For 13 years straight, True West Magazine has honored Dodge City as one of the top 10 Western Towns in the country.

This year Dodge City placed No. 4 with Abilene placing as No. 1.

"It's very exciting," Convention and Visitors Bureau director Jan Stevens said. "To have not just us but Abilene placing in the top 5 just shows how great Kansas is at preserving its heritage.

"For Dodge to be evaluated as a community year in and year and receive an honor, it just shows how the community of Dodge City is.

"This is very much a community award. Without the community pulling together and doing all they can do, we wouldn't be put on this list.

"The people involved in preserving our past with their commitment to tourism and western heritage is what got us this.

"My hats off to them."

Some of the things Stevens possibly attributes to the magazine honor was the recent statute of Matt Dillon being placed along with Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday from the Trail of Fame, as well as the renovation done to the Boot Hill Distillery.

"That building used to be the city hall, fire house, jail and in the 1980s it had the CVB and Chamber of Commerce for awhile," Stevens said. "By preserving our past and modernizing them I think is what stands out for people.

"And we just renovated the Depot to house all of us here so maybe that will factor in for next year."

The Santa Fe Depot is now the home office of the CVB, Dodge City Area Chamber of Commerce and Dodge City/Ford County Economic Development as well as the Public Transportation hub and Amtrak.

When talking about Dodge City history, it would be hard not to mention Boot Hill Museum.

"Boot Hill Museum was honored to have been selected as the 'Best Historic Cemetery of the West' for 2018 by True West Magazine," said Boot Hill Museum marketing manager Laura Tawater. "It feels great to know know that a national publication like True West Magazine recognizes our famous western heritage and consistently awards us for having the best of many things.

"It shows that we are truly an ultimate travel destination for people who enjoy western history."

"Dodge City's history is remarkable and fascinating," said True West executive editor Bob Boze Bell in a press release. "And it still lives in the events, the buildings, the collections that are visited by thousands of people every year.

"There's no question that Dodge City is a Top True Western Town."

According to True West Magazine, editors base their selection on criteria demonstrating how each town has preserved its history through old buildings, museums and other institutions, events, and promotions of historic resources.

For more information or to get a subscription visit TWMag.com or or call 888-687-1881.

To contact the writer email vmarshall@dodgeglobe.com