Home is Where it Happens preview

The Home is Where it Happens event Saturday is now canceled.

The Eudora community is invited to participate in the “Home is where it happens” event taking place Saturday at the Private Gardens event space. 

The event at 1393 E. 2100 Road promises live music, activities, raffles, a petting zoo, food and most importantly, interaction with the Eudora community. The event will run from noon until 5 p.m. 

Event organizer Mary Kirkendoll said the pandemic has taken away many opportunities for community events. She hopes this event will be a safe way to bring the community together. The end goal, she said, is to make an event that will help people know what’s going on in the community.

“We are hoping to bring people together in a safe way outside in a casual way that showcases what the community has to offer,” Kirkendoll said. 

Kirkendoll said almost 40 booths and open-air activities will be spread out across the Private Gardens’ large property. The free event will thus follow the county’s guidelines on public gatherings. Masks and social distancing will be strongly encouraged throughout the event. 

Kirkendoll said each Eudora business or nonprofit at the event will have a table with an activity or information about the organization. If participants complete an activity at the tables, they will be given a raffle ticket. Kirkendoll said there will be a raffle drawing every couple of hours throughout the event, which runs from noon-5 p.m.

Waylon Ziesenis, president of the Eudora Area Historical Society, has been in charge of collecting the almost 20 raffle items donated thus far to the event. Ziesenis said the prizes include gift certificates and items from the businesses. 

“I’ve lived in Eudora for quite a while, and it’s just home to me,” Ziesenis said. “Whatever I can do to help make it home for everybody else is something I’ll try and do.”

There will be several bands performing live throughout the event, and attendees are encouraged to bring blankets or yard chairs to sit in and social distance with their groups. 

“Sit with whoever you come with and spread out,” Kirkendoll said. “And people are used to that now so I don’t think it will be such a big deal.” 

Aaron Thakker of Eudora has donated a petting zoo for the event, which will be housed in the barn on the property. Thakker said the petting zoo has monkeys, kangaroos and other animals that participants will be able to pet and feed.

Thakker said he has put on community events in the past and loves doing what he can to bring the community together. He said he was happy to help with Saturday’s event because he loves the “tight community” of Eudora.

“I like to see the community out and involved and enjoying life again,” Thakker said. “It’s a great community, and I love to help out.”

The event is hosted by the Eudora Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Eudora Chamber of Commerce. Kirkendoll said the Eudora Department of Parks and Recreation have also been helpful in planning the event along with a group of community volunteers and Karen Boyer, executive director of the Chamber.

Kirkendoll said she hopes the event will become an annual way to bring the community together depending on the community response this Saturday. 

Kirkendoll said she’s unsure how many people will attend because it did not have a registration period, and because the pandemic makes some still wary of attending events. 

“Even if we have 50 people show up, I think we would be excited to just be together in a safe space and start this event for future plans,” Kirkendoll said. 

Hot dogs and hamburgers will also be for sale courtesy of Eudora High School culinary students. 

Attendees can park in the lot by the fields at 12th Street and Winchester Road. 

Reach reporter Cami Koons at eudoratimes@gmail.com.

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