|Downtown Kansas City, Missouri taken from the front porch of our townhome|
Kansas City is two cities in one. Kansas City, Missouri is the larger of the two and is where the convention center and most of you will probably be staying on the Missouri side. Kansas City, Kansas is the smaller sister and you probably won't get there, but us Kansas folks want you to know that we exist. The two cities meld together and when driving on certain streets you can have Kansas on one side of the street, Missouri on the other.
Downtown Kansas City, Missouri has recently been undergoing a wonderful revitalization. Folks are moving back downtown with the construction of the Power and Light District, an entertainment district in the city center which is a short walk from downtown hotels. My son just moved into a loft downtown, which shows you how downtown is now attracting the young and the hip! The Crossroads Art's District is on the edge of downtown and is bringing in artists, galleries and more retail between downtown and Crown Center.
Kansas City is full of wonderful neighborhoods and quaint and interesting shopping districts throughout the city. If shopping is your thing, try Westport for some fun, quirky shops including BonBon Atelier. Betsy runs this tiny shop with her sister and she's got fabric, knitting supplies and unique items for you and your home and they always have something surprising. It's a tiny shop, but you'll linger just to talk with these gals and see what they're up to.
|JC Nichol's fountain on the Country Club Plaza|
As for fabric shopping, are you up for a field trip?
|One small part of Sarah's Fabrics in Lawrence, Kansas|
|Modern, traditional, batiks, quirky, unique...Sarah's has it all!|
|This is just the wall of batiks.|
|There are so many fabrics at Sarah's that bolts are stacked under and just about everywhere she can find a place for them!|
|Can I say selection? Sarah's has an amazing selection of books and patterns.|
Lawrence is a college town, the home of Kansas University. Sarah's is located on Mass Street which is the main street through downtown and is filled with wonderful, unique shopping and restaurants.
Sarah's is the fabric mecca. Enjoy the wood floors, the brick walls, the tin ceiling, and the rows, and rows, and rows of fabrics, books, patterns and Sarah herself. If you can't get out to Sarah's, Harper's Fabrics is another favorite. Harper's is located in downtown old Overland Park which is a suburb of Kansas City on the Kansas side. The owner, Elaine is terrific and is a wonderful supporter of both traditional and modern quilting. I don't have pictures to share of Elaine's shop, but it's well organized and the staff is extremely helpful! It is the "go to" shop in Kansas City.
After all that work at Quilt Market, you're going to be hungry. If you can drag those aching feet out on the town here are a few great places...you may need to grab a cab or a car for most of these. KC is famous for BBQ and my all time favorite is a dive (it's inside a convenience store/gas station) on the Kansas side called Oklahoma Joe's. Grab a cab, get carry out and indulge. For something a bit more upscale Jack's Stack, in the freighthouse district (right by Crown Center), is wonderful and Lydia's (great Italian) is next door.
The Drum Room, located in the historic Hilton President hotel downtown is a blast from Kansas City's jazz past. Great food and it's like stepping back in time. Stroud's (We choke our own chicken is their motto) is a Kansas City classic. Go to the one in North Kansas City for a homestyle meal. (Be ready for a food coma and a long session in the gym after that meal!) For a late night greasy burger, grab a cab to Town Topic. It's close to downtown (a short cab ride) and a Kansas City institution. My favorite place to eat is Room 39 in Westport. It's a quiet, small, unpretentious gem with wonderful food.
I have lots of other favorite restaurants and places to go and see. If you're like me and can't go to a city without visiting a museum or gallery, the Nelson Art Gallery is amazing as well as the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art. They are both located right off of the Country Club Plaza. On a nice day, strolling around the grounds of the Nelson and through the sculpture gallery is a great way to relax and enjoy an afternoon. The Steamboat Arabia museum in the River Market district is a hidden gem and if you have your family with you is a must see for children.
Bottom line, enjoy my hometown. I know that folks will be helpful and welcome you with open arms. If there is anything I can do to make your stay better or help in any way, please drop me an email. I hope to see you all there! Welcome to Kansas City!!