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Your destination - Kansas City

Kansas City is two cities in one name, two separate political entities situated on bluffs on opposite sides of the Kansas River where it joins the Missouri River. The two are connected by a number of bridges and common interests, and are economically interdependent. Combined, they represent one of the nations major commercial and industrial centers. As a leading grain and livestock market and distribution center, their impact reaches north to the cornbelt and west to the great plains. Also important to their economies are government installations and industrial areas on both sides of the river. The population of their growing metropolitan area now exceeds 1,663,000. The area is served by excellent rail, river, and interstate highway systems plus the Kansas City International Airport.

One Kansas City, located in western Missouri, is often referred to as The Heart of America because it is the major city closest to the geographic center of the United States. It is the transportation crossroads for much of the nations heartland and home to one of the world's largest winter wheat markets, an outgrowth of the rich agricultural lands that surround the city. Famous for its many fountains, parks, lakes, gardens, and tree-lined streets and boulevards, it is considered one of America's most beautiful cities. The area's notable points of interest are the Harry S. Truman Library, the simulated space flights at the Challenger Learning Center, the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, the Linda Hall Library of Science and Technology, the national Agricultural Hall of Fame, the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, the Municipal Auditorium, the Broadway productions at the Starlight Theater, the Missouri Repertory Theater and the Midland Center for Performing Arts, the Philharmonic Orchestra, the Lyric Opera and the State Ballet of Missouri, and the Jazz Museum tracing the history of the area's greatest musicians, ranging from Scott Joplin to Count Basie to Charlie Parker. Other popular attractions include the Royals major league baseball club, the Chiefs NFL football team, greyhound racing at the Woodland track, entertainment and gaming in the riverboat casinos.

The name comes from the Native American Kansa people who occupied the area prior to the establishment in 1821 of a fur trading post at the junction of the KS and Missouri rivers. In 1835 the original settlement, Westport, developed as a supply depot for the westward migrations which ultimately reached the Pacific and doubled the size of the U.S. Prosperity and economic stability arrived with the railroads in 1865. The name became official on the KS side of the river in 1886 and on the Missouri side in 1889.


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