10 Reasons We LOVE KC
“I loved Kansas City before it was cool,” the expression goes, but I politely beg to differ. I’d say, “I loved Kansas City because I always knew it was cool!” Our city has caught the fever and these are just a few reasons we love KC!
- Lots of creative spaces to celebrate your KC love! Local artists have decorated downtown with one-of-a-kind murals on some of our oldest buildings to depict true KC love. These walls aren’t just new local landmarks, but also great backgrounds for photos. Three of our favorites and where to find them: Kansas City I’m So in Love mural in the Crossroads at 1919 Baltimore Ave., Kansas City, MO. Crafted in Kansas City mural on Urban Provisions General Store, 2616 Guinotte Ave., Kansas City, MO. #KC Loves mural on top of a parking garage at 1720 Main, Kansas City, MO
- KC is the City of Fountains. With more than 200 documented fountains, Kansas City is outstripped only by Rome in the count of watery works of art. Popular as backdrops for proposals, weddings and family photos, our fountains have become a symbol of love for locals. The fountains create a beautiful landscape while appropriately reminding us that the town where the rivers meet was the launching point for western expansion. In the winter, the Northland Fountain and the Concourse Fountain at Gladstone Boulevard freeze over, creating majestic outdoor ice sculptures. Take a tour with maps and info from KCFountains.com.
- Gotta love our skyscrapers! Kansas City is not home to the world’s tallest skyscraper, but we do have the world’s tastiest! The Burj Khalifa in Dubai, at 160 floors and 2,717 feet tall, is currently the world’s tallest building. One Kansas City Place, our tallest building (1200 Main), pales in comparison, at a mere 42 floors and 623 feet in height. Our skyline may not impress world travelers or New Yorkers like my friend who said, while driving through downtown, “You call that a skyscraper?!?” But Kansas City’s most famous skyscrapers will impress! Served in gigantic glasses with extra-long straws, Skyscrapers have been dished up by Winstead’s since their opening on the Plaza in 1940. Savor one of these classic four-spoon ice cream sodas or shakes with your family.
- It’s cool to show your KC love! One of our faves is the Charlie Hustle (CharlieHustleShop.com) shirt emblazoned with a huge heart and the letters “KC” (as shown on the cover of KC Parent). The style became extra popular during the 2014 World Series when Paul Rudd was photographed sporting the tee and enjoyed a resurgence with the 2015 Kansas City Royals’ World Series championship. This is one shirt that will always be in style in our book.
- You can commemorate your love with a love lock on the Old Red Bridge in Minor Park (KCParks.org/attraction/old-red-bridge-love-locks/). "The placing of love locks is a custom whereby couples affix a padlock to a bridge, fence, gate or similar fixture, so pronouncing their unbreakable and everlasting love. The Old Red Bridge is adjacent to the new bridge located on Red Bridge Road between Holmes and Blue River Road in south Kansas City" says KC Parks.
- We have world-class art right in our own backyard! The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (Nelson-Atkins.org) is the largest art gallery west of the Mississippi and is truly one of our greatest treasures. In the heart of the city, visitors enjoy the works of Monet, Caravaggio, Rembrandt, O’Keefe, Degas and van Gogh, not to mention an impressive collection of Asian art, ancient and modern art and the all-new American Indian gallery. The Nelson is just one extraordinary gallery in the city. For modern art, visit the Nerman or the Kemper galleries. Enjoy local artists at First Fridays in the Crossroads or one of the annual art fairs at the Plaza, Brookside, Town Center, Prairie Village and Westport.
- Kids spell love T-I-M-E, and KC is overflowing with awesome attractions for families. From unique places like Puppetry Arts Institute (Hazelle.org) in Independence where you can make your own puppet and watch shows or professional puppet shows by Mesner Puppets (MesnerPuppets.org) to traditional choices like ice skating at Silverstein Arena (SilversteinEyeCentersArena.com) or Crown Center (CrownCenter.com) to all the latest trends in entertainment from trampoline parks like Sky Zone (SkyZone.com) and Urban Air (UrbanAirOP.com) to Escape Rooms – there are many great ways to enjoy family time. Click “Going Places” on KCParent.com for a searchable guide to local attractions.
- KC just keeps getting better! Our sports teams and attractions keep improving, and that means our city is a great place for families. One of our favorite attractions, the Kansas City Zoo (KansasCityZoo.org) just keeps expanding. Changes are coming to Worlds of Fun (WorldsOfFun.com) in 2017 with a new entrance, new rides and Winterfest celebration. The Johnson County Museum (JoCoGov.org) will reopen is its new home in May of this year that will provide the museum with more space and great visibility.
- The performing arts in Kansas City are incredible and affordable for families. Our children are able to experience the talents of professional performers at our top-notch theaters. The Coterie (TheCoterie.org) produces professional children’s theater that is truly world-class. The Kansas City Repertory Theatre (KCRep.org) brings new and classic performances to the stage. Kansas City Ballet (KCBallet.org) is amazing, and the JCCC Performing Arts Series (JCCC.edu/theseries) presents an incredible variety of touring productions. Add in the Sprint Center (SprintCenter.com), Music Hall (KCConvention.com), the Folly (FollyTheater.org) and Kauffman Center for Performing Arts (KauffmanCenter.org) and you always can find something to enjoy, from music, to opera, to ballet and theater.
- No list would be complete without tipping our hat to our reputation as the Barbecue Capital of the World! Kansas City has more barbecue restaurants per capita than any other city—and the best too! Kansas City-style barbecue is slathered in sweet and tangy sauces, and every local has a favorite. If you celebrate summer holidays and special occasions here, chances are strong you’re also enjoying juicy ribs or burnt ends with a side of slaw and pit beans.
Kristina Light has a lifelong reputation for loving her hometown, and her friends find it contagious.