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Best Museums in Kansas City

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National World War I Museum and Memorial

A stirring commemoration to those who fought in World War I, the solemn Liberty Memorial forms an integral part of Kansas City's dynamic skyline. Built in the year 1926 to honor those Americans who lost their lives during World War I, this towering memorial is skirted by other nationally and historically-significant sites like the Memory Hall and Exhibition Hall. It was funded entirely through private donations and it is the only commissioned memorial of its kind in the country that honors the 'Great War'. As dusk falls, the top of the tower is lit brightly, towering over Kansas City's urbane landscape. The memorial is home to the National WWI Museum, the official U.S. museum that contains the tanks, guns, memorabilia and interactive exhibits which display the nuances of the early 20th Century warfare.

Kansas City, MO, United States
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Airline History Museum

Take a trip back in flight-time with a visit to this museum that celebrates aviation history. It is located inside a hanger at the old Downtown Airport and visitors can see airplanes, photos, audio/video productions, artifacts, logbooks, uniforms and other items that illustrate the grace of propeller-driven travel. Individuals who lived and worked among the aircraft during their glory days sometimes lead informative and entertaining tours. Groups of ten or more must call ahead to reserve one.

Kansas City, MO, United States
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Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art

Since its opening in the Fall of 1994, over the last two decades the Kemper Museum has become one of the most respected galleries in the region. The permanent collection donated by Bebe and Crosby Kemper features contemporary artwork and some of the artists include the famous glassblower Dale Chihuly, Georgia O'Keefe, Andrew Wyeth and Robert Mapplethorpe, just to name a few. Some temporary exhibits have featured a complete retrospective by fashion photographer, Herb Ritts and a moving AIDS tribute by Robert Juarez. The building merits attention also, it has plenty of nooks and crannies that are interspersed alongside two elongated wings, which makes the structure appear like a bird in flight.

Kansas City, MO, United States
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The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

This artistic wonderland is housed in a splendid neoclassical structure that looks like it is a piece of work in itself. The collections of American and European art contain masterpieces from the most prominent schools and periods, from artists such as Homer, Caravaggio, Monet, Titian, Rodin, Renoir and hundreds of others. Popular displays at the museum include the Chinese Temple Room, a sealed Egyptian tomb and an outdoor sculpture garden. A cafe and gift shop are also on-site. Admission is free.

Kansas City, MO, United States
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