In Liberty Missouri, the Odd Fellows Home built in 1900, is now a the Belvoir Winery. This is one of our favorite winery so it was natural for us to take the Rotchfords there. This historic building was completed in 1900 and home to the Odd Fellows Home, a residential complex established for the care and maintenance widows, orphans, and members of the fraternal order who were unable to earn a livelihood by reasons of age or affliction. The complex included a school and a working farm and shops where residents contributed to their upkeep with their labor.The property consists of four buildingsā€”the Old Folks Home, Hospital, Orphanage and Nursing Home/Morgue.The main building (old orphanage) is now home to Belvoir Winery & Inn on the first floor. 

The winery building is beautiful with it stain glass windows. We did our wine tasting then took a tour of the public rooms.

The skeleton, named George, of ex-Odd Fellow member. George was located in one of the rooms containing historical items. There are some interesting things to see, besides George.

After we finished looking around, we returned to purchase some wine to have on the front patio with our lunch we had packed. We had cheeses, crackers, chicken salad and grapes. It was a wonderful day for a picnic.

Ladoga Ridge Winery is a family-owned and operated winery and vineyards, located in Smithville Missouri.

We entered the warm and welcoming tasting room and found a gift shop filled with local merchandise. We did our wine tasting, purchased a bottle of wine, a cheese and cracker tray and retreated to the backside of the winery.

Surrounded by acres of vineyards, trees, pastures and the serenity only nature can bring, we were delighted to seat enjoying our wine the country side and the chickens wondering around.

After sipping our wine, we got ready to leave and pick up the fruit flavored wine slushies for the road.

On another afternoon, we went to Oklahoma Joe’s Barbecue of Kansas City KS for lunch. Joe’s, located, in a little neighborhood gas station and convenience store, at the corner of 47th and Mission Road in Kansas City, Kansas. As we approached the front door, we saw this sign on the front door. We weren’t sure what was going on but decided to enter anyway,

Inside we found that the Travel Channel was filming for one of their shows. We had gotten there at a slow time and them filming wouldn’t stop us from getting our food. So after reading the menu on the chalk board, we placed our order and took a seat. In 2012 Joe’s was the best BBQ in Kansas City, in our opinion.

The Kansas City Renaissance Festival happens every year from Labor Day to Columbus Day, a seven week period. It is 15 minutes from our house so we spent the day there before the Rotchfords flew back to TX. We had a nice location to watch the King & Queen in the daily parade. The fest featured over 150 shops and vendors, many of which sold original crafts and artwork. The grounds were artistic, featuring winding tree-lined lanes, painted murals, and banner-strewn, fancifully decorated buildings. Its artisans demonstrated a variety of textile, wood and metal crafting techniques, even operating a fully functional blacksmith shop.

Steve and Fred stopped for a beer at one of the food vendors. The staff walking stick Steve is holding is one he purchased at the fest the second time we attended, many years earlier.