A whole summer of walking

Final Friday schedule for events on the downtown loop trails

By Karen Long

The Exploration Trail runs through Riverside Park and alongside Exploration Place.

The Exploration Trail runs through Riverside Park and alongside Exploration Place.

Starting in May, local organizations are planning entertainment along the trails on Final Fridays to correlate with the various trail themes. Richard Schodorf of Sunflower Title, and Debbie Williams, head of the Health & Wellness Coalition of Wichita have also been part of the team organizing the Final Friday entertainment.

According to Schodorf, heres the Final Friday schedule to keep you walking  and having fun  throughout the summer.


Exploration Trail
In conjunction with Exploration Place, and in anticipation of the CSI exhibit they have opening the following week, there will be a murder mystery for walkers to solve, with clues along the trail. You'll play the role of a CSI investigator and learn about the latest forensic science while solving the mystery.


The trails will be an official Riverfest event with a brochure provided by the Wichita Downtown Development Corporation.

Art Museum Trail
Artists will be creating art along the trail, including North High graduate Jordan Tarrant, who will paint a mural on the side of a building at 201 N. Mead, in a space donated for the purpose by Dave Burk. Tarrant is known for live art performances and will be completing the mural during Final Friday. The trail also encompasses much of the sculpture installed in Old Town by CityArts, and some of the trail signs reproduce art from the collection of the Wichita Art Museum.

Poets Trail
Poets from all over Kansas will converge on the trail to recite poetry. Jordan Tarrant will be painting a mural at WaterWalk in another of his live art performances. The mural will be a portrait of Shakespeare, built up from the 300 words the poet added to the English language.


American Indian Trail
The Mid-America All-Indian Center teams with the Old Cowntown Museum for some fun with cowboys and Indians along the trail.

Magic Trail
In Haysville, optical illusions will come to life on the Magic Trail, thanks to the slight-of-hand skills of 25 magicians from the Wichita Wizards organization.


African American Trail
Prisca N. Barnes, executive director of The Kansas African American Museum, is working with Go Wichita to organize a Kansas Idol competition in recognition of the key role music played in the life of African Americans in Wichita.


Sports Trail
Ted Hayes, president and CEO of the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame is helping to organize an interactive evening of activities where budding athletes can compete against some of their heroes in college and pro sports on the walking trail. This also leads up to a Hall of Fame induction the following week.

Tallgrass Film Festival Trail
Filmmakers from all over the country will be in town for the Film Festival, and some of them will be giving courses on how to make a film on an iPhone  everything from storyboards to editing to uploading on YouTube.

For updates throughout the summer, go to the website of Wichita Downtown Development Corporation: www.downtownwichita.org

Wichita downtown loop trails map

Landmarks on the downtown loop trails

Download a map of the downtown loop trails, opening later in April. Each themed trail is roughly two miles long and is marked with signs bearing quotes relating to the subject. The quotes were compiled in partnership with local experts.

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