I thought Ms. Wheelchair Kansas should have an appearance on Kansas Day. So, I started looking for some special activity I could be part of. When I discovered there were Kansas Day activities at the State Capital and a dedication of the newly finished State Capital renovation, I knew I needed to try to be there. Senator Ostmeyer had invited me to come to the Capital and be introduced in the Senate. Fortunately, we were able to work it out for Kansas Day.
There were several schools on field trips to the Capital to enjoy Kansas Day activities. I got to talk to some students as well as enjoy the activities with my own family. We got to listen to stories, the kid's made Kansas day crafts, and we got to spend time talking to reinactors. :) There is now a state map on the floor of the entry way so we had the fun of finding the counties we have explored and talking about all the fun there is to do in Kansas.
After enjoying the Kansas Day activities and getting to spend time in the gift shop, we headed to the Rotunda for the Dedication of the Restored Kansas State Capital. I was blessed to be get to sit beside Senator Ostmeyer and have a private explanation of all the changes. The newly restored Capitol is a beautiful building that all Kansans should be proud of. I learned a lot about it's history and the renovation process. My daughter even got to write a paper about her time at the Capital for a school project. We got to hear several speakers, several re-enactors, and listen as the Governor dedicated the the renovated State Capitol Building. We were blessed by the musical talents of Wentley Phipps and the orchestra from a local high school. Those who know me know the music was probably the most memorable part of the experience for me. I was almost moved to tears as I listened to the Kansas House and Senate, as well as other attendees singing Home on the Range. I was glad the words were printed in the program, since I don't really know the words to more than one verse. I was honored to get to hear this great state song sung once again later that afternoon in the Senate. We even got to sing Happy Birthday to Kansas and enjoy some birthday cake. What an awesome Kansas Day!
I then had the opportunity to spend time with Senator Ostmeyer in his office before heading to the Senate to be introduced and presented with a resolution. I thoroughly enjoyed getting to spend time with the Senator and learning about each other and our families. I did offer to be available in the future for any conversations needed regarding disability issues including the WORK program and home/community based services.
What an honor to be introduced in the Senate and recognized for being Ms. Wheelchair Kansas. I was thrilled to have the privilege to get to speak to several other Senators after the session. I hope as they are presented with disability issues, they will remember to contact the Ms. Wheelchair Kansas program as needed for any conversations about first hand experience. It always seems to work better when making policy decisions about disabled services if you can involve those who will be affected by those services in the conversation. I hope they remember that I am available for those conversations and I'm sure many others in the Ms. Wheelchair Kansas community are available as well.
I left the State Capital on Kansas Day thinking how proud I am to be a Kansan.
And, I also remember thinking I had never seen the State Capital without a green dome. Great job with the renovation!!
Thankful thoughts for today:
Politicians that travel that state
Newly renovated capital building
"Give thanks for unknown blessings already on their way."
Native American Saying