Boot Hill Antiques, Dodge City Brewery, Boot Hill Distillery, Holiday Inn Express, The Long Branch Lagoon (Waterpark), Tacos Jalisco – Dodge City

We stayed smack dab in downtown Dodge City which gave us a whole new feel for a place we have visited dozens of times while staying nearby with family in the small unincorporated town of Wright, where my husband grew up. The occasion was sad, a belated memorial service for the family matriarch, who died last November shortly before her 97th birthday. But we offspring and in-laws, 33 people including 12 of 15 grandchildren (ages 25 to 39) and 5 great grandchildren, gathering from all over the country, were so happy to be together at long last to honor Evelyn (with masks on in the small country church during a memorial mass) and to catch up, Covid be damned.

Most people stayed at the new Holiday Inn Express, just south of the main drag, Wyatt Earp Blvd, and it was surprisingly contemporary, almost cool. But we opted to stay a five minute walk away in a cool old western bungalow near the Boot Hill museum, on an old red brick road. Great place, well-decorated in not too kitschy western decor, very comfortable beds and a great front porch with a table and old metal chairs where we ate breakfast looking down across the city, the sound of an occasional car rumbling by on the brick streets, a few people next door at the cool modern brewpub and up the hill at the distillery in a Spanish style brick building with a red tiled roof that used to be the city hall/police station..

Sadly Red Beard Coffee was closed, but we ate tacos at our favorite Mexican road house, Tacos Jalisco, which was as busy as ever with Hispanic and Anglo families. Good tacos (el pastor, carnitas, carne asada) and flan! We had a big family dinner at the venerable Cowtown Steakhouse.

I squeezed in a quick visit to Boot Hill antiques on the third floor of an old building downtown. Tons of great stuff packed into dozens of vendor’s stalls, lots of vintage tablecloths, Roseville pottery, old blue glass tumblers, turquoise jewelry, and that was just the stuff I liked in particular.

I wished we had brought our swim suits. The elaborate new waterpark looked very inviting although I’m not sure when we would have had time to visit. We had a little walk downtown on a very quiet Sunday, admiring some of the old buildings in fairly good shape and the beautiful old Spanish-style cathedral.

Sorghum in Western Kansas

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