One of the more impressive buildings dedicated to the performing arts, the Kauffman Center is the highlight of the city's cultural scene. Located downtown, this multifaceted event center is dedicated to enhancing stage arts in the city by hosting nationally and internationally renowned artists, as well as providing a platform for local artists to share their expression with a bigger audience. Spread over approximately 285,000 square feet, the center is comprised of venues like the Muriel Kauffman Theatre and Helzberg Hall.
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's insides are 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.
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.
Located inside the Liberty Memorial, this museum offers a remembrance of World War I, it's beginning as well as its aftermath. Some of the exhibits display field equipment, artillery, helmets, propaganda posters and a Renault French Tank. One of the most poignant parts of the museum is a walk over the Paul Sunderland Glass Bridge. Here, visitors tread somberly over a field of 9,000 red poppy flowers; each one represents 1,000 dead soldiers. The museum presents an earnest and candid look at the scope and realities of war, as well as its consequences.
Chicago has the Green Mill and Kansas City has the Green Lady, a couple of things they have in common are great jazz and loads of ambiance. The only difference with the K.C. version is that guests can enjoy a couple of small bites while listening to some up-and-coming local artists. The cocktail menu is also filled with a lot of old-school drinks like the Manhattan, Rob Roy, Old-Fashioned and their very own Green Lady made with apple jack brandy. Check website for complete calendar of musicians and other information.
This interactive museum provides educational entertainment for the entire family. Located in Union Station, the newly created Science City provides interactive displays where visitors learn about astronaut training, weather, history and other scientific phenomena. Divided into five sections, each with a different theme, the museum provides hands-on interactivity for children of all ages, proving that learning about science can be fun, as well as educational. The new City Nights Theater and the overnight 'camp-ins' only add to the experience.
This art gallery-cum-community center is located in the eclectic Crossroads District of KC and is one of the premier galleries of abstract work in the city. Some of the rotating exhibits include sculptures, found art, performance art and other media too varied to compile here. The Belger Cartage Service building itself is a living monument, it is over 100 years old and in fact, this company still does business out of the offices on the 3rd floor. Check website for exhibition details and admission is free.
A much-welcomed addition to the cultural weave of this city, the Muriel Kauffman Theater is located inside the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts. Promising to be a venue that presents an impressive variety of artists and events, this theater is definitely a venue to visit for those who really wish to know intimately the liveliness of Kansas City. Named after a local leader, this theater is a proscenium venue, with a capacity of 1,800 seats. Appointed with the latest in technology, this theater can make an audience experience quite memorable.
Constructed in 1914, this Union Station was known as the third largest train hub in the country, right behind New York's Grand Central and Pennsylvania stations. It has since lost this distinction, yet it remains one of the popular city attractions; the station has been newly renovated and is even more resplendent with its grandiose high ceilings, arched windows, theaters, exciting touring exhibitions and the beloved Science City museum. Other than the architectural eye candy, there is plenty to do inside the station - browse through shops or eat at one of the many fine restaurants.