Family Fun in the Crown Center District
Whether you're local to Kansas City looking for a great weekend staycation, or visiting from out of town, we teamed up with Expedia.com to bring you the best activities for family fun in the Crown Center District! Note that with the Streetcar, and short walking distances, you can enjoy many great attractions without a car.
There are so many fun things to enjoy in the area, families can really make the most of their weekend.
Check out Sea Life at 2475 Grand Blvd, KCMO. 816.471.4386. At Sea Life your family will be transported into an amazing underwater world with up-close views of more than 5,000 sea creatures! Come nose to nose with sharks in the walk-through underwater tunnel, experience the touch pool where you can hold a crab or touch a starfish, participate in educational demonstrations, watch animal feedings and explore this state-of-the-art home for many of the ocean’s most majestic creatures!
Next door to Sea Life you’ll find LEGOLAND® Discovery Center in Crown Center (2475 Grand Boulevard, KCMO. 816.471.4386), is a larger-than-life attraction! Begin your journey on a ride into the unknown on laser chariots. Play with the world’s biggest box of LEGOS®. Watch a film in the LEGO® Studios 4D cinema and explore a miniature Kansas City that highlights 10 of our most popular local attractions in LEGO® MINILAND®.
Take a ride on the FREE KC Streetcar and visit City Market for a bit of shopping and taste testing (many of the vendors offers samples of their food so you can try the delicious goat cheese or buffalo meat before you buy it).
On weekends, City Market is a must! Home to a lot of delicious restaurants, including the kid-friendly Minsky's, Cascone's, and Beignet's. Also, visit the Arabia Steamboat Museum. And, be sure to buy fresh produce and spices from local vendors. We never visit City Market without stocking up on our favorite seasonings at Planter's.
Head to the Kansas City Power & Light District. On the 2nd Saturday of the month (May- Oct) enjoy FREE Sprint Family Fun Days (note fees may apply for premium activities). And, any time catch a movie at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema (check ahead for age restrictions). Or, buy lunch at Consentino's and take the elevator to the top for the Rooftop Park above market where you can enjoy a picnic.
The National World War I Museum and Memorial is one of our favorite Kansas City attractions. Visitors should plan to spend at least 4 hours or more on a visit to the museum with wonderful interactive exhibits, films, and displays telling the story of World War I.
The National Archives of Kansas City is a little gem that few locals know about. Immediately west of the Union Station Park Lot (pull into the same driveway), you'll find this free attraction. They offer free exhibits on local history. Hours: Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.
Get some free money at the Money Museum where each visitor leaves with a bag of shredded cash. A short walk up the hill (across from Liberty Memorial), this free museum is another local favorite. Learn all about the Federal Reserve Bank and the U.S. monetary system through interactive exhibits and tours. Hours: M-F 9:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
The crown jewel in the Kansas City Public Library system, the Central Library is beautiful and magnificent. The children's department is magical as you walk through the pages of a book to enter. The parking garage painted to look like a bookcase is a local landmark. And, no visit to the library is complete without a game of rooftop chess.
Be sure to check out the Kansas City City Hall Observation Deck. City Hall is the third tallest building in Kansas City. It offers amazing views of the city, and the observation deck is free. Hours: Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Be sure to allow time to visit Union Station and check out the model trains at the KC Rail Experience and movies on the Extreme Screen. Also, be sure to visit Science City while you're at Union Station. Science City is Kansas City's hands-on science museum for kids. Or, catch a show at the Gottlieb Planetarium.
Kaleidoscope is one of the best FREE attractions in Kansas City. Check out one of their FREE Walk-In Sessions for ALL Ages (perfect if you have multiple children with a span of ages as we do), and we’ve learned that they tend to have the smallest crowds at the earliest sessions. If the sessions aren't crowded, they'll let you walk in a few minutes late or early and they won't require you to leave at the end of the session (this depends on the size of the crowd). Children love Kaleidoscope where creativity and imagination play in Kaleidoscope's magical hands-on world where children create masterpieces with super cool, super fun supplies, in a super amazing atmosphere all thanks to Hallmark. This is truly one of Kansas City's BEST family-friendly attractions! PLUS it is indoors... making it perfect for rainy days or days when you just need to "stay in the a/c"!
Visit the Hallmark Visitor's Center next door to Kaleidoscope, another FREE attraction and one of our favorite "Watch it Made in KC" attractions. Children are given a scavenger hunt to follow as they learn the history of Hallmark, artists demonstrate their craft (we recently watched as an engraver prepared designs for greeting cards and watched the machines that assemble the cards), kids make their own bows with the press of a button, and the self-guided walk through tour almost always ends with a gift (frequently these are the music playing cards for the upcoming holiday, but we have even been excited to receive FREE recordable books for gifts). The Visitor's Center is especially nice if you are visiting with multiple generations (it is a favorite when grandparents are in town visiting) and you're able to enjoy it at your own pace.
This is Just the Beginning...
ALWAYS Check our Kansas City Calendar. Throughout the summer, Crown Center offers many terrific events for families including FREE Puppet Shows, Concerts, Movies, and festivals. This summer, Coterie Children's Theatre is showing Garfield: The Musical. And, their free summer exhibit will feature Thomas the Train. And, check the Crown Center Calendar before you head out to make the most of your fun!