Logo graphic Prairie
27th and North Main, Bethel College, North Newton, Kansas 67117

Tues - Fri 9:30 - 4:30
Sat - Sun 1:30 - 4:30
Closed on Mondays and major holidays.

Children 6 - 16, $2.00
Adults, $4.00
Association members free

Begun in 1984, the 1.5 acre prairie reconstruction stretches from our parking lot to the museum building. On the 50 yard approach to the museum visitors first encounter the prairie-- over 15 grass and more than 100 wildflower species. Most species selected are represented in the Bethel College Herbarium plant collection gathered in this area in 1896. Each year portions of the reconstruction are burned or mowed to simulate the natural effects of prairie wildfires and grazing. From the prairie anemone in spring to the heath aster of autumn, a procession of blooming wildflowers can be seen throughout the growing season. Even in winter the prairie shows color in the red-brown of big bluestem grasses.

Early European settlers encountered the prairie as a huge wild sea of grass. The steel-bottomed sod buster plow laid bare the richness of the prairie, and today, only 5% of the original prairie remains.

This prairie reconstruction has become a vibrant living part of the Kauffman Museum, creating a context for the historic artifacts held in our collections while providing a research and education tool.

316•283•1612   kauffman@bethelks.edu
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