Kansas City Missouri | KCUR

Kansas City Missouri

Peggy Lowe / KCUR 89.3

Even before the new year, Beth Kapp had been thinking about clearing the clutter in her Kansas City, Missouri, home.

Just the thought of the holidays was making her anxious. The single mom with two daughters knew her family would get presents, which meant even more stuff.

“Then, after the holidays, I was watching on Netflix this show. And it was really interesting to see her process because I knew there were things I needed to do but I really didn’t know where to start,” Kapp says.

Elle Moxley / KCUR 89.3

Students in Kansas City Public Schools will ride to school next year on new propane-fueled buses, part of a three-year, $60.6 million transportation contract with Student Transportation of America.

“We’re very excited about that,” said Linda Quinley, chief financial officer for the district, after the school board voted to approve the contract Wednesday night.

Amelia Nelson / The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

A quick Google search of Kansas City author and artist Shane Evans, who has illustrated more than 30 children's books, brings up his professional website, his author page on Scholastic and his Facebook page. What doesn’t show up is a Wikipedia entry.

Evans isn't alone. Other African-American artists in Kansas City are also missing from Wikipedia, which a recent edit-a-thon attempted to fix.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: Renowned historian discusses the influences that made four presidents great leaders.

When it comes down to it, 50 years of presidential scholarship has convinced Doris Kearns Goodwin that great leaders are made, not born. The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of books on former presidents Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, FDR, and Lyndon Johnson talked about the individual trajectories that brought each of them to the national crises they faced as president.

Creative Commons

Seg. 1: A recent poll shows Jolie Justus and Steve Miller leading the race for Kansas City mayor, but nearly 30 percent of voters are undecided.

UMKC Athletics

For Michael Watson, playing pro basketball was like being in an entirely different world from the one he grew up in, shooting hoops at Kansas City's Central High School.

"Everything is done at the highest level of excellence — from the GMs down to the players to the managers and the coaches and the staff — everything is done 100 percent and at the top of what you can get," he says. "That's what you dream about doing."

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: The cost of higher education has shot up faster than family income in recent decades.

Samuel King / KCUR 89.3

A Kansas City-based project aimed at helping end homelessness among veterans was touted as a national model Wednesday by United States Rep. Vicky Hartzler, R-Missouri, who toured the campus of the Veterans Community Project in south Kansas City.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Tara Raghuveer wants to raise the alarm.

"The national housing crisis has not skipped over Kansas City," she says. "Half the people in this city are tenants and many of them have issues with their housing."

Raghuveer is the woman behind the Kansas City Eviction Project, which has analyzed 18 years of eviction filings in Jackson County.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: We hear from the man responsible for getting stuff done in Kansas City.

From the future of a downtown ballpark to "pothole management" to streetcar expansion, we talked with the city manager about several big issues on the minds of Kansas Citians. Schulte also addressed caller questions, and says of rising water costs in Kansas City, "we're hopeful we can get a new environmental agreement done for the next 17 years of the plan, and the days of double-digit rate increases are over."

Elle Moxley / KCUR 89.3

Career and technical education is having a moment, but not in all schools. Most charters still focus almost exclusively on college preparedness.

“University Academy seeks to prepare students for higher education and to be leaders in society,” said superintendent Tony Kline. “The vision is to be the best college prep school in the country.”

Peggy Lowe / KCUR 89.3

A few miles away from the Ford plant in Claycomo, Missouri, the assembly line at Knapheide Manufacturing Co. starts at the back door, where six brand-new white Ford Transit cargo vans are lined up, ready to snake through the line for their finishing touches.

Introduced in the U.S. in 2013, Transits have been popular, with an 8.2 percent increase in sales last year.

Kansas City Water Overwhelmed By Weekend Water Breaks

Feb 11, 2019
Flickr user Horst Guttman

Water was restored to dozens of Kansas City homes and businesses overnight after two water main breaks happened Sunday in Midtown and South Kansas City.


Thirty-four customers lost water or water pressure after the first break on Sunday morning. The second break, which happened later in the day on Blue River Road, affected dozens more. Kansas City Water’s dispatch center was not able to keep up with customers calling in to report water loss.


Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Sen. Tim Kaine last called Kansas City home in the 1970s, but he says he still relies on his Midwestern values to guide his politics.

Kaine is Virginia's junior U.S. Senator and was Hillary Clinton's vice-presidential running mate in 2016. But Kaine grew up in Overland Park, Kansas, and this week returned to stump for his old friend from Rockhurst High School, Steve Miller, who is running for Kansas City mayor.

"It was a delightful place to grow up," Kaine says of Kansas City.

Julie Denesha / KCUR 89.3

Once the bane of parents and bosses, tattoos are now everywhere. Four out of every 10 people born after 1980 have at least one tattoo, according to the Pew Research Center.

When Brennan O’Rourke bought A1 Tattoo Shop in Gladstone twenty years ago, the scene looked a lot different.

“When I first was here at A1, there were only five or six shops in all of Kansas City,” he says. “Now there's upwards of 90 just on the Missouri side of Kansas City.”

Michelle Tyrene Johnson / KCUR 89.3

This story is KCUR's contribution to a collaborative reporting project from Sharing America called Fixed Odds, exploring the impact of problem gambling on communities of color and the extent to which states provide money for treatment.

Tribal casinos receive a lot of attention. What doesn’t receive as much attention is the higher incidence of problem gambling among Native Americans compared to the rest of the population.

Chris Haxel / KCUR 89.3

Note: This post has been updated to include comments from Sen. Bob Onder.

A bill that would allow people to bring guns onto public transit last week became the first of about 20 gun-related proposals to receive a hearing in the current Missouri legislative session.

Sporting Kansas City

Kerry Zavagnin is the assistant coach of Sporting Kansas City, but sometimes he dreams of another life.

"Deep down inside, I'm an opera singer without a voice, that would love to be on stage at one point," he says. "If I had any talent to sing, it would be the passion that I have the most for."

Sam Zeff / KCUR

Segment 1: Test scores are in and public school supporters are ecstatic with the results.

Kip Niven

What started as a high school reading group in the 1960s has become a way for Kansas City audiences to enjoy some of America’s greatest plays, read aloud by Kansas City finest actors, for free.

When Kip Niven was a student at Shawnee Mission East High School, friends would gather in Frank Dwyer’s living room, Frank’s mother would put out snacks, and they’d read through plays like “You Can’t Take It With You” just for the heck of it.