Friday, June 18, 2010

Bashing of KC, internally and externally, makes me sick

So after the news was confirmed that Kansas City will indeed host the 2012 MLB All Star Game, most people in Kansas City rejoiced. Then we started reading what people were saying about us. It hurts to see people bash a city. But then again, most of these people are probably east coasters and have probably never been to Kansas City in the last 5 years. Then I started reading the reaction from locals, some saying that KC will be exposed as a fraudulent major league town. The best way I can compare it is like a good looking girl suddenly panicking and thinking that she looks awful in her prom dress and won't leave her room...two months before prom.

I'll admit it, KC was a pretty boring place 5 years ago. We had just lost the Big 12 tournament and Westport had been taken over by hooligans and criminals. Most of the city's metro population lived in Kansas and suburbs. It was a boring place unless you were searching for some damn good barbeque and had an affinity for outdoor shopping.

But the city is on its way back. 50,000 people have moved back in to the city limits, 5,000 to downtown alone. $4.5 billion dollars have been invested in downtown since the late 90s. The Power and Light district is the social center of the city, the Kauffman Center for Performing Arts will be a premiere theatre on the national stage, the Crossroads District is still one of this city's best kept secrets, Union Station has been a bust, but it still brings in some pretty awesome national exhibits.

Most people's view of Kansas City is very dated. This isn't the KC of the 1990s, where the main attraction in town was the world's largest collection of Starter jackets ( still might be). There are plenty of things for people to do in this town now. All within a short taxi or bus ride from downtown are the River Market, Westport, the Plaza, Power & Light, Crown Center, Negro Leagues Museum, and the 18th and Vine Jazz district.

The point is, people have become so disconnected with Kansas City. People say they're from KC, but in all likelihood they're from Lee's Summit, Blue Springs, Overland Park or Parkville and haven't seen the revitalization from up close. I've seen it. I worked at Power & Light for nearly a year. Every night, people from KC or even out of town, would come up to me and say how they couldn't believe an area like this could be in Kansas City. The people of KC need to stop badmouthing our city. She's back on the rise. I think we're going to blow people away.

Maybe we're suffering from ugly duckling syndrome, or it could be the other thing that has plagued this city for the last 20 years...loser mentality. Get behind your city and for crying out loud, stop it with the loser mentality.


  1. What makes me really sick is when other jealous cities (like Boston) start griping that they deserve it more. The ASG isn't just about the team (which if you gave the ASG based on team success, well, KC wouldn't have a leg to stand on). It's about the fans, and it's about time that Royals fans got some good news.

  2. 50,000 people? More like 5,000.

  3. Just checked... total downtown population as of June 7, 2010 is around 17,000. Just sayin.

  4. ^misprint on my part. 50,000 have moved back in to the city limits since 2005.

  5. Great Post. Why don't you write one on what 2030 in Kansas City is going to look like. NBA team? Hockey Team? Whose the next Mark Cuban? Jerry Jones of KC?

  6. My brother moved into downtown KC just a few blocks north of Union station 4 or 5 years ago. It's a great area with a lot of cool new shops and restaurants and bars. KC is a great city! Independence, on the other hand, sucks, and the K is very close to Independence.

  7. I'm from New Jersey, a lifelong fan who just moved out of the town where Willie Wilson was the STAR running back on the football team of the high school I went to.

    Growing up, Dad said I could be a fan of any team other than the Yankees. I am a lifelong Royals fan as a result of these two facts.

    I've been to Kansas City three times, and seen the Royals in four other cities spanning the country. I think of myself as a die-hard fan. I do get weird looks walking around in a powder blue Greinke jersey with the 40th patch, but real baseball fans love it.

    As an east-coaster for life, I occasionally enjoy flying out there for a few games. I have a college buddy there where I can crash, and we have gone to all kinds of neat places in the KC area, usually after games.

    I've even gone to a Chiefs game in opposing colors. That was an interesting, yet fun experience. Best tailgate I've EVER seen.

    It's not the east coast by any means, it's just different. I fit in as an east coast person because I traveled a lot as a child and have few places in the USA that I have a bias against.

    Kansas City never ever made my list. Los Angeles never even made my list and we saw what happened after the Lakers' victory last night.

    KC has it own personality. Now let's hope MLB doesn't botch this. They usually don't, but hopefully Selig will be gone by then. KC has many positive things and I hope MLB advertises that fact to the fullest.

    Now I have to start dropping quarters into the piggy bank to go. A lifelong dream; it should have been years ago.

  8. You make a few decent points, 5k moving downtown, Crossroads, etc. But that doesn't mean that Kansas City is anywhere near becoming a world class city. We're still, sadly, a suburban city full of small minded rednecks. Yes, you can hate if you like but I'm just pointing out that Kansas City is really Akron, Ohio with a few crappy major league teams. It's not that I'm a hater, I just get sick of people in a town who live for and think of a towns worth due to some sports teams who could give a rats ass really about whether you care for them. Just spend some money.