Union Station KC
Welcome to Kansas City's very own Union Station, the city's 'hub of culture, education, and entertainment.' This former train station stands as a giant in regional history, as well as a popular science learning center and accomplished entertainment venue. Within the massive doors of Union Station, you will find various permanent and traveling exhibits, an on-site planetarium, and even a science center. You will also find plenty of fun shops and eateries scattered throughout the sprawling station. So where do you start? How about a history lesson?
Union Station is over 100 years old, first established in 1914. At the time the 850,000 square foot complex held over 900 rooms, this being one of the most widely used train stations in the Midwest, some even say in the entirety of the United States. During the WWII era, this spot saw over 1 million travelers, mostly soldiers, who were well taken care of with onsite restaurants, cigar shops, railroad offices, barber shops, and the biggest Railway Express station around.
Head to Science City first, the hands-on science playground wonderland considered to be one of the country's 25 best science centers by Parent's Magazine. Inside you will find several different exhibits and 'discovery areas', such as the Giant Lever, Kinderlab, Maker Studio, Maze Park, and Dinolab and Digsite. This truly is the perfect place to explore 'with freedom and perfect imagination', so forget all about that 'look, don't touch' rule!
Older visitors may want to opt-in for the galleries instead, with several traveling exhibits from the Smithsonian and National Geographic as well as permanent ones such as the popular KC Rail Experience.
You can spend the rest of your time within the Arum Gottlieb Planetarium, 'Kansas City's greatest connection to the night sky and beyond', or the Extreme Screen room, the latter playing popular 3D movies regularly. Get some shopping done or grab a bite at any of the shops when you are done, a couple of favorites always being the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory and Kansas City Store.