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Have you checked out Uranus? It's growing

Valerie Schremp Hahn, St. Louis Post-Dispatch on

Published in Travel News

A partner just opened an archery tag course, and they're working on a Dr. Who-themed escape room inside an old double-decker bus.

Keen's added a few dinosaur statues, a rocket and a vintage police car that says on its front fender: "To Serve and Protect Uranus." This summer, the Guinness Book of World Records verified the world's largest belt buckle in Uranus.

Keen wants to open a petting zoo, a brewery and a wedding chapel, where he can call himself Pastor Gas.

He voted himself in as the mayor of Uranus and loves bopping around the property greeting customers in an American flag-themed tie and cowboy hat, and making videos for Uranus' social media sites. "I say it's hard being a tyrannical dictator," he says, "but it's working out well."

Keen is married with four kids, ages 1 to 14, and they live on 40 acres in nearby Lebanon. He wants to keep things family-friendly and just wants to make people happy.

"I never cross the line," Keen says. "That's on you."

If people complain, Uranus employees ask what they have against the planet. That flusters them.

Keen grew up in Cassville in southwestern Missouri and worked seven days a week on his parents' livestock farm. He remembers loving road trips and roadside attractions, and he particularly remembers a place called the Rock Shop by his great-grandmother's nearby farm.

An adult pressed a switch to turn on a black light inside a box, and he peeked under a flap to see an assortment of glowing rocks.

"It was such an impactful memory," he says. "That's what I'm building here. I want to build something that has an impact, that makes you remember it."


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