We met at The Bass Pro Shop in Independence. As soon as I entered the foyer area, I just had to sketch the Texas longhorn since our children all live there . . . . then I added a baby bison for our home, Kansas. It's so easy to draw animals that don't keep moving! The foyer was a very inviting place to start out, with deep couches, a huge ottoman, and huge live fireplace.
This awesome grizzly bear was next to a pond with living fish and ducks . . . . which attracted lots of parents and grandparents with small children, some of the youngest ready to jump right in. As we drew, some of us found that we were part of the day's entertainment. A few of us even had our pictures taken by shoppers as we sketched. I thought that would make me feel intimidated, but it was actually lots of fun. Strangers are generally very respectful and admiring.
Eating at the restaurant later, we passed our sketchbooks around, signing each other's books to remember the day. Shops like this are a fantastic place to find subjects for sketching. Besides the animals, there was a great antique truck (Jeanette captured it!), a lovely view overlooking a small lake and running trail out the huge windows, lodge-style furnishings, and so many interesting people of all ages! Way too much to capture in a few hours.