Vacation and value? In KC, they are one in the same. This summer, Kansas City has you and your wallet covered with all the excitement of a big family escape, but at a fraction of the price. So pack those polka dot flip-flops, load up the car and get set for a family trip to remember. You’ll discover a unique, fun-in-the-sun vacation of value. To us, it’s just another beautiful summer day in Sunsational KC.

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The Big Three

Jazz, barbecue and fountains—these beloved traditions thrive in a Kansas City summer. Sample KC’s signature sound at one of our many jazz clubs, or head to the 18th & Vine Historic Jazz District to learn more about the genre’s rich KC roots. Then, belly up to the bar for some barbecue (or is it BBQ?) No matter how you spell it, Kansas City does it right. In fact, KC can boast more barbecue restaurants per capita than any other city in the world. Take the challenge and find your favorite. Finally, no visit would be complete without a tour of the city’s beautiful fountains. From large and majestic to small and whimsical, there are more than 200 waterworks sprinkled throughout the metro.

15 Reasons to Love KC this Summer-KC Royals
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The Great Outdoors

Don’t forget your sunscreen for these fresh-air adventures. Take it outside to experience Kansas City’s thrilling, side-by-side amusement parks, Worlds of Fun and Oceans of Fun. Then, get up close and personal with hundreds of butterflies at Powell Gardens, Kansas City’s 915-acre botanical garden. Finally, cheer on the “boys in blue” inside one of baseball’s most beautiful ballparks, the newly renovated Kauffman Stadium.          

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Kid-Friendly KC

Looking for an adventure that will appease everyone in your tribe? Kansas City has enough to keep the whole gang busy. Let the kids be a scientist for a day at Science City in Union Station. The hands-on exhibits will have them laughing and learning. Hallmark’s Crown Center is another hot spot, playing host to several family-friendly events throughout the summer. Returning this Memorial Day is Jiggle Jam, a music festival designed with kids in mind.

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Under the Summer Sky

Nothing says summer like theater under the stars. Sing-along with Broadway favorites likeThe Producers and Dreamgirls at Starlight Theatre, the second-largest theater of its kind in America. Another summertime favorite is the Heart of America Shakespeare Festival in Southmoreland Park. For three weeks beginning in June, the festival presents free performances of Shakespeare’s tragedy, King Richard III. 

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Art Al Fresco

A mild summer evening is the perfect excuse to experience KC’s eclectic arts scene. Join the thousands who flock to the Crossroads Arts District for one of the nation’s largest free art walks. Or head to The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, where you can explore the Kansas City Sculpture Park or picnic next to gigantic Shuttlecocks. Finally, take in some art while you shop. The Spanish-inspired Country Club Plaza is a million-dollar treasure trove of outdoor artwork, sculptures and fountains.

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WHAT’S NEW

Chances are Kansas City has changed since your last visit. Make time during your trip to visit some of KC’s brand new attractions, like the Schlitterbahn Vacation Village Waterpark, the National Archives at Kansas City, or the new polar bear exhibit at the Kansas City Zoo.

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Off the Beaten Plate

Kansas City is quickly gaining ground as a serious dining destination. Sample the award-winning cuisine at Bluestem and Justus Drugstore. Or see what’s cooking at Carmen’s in Brookside, where sumptuous yet inexpensive Italian dishes are the mainstay. Other noteworthy tastes: the fresh, regional fare at Webster House, authentic Greek cuisine at Tasso’s and delicious soul food at Peachtree.

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Around the Metro

Although you might be tempted to linger in the heart of the city, a short trip in any direction around the metro offers a wealth of interesting discoveries. Follow in the footsteps of Harry S. Truman, America’s charismatic 33rd president, in nearby Independence. Or make the short drive to St. Joseph—the start of the legendary Pony Express, which celebrates its 150th anniversary this year. On the Kansas side, hunt for bargains inside The Legends at Village West or enjoy fun family events like the Amelia Earhart Festival in Atchison.

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