Friday, September 28, 2012

Kansas Road Trip 2012: Crown Center, the Link and Union Station

We first visited the Crown Center and surrounding area last year and we were amazed by everything in the district.  This year we went back, and even though we went on a Sunday afternoon when things were pretty slow, it is easy to see why the Crown Center district in Kansas City is still one of the most impressive mixed use developments in the United States.

Crown Center was opened in 1971 and is named for the crown logo of Hallmark Cards.  The Crown Center development, which is close to 100 acres, was the grand idea of the founder of Hallmark.  Today the Crown Center is home to lots of really cool attractions and a great shopping center anchored by Halls.  For those playing the home game, Halls department stores are part of Hallmark, too.

Inside Crown Center is Legoland, a huge sea life aquarium and several theaters, so if you are traveling with kids this is a great place to visit in Kansas City.  Crown Center is connected to other parts of the district by the Link which is an elevated climate-controlled pedestrian walkway, and you can follow this thing all the way from Crown Center to the historic Kansas City Union Station.  This fall the KC Union Station is hosting a special Titanic exhibit but the building is home to several really cool attractions including a planetarium, science city, and a railroad exhibit.  It is free to go inside Union Station and explore the building, but there is a charge for most of the special attractions.  Still, if you have kids or are young at heart, it will be well worth the money.

This post really doesn't go Crown Center or Union Station justice - you really have to go see this area yourself.  And save time to check out the World War I Liberty Memorial.  We'll have pictures of the Liberty Memorial to show you in an upcoming post, and trust us when we say that this thing is seriously impressive.  Plus it's where you'll find the best view of the Kansas City skyline for photography.  We've still got more to share with you from our Kansas Road Trip 2012 so keep reading Josh and Joe Travels!

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