NTS 50th Anniversary

old, stone two-story house with porch, awning and steps extending from the front
Visit the Rawlingson-Terwilliger Home (Trail Days Historical Site) in Council Grove. To find other events on a National Trail visit Trails50.Org.

Santa Fe Trail Association

Celebrate in Council Grove

4 pm: Groundbreaking Ceremony at Rock Creek Crossing, property owned by Della Orton (located 0.25 miles north of US 56 on 200 Road)
6-7 pm: The Last Chance Store is open to the public
7-9 pm: Night at the Mission at the Kaw Mission State Historic Site
Archeologists will discuss their findings from the 2016 archeological dig at the Last Chance Store. Light hors d’oeuvres will be served.

Council Grove Historic Sites are open to the public, including:

  • Seth Hays Home: 11 am-4 pm

  • Post Office Oak Museum: 11 am-4 pm

  • Kaw Mission: 10 am-5 pm

  • Last Chance Store: 10 am-5 pm

  • Council Oak: 8 am-5 pm

  • Rawlinson-Terwilliger Home (Trail Days Historical Site): 9 am-8 pm

9 am-5 pm: Wagon Rendezvous – Council Oak Park
Throughout the day, experts will be on hand to discuss wagons, stagecoaches, and demonstrate the skills, such as blacksmithing, needed to keep the wagons rolling. Horse-drawn vehicles will be on display all day.

10 am-12 pm and 1:30 pm-5 pm: Stagecoach viewing, program, and rides provided by Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop & Farm, Olathe, KS – Council Oak Park

9 am-5 pm: Visit the Santa Fe Trail at the Trails Day Historic Site
Information provided on historic sites to visit along the length of the Santa Fe National Historic Trail. Santa Fe Trail Chapter exhibits located in the Field School.

Recruitment & Enlistment Camp by the 8th Kansas Volunteer Infantry – Trail Days Historic Site

7:30 am: Opening at Council Grove Christian Church, 106 E. Main Street. Gathering/breakfast available for purchase.

7:45 am: Welcome/Introductions of dignitaries (Council Grove Christian Church)

8 am: Geocaching 101 – Introduction to the hobby of geocaching, followed by geocaching event at the Neosho Riverwalk with Ryan Semmel and the Flint Hills Geocachers

9 am: Dr. Leo E. Oliva – Overview of the Santa Fe Trail (Council Grove Christian Church)

10 am: President Harry Truman visits the Madonna of the Trail (Madonna Park). President Truman will visit around Council Grove throughout the day.

11 am: Blacksmithing/Wheelwright Demonstration (Council Oak Park)

11:45 am: Stagecoach Brings the Mail (Council Oak Park)

12 pm: Lunch on your own. The Council Grove Christian Church will be providing lunch offerings as well as Council Grove restaurants. Lists of restaurants are available at the Chamber table and office.

1 pm: Recruitment & Enlistment Camp “Call to Arms” by the 8th Kansas Volunteer Infantry Regiment (Trail Days Historic Site)

2:30 pm: Annie Wilson and the Tallgrass Express String Band (Council Oak Park)

3: 30 pm: Blacksmithing/Wheelwright Demonstration (Council Oak Park)

4:15 pm: Stagecoach Brings the Mail (Council Oak Park)

9 am-4 pm: Geocaching “Rendezvous on Santa Fe Trails,” led by the Flint Hills Geocachers (Neosho Riverwalk)

6:30 pm: Ron Parks “Kanza and the Santa Fe Trail” (Allegawaho Memorial Heritage Park, 3.5 miles SE of Council Grove via Dunlap Road, at X Ave. and 625 Road)

Be prepared! Bring your lawn chairs to all events, day or night!

Celebrate in Olathe, Kansas

On June 2, 2018, the Missouri River Outfitters Chapter of the Santa Fe Trail Association and the National Park Service will join the Kansas City Area Historic Trails Association (KCHTA) and Trails Head Chapter of the Oregon-California Trails Association to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the National Trails System Act and the 175th anniversary of the Oregon Trail. Activities will take place from 10 am to 2 pm at Lone Elm Park in Olathe, Kansas. Visit the KCHTA website for more information.


Rendezvous in Larned, Kansas

The Santa Fe Trail Association and National Park Service will hold a board meeting and rendezvous in Larned, Kansas from September 20-22, 2018 and will commemorate the 50th anniversary of the National Trails System Act. For more information, please visit the Santa Fe Trail Center website and follow the Santa Fe National Historic Trail on Facebook.


Celebration: Eastern Chapters

On October 5-7, 2018, the six eastern chapters of the Santa Fe Trail Association, along with the National Park Service, will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the National Trails System Act in the following locations:

  • Elkhart, Kansas

  • Boise City, Oklahoma

  • Clayton New Mexico

Activities include bus tours of the Oklahoma Panhandle, tours of McNeese Crossing and Autograph Rock, tours and a cookout in the Cimarron National Grasslands, and a visit to Camp Nichols where John Carson will speak about his great grandfather, Kit Carson. Visit the Santa Fe Trail Association website for details and updates.

Last updated: May 16, 2018

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

National Trails Intermountain Region
Santa Fe National Historic Trail
PO Box 728

Santa Fe, NM 87504


(505) 988-6098

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