WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) — The Keeper of the Plains turned 48 on Wednesday, May 18.
According to the City of Wichita, The Keeper was erected on May 18, 1974.
The 44-foot tall steel sculpture was created by Wichitan and Native American artist Blackbear Bosin.
It stands where the Big Arkansas River meets the Little Arkansas River.
According to Visit Wichita, the land between the two rivers is sacred ground to the Native American people and is also home to the Mid-America All-Indian Museum.
Decades after its installation, it was revamped. The Keeper now stands 30 feet higher and has lit fire pots, known as the Ring of Fire, that surrounds it. The installation of two footbridges allows Wichitans to get up close and personal.
The Ring of Fire is lit for 15 minutes at 9 p.m. during Daylight Saving Time, or spring and summer, and at 7 p.m. during Standard Time, or fall and winter. The fires are manually operated and depend on the weather, river levels, and if a person is too close to be lit.
The Keeper of the Plaines is accessible to all citizens of Wichita and visitors.