What to Do in Kansas City

Ericka Chatman

Kansas City has the reputation of being unfriendly to those under 21, but there are a variety of ways to have fun and experience the city for little money. Most of these places are within walking distance from campus or just a short metro bus ride away.

The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, located at 4525 Oak Street is within walking distance from campus. The museum is known for its extensive collection of Asian art, but the works range from ancient to modern day. Walking tours and mobile-guided tours are also offered.  The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday. Visit nelson-atkins.org for hours.

Cost: Free

Cinemark Palace At The Plaza

Cinemark Palace is a short walk from campus, located at 526 Nichols Rd. Cinemark has a variety of newly released movies. Newly relased  movies can be seen for only $4.25 before 6 p.m. and $6.25 after 6 p.m. Cinemark also has an email club where free weekly concessions coupons are sent out.

Cost: up to $6.25

The Warkoczewski (Warko) Observatory

The Warko is located on the roof of Royall Hall, and is open to the public on most clear Friday nights starting at dusk. At the Warko, visitors are able to view the moon, Venus, Mars, Saturn, star clusters, Jupiter and other galaxies. The Warko is open from May 1 through Oct.31.  Free parking is located in the garage by Royall Hall during the open hours of the observatory. For more information visit cas.umkc.edu/physics/resources.

Cost: Free

Boulevard Brewing Company Tours

Boulevard Brewing Company offers daily free tours of their production facility located at 2501 Southwest Blvd. The tour is 45 minutes and teaches the history of the company and the brewing process.. The tour ends in the Tasting Room where visitors are able to sample a variety of Boulevard beers. Visit boulevard.com to make a reservation.

Cost: Free (must be 21 or older)

Hallmark Visitors Center

The Hallmark Visitors Center, located at Crown Center, is a short bus ride from campus. Visitors can learn about the history of Hallmark cards, view the production process watch interactive videos and view how the greeting cards business evolved over time.  The Hallmark Visitors Center is open Monday through Saturday. Visit hallmarkvisitorscenter.com for hours.

Cost: Free

First Fridays at The Crossroads District

Every first Friday of the month, rain or shine, the Crossroads district offers an eclectic experience of art culture. Between 7 p.m. and 9 p.m., view different art galleries from all types of artists. Indoor and outdoor entertainment is provided at the surrounding shops.  There is a variety of restaurants and bars in the area that serve burgers, Thai, Italian, Mexican, barbeque, seafood, steaks and more.

Cost: Free (bring money for food, and souvenirs)

  1. 1.     Kansas City Power & Light District  (KCP&L)

The Kansas City Power ad Light District contains more than 50 restaurants, bars, and shops. The Power and Light district also hosts free concerts throughout the year. For more information, visit powerandlightdistrict.com.

Cost: FREE before 11pm (must be 21 or old to visit after 10 p.m. and some bars require a cover charge.)


Note: UMKC students have $28 added to their tuition each  year for the citywide student bus program. Therefore, the bus is free to ride for all students.

For more information about bus transportation, visit umkc.edu/transportation/metro.asp.