Participants will be able to get an up-close look at two of the city's oldest neighborhoods during the three-day conference.
Some high-profile preservation projects in Lawrence -- including the Union Pacific Depot -- will be showcased this weekend when the city hosts the 1996 Kansas Statewide Preservation Conference.
The conference, which is expected to draw between 75 and 200 people, including elected officials and preservationists from across Kansas, begins Friday with registration at the Eldridge Hotel followed by a reception at the newly restored depot.
"The Union Pacific Depot is a place that I think we can show off," said Dale Nimz, a member of the city's Historic Resources Commission. "We're going to be having some of our seminars in the Masonic Lodge Temple. That's a very historic building, so it's fitting that we get to use it for the conference."
The depot, designed by renown architect Henry Van Brunt, was built in 1889. Efforts to preserve the building began in 1984, and earlier this year the renovated depot reopened.
The Masonic Lodge was built in 1911.
Dennis Enslinger, a planner with the city of Lawrence, said guest speakers will discuss such topics as legal issues pertaining to preservation, how preservation can aid economic development and community issues in preservation.
The topics will be discussed in seminars Saturday morning and afternoon.
Walking tours of Old West Lawrence, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and East Lawrence will be offered Saturday evening and Sunday morning.
Nimz said he is looking forward to this weekend's conference and meeting others interested in preserving the history of their communities.
"For me, it's an opportunity to present Lawrence to people from other communities across the state and an opportunity to meet preservationists from other cities," Nimz said.
While the city of Lawrence doesn't receive any direct revenue from hosting the conference, Enslinger said, it offers a chance to show off the city.
"Actually, we don't receive anything for doing this. We got a historic research fund grant from the Kansas State Preservation Society, and that provided for the guest speakers," Enslinger said.
"It's a nice opportunity for Lawrence to showcase its preservation."