History and industry in Kansas City, Missouri
Kansas City, Missouri, has been described as the "Paris of the Plains." The name is in part due to Country Club Plaza, a European-style shopping district. The Plaza is not the only place visitors and locals go to browse businesses. On 5th Street you'll find City Market, one of the largest public farmer's markets in the Midwest. When it comes time to eat, reserve a table along the 39th Street District (famous for steak and barbecue). If you want something special, besides the usual hustle and bustle of this popular city, you can visit these famous attractions:
If you're driving your Kansas City rental car around the area, might we recommend a stop at Kauffman Stadium. Originally dubbed Royals Stadium when it was first constructed in 1973, the ballpark was renamed in 1993 to honor Ewing Kauffman, the founding owner of Major League Baseball's Royals. Over by left field, you will find the largest privately funded fountain in the world. Dubbed "the water spectacular," this 322-foot wide display features a constantly running waterfall and dancing water sprays before and after games. Kauffman Stadium (or "The K") is part of the Truman Sport Complex, along with Arrowhead Stadium where the Chiefs play. If you are big sports fan, then you'll want to visit the Kansas City Negro League Baseball Museum
World War I Museum
The Truman Sports Complex gets its name from President Harry S. Truman, whose former home is in Kansas City and is open for public tours. The area's major historic attraction, though, is the World War I Museum at the Liberty Memorial. When you approach the museum, the first thing you will notice are the bright red poppies growing out front. This garden of 9,000 flowers is a tribute to Flanders Fields, WWI battlefields in Belgium where the poppies grow wild. The garden also honors war casualties, as each flower represents 1,000 soldiers who gave their lives in the first great war. As you move inside the museum, you will see artifacts on display that began being gathered once the fighting stopped on Armistice Day. Objects available for viewing include weapons, uniforms and equipment from the front lines, as well as quilts, posters and media that give visitors a glimpse at what life was at home in wartime America. It is an interactive museum that utilizes modern educational tools and the second-oldest collection of WWI artifacts in the nation.
Harley Davidson Factory Tour
To learn about local industry, drive your Kansas City rental car to the Harley Davidson Factory. You don't have to be a motorcycle owner to appreciate this up-close look at a real assembly line. The primary tour of the factory is free. The basic walk through lets you examine the actual production floor and sit on the finished product. You can pay for the Steel Toe Tour to learn more about the history of this classic vehicle and go even further behind the scenes to see where the bikes are painted, polished and customized. The advanced package includes a souvenir pin and photo. Other in-depth tours in Kansas City include the Roasterie Coffee Factory and the Kansas City Gangster Tour.