As I mentioned above, we remained in Kansas City for our final day before having to head home. The day included two more museums, but only one meal worth including here. Neither of us felt like straying far from the hotel at night. We wound up walking to a nearby Chinese restaurant for dinner.
But lunch was a trip highlight and I wanted to make sure we arrived at our lunch destination before the lines got too bad, so we set out early for our first museum stop of the day: the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, which was part of a museum complex that included a jazz museum. As with all of the other museums, it was very worthwhile. The museum wound around in a circle around a model baseball field that periodically came back into vision.
The photo is a bit blurry, but Octavius Catto, who lived during the mid to late 19th century, was just honored with a statue next to Philadelphia's city hall today. There was a large turnout.
We left the museum and made the short ride over to Arthur Bryant's for lunch. Besides Jack Stack, which we had the gift card for, I was initially learning towards making Kansas City Joe's at the gas station in Kansas City, KS, my second barbecue stop if I could only make two. But I changed my mind in the end and decided it would bother me more if I missed Arthur Bryant's. I had read on here that A.B. had gone downhill for some years but that they had improved more recently, so I was guardedly optimistic that I'd like it. My initial ordering plan didn't work out. I had hoped to be able to get small amounts of a few types of meat on a tray. In the Texas barbecue belt, they generally will let you order by the quarter-pound. But when I asked the guy taking our order, he said that the minimum was a half-pound per meat. I didn't have a big enough appetite at that point in the trip to eat a massive amount of meat, so I improvised and went with a short end of spare ribs with a side of baked beans. It turned out to be a good decision because the ribs were fantastic. They had a nice amount of smoke and were perfectly done. The baked beans were also great. It's a close call as to which barbecue place I went to made better beans.
Our final activity of the trip was a visit to the National World War I museum. As I mentioned in an earlier post. This is a spectacular museum. I don't think I've ever enjoyed a museum more. The sheer volume of things they have is amazing. There are weapons of all kinds, gas masks, uniforms, and a seemingly endless amount of posters from various countries, most of them propaganda posters or requests to buy war bonds. The museum is next to an older monument that is up on top of a large hill across from Union Station. I would advise anyone who goes to the museum to drive unless you are in good shape and used to climbing large hills. We walked it on a very hot and humid day and we were drenched and in need of a rest in the museum café when we made it to the top. I didn't see anyone else walking up like we did. I assume most people are aware of the situation and drive.
The first couple shots are of the older monument. You can go up in that, but we didn't. There is also a separate room devoted to posters next to the base of the monument.
The U.S. is drawn into the war when it is discovered that Germany tried to encourage Mexico to invade us in an effort to bog us down and keep us out of the European war.
A model of a trench:
These are from the poster room next to the base of the monument:
And a final shot from the balcony next to the monument:
As far as what we did and saw, the biggest trip highlight was definitely the WWI museum, although the two presidential museums and the one devoted to Churchill were also very memorable for me.
If I had to pick a biggest food highlight of the trip, it was probably the coconut-cream pie at the Sommerset Hall Café. Other highlights were the ribs at Arthur Bryant's, the malts at Town Topic and Winstead's and the beans at both barbecue places. And I'll throw the burger at Town Topic in there. It wasn't quite one of my favorites, but it was very enjoyable and really hit the spot that first night were in Kansas City.