Since I haven’t ventured far from home this week, I’m going to share a few pictures that reflect the joys of summer in Topeka, Kansas. We live near Lake Shawnee, where I try to make myself take a walk most every morning. I snapped this picture on the right during one of my recent walks. Since it’s also very humid in Kansas, I take my walks around sunrise in an attempt to avoid the heat. I’m guessing that you’re probably surprised to discover there are any large bodies of water in this landlocked state. Well, Lake Shawnee isn’t a large body of water, but it is a lake, and it does have some beautiful gardens and some wonderful walking and biking trails. And it's big enough for everything from speed boats to sailboats, paddleboats, canoes, rowboats and an occasional kayak.
The lake area has undergone many upgrades and changes through the years, but construction of Lake Shawnee and the surrounding park was a project of Shawnee County and the Federal Works Progress Administration (WPA). Anyone remember learning about the New Deal and the WPA in history classes? Oh, come on—surely you remember! If not, consider this a brush-up class. The WPA was a relief measure established in 1935 and was supplied with an initial congressional appropriation of $4,880,000,000, and offered work to the unemployed on an unprecedented scale by spending money on a wide variety of programs, including highways and building construction, slum clearance, reforestation, and rural rehabilitation. The building of Lake Shawnee began November 3, 1935, and was completed May 30, 1938, and employed an average of 400 workers for thirty months.
For seventy years, people have enjoyed picnicking and outdoor recreation at this lake, especially the children. The little girl enjoying some of the lake’s pleasures is Samantha, the daughter of a dear friend. And what better way to enjoy a summer day than feeding ducks or jumping off a bench with your best friend? If you haven’t taken a few minutes to stroll outdoors and enjoy the wonders of God’s creation, try to get out there soon. In the meantime, I hope you’ll derive a few moments of pleasure from pictures of a sunrise over the lake and little girls jumping off benches and feeding ducks.
May you find joy in God’s creation. ~Judy
P.S. And super congrats to our Tammy for her SECOND Christy win. You make us proud!!