Wednesday, July 3, 2013


One of the pleasant offerings of the Northland New Neighbors League is Day Trips.  As second vice-president, I had the pleasure of scheduling a number of these outings.  The league tries to have at least one day trip a month.  Surprisingly the attendance is always small considering we have around 125 members, but I haven't been on one yet, that everyone in the small group didn't have a blast.

Yesterday was no exception.  Marilyn, Carol, Janice, and I had a blast visiting the Overland Park Arboretum & Botanical Gardens in Overland Park, KS. 
It was a perfect day as the temperatures are only in the low 80s.  For the first of July, that is low.  Next week the forecast is back in the 90s again.

Marilyn was the only one in the group who had been there before.  It was absolutely beautiful.  When I came home and downloaded the pictures I had taken, there were 77 pictures.  I obviously can't put all those pictures here so I have tried to choose some of our favorite "sites".

Janice took this picture of Carol, Marilyn, and me.  We asked a person walking by to take a picture of the four of us, but it wasn't on the camera. ??? I usually look at the picture when someone else takes it to make sure it is acceptable, but I didn't this time. This is Margaret's Pond behind us.  I have a number of pictures taken around it.

I took this one of Carol, Marilyn, and Janice with  Janice's phone.  So sorry that I didn't get one of the four of us.

There are many little places like this one there, that you can sit down, "meditate", and enjoy the plants.

I made this picture larger because I wanted you to see the "culprit" in the upper right hand corner.  See him?  This was next to the bench we were sitting on.  When we got up to leave the area, Carol noticed the web and the "crystal-like" water drops.  I didn't see the spider until I downloaded the picture.

Another beautiful area.

Here is a close up picture of one of the hanging baskets seen on the sides of the railing.

Looking across Margaret's Pond at the amphitheater.

Marilyn noticed the angels on the legs of this bench.

I don't remember what this flower was called.....some of them didn't have little name plates...., but I liked the colors.

This is a stevia or sweetleaf plant.

Some of the koi that we saw in some of the ponds.

These beautiful urns marked the entrance to the amphitheater we saw from the other side

and then an area of vincas on the other side of the theater.

I had to take a picture of the lone little turtle out in Margaret's Pond "basking in the sun".

This was an interesting plant none of us had ever seen before.  I bent down and tried to take a picture looking back up in the blossom, but couldn't get the shot I was looking for.  I don't think it was labeled.

I couldn't resist taking this picture of this clematis bloom.  My Auntie loved her clematis vine.

This clematis vine was right across the sidewalk from the above one.  It was a lighter purple.

This is a picture that Janice took with her phone of one of the wooden bridges in the gardens that we crossed over.

This is a picture of another waterfall that Janice took.  Several of the ponds were low on water and so the water wasn't flowing over the rocks.  This one was really pretty.

I saw this little butterfly and watched him rhythmically open and close his wings.  I tried to time my picture so that I would get him with his wings open and I did.

We saw several  hydrangeas plants all of which were white.  Did you know that there color is determined by the soil they are planted in.  Usually you see them in pinks and lavenders.  All that they had were this beautiful white.

In addition to flowers and trees we saw many statues and "objects".  I love bird houses and couldn't resist taking this picture of these three bird houses made of brass, bronze, and aluminum.

We rounded a corner and came upon this enchanted area.  This coleus was in a pot but placed down in the tree that had been hollowed out to hold the pot.  Just beautiful!

Next to it was this sign describing the Enchanted Area.

This is what we saw in the tree... (My picture once again doesn't do it justice.)

One of the many smaller ponds and its waterfall.

I've seen pictures of these on cute

We didn't see what this plant was called, but there were several different but similar plants in this area.  They reminded us of fireworks.

A slightly different one.

And the prettiest picture of all because of the variety of plants growing with them....

This clever "train" made from whisky barrels was at the entrance to a "children's play area"

They had this actual caboose there and the tracks with two separate trains operating on them.  If you look closely, you can see the larger of the two trains crossing the water on the bridge.  When this train track ran under the sidewalks, they had a glass cover so the children could see the train.

You know, if you read my blog often, I like to take pictures of signs.  I took this picture because it sorta explained the medicine wheel.  This one (see the next picture) is the only one of its kind in Kansas.  We decided we needed to do more research on the Medicine Wheel because we still didn't quite understand its significance.

This is the Medicine Wheel.

We left the flowers and walked on a trail through the trees and was amazed at some of the most beautiful Chinese sculptures.  This one celebrates the Chinese contribution to building the railroads in the United States.  Once again my camera didn't do it justice.  (Even making it larger, doesn't do a lot.)

This darling one was showing what we called "Latch Key Children"....children who came home and had to let themselves in their homes because their parents were still at work.  The artist called them Key Chain Children and said children had to come home to eat lunch that they prepared themselves because the schools didn't offer lunch. They wore the keys to their homes around their neck.

This one was called
"The Kiss".

I forget the name of this one.....maybe "Childhood".

Anyway, the two smaller children are enjoying swinging on the branch that the older child (?) is holding.

This one is stainless steel.  The light is "playing" off the steel and is giving the head and body of the cyclist a strange look, but this sculpture was beautifully done.

Janice took this picture of a sculpture of Michael Jackson.
Another picture Janice took of a planter from a hollowed out log.

Back at the entrance was an area rightly titled Monet's Pond.  I took several pictures of if from both sides.  Monet did a better job than my camera did.
We were admiring the beautiful water lilies and the other water plants with the purple flowers....we didn't know what they were called.

And from the opposite side of the pond.....

One more beautiful urn in the gardens....

This was a picture of one of the signs showing the gardens and the many paths you could follow.

We didn't choose to do so, but there were a number of locations for picnics if you brought your own food or purchased food in the cafe. You can see that this particular one was full.  

There were quite a few people visiting because Tuesday is "free day".   It only costs $3 anyway for ages 13 and above.  Quite a bargain for the enjoyment you can receive from spending several hours there.

I would have liked to have shared all 77 pictures that I took, but didn't want to overwhelm you.  Hope you enjoyed the ones I chose.  AND a BIG THANK YOU to Janice for sending me the pictures she took.  

If you have never been, I would highly recommend going to the Overland Park Arboretum and Botanical Gardens.  It is on 179th street just west of US 69 in Overland Park, KS.


  1. Hey Patricia,
    I am working with the city of Overland Park to design the 2015 Overland Park Visitor's Guide. Could we please use your image from the Overland Park Arboretum & Botanical Gardens in the Metro Attractions section of the guide? I would love to use the one of the sign that you have at the top of the blog. If this is a possibility, could you please send me an at your earliest convenience email with the image attached at - Thank you so much!

    1. I will send you the picture, Jenny. Thanks for asking.