During a recent business trip to the University of Kansas Medical Center in Wichita, KS, I was able to make a few trips down to the Scientology mission there that was started up with the help of Kirstie Alley (who is from Wichita). The mission is located at 3705 E Douglas Ave, Wichita, KS Phone number: (316) 682-8080. There is a small outbuilding in the back of the mission that appears to be the "library" or rather, bookstore. The mission property including the outbuilding appraise at $416,080 and they are owned by CHURCH OF SCIENTOLOGY MISSION OF WICHITA.
There is also a house next door (from the back side) at 3416 E OAKLAND. This property is also owned by the CHURCH OF SCIENTOLOGY and the house appraises for $111,700. It appears that the people that run the mission live in this house. These people also appear to be running a day-care center, presumably because the mission isn't bringing in enough money to sustain themselves economically.
Click here for the location and aerial view from Google Groups: http://tinyurl.com/zb74l
On Sunday, July 30, 2006, at 6pm. The mission was completely abandoned. Not a single car in sight in the parking lots. A few lights were on in the building, but no movement was observed.
On Monday, July 31, 2006, at 7pm. The mission was nearly empty: 3 cars in the lot.
On Tues, Aug 1, 2006 at 5:45 pm. The mission was nearly empty: 4 cars in the lot.
On Wed, Aug 2, 2006 at 6:30pm. The mission was nearly empty: 2 cars in the lot.
So, assuming that one of the vehicles at least belonged to the mission holder, we have an average nightly attendence at the mission as 1.5 people. And of course its possible that all the cars belonged to staff, meaning they might have zero public at their mission.
You can see full-size pictures of the Wichita mission by visiting my Flickr page at:
Wichita Scientology Mission full-size photos
I photographed the front and back of the building and the empty and nearly empty parking lots. L. Ron Hubbard developed many of the ideas of Dianetics while in Wichita, and the CoS has made note of this with roadside plaques and other advertisements which I also photographed.
I'm guessing that this mission only stays in business because it receives generous donations from its main benefactor, Kirstie Alley, a former Wichita, KS resident.
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It is Sunday night at 7PM. You can hear the crickets chirping by the abandoned mission:
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