Fall 2014: “Erie Dinosaur Park” sneak peek!

Erie Dinosaur Park
Dorris dinosaurs donated to Erie to create new public park

People who knew the late Robert Dorris describe him as honest and hard-working, imaginative and adventurous: a stand-up Christian husband and father.

But an artist? That’s not how Bob saw himself, anyway. His wife, Elveta, says he “didn’t want to be called an artist in any form.”

Still, some may beg to differ.

From 1989 to the early 2000s, Bob was responsible for the conception, construction and installation of 15 larger-than-life dinosaurs along Hwy. 47 near Erie. Using only metal scraps – mostly old car parts – Bob sculpted the now-famous dinosaurs “just for fun,” Elveta says. “We never dreamed it would be so (popular).”

Fondly known by many as the “Dinosaur Not-So-National Park,” the sculptures have remained on the family’s private property since Bob’s passing in 2007. Soon, though, 12 of his cherished creations will travel to the heart of Erie, where they will be preserved and displayed publicly as part of the brand new Erie Dinosaur Park…

Want to keep reading about Erie Dinosaur Park? Check out the fall issue of Southeast Kansas Living, out now! It will include this story in its entirety, plus so much more. Subscribe now, or contact us to find a newsstand near you.

Fall 2014: “Vogel Family Vineyards” sneak peek!

Vogel Family Vineyards
Vines flourish on Galena family’s land

Photo courtesy of Vogel Family Vinyeards

Photo courtesy of Vogel Family Vinyeards

Ten years ago, Steve and Sheryll Vogel took a trip to Napa Valley.

Like millions of wine enthusiasts, they were impressed with the beautiful northern California landscape. Unlike many of those other visitors, however, they decided to try to replicate what they saw back at home – in Southeast Kansas.

“We went out to Napa and thought, ‘That’d be pretty on our hill,’” Steve says. “We thought we’d grow some grapes and that it wouldn’t be much trouble. It was a lot of trouble! But we decided to take a chance.”

The trouble was well worth it. Today, Steve, Sheryll and their son Phillip run Vogel Family Vineyards on 6.5 acres south of their hometown of Galena. As you turn the corner toward their home and vineyard, a sign proclaims that you’re in “Wine Country” now – and when you catch a glimpse of the scenery, there’s no arguing with that.

“We were traveling into Galena from the south, and we looked up on the hills and saw these rows of beautiful vines,” says Doug Gatewood, who moved to Galena a little more than a year ago with his wife – and has visited the vineyard several times since. “Seeing the rolling hills and the vineyard, it’s like you’re in Burgundy…”

Want to keep reading about Vogel Family Vineyards? Check out the fall issue of Southeast Kansas Living, out now! It will include this story in its entirety, plus so much more. Subscribe now, or contact us to find a newsstand near you.