on-site tours & activities
The Kansas Oil Museum offers plenty to see for student groups of all ages. In addition to guided tours through our galleries and grounds, we offer a variety of educator-led activities and demonstrations. Student tours are $3/child, and may be scheduled by phone (316-321-9333) or through our website form.
Most of our tour groups plan to experience both the indoor galleries and outdoor exhibits at the Kansas Oil Museum. Indoor tours include a staff-led visit through Glory of the Hills, showcasing the Flint Hills and its pioneer heritage, and The Story of Oil, which explores the 1915 discovery of oil near El Dorado. Outdoor tours take visitors around the 10 acres of our grounds, featuring historic oil equipment, buildings, and vehicles once used on the Butler County oilfields.
Historic Building Exploration
With nearly a dozen different historic buildings on our grounds, there are many opportunities to explore the ways in which people lived and worked in Butler County, from pioneer days up through the boom years of the 1920s and '30s. Get a tour of the boomtown, then pick a building (or two) to investigate in detail. Our educator will lead students through an exploration of the whole building as they use their investigative skills to puzzle out the history of the structure and its former inhabitants.
Oil Equipment Demonstrations
Our 10 acres of outdoor exhibits include many large pieces of equipment once used out on the local oilfields, and some of it is still operable! Imagine what it was like to be a worker on a wooden derrick, marvel at the giant band wheel that once operated the central power unit, then see the difference between an old-fashioned cable tool rig and a modern rotary drill as you watch them run.
We offer scavenger hunts throughout the museum galleries and grounds that can be tailored to different ages and topics of interest. Younger children will enjoy matching the pictures with different objects found around the museum, while older students can hunt through the galleries for both information and artifacts. A fun way to explore geology, history, nature, and much more.
History & Science Activities
In addition to tours and demonstrations, a variety of educator-led activities are available to schedule for your class visit. Please check out our ACTIVITIES PAGE for more details!