Grainfield, platted in June of 1879 along the Union Pacific, was in the days of travel by wagon, about a day's trip from Gove, Park, Grinnell, and Orion.
Today, Grainfield is one of the five towns in Gove County that sits quietly near I-70 west of Hays about 65 miles and I-70 east of Colby about 40 miles. No would guess that this small town of about 300 is home to the once famous Opera House. Built in 1887, the Opera House played an important part in the lives of early Grainfield residents because this building provided the only place where various contests could be held. Stock companies would come to town by rail to perform in the Opera House. Entertainers performed there until the 1930's.
Since then, the Opera House has been "home" to various retail businesses-a doctor's office, a harness shop, hardware store, furniture store, print shop, private school, a Ford dealership, tire shop, and a plumbing and electrical business. The last store closed its doors nearly 30 years ago. Since then, the Opera House has stood empty.
When the owner of the Opera House, Joan Dingworth of Texas, was approached with the idea of renovating the building, she deeded it over to the Grainfield Lions Club. Presently, the Grainfield Lions Club and other interested individuals of Grainfield and northwest Kansas have begun Phase I of the project--weatherizing the building and cleaning up the facade and outside of the building. The renovation project is funded by a grant and donations from interested persons.
Students from the Department of Interior Architecture at K-State under associate professor Jim Dubois have worked up design proposals and ideas for the Opera House which include a brewery, ice cream shop, youth center, conference rooms, displays of art and antiques, and restoring the theater. Currently, there has been no decision made as to what the renovated Opera House will house.
As you drive along I-70 west of Hays and east of Colby, look for Grainfield--the Home of the Opera House-currently under renovation.
292 - Wheatland (785) 673-4213
District Office (785) 673-4213 / I-70 & K-23
P. O. Box 165 / Grainfield KS 67737-0165
Wheatland Elementary (785) 673-4365 / 4th & Elm
Wheatland High School (785) 673-4223 / I-70 & K-23
|Library||Grainfield Public Library (785) 673-4770 / 242 Main / P. O. Box 154|
|Churches||St. Agnes Catholic Church (785) 673-4625 / Cedar St.
St. Agnes Educational Center (785) 673-5550 / 3rd & Cedar
United Methodist Church (785) 673-4265 / 3rd & Oak
|Recreation||City Park-horse shoes, basketball, tennis, and sand volleyball
Grainfield Ball Diamond - American Legion; K-18; and Pee Wee teams
American Legion (785) 673-5520 / Main St.
|Shopping||Heinrich Liquor Store (785) 673-4825
The Store (785) 673-5501 / 289 Main
|Dining||Teddy Shack (785) 673-4810 / 223 Main Street|
Citizens State Bank|
206 Main Street
|Government||City Office (785) 673-4759 /200 Main
City Shop (785) 673-4759
Post Office (785) 673-4686 / 205 Main
Library (785) 673-4770 / 242 Main
Fire Emergency (785) 673-5595
Ambulance Emergency (785) 754-2100
Sheriff Emergency (785) 938-2250
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