Explore Lenexa with self-guided tours

Body Politic is one of three outdoor sculptures you’ll find at Lenexa City Center. Head inside the Lenexa Rec Center or Lenexa City Hall to find more public art to enjoy. (Photo by Bill Harrison)

With mild autumn weather arriving soon and residents seeking new ways to stay socially distant and entertained, there’s never been a better time to explore Lenexa’s beautiful parkland and outdoor art. Take an afternoon to discover areas of the city you’ve never seen before or learn something new.

Mini public art scavenger hunts

The City of Lenexa’s public art collection includes a variety of interesting outdoor sculptures. Discover them all with three fun short tours.

  • Sar-Ko-Par Trails Park (southeast corner of Lackman Road and 87 th Street Parkway) is home to five pieces of public art: Swimmer, The Serpent, Wash Day, Grampa and Amusing Breeze. Stroll the park to find all five. Here’s a hint: Two are located in Rose’s Pond.
  • Walk around Lenexa City Center to find three of the city’s most iconic sculptures, including one of Lenexa’s namesake: Frenzied Flight (Central Green Park, Penrose Lane and 8 th Street Parkway), Body Politic (Lenexa Rec Center, 17201 W. 87th St. Pkwy.) and Na Nex Se (Lenexa City Hall, 17101 W. 87th St. Pkwy.)
  • Take a mini road trip to explore these off-the-beaten-path gems from public buildings to trailheads: The Jogger (13420 Oak St.), Windswept (12500 W. 87th St. Pkwy.), The Hunt (83rd Street Trail west of Pflumm Road) and Bull Ridge (just west of Fire Station 5 at 19151 Prairie Star Parkway).

Evan Knaus Memorial Walk

Take a stroll in the shade to learn more about the many species of trees at Black Hoof Park.

Black Hoof Park is home to some of Lenexa’s most beautiful natural areas, from meadows to marshes to woods. The Evan Knaus Memorial Tree Walk, named in honor of a former Parks and Recreation employee, meanders about 2.5 miles through the wooded areas around Lake Lenexa to highlight nearly three dozen species of trees.

This tour is worth taking twice. Stop by now to enjoy the cool green shade of the woodland area, then return later this fall for the bright spectrum of autumn foliage.

Get started: Park in the north parking lot at Black Hoof Park, 9053 Monticello Rd. Walk east to find a sign near the Oak Shelter that identifies the tree locations and provides more information about the walk. The loop around Lake Lenexa includes both paved and natural trails, so wear appropriate footwear.

Raindrop Walk

Each step of the self-guided Raindrop Walk tour offers advice to incorporate smart stormwater-friendly practices at home and in your everyday life. Photo credit Bill Harrison.

Discover the hidden ways the City of Lenexa protects water quality and natural ecosystems on this self- guided walking tour across Lenexa City Center. The Raindrop Walk begins at the Lenexa Rec Center and
winds about 0.55 miles on paved sidewalks and trails to a bridge over the creek in Parkhurst Park. Each of the tour’s six signs explores a different stage on rainwater’s journey to Shawnee Mission Lake with
vivid watercolor illustrations. You’ll learn about steps we take to treat rainwater, plus ways you can help preserve natural resources at home.

Get started: Park at the Lenexa civic campus parking garage just south of the Rec Center, 17201 W. 87th St. Pkwy., and find the first sign near the Rec Center’s entrance. Once you’ve visited all six signs and are ready to return to your vehicle on the civic campus, go to RainToRecreation.org to explore new fun facts and helpful tips for each sign.