Sedalia has a Fair Share of Fun Year-Round

Sedalia has been home to the Missouri State Fair since 1901, holding true to the state’s vast history and tradition. If you’ve visited Sedalia during the fair, but never explored the city, you’re missing a great opportunity.

This year, plan to come a day early or stay late to experience all of the other fun things to do, whether it’s enjoying historic architecture, modern art or visiting the Katy Trail Depot, Sedalia has much to offer its guests.

Bringing world-class art to Sedalia, the Daum Museum of Contemporary Art boasts fantastic sculptures, paintings and drawings portraying the intricacy of the contemporary movement. This museum is open to the public, has no admission charge and features a separate gallery for local artists to display their work.

Stay at the historic Hotel Bothwell and Spa while you’re in Sedalia.

In downtown Sedalia, the historic Hotel Bothwell stands tall and majestic over 4th Street. Built in 1928, the Hotel Bothwell has welcomed many famous guests to Sedalia – including President Harry S. Truman and country singer Hank Williams Jr.

If you’re in the mood for pampering, note the hotel has recently added a day spa featuring hot stone massages, manicures, pedicures and even hydrotherapy. The spa is located inside the hotel and welcomes any weary traveler for a day of relaxation and beautification.

Another piece of Sedalia history is the Bothwell Lodge Historic Site, overlooking Highway 50. Built by John Homer Bothwell, this 20th century lodge with 31 rooms sits atop rocky bluffs and provides an unforgettable view of the beautiful Missouri landscape.

Bothwell Lodge Historic Site.

Take a tour of the lodge, left untouched by the hands of time, and explore the many hiking trails that Mr. Bothwell spent his life trying to preserve. Call 660-827-0510 for reservations.

Before the State Fair came to Sedalia, the Katy Depot brought in travelers from all over the Midwest on the MKT Railroad. Once the hub for railway travel in the late 1800s, the Katy Depot has been converted into a museum and bike-rental facility, offering everyone an opportunity to have an adventure on the Katy Trail.

Stop by and experience a piece of Missouri’s history before renting bikes at Champion Bicycle and making your way through the tree canopied trail.

Eat in a diner car at Kehdi's BBQ in Sedalia.
Eat in an old dining car at Kehdi’s Barbeque in Sedalia.

If deep fried fair food isn’t your thing, Kehde’s Barbeque is a tasty alternative and it’s located right next to the fairgrounds. Enjoy smoked meats smothered in Kehde’s special barbeque sauce while eating in the old “Katy Flyer” dining car. Kehde’s provides a unique atmosphere with a flavorful kick that will keep your stomach satisfied. Try the Posh Potatoes, Fat Albert Burger or some burnt ends.

After the rides are over, the fried Oreos have been eaten and oversized stuffed animals have been won, Sedalia is ready for you to experience all of the other things to do and see while in town.

For more information on things to do in Sedalia, check out

Written by Abbey Theban, intern for the Missouri Division of Tourism. 

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