October 22, 2015
You may not find Faulkner’s Ranch in a tourism brochure next to the Power and Light District or Crown Center, but years of history have polished this quaint piece of farmland into a hidden gem of Kansas City. A family business that began in the 1950’s by Bud and Mary Faulkner, started as an outpost for square dancing apparel and evolved to a western store featuring anything from saddlery to tack.
In 1986, Bob and Dick, two grandchildren of Bud and Mary, evolved Faulkner’s Saddlery to a successful equipment manufacturing venture that continues to ship internationally to this day. Opportunity knocked again in 1988 when Bob was asked to run the Benjamin Ranch.
Faulkner Ranch continued to grow and in 1999, Bob suggested his daughter Christine to use her hospitality management degree at home and “make” a pumpkin farm. The job title of “pumpkin farmer” isn’t exactly glamorous. However, her family roots kicked in as well as her love of event production and entrepreneurship. And thus, the Faulkner Ranch was born 1999.
The ranch is a private, event facility that produces turnkey events, giving all-inclusive services such as catering, entertainment, and setup/teardown. Events are hosted inside the climate controlled banquet barn and outside there’s a covered pavilion for additional seating as well as a stage for the live entertainment.
Being out in more of a rustic barn ranch environment you might expect something akin to a camping trip, right? Wrong! Guests enter the facilities and welcomed by areas that are nice, clean, air conditioned, and heated….and so much more!
A lot of the décor in the ranch and bathrooms was brought from the historical Benjamin Ranch including reclaimed wood and light fixtures. In addition to the lovely men’s and women’s restrooms, there’s a family restroom in the pony party place in the next building over from the main facility. The Faulkner’s show their highly-valued opinion on family by placing changing tables in both the men’s and women’s restrooms.
“My Mother took over the décor in the ladies’ room when we first built it and used a lot of her fashion cowboy boots hanging on the walls. And her, purses and accessories. I think she has a Roy Rogers purse hanging on the wall that’s very precious to her. So, we try to keep it light and feminine but western. The facility itself here we try to keep neutral so that you don’t have to have a western themed event if you don’t really want to,” said Loneman.
The ranch hosts a variety of events from weddings, to corporate events, to children’s birthday parties. The idea behind it is so the person responsible for planning the event can show up and actually enjoy it instead of worrying about cooking or cleaning.
“We have what we call ranch specialties. There are activities throughout the ranch that are staffed and include all kinds of interactive activities for families to play together, such as pony rides, petting farm, zip line, fishing, corn cannon, moonwalks and more. In addition, there are outside activities called Ranch Recreation that are not staffed, but they’re fun interactive games that a guest would walk up and play on their own, such as, sand volleyball, hillbilly golf, horseshoes, washers and other games of that nature.”
The Faulkner family puts prides in their ranch and is so thrilled to offer a unique experience for the families that visit their ranch.
Learn more about the Faulkner Ranch history at http://www.faulknersranch.com/