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Disney's Kansas City Studio | Shop Kansas City Local

In 1922-1923, this was the home of Walt Disney's first animation company, Laugh-O-Gram, at 31st and Forest. Photo taken in 1989.
Dory DeAngelo
Courtesy of Missouri Valley Special Collections, Kansas City Public Library, Kansas City, Missouri
This 1989 photo shows the 1922-1923 location of Walt Disney's first animation company, Laugh-O-Gram, at 31st and Forest.

Walt Disney's first professional studio was in Kansas City and is now getting a new lease on life, and a way to keep holiday dollars in the metro.

Segment 1, beginning at 4:35: A non-profit is envisioning the cartoonist's studio as a community space.

The Laugh-O-Gram animation studio building was on the demolition list before being rescued by the Thank You Walt Disneyorganization. Now the goal is to restore the structure and reopen it as a museum, offices for entrepreneurs and a digital arts training program for local youth.

Segment 2, beginning at 31:41: How to find the perfect gift and support area entrepreneurs and artists along the way.

The first "Shop Local" campaign occurred in Boulder, Colorado in 1998. The idea has since spread to cities around the country including the Kansas City metro and this year could prove to be the most impactful for small business owners. Get a guided tour of one such effort, The Strawberry Swing's Holiday Market, and hear gift suggestions to help with finishing your shopping list.

The Strawberry Swing's Holiday Market takes place Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. and Sundays from 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m., December 12-13 and 19-20 at Union Station, 30 West Pershing Road, Kansas City, Missouri, 64108. Tickets are $7.50 to $25 and are required. CDC guidelines will be in effect.

When I host Up To Date each morning at 9, my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. Reach me at steve@kcur.org or on Twitter @stevekraske.
Whether it’s something happening right now or something that happened 100 years ago, some stories don’t fit in the short few minutes of a newscast. As a podcast producer and reporter at KCUR Studios, I help investigate questions and local curiosities in a way that brings listeners along for adventures with plot twists and thought-provoking ideas. Sometimes there isn’t an easy answer in the end – but my hope is that we all leave with a greater understanding of the city we live in. Reach me at mackenzie@kcur.org.