• Last modified 810 days ago (April 7, 2022)


Alum, chums scout out Harvey House

Staff writer

A plan to get together regularly with a group of scouting friends to try out new eating establishments in Kansas City led 1969 Marion High School graduate Doug Westerhaus to suggest meeting at Harvey House in Florence.

The group met Saturday to view the museum and share a meal served by Harvey Girls Judy Mills and Sara Dawson. Mills gave a history of Fred Harvey.

Joining Doug and wife Vicki were his sister, Denise, and her husband, J. Hutcherson, of Arlington, Texas.

Doug and Denise’s parents were born in Florence, and the siblings sought out their parent’s photographs in Florence High School class photos that hang in one of the second-story bedrooms.

Doug and Denise grew up in Marion. Their parents were Edwin “Pat” and Bernadine Westerhaus.

Their maternal grandmother, Amelia Ullman, had a piano and violin studio on Main St. in Florence. She also organized an orchestra. The Westerhauses visited their grandparents often.

Most members of the group that came to Florence met through involvement in Scouts in the Kansas City area. They said they enjoyed the trip from Kansas City to Florence, noticing plumes of smoke here and there from the burning of Flint Hills grass.

“These folks all have serving hearts,” Doug said. “It’s about, how can we help people help themselves.”

After the “delightful” meal, as Doug described it, the Westerhauses drove around town with some of their friends.

Mike Schaefer said it would be interesting to see whether Ukrainian refugees could be resettled in Florence. Doug said he would look into it.

Barb Creamer, Edna Robinson, Iva Britton, and Glenda Mackey were kitchen volunteers.

The visiting group included Matt and Diane Roening, David and Janet Woosley, and Adam Rini, all of Overland Park, and Mike and Judy Schaefer and Ron and Becki Clary, all of Leawood.

“We had a lovely afternoon at the Harvey House,” Matt Roening said. “The time with friends in a historical period setting was a nice change of pace. The museum was special, and we enjoyed the ladies in the kitchen while chewing on a piece of chive from the sea of chives that was the back lawn.”

Last modified April 7, 2022