Startland News presents its annual Made in Kansas City Gift Guide. Check out selections from the KC Experiences category below. Have more ideas? Leave them for readers in the comments below.
More than 15,000 square feet of climbing walls and routes up to 40 feet high await exploration at RoKC’s North Kansas City branch. For beginners to experts, the rock climbing facility provides an adrenaline-pumping workout with conventional climbs, bouldering and a variety of lessons.
Ever just want to build a chair? The folks at Maker Village KC can relate. Build that chair, make a cutting board, refinish a wooden spoon or weld some bookends at Kansas City’s slickest wood and metal shop. Buy a class to make the aforementioned items and more, or groups can book the entire space if you want some sawdust bonding time.
Negro League Baseball Museum & American Jazz Museum – $10 & up
It doesn’t get much more Kansas City than jazz and baseball. Explore two gems capturing icons of Kansas City’s history in one trip to Kansas City’s historic 18th and Vine District. The Negro Leagues Baseball Museum imparts powerful and thought-provoking stories from the Negro Leagues. The American Jazz Museum offers the sights and sounds of jazz’s history in America through interactive exhibitions, films and visual arts. Both locales provide a cultural and historical experience that provide better context on Kansas City’s segregated roots.
Miss those obscure board games from your childhood? The chances are high that Pawn and Pint not only has the game, but also access to a community that wants to play it with you. Kansas City’s bar and boardgame joint, Pawn & Pint, has hundreds of games for friends and families looking for a venue to get competitive over trivia or Dungeons and Dragons. The locale also offers a variety of leagues and tournaments for those looking to test their skills against KC’s finest.
Defuse a bomb, solve the crime or develop a cure before time runs out. Gather the puzzle solvers on your list and try to break out of a room in this elaborate escape game. The team at Breakout KC are nationally recognized as some of the best in the nation in creating escape game experiences.
Satisfy your inner lumberjack and hurl a hatchet at some wood. Don a flannel, line up in your alley and throw an axe at Blade & Timber, located in Kansas City’s West Bottoms.
Check out the Plaza lights by air in a helicopter or plane tour. River’s Edge offers 10- to 30-minutes helicopter rides starting at $130. Or hop on a plane with ATD Flight Systems to zip through Kansas City for $80 and up.
Short of a rocket, the Arvin Gottlieb Planetarium’s 60-foot dome and recently-upgraded 4K projector are one of the best ways to intimately view the heavens. Hop on a big bean bag and bask in the wonders of outer space, learning about dark matter or touring the constellations and asterisms now visible in Kansas City’s night sky. Continue the day of educational exploration with a trip to Union Station’s Science City.
Munch on some tasty chicken before whacking the ol’ pickleball at this popular North Kansas City locale. For those unfamiliar, pickleball is a sport similar to tennis wherein players use paddles to hit a perforated plastic ball over a net. Reserve a court for doubles or singles, or book a beginner’s lesson to pickle up the sport.
Take in some area history as you gaze upon Kansas City from a new perspective: the top of a double-decker bus. Grab the hop-on, hop-off pass to enjoy each stop along the way, including Boulevard Brewing Company, Crown Center, the River Market, National World War I museum and more.