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Next Best Thing
Next Best Thing is a new, limited-run commentary from KMUW. Every other Wednesday, KMUW's Jordan Kirtley will take a look at ways we can stay connected from a far via virtual events and outdoor activities.

Next Best Thing: Welcoming Spring

Jordan Kirtley
For me, blooming tulips are the first sign of spring.

Spring began on March 20, but it’s finally feeling official as the outdoor events and activities we look forward to each year start back up.

This coming Saturday, April 3, is opening day for the Kansas Grown Farmers’ Market locations in West Wichita and Derby, and also the Old Town Farmers’ Market.

  • Kansas Grown Farmers' Market Derby | 512 E. Madison Ave. | Saturdays 8 a.m. - 12 p.m. starting April 3
  • Kansas Grown Farmers' Market West Wichita | 7001 W. 21st Street N. | Saturdays 7 a.m. - 12 p.m. starting April 3
  • Kansas Grown Farmers' Market Union Station | 701 E. Douglas | Wednesdays 4 to 7 p.m. starting May 12
  • Old Town Farmers' Market | 835 E. 1st Street | Saturdays 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. starting April 3 

Botanica’s extended seasonal hours begin tomorrow, and Tulip Festival isn’t far behind. For three Saturdays, April 10 through 24, you can enjoy the celebration of more than 66,000 planted tulips with live music, food trucks, carousel rides and special activities. Details are at botanica.org.

Another local hotspot for tulip appreciation is the Bartlett Arboretum. They’re open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Friday through Sunday, and noon to 7 p.m. on Thursdays beginning tomorrow. And Art at the Arb returns on April 10 and 11 with visual and performing artists and food vendors amidst a colorful blooming backdrop. Visit bartlettarboretum.com to find out more.

And if you’ve yet to visit the Chain Link Gallery, now is the perfect time. This temporary outdoor gallery features new artwork every couple of weeks, installed on the fence in front of the former Popup Park downtown on Douglas. The current installation by Carlos Palomino and Hugo Zelada-Romero is on view through April 4. The artists also have an event this Friday at Harvester Arts, displaying the process of making the installation.


Music: "Kitty in the Window" by Podington Bear. From the Free Music Archive. CC BY NC.

Jordan Kirtley is KMUW's Marketing Manager and the host of Next Up, a local events commentary. More casually she is known as KMUW’s “in-house artist,” having designed the many facets of KMUW’s visual identity.