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A playoff-caliber visitor's guide to Kansas City

The weather isn't cooperating, but that doesn't mean you can't have fun while you are here.

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John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

It's raining. It's pouring. Presumably, old men across the metro are rocking gently in chairs, snoring through an afternoon marathon of The Bob Newhart Show on TV Land.

But not you, weathered traveler. Though you may have visited to see a few games of rounders played out under the bright lights of Kauffman Stadium, the weather report has insisted that you seek comfort elsewhere for the time being. You may be sitting in your hotel room, contemplating ordering a pizza or, for you high-dollared gadabouts, room service replete with mini-bar delectations.

Don't. Don't be that guy.

There are literally dozens of things you can do in this city. Most of which don't involve being out in the rain for too terribly long. So go outside, then go back inside to one of these local haunts, enjoy your Royals/Orioles-less night in the Sister City of Seville.

Alamo Drafthouse

If you felt like your evening out could be complete with good food, good drinks, and a film about marital infidelity and murder, you should drop in to the Drafthouse for a one-of-a-kind cinematic experience. If you're not interested in David Fincher films (because of some reason that I can't possibly comprehend), there's a revival of Sam Raimi's classic comedy-horror film Army of Darkness this evening.

Tomorrow night, there is a special screening of a classic Dario Argento film, Phenomena. Get a beer, a martini, or a latte, eat some delicious food, and be entertained indoors.

If you're on the Kansas side, Cinetopia might be a consideration as well.

Arthur Bryant's

If you are going to come to this city, you are going to eat barbecue at some point. It might as well be the original, the halcyon of Henry Perry's gift to the world. Located at 18th and Brooklyn, just around the corner of the historic Kansas City Jazz District, there isn't a better representative of barbecue in the city (not that we are exactly short on contenders). The sauce has been well-traveled, making stops at the summits of mountains and traversing the arctic climes to rest atop the ceremonial North Pole. Every president since Ronald Reagan has eaten there. You should, too. You owe it to yourself.

Personal recommendations are the combo beef and sausage, burnt ends, or a slab to split with a friend.

Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

Every city worth its salt has a museum, and kansas city happens to have one of the premiere art museums in the Midwest. Between its annual installments of American Gothic paintings, a hefty collection of the works of Caravaggio, sculptures and monuments from the world over, and the contemporary exhibits in the Bloch Building, it is a world class experience. It also happens to have one of the finest restaurants in town, the Rozzelle Court Restaurant.


If you're willing to brave the rain, Westport is the place to be. The potential for you to find something to enjoy is overstuffed into a seven-block stretch, holding everything from cocktail lounges and hookah bars to live music and shopping. If you are visiting this city, you will end up here at some point. You might as well be a little more informed on where to go. The Foundry and McCoy's are always classy, Kelly's benefits from having some of the better pizza in town. Or, you can go a block over to the Greenroom, check out Sinbad's hookah bar, or swing across the street for some live music at The Riot Room.

There are literally too many things for me to mention. Go and be satisfied.

The Country Club Plaza

Anything with the phrase "country club" in it denotes a certain monetary inflexibility, and the Plaza has it in spades. But hey, you pay for what you get, and between Bo Ling's and Zócalo, in the midst of Aldo and Zoom, you'll find four dozen different places worthy of throwing your money at. Future NFL Hall of Fame tight end Tony Gonzalez loved it. Perhaps a little too much, depending on some of the stories that get tossed around.

Check out O'Dowd's, or the aforementioned Fiorella's Jack Stack. If you are looking to propose to someone, The American is the standard bearer.

If none of these places strike your fancy, check the comments below. I'm sure there are several more haunts worthy of your time while you are in the city. I haven't even mentioned the Crossroads, or the River Market because of the weather, but all are worth your attention. There's also the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, the Kansas City Symphony, and the Lyric Opera, for those of us who enjoy Frasier a lot more than we should.