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"Ok, Colby is a small town, in the middle of nowhere, in the western part of Kansas. This museum is something I would have expected to see in a major city. The outdoor buildings were interesting, a sod house, an old schoolhouse, a home, a church, the most amazing barn (that is a whole story in itse..."lf, the biggest barn in Kansas, and it is huge, so well kept, and the fact that is was moved here in one piece is just mind boggling!). You can go inside all of them, the best thing I thought was all the signs welcoming kids to touch things, to try on the pioneer clothes, to experience what living on the prairie was really like. So many museums are a "no touch" area for kids, this was cool, and I did not even have any kids with me!
Inside the museum is a wonderful collection of amazing things, toys, dolls, marbles, wedding dresses, military uniforms, china, prairie living items, all displayed so well in similar groupings with wonderful lighting, and again, things to keep kids interested...
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"What a surprise ... this museum is an unexpected jewel. Incredible collections of all varieties: military uniforms, world-wide crystal, glass, pottery, toys, dolls, farming implements, etc, etc. Worthy of the Smithsonian. Also on site: one-room schoolhouse, one-room sod house, historic church, hug..."e restored barn. Great educational opportunities from pre-school to Senior citizens.
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"This museum complex is a great place to stop on your way through western Kansas. The barn is pretty impressive, and the other buildings really make you feel like you've stepped into a previous century. One building really feels like you've walked into someone's current living room -- it even smells ..."like someone's grandmother might still live there.
They went to great pains to detail the history of the area in binders near each exhibit, so you can decide to learn in as great a depth as you like about any of the objects you see.
They also provide a number of activities for kids that are clearly labeled. There are lots of things to touch, in general.
We only stayed for about an hour, but could have probably stayed longer. Might want to come when it's a bit warmer outside, since the several buildings are connected by outdoor paths.
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