Children of the Trails
Owner: Johnson County Parks & Recreation
Artist: Kwan Wu
Designer: Ray Wolf
Dates: Dedicated September 7, 2000
Medium: Bronze, stainless steel
In the park between the Johnson County Courthouse and the Johnson County Administration Building is this fountain featuring the bronze sculpture "Children of the Trails" by Kansas City artist Kwan Wu. It features a boy and a girl running through an arch followed by their dog. The boy is losing his hat and the girl is carrying freshly picked flowers. A rainbow floats above them and five doves fly overhead. The bronze figures are held up by the stainless steel tubes. These are pioneer children so they are running towards the west. The fountain basins contain rocks and stones to simulate the streams the children would cross on their journey west. Water wells up the top basin and runs gently down the side to the lower basin.
The sculpture is dedicated to all the children who were lost to the harsh and unforgiving elements that settlers encountered on their journeys west. This was perhaps the greatest test of the pioneers' spirit.