Former Kansas Sen. Nancy Landon Kassebaum Baker will visit her childhood home Saturday, and more than 100 guests will get to be present.
Kassebaum Baker will speak about her experiences growing up in west Topeka at 5:15 p.m. Saturday at the former Landon Mansion at 521 S.W. Westchester Road, said Pat Michaelis, president of the Shawnee County Historical Society.
Tickets are required to attend the event, which is part of a fundraising “Historic Homes Tour” being put on by that organization.
The tour’s 100 tickets sold out within 24 hours after the historical society in February made them available for $75 each.
Between 1 and 4 p.m. Saturday, guests may tour any of three historic homes.
A booklet being provided to guests identifies those as:
• The Victorian-style home of Jerry and Ann Palmer, built in 1886 at 305 S.W. Greenwood Ave. in Topeka’s Potwin community.
• The prairie-style home of Dan and Helen Crow, built in 1918 at 400 S.W. Greenwood Ave., also in Potwin.
• The Garlinghouse home of Ron and Rhonda Cathey, built in 1933 at 2532 S.W. Granthurst Ave., about a block west of the 2500 block of S.W. Topeka Boulevard.
From 4 to 6 p.m., guests may tour the Michael and Kathryn Franklin Home, which was formerly the Landon Mansion. It’s located at 521 S.W. Westchester, about one-half mile west of S.W. 6th and Gage Boulevard.
Guests may park along the street near the Franklin home or in the parking lot at Gage Park’s Blaisdell Family Aquatic Center, where shuttles will take them to and from that home. Shawnee County Parks and Recreation is allowing the historical society to use that lot free of charge.
Kassebaum Baker, 86, grew up at the Landon Mansion as a daughter of Alf Landon, who served as governor of Kansas and ran unsuccessfully in 1936 as the Republican candidate for president. Alf Landon died in 1987, shortly after his 100th birthday.
The booklet for Saturday’s tour says Kassebaum Baker was vice president of Kassebaum Communications, a family-owned company that operated several radio stations, and served on the board of education at Maize, a suburb of Wichita.
She spent one year in the mid-1970s serving in Washington, D.C., on the staff of her longtime friend, Kansas Sen. James Pearson, then won election to the Senate in 1978 and served there until 1997.
In 1996, Kassebaum Baker married former Sen. Howard Baker, of Tennessee. He died in 2014. She lives on a ranch near Burdick in Morris County, located in central Kansas.