Kansas City as a crazy sports town was solidified with the 2015 World Series when the hustle of the Royals beat the best efforts of the New York Mets in just five games. The city literally and figuratively turned blue as more than a half million people celebrated the team’s second World Championship along a parade route that ran 2.5 miles from the Sprint Center downtown to Union Station, both of which turned blue.
The city’s many fountains ran blue, the Kauffman Center turned blue, even Shatto Milk turned blue and Boulevard Brewery released a Crown Town Ale in a special blue bottle.
“The K” or Kauffman Stadium, one of two stadiums in the Truman Sports Complex on the east side of the city, is home to the World Champion Kansas City Royals. The stadium is recognized as one of the prettiest ballparks in the major leagues based in large part on the 322-foot long fountain in the outfield. The K is also home to the Royals Hall of Fame that includes, among other things, that infamous pine tar bar that got George Brett into such trouble back in the 80s.
Speaking of George Brett, the highway crossing over Interstate 70 to the stadium complex is named “George Brett Bridge.”
The Truman Sports Complex includes Arrowhead Stadium, home to the Kansas City Chiefs. Arrowhead is proudly recognized as the noisiest stadium in pro football, particularly when the Raiders are in town. Tours of both Kauffman Stadium and Arrowhead are offered throughout the week. Both stadiums are great places to shop for team apparel, some not available elsewhere in the city.
Baseball fans should not miss an opportunity to visit the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in Kansas City’s historic 18th & Vine District. This museum tells of the time before Jackie Robinson integrated the game and the talented athletes who traveled the U.S. and Canada playing baseball in Negro Leagues. It’s more than a story of sports – it becomes a story of racial integration in North America.
Other than winning a World Series, Kansas City explodes with sports fans during the month of March. The NCAA’s first headquarters was founded here in 1952. As a result, Kansas City has hosted more Final Fours than any other city in the U.S. and today continues to host more basketball tournament games in March than any other city.
The College Basketball Experience, located adjacent to the Sprint Center where many of those tournament games are played, is an interactive experience that not only explains the history of basketball and its many rules, but allows you to shoot from the foul line, dunk in a lowered net and dribble until your heart is content.
In addition to a winning baseball franchise, Kansas City is home to Sporting KC, a member of the Major League Soccer. The team plays in Sporting Park at the Legends in KCK and has twice won the MLS cup. Fortunately for those who dye the city fountains, Sporting KC’s colors are also blue.