Arts, Entertainment and Culture
Junction City-Geary County residents have long had an affinity for arts and cultural experiences. Since 1882, the C. L. Hoover Opera House has occupied a prime location in Junction City’s downtown. The renovated Romanesque landmark continues to serve as a hub for live theatre, ballet and musical performances. It also hosts children’s plays as well as popular and independent movies.
The Junction City Arts Council ensures arts activities and opportunities are available for all, with free art classes for kids and arts learning events for adults of all skill levels. It hosts the popular annual Arts in the Park event and organizes engaging year round activities, such as local art showings and writer’s workshops.
Junction City-Geary County has a variety of free family-friendly events throughout the year that honor our unique culture and the character of our region. Sundown Salute, the largest Independence Day celebration in Kansas, features a massive parade with military displays, celebrity musical acts and delicious local delicacies. It caps off with a spectacular fireworks display in downtown Junction City.
Residents and visitors alike can also enjoy local events like the Fort Riley Apple Day Festival, Juneteenth, the Junction City Open Rodeo, Geary County Free Fair, Annual Hometown Christmas and the Annual Christmas Parade.
Geary County is located in the heart of the Flint Hills, where the Republican and Smoky Rivers meet to form the Kansas River. It’s a place of scenic beauty with a world of outdoor fun to be had. Whatever outdoor experience you’re craving, you can satisfy it here.
Milford Lake is one of the area’s finest features. With its 16,000 surface acres of water and 163 miles of shoreline, there are abundant options for recreation, including camping (Acorns Resort, Thunderbird Marina & RV Resort) picnicking, hiking, horseback riding, swimming and boating. Known as the fishing capital of Kansas, the lake contains bass, walleye, catfish and more. It’s also home to the largest hunting grounds in the state, for both small and large game.
Rolling Meadows Golf Course stretches over 160 acres of north central Kansas. Rated 4 1/2 Stars by Golf Digest, it’s one of the top places to play golf in Kansas.
Historic Rathert Stadium is home to the Junction City Brigade, a summer collegiate baseball team, and is one of the most historic baseball stadiums in the Midwest. Rathert Stadium was built in the 1930s, and has seen several renovations to restore it to its original luster.
Junction City puts a priority on green space. It’s home to 19 city parks with an array of awesome amenities, like playgrounds, ball fields, picnic areas, walking trails, historic monuments and more.
People here believe in the power of play. A citizen-led nonprofit called “Quality Play for All” works to augment quality of life by improving the quality and safety of playground parks in the community.
With city support and grant funding, Quality Play for All aims is creating a “showcase park” in Junction City with Playground Park that will be a draw for local and surrounding community members. Quality Play for All also has a special PlayJC.org committee focused on providing youth sports opportunities. Find out more: https://www.playjc.org.
Shopping and Dining
Junction City-Geary County has some one-of-a-kind shopping and dining experiences. Explore downtown Junction City for locally-owned shops and boutique stores, such as Muddy Creek, Quilter's Yard, Magnolia's Boutique, Twitches Gallery & Gifts/JC Gifts & Crafts, and Tom's Menswear.
Additional shopping options can be found at Manhattan Town Center. Located in the heart of downtown Manhattan, KS, it’s a shopper’s dream with 60 small shops and six full-service restaurants.
In the beautiful countryside setting just outside of Junction City, visitors can sample some of the finest foods in Kansas at the Hildebrand Farm Store. The micro creamery has everything from homemade cheese to fresh flavored milks and local specialties like Krehbiel’s Sausage, Hillside Honey and Hildebrand Soft Serve Ice Cream.
The area also has some mouthwatering dining options. Whether you’re looking for an authentic Kansas-style barbeque joint, a traditional steakhouse or you’re craving Caribbean, Italian, Mexican, Chinese or Korean cuisine, you’ll find tasty meals to satiate you here.