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Manhattan, KS

Located in the northeastern part of the state of Kansas, Manhattan straddles both Pottawatomie and Riley counties. This town of approximately 52,000 lies in the junction of the Big Blue and Kansas rivers and is the county seat of Riley County. Its nickname, "the Little Apple," comes from its namesake in New York City, "the Big Apple." Residents also sometimes refer to the town as "Manhappiness" or "Manhappening."

NEIGHBORHOODS AND DISTRICTS

Located in the Flint Hills of Kansas, Manhattan is surrounded by rolling hills covered in swaying tall grasses. Manhattan's downtown area was built on a floodplain between those lovely hills and, as a result, it has experienced flooding problems over the years.

Kansas State University is located in the heart of Manhattan. The students who swarm to the city each year have a tremendous economic and social impact on the community.

Manhattan has eight neighborhoods and is the ninth-largest community in Kansas. Some of the more expensive neighborhoods in Manhattan are Bluemont Hill, Tuttle Creek, Sunset Park, and Warner Park Road.

ECONOMY AND INDUSTRIES

Manhattan is a center for trade, education, government, health care and entertainment. About 86 percent of Manhattan's residents are employed in white-collar jobs.

Kansas State University is the main employer in the city, but nearby Fort Riley also employs many of Manhattan's citizens. Large businesses located in Manhattan include the American Institute of Baking and Landmark Bancorp Inc.

BEST BETS

  • Riley County Historical Museum offers historic exhibits from frontier days to the present. The museum has been in operation since 1916.
  • Historic Fort Riley was originally constructed in 1853 to protect settlers heading down the Kansas River as they traveled west. The fort is still active today and is home to the First Infantry Division. There is a daytime population at the fort of about 25,000.
  • Wolf House Museum was built as a boarding house in 1868. This home was given to the Riley Historical Society by Mrs. Lucile Wolf in 1982. The house has been fully restored, with beautiful Victorian wallpaper and furniture.
  • Harold M. Freund American Museum of Baking is the only museum in America devoted to baking. Visitors can view an Egyptian cake that is more than 3,800 years old and learn about the history of baking in America.

Additional cultural sites and museums include:

  • Oregon and Old Military Trails
  • Goodnow House Museum
  • Pioneer Log Cabin
  • Kansas State Historical Society

ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT

  • Marianna Kistler Beach Museum of Art is located on the Kansas State University campus and holds approximately 1,400 works of art.
  • Manhattan Arts Center brings theatrical productions, art exhibitions and classes to the community and surrounding areas.
  • McCain Auditorium hosts ballet, jazz, and chamber music performances as well as comedy and classical theater productions.
  • The Nichols Theatre and the Blaine Thomas Musical Museum are also located in Manhattan.

EVENTS

Manhattan hosts several festivals each year to celebrate music, the arts, and the history of the community:

  • Country StampedeMusic Festival is a four-day country music festival held every June at Tuttle Creek Lake Park.
  • Tuttle Creek Lake Festival, also held each June, features arts and crafts, a Jet Ski competition, live music, and fireworks.
  • Some other annual festivals that are held in Manhattan are the Konza Music Festival (April), the Little Apple Jazz Festival (July), and Aggiefest (September).

SPORTS TEAMS

The Kansas State Wildcats are the heart of sports in Manhattan. The university has nationally ranked teams that compete in football, men's and women's basketball, volleyball, baseball, golf, rowing, tennis, and track-and-field. The football team plays at Bill Snyder Family Stadium, which is named for a former coach. Both the men's and women's basketball teams play at Bramlage Coliseum, and the baseball team plays at the Tointon Family Stadium.

FOR VISITORS

  • Konza Prairie Research Natural Area is an 8,000-acre prairie grass preserve and field research station. Visitors can take a self-guided tour around the facility, which is run by the Nature Conservatory and Kansas State University.
  • Tuttle Creek State Park offers campgrounds and walking trails, as well as fishing, hunting, and recreational vehicle areas.

Additional sports and recreation facilities, clubs, and nature trails in Manhattan include:

  • Linear Trail
  • Wildcat Creek Sports Center
  • Stagg Hill Golf Club
  • Randolph State Park Equestrian and Hiking Trails
  • Colbert Hills

EDUCATION

  • Kansas State University was founded in 1863. The university ranks first in the nation among state universities in its total of Rhodes, Marshall, Truman, Goldwater and Udall scholars, and has since 1986. There are more than 250 undergraduate programs available; among the most popular are business and management, education and teaching, liberal arts, and engineering.
  • Manhattan Area Technical College offers programs in technical fields such as air conditioning and refrigeration, business and computer technology and welding.
  • Manhattan Christian College was founded in 1927 and features courses in adult education, practical ministries, general studies, and theology.