More than Lights: A Plaza Christmas

(originally published 12/19/19) It was inevitable. These past two weeks I managed to find some unusual views of Kansas City at Christmas, declaring we were more than the Plaza Lights. Still, Christmas in Kansas City will always be associated with those lights, so it was inevitable I had to end this three-week series there. ButContinue reading “More than Lights: A Plaza Christmas”

Of Witches, Elves, and Chivalry: Brookside’s Christmas Pageant of 1921

(originally published 12/12/19) Christmas came early for me, in the form of a flood of great Christmas-related photos and stories. I hadn’t planned to dedicate most of this month’s posts to the holiday, but this bounty of history changed my mind. I started last week with a photo montage about Christmas events in Kansas CityContinue reading “Of Witches, Elves, and Chivalry: Brookside’s Christmas Pageant of 1921”

Christmas in Kansas City – More than Plaza Lights

(originally published 12/5/19) Understandably, when Kansas City pictures itself at Christmas, those pictures are often of the Country Club Plaza lights. Celebrating its 90th year of official lighting (decorating actually began informally as early as 1923), it’s considered one of “the” lighting displays in America. While the Plaza lights are a tradition to embrace, KansasContinue reading “Christmas in Kansas City – More than Plaza Lights”

Halloween, and other Lost Parties of the Country Club Plaza

(originally published 10/31/19) Holidays and history are close companions. Holidays have their own histories of course. Holidays are about tradition, and tradition is history made a part of culture. Culture at every level, from the community-wide to the personal levels, when holidays are the frameworks for memories. Christmas with family, fireworks with friends, Halloween inContinue reading “Halloween, and other Lost Parties of the Country Club Plaza”

The Independence Day Popsicle Parade

(originally published 6/27/19) On the surface, history and tradition might seem opposites. History is the record of the past, static and fixed. Tradition continues and evolves. But the truth is, traditions are history as performance art. Tradition brings history into our lives, connecting who we once were to who we are today. In some cases,Continue reading “The Independence Day Popsicle Parade”