Historic Delano District
Rowdy roughnecks, loud dance hall saloons and cowboys driving cattle through town made the Historic Delano District a sight to see in the early 1870s. As drovers pushed steers along the Chisholm Trail north from Texas to railhead markets, the population of the area increased making it a bustling business district along Douglas Avenue. Settlers named the new town Elgin, but it eventually was renamed to Delano (in honor of Columbus Delano, Secretary of the Interior under President Ulysses S. Grant) in March 1871 – a year after Wichita was incorporated as a city in 1870.
Today, the Delano District is lined with more than 250 businesses ranging from restaurants, bars, retail shops plus service providers and entertainment venues. Visitors to the area can still see historical references to the early days of the district. The Delano clock tower’s four panels showcase Jesse Chisholm, the namesake of the Chisholm Trail.
The district is on the west bank of the Arkansas River, immediately west of Downtown Wichita. The neighborhood boundaries are the river on the north and east, Meridian on the west and US 54 Highway/Kellogg on the south.
Where to Shop
Prepare to discover great finds while shopping the independently owned shops along Douglas Avenue in the Delano District. From bicycles to barbecue grills and home goods to hats, the area’s diverse retail stores offer something for everyone.
The independently owned shops along Douglas Avenue in the Delano District are friendly and unique. Peruse Bungalow 26 for bath, body and home items. Choose a pair of novelty socks or from their wide selection of bottled pops, candies or sauces at Sweet ’n Saucy. Shop for running gear and order a delicious fresh smoothie at Fartleks. Stock up on grilling supplies and outdoor living items at All Things Barbecue. Explore legendary Hatman Jack’s, one of the country’s largest hat shops and among the longest-operating businesses in Wichita. Pick up Wichita flag swag at Wichita Screen Printing and The Health Connection, where you can also find holistic healing products and services.
Where to Eat & Drink
You’ll find pizza, burgers, Mexican, barbecue, Asian, fusion, coffee and tea, a French bakery, a gourmet dessert spot all within Delano. Grab a meal or snack along with a specialty coffee at Leslie Coffee Co. and Mokas Cafe. Don’t miss a crumbly burger and root beer at NuWay Burgers. Enjoy tasty smoked meats and a fun atmosphere at Monarch, named one of Bourbon Review’s best bourbon bars. Sample a variety of pours from the self-serve machine at Alzavino Wine Tavern.
Where to Play
Delano is perfectly located within a mile of the Keeper of the Plains and the Museums on the River. Just head north along the Arkansas River and you’ll encounter Exploration Place, Mid-America All-Indian Museum, Old Cowtown Museum, Wichita Art Museum and Botanica Wichita. Families won’t want to miss the Children's STEAM Learning Garden, an outdoor interactive playground, at the Wichita Public Library - Advanced Learning Center.
Head south along the river to find Riverfront Stadium, home to the Double-A affiliate of the Minnesota Twins, the Wichita Wind Surge, the Wichita Baseball Museum and other special events throughout the year. View our guide to attending a game at Riverfront.
Across the street from the stadium is Wichita Ice Center. Other fun things to do in Delano include visiting The American Overseas Schools Historical Society, throwing axes at Blade & Timber, expending energy at the Let's Smash smash house or treating yourself to a spa day at Bohemia Healing Spa. There’s also plenty of public art throughout Delano for great photo ops.
Where to Stay
If you want a convenient place to relax and stay overnight, check into Home2 Suites by Hilton Wichita Downtown Delano, Delano Bed & Breakfast or Waterwalk Wichita on the west side of the river. Just across the river are the Drury Plaza Hotel Broadview, Hyatt Regency Wichita and Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott Wichita Downtown.
The Historic Delano District is one of Wichita’s many shopping and entertainment districts. Check out the latest happenings in Wichita on our calendar of events or by exploring our website. If you’re in the area, stop by the Visit Wichita Visitor Center and ask for the Delano Visitors brochure.