Deanna Rose Children’s Farmstead has been a family-friendly gem in Overland Park for decades.
1971 – Overland Park purchased land that would become the Farmstead, then known as Community Park.
1978 – The Farmstead opened Memorial Day weekend with two miniature horses, two Shetland ponies, nine goats, six sheep, three calves, a dozen chickens, a vegetable garden and a silo slide and shaded seating area. The Farmstead served 11,000 visitors its first year
1985 – On May 27, 1985, the Farmstead changed its name to Deanna Rose Children’s Farmstead, in memory of Deanna Rose, an Overland Park police officer killed in the line of duty.
1996 – Friends of the Farmstead was established as the not-for-profit group which would help raise funds for future projects and programs at Deanna Rose Children’s Farmstead.
2000 – The Farmstead expansion project began, with the Fishing Shack and Grandpa Bob’s Fishing Pond opening to the public. The Schoolhouse, Kanza Indian Encampment, Prairie Playground, Tractor Track, Dairy Barn and Main Street opened in the years following.
2009 – The new entrance building opened.
2018 – The Ben Craig administration building opened, providing more space for staff, a new concession area on the east side of the Farmstead, and family restrooms.
The Children’s Farmstead was renamed in 1985 to honor Deanna Sue Rose, an Overland Park police officer killed in the line of duty.
In January, 1985, Rose was injured when a suspect she was trying to arrest on suspicion of driving while intoxicated knocked her to the ground and ran her over. She died two days later from her injuries.
Officer Rose was the first Overland Park police officer killed in the line of duty and the first female officer in Kansas to die in the line of duty. She received an award for valor posthumously from the Kansas Association of Chiefs of Police.
Prior to working for Overland Park, Officer Rose graduated Cum Laude from Wichita State University in criminal justice and was a member of the San Diego County Sheriff’s Office.
Deanna Rose Children’s Farmstead serves as a permanent and living reminder of Officer Rose’s love for animals and her zest for life.