The time has come for the opening of the newly located Kansas Heritage Center at the Dodge City Public Library.

Previously the home of the Dodge City USD 443 Administration Building, the Kansas Heritage Center move began in February this year and will be in the lower level of DCPL.

To celebrate the grand opening, DCPL and Kansas Heritage Center will hold a weekend-long event from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday and 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday.

According to DCPL, on Friday there will be an official ribbon-cutting ceremony with DCPL executive director Diedre Lemon from the Dodge City Public Library speaking.

Miss Kitty will also be in attendance and will sing Kansas' state song, "Home on the Range," along with local musician Derek Bower.

Sharing the history of "Home on the Range," local historian Connie Ross will present a display for the event featuring information on the cabin in Athol, Kan., in which the song was written, as well as history about the song itself.

According to DCPL community relations specialist Phil Handsaker, the documentary "Home on the Range," winner of the 2018 Western Heritage Award (Wrangler) for Best Docudrama by the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City, will be screened.

Kicking off the screening will be a presentation by Ken Spurgeon, producer and director of the documentary.

Local station manager of Rocking M radio and performer in the documentary Josh Roesener will also speak of his experiences during the production.

A tour will be available of the Kansas Heritage Center from 2 to 3 p.m. Saturday. Light refreshments will be available.

At 3 p.m. Saturday, Spurgeon will hold a presentation of interesting and little-known facts about the history of the state of Kansas.

Spurgeon has written, co-written and directed four documentaries through his production company Lone Chimney Films Inc., two of them award-winning.

"This event is really a celebration of the move of the Kansas Heritage Center from the USD 443 School District to the Dodge City Public Library, but what a great way to embrace the rich history contained within its new walls than to have such a recognized filmmaker share some of the Kansas history people can then research in more detail here locally," Handsaker said.

For more information on the Kansas Heritage Center grand opening weekend events, call 620-225-0248.


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