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A city for all seasons

Wondering what to do or where to stay when you visit the capital of Kansas? Finding that information has never been easier. Beginning with a beautiful and strategic new logo and an exhaustive ad campaign, Visit Topeka Inc. recently launched a fresh website to help visitors plan their next trip. The city's official tourism website--www.VisitTopeka.com--offers user-friendly functions, well-organized content, and information on upcoming events, attractions, lodging, and the area's many sports venues. It is also the complete resource for meeting and tour planners.

"We wanted to create a look for 'Visit Topeka' that embodied the positive, progressive direction our city is moving and conveys that message graphically with our new brand and website," said Olivia Simmons, president and CEO. "The new site is a great resource for visitors coming to our city as well as for our residents."

A new section allows organizations, agencies, museums and even the general public to submit their own dates for the calendar of events, and there is an online booking system for lodging in the area to further simplify trip planning. Tech fans can click on icons linking to Visit Topeka's Facebook fan page, Twitter account, Flickr and YouTube, for up-to-the-minute news and an invitation to add comments about favorite attractions, restaurants, and shopping spots.

The state is proud of Visit Topeka Inc.'s new ad campaign. This popular destination shows off its attributes to the rest of the country through nationwide print publications and online advertising. Many billboards on Interstates 70, 35, and 335, plus some on Kansas Highway 75, highlight Topeka as "a capital place to visit for history, sports, music, dining, and more."

One of Topeka's most visited attractions commemorates the city's role in the fight for freedom--the Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site, along with its permanent interactive exhibit illustrating the importance the 1954 Supreme Court decision played in the Civil Rights Movement. Visitors during February or March will experience "Color of Freedom: Journey along the Underground Railroad"--a collection of 50 paintings, etchings and drawings by Joseph Holston expressing the courage and determination required to escape slavery.

On a lighter note, in late February and early March, families can catch "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee" at the Helen Hocker Theater. Chronicling the experience of six adolescents vying for the spelling championship of a lifetime, this musical is a hilarious tale of overachievers' angst. Shows begin at 8 p.m. Feb. 19, 20, 25, 26 plus March 5 and 6. Matinees are at 2:30 p.m. on Feb. 21, 27 and March 7.

No matter the weather and whatever the season, there is always much to do and see in Topeka. For a complete listing of Topeka events, check out www.VisitTopeka.com.

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