The Franklin County Quilt Block Tour was the first organized quilt block tour in Kansas. The tour began in 2010, with support from the Franklin County Quilt Block Committee and the Franklin County Convention & Visitors Bureau, and has grown to more than 35 quilts throughout the county. The purpose of the tour is to showcase the rural areas of the county and highlight the farms, ranches, crops and livestock while educating the public of the importance of agriculture — economically and historically — in the area. The landowners participating in the program realize the importance of telling their stories about agriculture, as well as history, on the farm — where it all happens.
• Reception seating: 75
• Classroom seating: 26
• Alcohol permitted
• Limited kitchen facilities
Clinton Lake 785-843-7665
Pomona Lake 785-453-2201
Hillsdale Lake 913-783-4507
Melvern Lake 785-549-3318
Ottawa is the central point for four great fishing lakes located just outside Franklin County: Clinton Lake to the north, Pomona Lake to the west, Hillsdale Lake to the east, and Melvern to the south.. Each is easily accessible and less than a 30-minute drive from Ottawa. All of the lakes were built as Army Corps of Engineers flood projects and contain ample opportunities for recreation. Each lake offers camping, boating access, swimming, wildlife viewing, fishing, equine trails and Pomona and Clinton both have adjacent hunting available. Fishing includes crappie, channel catfish, flathead, bass, bluegill,and everyone’s favorite – walleye.
The Flint Hills Nature Trail stretches for 117 miles across east-central Kansas, from Osawatomie in the east to Herington in the west, and passes through several communities, including Rantoul, Ottawa, Pomona, Vassar, Osage City, Miller, Admire, Allen, Bushong and Council Grove. The trail passes through five counties: Miami, Franklin, Osage, Lyon and Morris. As its name suggests, the trail crosses the beautiful Flint Hills. The Flint Hills represent one of the last remaining tallgrass prairie ecosystems in the world. It is home to abundant prairie plant and wildlife species, spectacular views, national historic sites and a diverse set of recreational areas. The eastern portions of the route travel alongside the Marais des Cygnes River, between rushing waters and towering bluffs, through rolling farmland and riparian woodlands.
The Flint Hills Nature Trail has more than a dozen trailheads and other access points, some with nearby parking, camping/lodging and other services. A few access points include:
- Osawatomie — Go 2 miles west on John Brown Highway (Parker Avenue) and then north on Indianapolis Road a half-mile.
- Ottawa East — Go 1 mile east on Seventh Street from U.S. 59 (Main Street). The trail begins just past South Mason Street.
- Ottawa West — Go one block west on First Street from U.S. 59 (Main Street) to Walnut Street, where the Flint Hills Nature Trail intersects with the Prairie Spirit Rail Trail. Follow the Flint Hills connector path to Maple Street, where the trail veers off to the right and passes under K-68 Highway. (Parking at Second and Walnut streets.)
- Vassar (Gateway to Lake Pomona) — The trailhead is 1 block south of the Vassar Methodist Church on Croco Road.