Archive for Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Bonner business in running for 8 Wonders list

January 7, 2009

A Bonner Springs business is among the 8 Wonders of Kansas Commerce finalists.

The Kansas Sampler Foundation on Monday announced that Moon Marble Co., 600 E. Front St., was among the 24 finalists in the competition from more than 100 publicly nominated entries. A representative of Moon Marble was on hand in Inman for the announcement.

Criteria required that the business be publicly accessible for tours or that their story be on permanent display at a museum. The finalist could be a past or present business.

Each finalist had to have a characteristic that made it unique in some aspect of its field and possess some “wow” traits, the foundation said.

At its Web site,, the foundation said “Moon Marble Company is a finalist because it is the only store in the country where you can buy toy marbles, handmade marbles and watch them being made.”

A public vote will determine the top eight. People are encouraged to vote online at, call (620) 585-2374 for a ballot, or pick up a ballot at Moon Marble. Voting will end at midnight Feb. 17. The top eight will be announced before the end of March.

Of the 24 finalists, foundation director Marci Penner said, “I bet this list will surprise people. The goal was not to choose the top money-making businesses in Kansas but to select businesses, big or small, that have reached a gold standard in their arena — and that also allowed group tours or are open for retail business.”

Educating the public about Kansas and encouraging travel in the state is the purpose of the 8 Wonders series organized by the nonprofit Kansas Sampler Foundation. The overall 8 Wonders and contests for architecture and art have been completed. The rural culture elements yet to be showcased are cuisine, customs, geography, history and people.

“Winners do not receive a cash reward or sculpture made in their honor,” Penner said. “The only goal is to educate the world about Kansas — and have fun doing it. These are incredible finalists.”


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