After all these years, I recently went to Conception Abbey — in rural northwest Missouri (i.e., the boonies) — for the very first time. The basilica was built in 1890 and I'd always heard it was really impressive.
Unfortunately, it was for the funeral of a great, great man. Chuck Place was a valuable mentor who I respected very much; he truly was the salt of the earth. A past president of the Northwest Foundation, Chuck and I served together on Northwest's presidential search committee throughout the past year. He is sorely missed.
Though I arrived almost 30 minutes early, hundreds of people were already there and I sat in the second-to-last row.
With Kay and Sully, the two previous presidents of the Northwest Alumni Association, at the luncheon afterward.
Barely beyond the grounds of the abbey, just around the corner of this building...
I was surprised to see these huge wind turbines.
The Conception Wind Farm includes 24 turbines and supplies more than 20,000 homes with energy.
A local landmark on my way back to civilization.
I heart the seniors, too. (Heck, with only 11 in the class, they really could've fit their whole names on there.)