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Blick auf Kansas City, Bild: TommyBrison / shutterstock

Highlight in the Midwest: Kansas City

The Midwest is often underestimated, especially culturally. Many cities have a rich cultural scene. A good example is Kansas City in Missouri, which is nicknamed the City of Fountains because of its more than 200 fountains, and is simply called KC by the locals. Nature lovers will appreciate the surrounding area, which is mainly characterized by the Missouri River. Last but not least, the metropolis with almost half a million inhabitants is known as the cradle of jazz.

Going out in Downtown KC

Downtown Kansas City is also known as the “Power & Light District.” Here, residents and visitors will find everything they need for an entertaining evening. A total of nine blocks were developed here a few years ago exclusively for gastronomy, shopping and entertainment. Live music usually sounds from the bars and passers-by can also listen to the performances of musicians in the public squares. A special feature of KC’s downtown: Alcoholic beverages from the surrounding bars and restaurants may be taken outside and consumed – not a matter of course in the USA.

Culinary highlights in Kansas City

Scout Statue, Kansas City
The Scout statue in Kansas City, Image: f11photo / shutterstock

The metropolis is considered the world capital of barbecue. This is prepared in over 100 restaurants and should definitely be on every to-do list of a stay there. In the typical preparation, the meat is smoked very slowly and served juicy with a fruity sauce. Barbecue fans who are in town in September can attend the legendary World Series of Barbecue . The largest barbecue competition in the world is part of the American Royal festival. If you’re looking for regional treats, you’ll also find them at the Kansas City River Market. The market south of the Missouri River delights with about 140 stalls and lots of local specialties.

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Must-see museums in the City of Fountains

Art lovers will find two renowned museums in KC. The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, with over 30,000 works, houses one of the region’s most extensive collections, showcasing art from antiquity to modernity. One focus is on American, European and Asian art. On the extensive grounds that surround the modern building, visitors can stroll through a sculpture park. The Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art specialises in contemporary artists. Among the most famous names are Andy Warhol and Jackson Pollock.

In addition to the permanent exhibition, the museum shows ten to twelve special exhibitions every year that present top-class works. History buffs can explore the National WWI Museum and Memorial. This houses an impressive collection of exhibits from the First World War. The Liberty Memorial Tower, which belongs to the museum, should definitely be visited, because it offers a magnificent view over the city area. The jazz style that originated in the metropolis in the 1920s – Kansas City jazz – is still alive here. For example, there is the American Jazz Museum with an interactive exhibition to discover. Here, the history, music and artists of this genre are honored.

Experience cultural evening entertainment

Jc Nichols Memorial Fountain, Kansas City
Jc Nichols Memorial Fountain, Image: Wallace Weeks / shutterstock

Jazz fans don’t just make a pilgrimage to KC’s downtown for live performances. Above all, the lively district of 18th & Vine is the program. In the past, great jazz legends such as Count Basie or Charlie Parker created the sound of their time here. But jazz is omnipresent around the city area – everywhere numerous clubs and bars with live concerts provide an exuberant atmosphere. The Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, which only opened in 2011, also promises cultural enjoyment. Here, fantastic performances from ballet, theatre and orchestra inspire the audience. Among others, the Kansas City Symphony Orchestra plays here.

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Company Culture in Kansas City

Entertainment and a lively appreciation of the local traditional companies will be provided by the companies Hallmark and Harley-Davidson. The former is a well-known greeting card company. Six days a week, interested parties can admire an exciting exhibition on the company’s almost 100-year history at the company headquarters. In addition, the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art also has a historical photo collection of Hallmark to see. Lovers of legendary bikes will be happy at the Harley-Davidson Factory. There they can take part in a guided tour and see where the motorcycles of the cult brand are made.

Highlights for families in Kansas City

Visitors with children will find a wealth of family-friendly attractions in the friendly city. If you are traveling with little animal lovers, you can’t avoid a tour of the SEA LIFE Aquarium. The interactive world of the seas is located in the Crown Center and has ten themed zones. Thousands of aquatic creatures cavort in these. Children have fun especially at the touch pools. Another must-see is the Kansas City Zoo. This was created in 1909 in Swope Park and invites you to take long walks.

Elephants, leopards, giant tortoises or Mendes antelopes are spotted. The Legoland Discovery Centre is a colourful indoor entertainment park. There, everything revolves around the colourful building blocks from Denmark. Fast-paced Lego rides, a soft play area and a 4D cinema provide fun and entertainment here. A huge amusement park for action lovers is offered with the Worlds of Fun. Here, roller coasters, carousels and other rides get the blood pumping. Right next door is the Oceans of Fun. The water park has everything that makes water rats happy. Above all, the countless slides are popular with guests of all ages. If you can’t get enough of it, The Bay Water Park is another option for splashing around.