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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Everything's Up to Date in Kansas City

Rodgers and Hammerstein wrote "Everything's up to date in Kansas City" for "Oklahoma!" In the years since that musical was produced, it is still up to date!

I'm here for the National Educational Telecommunications Association meeting. My days are spent in sessions -- all useful and interesting. It's a good learning conference.

In addition to the break-out sessions, we also get current information on the state of the system, from such respected industry leaders as Patricia Harrison of Corporation for Public Broadcasting and Paula Kerger of PBS.

We also had a breakfast during which we watched Amy Goodman present "Democracy Now" live.

And then, there are the evenings. The first night we had a reception at Lidia's (as in public TV's Lidia) restaurant. Lots of people were crammed into the tent for the reception (and good treats) including Hari Sreenivasan of "PBS NewsHour" and CPB's Jennifer Lawson.

There was entertainment, too.

The walk over, through Union Station was as fun as the reception. Kansas City has an elevated indoor walkway that snakes through various areas, making it safe and warm to get from spot to spot.

The interior of the building was amazing!

The second evening's activity was a reception at the American Jazz Museum, which included a tour.

Dennis Winslett was our guide -- and it was all the more meaningful and fun because of the musical interludes he included to emphasize certain points.

It's a terrific museum with lots of interactive exhibits, film, and displays.

The design is terrific, as is the flow. It's well worth the stop for the Kansas City traveler.

And while you're there, stop in the Blue Room at the museum. Rated one of the best jazz attractions in Kansas City (and for a city known for jazz, that's saying something), it really rocks!

The museum is adjacent to the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum. One of my heroes is John "Buck" O'Neil, whom -- if you saw Ken Burns' film "Baseball" -- was a remarkable narrator with his own story.

There was a special display honoring him.

Across from the museums is the Gem Theatre -- stop by there for some terrific jazz performances.

And then, it was home to gear up for another day of learning and fun.

But it will be tough to beat this evening! (Although I can tell you, my free day, Friday, will -- Looking forward to meeting fellow blogger Beth of Gathering Dust for lunch! Can't wait!)

Till then, it's music in my head as I drift off into fuzzy dreamland!

NOTE: If you enjoy biography of a sort, or books on Paris, or Hemingway, visit Chopsticks and Strings for a look at "The Paris Wife."

15 comments:

Joanne Huffman said...

It's always such fun to go along on your trips with you.

Marilyn said...

It has been many years since I was in Kansas City, but do remember seeing the station. There wasn't a museum there then. What fun to have music a part of this adventure. Happy travels.

Janet said...

Thanks for including us on your adventures. Kansas City is a great place for jazz and barbecue. Looks like you had a fun day.

Love the ceiling in that one building.

anno said...

oooh! Love that last picture! Looks like so much fun ... but then, as I've said before, I think you bring good times wherever you go. Love seeing KC through your eyes and heart.

Blissed-Out Grandma said...

I love Buck O'Neil, too. I have a KC Monarchs jersey with his number on the back, and I wore it when I got to meet him several years ago. He gave me a big hug, and here in my office I have a big photo of the two of us. Some day I hope to go to the Negro Leagues museum, and now I'll add the jazz museum to that list!

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

I am glad you are having a great trip! It's great to attend a conference that is worthwhile and enlightening!! I have never been to Kansas City, but my friend lived there for a couple of years and loved their downtown area!

Barb said...

You make me want to visit Kansas City! The conference sounds wonderful - lots of sights, sounds, and even tastes!

Dr. Kathy McCoy said...

Thanks for taking us along on your wonderful trip, Jeanie! It brought back so many great memories for me. I have relatives in Kansas City and when I was a child, we often went by train into that beautiful station. When I was in college at Northwestern in the Chicago area, I would take the train again to spend Spring Break with my Kansas relatives and pass through that station. I'm so happy to see that it's so well-preserved and has multiple uses. And I'm glad you so enjoyed your conference!

Oh said...

Really? All that in KC? ha. next time I go, I'll have to skip the sports with the boys and see some of this good music stuff!

Love the pictures - keep 'em coming!

Retired English Teacher said...

The conference looks like it was really a great one to attend. The fact that is was in Kansas City really makes it even more of an attraction. I think we need to go to Kansas City. It looks like great fun.

Becca said...

Enjoyed this mini-tour of Kansas City :) I love the way you bring us along on your excursions!

Karen Owen said...

You get to do the most interesting things! Thanks for taking us along.

BECKY said...

Looks like an awesome time! You were fairly close to me...I'm just on the other side of Missouri! :)

Tracy said...

Oh, this was fun--and such wonderful photos! All the neon sizzles... I love jazz, so maybe one day will get to the Blue Room! Really enjoying catching up with your travels, Jeanie. :o) Happy Days ((HUGS==

shoreacres said...

Oh, my gosh. We were in Kansas at nearly the same time! Let's see - I was in-state the 8th-9th, before heading up to Iowa.

I love this post. I had my first job and my first apartment in Kansas City, way back when - the apartment was on North Main, when it was a little more "residential" in feel than I suspect it is now.

Did you know that the fellow who wrote "Going to Kansas City" eventually wrote a song called "Leaving Kansas City" just before he left for New York? True story.

And I have to ask - did you get to the Jewel Box over on Troost? I suspect not. ;-) A couple of the fellows who lived above me in that first apartment worked there. It took me a long, long time to figure that out - but they were great neighbors!

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