My last out of state adventure of 2019 was to the Midwest. Chris and I traveled to Kansas City earlier this month primarily to see the Chiefs and Denver Broncos play at Arrowhead Stadium. Luckily, we also had time to explore other areas of the city.
Kansas City Chiefs vs. Denver Broncos
First off, the game. Not only did we get a taste of Kansas City football, we experienced a Kansas City blizzard. After a failed attempt to make it to the game in our Chevy Malibu rental (we got stuck on a hill and Chris pushed the car into a three-point turn), we made it to Arrowhead Stadium successfully in an Uber XL. Being in the loudest stadium in the world (it holds the Guinness World Record for loudest crowd roar at a sporting event) in a snowstorm was crazy and fun at the same time. Even though the Broncos didn’t pull out the win (6-30), our view of the field was great, and it was an experience we’ll never forget.
P.S. Us New Yorkers are spoiled when it comes to snow removal. #grateful
We spent most of our time at the Plaza where different shops and restaurants line multiple parallel streets. With free parking garages and a map of everything, it reminded me of a huge outlet.
We walked through some KC-specific stores like Made in Kansas City Marketplace where Chris discovered his chocolatier cousin (it’s funny if you know his last name). The shop had a bunch of Kansas City souvenirs like art, accessories, apparel, and barbecue sauce. We also found Charlie Hustle, an apparel store that made us question which state we were in. Missouri? Kansas? Iowa?
The European architecture of the buildings, the clock tower, and the fountains really make the Plaza a nice area to walk around in. The Plaza’s website describes it as, “an outdoor museum of romantic Spanish architecture and European art where people actually live and work every day amid its beauty.”
One of my favorite parts of our weekend trip was riding in a horse carriage through the Plaza one night and seeing all the buildings lined with Christmas lights. The lights are a winter Plaza tradition.
P.S. Look at the horse’s sparkly hooves!
There’s no doubt that Kansas City is known for its barbecue. The dry rub of spices and the way it’s slow-smoked over a variety of woods sets it apart from the barbecue in other areas. According to Wikipedia, the Kansas City metropolitan area has more than 100 barbecue restaurants! Prior to traveling, I read all about the different BBQ hot spots. Chris and I made it to Fiorella’s Jack Stack Barbecue where we tried burnt ends for the first time – delicious. It’s one of the higher end barbecue restaurants.
We also crossed the state line and ate at the original gas station location of Joe’s Kansas City BBQ in Kansas. Talk about a unique experience. Joe’s is literally a gas station restaurant and is known for winning numerous awards for its barbecue. Chris and I split a platter of ribs, pulled pork, and sausage. We also had mac and cheese and onion rings. Believe it or not, the onion rings alone made the 30-minute line worth the wait.
The Liberty Memorial is a monument to commemorate the men and women who served in World War I. It’s located above the WWI Museum and overlooks Kansas City. Chris and I rode the elevator to the very top and saw the greatest view of the city.
Once a working train station and now a historic monument, Union Station is a popular tourist attraction in Kansas City. Upon entering the Grand Hall, Chris and I stared at the 95-foot ceiling, 3,500-pound chandeliers, and lovely Christmas decorations in awe. The Union Station website describes the building as “a hub of culture, education, and entertainment.” Union Station displays national traveling exhibits and is home to a planetarium, the Museum of Illusions, Science City, a movie theater, the Model Train Exhibit, and more.
We spent hours in the planetarium for a holiday laser light show, solving puzzles in the Museum of Illusions, and following 8,000 square feet of toy trains riding the tracks at the Model Train Exhibit.
Our time in Kansas City was short but full of fun! In addition to the highlighted experiences above, we also caught a University of Kansas and UMKC men’s basketball game (98-57) at the Sprint Center in the Power & Light District and ate one of the best breakfasts at eggtc. (which I think is pronounced etc. with a couple of g’s).
The trip crossed off a lot of firsts for me and Chris and was the perfect way to close out the year. It was our first time on a plane together, first time to Missouri and Kansas, first time to Arrowhead Stadium, and first time being at an NFL game in the snow. The trip also crossed off an NFL stadium on Chris’s bucket list.
Looking forward to our next adventure in 2020!