(New) Kansas City Adventures

It’s sad to think that Andrew and I will be leaving Kansas City in just a few short months. It will be bittersweet to graduate and move home; we’ve made a lot of friends here and have grown to love this city. So, we want to do as much as we can in the last couple of months before we move back to St. Louis.

One of the placed I have always wanted to visit is the downtown central branch of the Kansas City Library. Andrew suggested going between classes yesterday; it was a bit gray out but it wasn’t supposed to rain and it wasn’t too cold, so we decided to go. While visiting a library sounds boring, the downtown library is very unique. The south side of the parking garage features the spines of classic novels that are as tall as the garage itself, so it looks like a gigantic bookshelf!

Right Book Shelf
The east side of the bookshelf.
Left Book Shelf
The west side of the bookshelf.

It was hard to take a good picture of all of the books in one shot because the streets are so narrow, so crossing the street didn’t help much.

Me standing next to Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury.
Me standing next to Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury.

The inside of the library is just as amazing. From 1906 to 1999, the building was actually a bank. They remodeled it and turned it into the library. It has such a classy feel inside with marble floors and beautiful architecture. Their children section is so cute, too, with large pages of famous quotes from various books framing the entrance.

Children's Area

We wandered around for a while, just exploring. I couldn’t get over how huge the library was. They have just rows and rows of books, as well as conference rooms and tons of computers. If I lived a bit closer, I could find myself spending a lot of time here. They have a grand reading room, with tons of tables and lamps in a large room, where you can study or look through books. It reminded me of something from a movie! I didn’t take a picture though because there was a sign that asked to turn your phones off and put them away. I had to tell Andrew not to talk through that room because he cannot whisper to save his life. :D

Downstairs in the basement, the library is currently turning one of the old bank safes into a movie theater. It was open, and looked finished to me, but apparently they aren’t having any showings yet.

Bank Vault turned Movie Theater

It was a great afternoon “mini-date,” and I can’t believe it’s somewhere I’ve not been before. I’ve lived in Kansas City for three and a half years and I’m just now going to this awesome place with books! :P

Later, we had friends over for dinner. We ordered pizza from a local pizza place called Minsky’s that we hadn’t tried before. I’ve been compiling a list of restaurants as well to try before we leave, and this was on the list. Numerous friends have recommended it — including the ones we had over! — so we gave it a go.

By the time I remembered to take a picture of the pizza, we ate it all. :P
By the time I remembered to take a picture of the pizza, we ate it all. :P

The price wasn’t too expensive; we paid about $40 for two large pizzas and an order of bread sticks. We normally just order from Domino’s or Papa Johns because it’s cheap, but it was very good. Andrew and I couldn’t say we liked it more or less than other pizza places, so we probably wouldn’t order their regularly. However, they have a huge menu, so I would like to try some other things besides their pizza in the future!

13 thoughts on “(New) Kansas City Adventures”

  1. OMG WOW that library looks amazing. Those giant books are freaking fantastic, what a brilliant idea. And oh, it sounds so grand being an old bank… so cool, so very very cool.

  2. That library has some cool ideas. I was going to ask how you knew it was an old bank, but then kept reading and saw the picture of the vault door. It looks like a fairly complex locking mechanism, any idea how long it’s been since it was a bank?

    My fiancee says I don’t know how to whisper either, she claims I always talk loud even when I talk normal, so she might tell me to keep quiet in there too.

    1. After a series of mergers, the bank moved locations in 1999. The library started renovations in 2002 and then moved in in 2004. After our trip I looked more of the details up on the website since it’s so interesting! The front of the building they left the same, so it still has the First National Bank title on the building. The bank vault just confirmed my suspicions haha.

  3. Man, I really dig the library in Kansas-city! I’m going to have to put that on my Bucket-List for one of the places to travel too! Thanks for sharing this. I love how they painted the outside to look like books. That’s my kind of idea!

    Anyways, I’m not sure if you remember this or not, but in one of the Dr.Seus’s movies where Alec Baldwin was one of the actors? Well, that was actually filmed in Pomona. It just so happened that my stepmother at the time, had an office there, and so did my mom (who later told me she got a chance to walk behind the trailers of the actors to get to her work place and had no idea what was going on). Anyways, I took one of my friends down there after the movie was filmed and they kept it the same. I guess in her country, they don’t read Dr.Seus? Well, I had her take a look and she was very impressed. She was bugged eyed throughout the trip. I was glad to have shared a bit of my childhood with her, despite her not knowing the books. So, she claims. Anyways, at the time of filming this movie, it was said that Alec Baldwin came into the store that my stepmother had an antique booth at, and ordered a few things here and there. Apparently, he never came back to pay for the items. I told my stepmom “Maybe he forgot about them and received a phone call from someone and just forgot? You can’t just be mad at him for forgetting something like that. Yes, it’s a bit rude, but he is an actor.” That’s my take on it anyways.

    I was the same way when I moved to a new city. I was so familiar with Papa Johns and Dominoes that I didn’t want to try another restaurant. However, I ended up doing so, and was really impressed that this same restaurant remembered who I was (my dad and I always ordered their spaghetti, but never their pizza). The woman asked me if I had the coupon, and I told her I didn’t and she gave it to me anyway. I guess I made a big impression on them for her to do that.

  4. DAYUM. Now that’s a super awesome library! Love the giant books outside! :D They are really appealing to someone like me who’s a major bookworm :D I also love that giant page of quotes! Very fitting for the children’s section or any section of the library, really ^^ That movie theatre idea is also neat. Thanks for sharing about the library!

    That’s a bit of a shame that the pizza didn’t taste anything special, but at least you still tried it! ^^

  5. I love the look of that place, the giant books and everything – makes me wonder how many accidents it caused when it was first done, thats’ got to be incredibly distracting when a person is driving. But anyway, it sounds like a wonderful place and I’m glad you had chance to go and enjoyed it so much

  6. I love how the parking garage is painted with classic novels. It’s very fitting for a library! I’m also glad you took a photo next to it. That really shows the scale of them. I didn’t realize how large they really were!

    That’s so interesting how the library used to be a bank. Pretty cool how they kept the bank safes and are actually doing something with them. I also like what they did with the children’s section. This is such a cool library! I’d love to visit something like that :D

  7. The garage looks amazing, I never seen something like this. As this year I’ve started a reading challenge I’m going to the library every month and it’s exciting to discover new books, so I don’t think visiting the library is boring. :)

  8. Is it hitting you that you’re graduating soon? ;).

    It’s nice to explore town and discover new things! I like how the library is shaped as a bookshelf’s book/ Putting you next to the building, it’s huge!!! It looks like the both of you enjoyed your time looking through the goods being displayed.

    For a date for 2, $40 sounds pretty good! Papa John’s always have deals going on, and it’s not bad for what it is!

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