Our Story

Bill and Julia Fabris McBride are your hosts at Matfield Station. Welcome!

Seeing people up at the Bunkhouse and walking the paths makes us happy. Give us a call if you would like to talk and visit Bill’s Studio: 620-481-6074

We moved here from Chicago fifteen years ago. Here is the story . . .

Bill was an architect who dreamed of retiring early to become a sculptor in the prairie. In the late 1990’s he explored the Great Plains looking for a prairie place to call home. He and his wife, Julia, found Matfield Green after connecting with Wes Jackson, founder of the Land Institute, through high school friend, Noreen Warnock.

They met Wes in Matfield Green in 2001 and soon after purchased Matfield Station with partners Karl Rohlich, Bill’s college roommate, and Pat Moss, friend and skilled carpenter.

Soon after Pat moved down from Chicago to begin renovation of the bunkhouse. Bill, Julia, and Karl visited regularly to lend a hand, work on preserving the tattered fringes of their prairie, and celebrate the genius of finding such a beautiful place.

In 2006 Bill and Julia left Chicago and moved into the north unit. In 2007 Julia gave birth to Lake McBride — truly a native Kansan. Soon after Bill designed and Pat built the house and studio just north of the bunkhouse.

After renovation, construction, and a new child, Bill finally found time to devote to sculpture and working in the landscape – the beginnings of the PrairyArt Path.

Julia, launched a coaching practice in the middle unit that soon morphed into a position on the executive team of the Kansas Leadership Center in Wichita.

Lake is in middle school in Wichita, while mastering Minecraft tending our dog (Charlie) and eight kittens.

After living in Matfield Station for two years, Karl returned to his hometown of Madison, Wisconsin. Pat relocated to Los Alamos, New Mexico where he continues to build.