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BBQ, Seafood and More In Kansas City

When you think of Kansas City, you think of BBQ, music, and culture that knocks your socks off. We recently spent 24 hours in Kansas City and found all of the above and more!

It’s true, Kansas City is a BBQ lover’s dream come true. We had a great taste of Kansas City’s BBQ at Char Bar. We then experienced seafood at Bristol Seafood Grill. This was a small sampling of the different flavors that Kansas City has to offer.

Naked Burnt Ends KC
Naked Burnt Ends KC

Char Bar offered up Kansas City’s famous naked burnt ends and all the fixing’s, which included outstanding baked beans.

Our appetizer kicked things off the right way with these Cheesy Hushpuppies at Char Bar.

These mouthwatering hushpuppies were composed of stone-ground grits that were out of this world.

Bristol Seafood & Grill located in the Light & Power District offered another flavor of Kansas City. Here we had lobster mac and cheese. We tend to like our mac and cheese with a little crunch, not too creamy and just right.

We are pleased to say…. Bristol Seafood & Grill offered a fantastic taste of seafood in the heart of the midwest.

A visit to Kansas City would not be complete without swinging into Cosentino’s Downtown Market. We ate breakfast here and we had a nice selection of breakfast foods, including fresh fruit. You serve it up yourself and dish your meal into a to-go container. Breakfast is priced by the pound, so if you want to indulge in several chunks of pineapple, your breakfast may be priced higher.

Cosentino’s is a Kansas City area favorite and we would add that it quickly became a favorite of ours.

The bakery is out of this world, as well as the nice selection of local wines and brews.

The marketplace is also loaded with colorful fruits and vegetables. Cosentino’s will make your meal planning easy. The large selection of food and drink is right at your fingertips. You can shop till you drop at Cosentino’s.

If a quick slice of pizza is calling your name, swing into the Pizza Bar. The service is quick, the environment is fun while enjoying a slice of pizza.

24 hours is simply not enough to indulge in all of the flavors that Kansas City has to offer. We look forward to a return visit and maybe comparing a few BBQ joints.

Do you have a favorite BBQ joint in Kansas City? We would love to hear which one is your favorite.

Thank you to Visit KC for hosting us.

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Convenient Lodging: Crowne Plaza Hotel Kansas City Downtown

Crowne Plaza

Kansas City is becoming a midwest destination of choice for many as it is deatination on the radar of many. The Crowne Plaza Hotel located in the heart of Downtown Kansas City offers a location unlike many others. Here you will find yourself a hop, skip and a jump away from the Kansas City Streetcar and the vibrant Power & Light District.

We drove into Kansas City and were able to find the Crowne Plaza Hotel relatively easy. One tip that we would give you, is that the parking ramp is located to the right of the main doors and the valet drop off area. It would be easy to drive by if you were not aware of its location.

The check in process was smooth and the staff was very friendly. Upon entering our room, we found it to be spacious with a stunning view.

Crown Plaza Hotel Room

Anytime we stay in a downtown property, we often find the views to be tremendous. What’s not to love about sunset?

Sunset from Crown Plaza Hotel

Staying in the heart of Downtown Kansas City during the holidays also has special perks.The Christmas lights are abundant and it’s a sure sign that the Christmas spirit is in the air. The Crowne Plaza lobby was also decked out for the season, as there were packages here and there.

packages at Crowne Plaza

The Crowne Plaza Hotel in Downtown Kansas City prides itself on offering 14,614 square feet of meeting space. With 10 meeting rooms and one that will hold 325 people, this property offers a great venue for companies looking for a place to meet.

additional outlets
additional outlets

Other amenities on the property are:

  • Complimentary Wifi
  • On-site fitness center
  • Plug ins are adequate in the rooms (There are several outlets)
  • Restaurant and Starbuck’s are on site
  • Outdoor swimming pool

Kansas City is a town that is rich in architecture and history. Once you park your car at the Crowne Center Hotel in Downtown Kansas City, you can easily explore on foot and use public transportation.

Power and Light District

The Power & Light District, is a couple blocks away, and offers entertainment and an opportunity for you to explore the different types of food that Kansas City has to offer. From BBQ to seafood, Kansas City has a wide variety of foods to sample.

We have more to share of our recent visit to Kansas City, so stay tuned. The Crowne Plaza Hotel makes for a great base camp, as the rooms were clean, inviting and in the heart of Kansas City.

Have you explored Kansas City and its outlying areas? If so, we’d love to hear about your experience.

*A special thank you to Visit Kansas City for hosting us during our recent stay.


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Tips For Enjoying Your Branson, Missouri Vacation

This year our family vacation adventures took us to Branson, Mo. Now, that we’ve been back for several weeks, I’ve had time to reflect on our trip and how fantastic it was! Fantastic and yet exhausting and wonderful. I’ve compiled a few tips for you and your family to help you assure that you enjoy your Branson vacation AND have a great time, just like we did:

Become friends with the Convention and Visitors Bureau. Early on in our planning stages, I communicated with the Explore Branson people about a visitor’s guide, recommendations, etc. They were so helpful and answered any and all questions that I had. It was great to know that I had someone on my side to help make sure our trip went off without a hitch.

Budget. I know this may be obvious to some, but there is so much to see and do in Branson that spending can easily spin out of control. We had planned on spending so much and spent more! Because there were additional things we wanted to see and do it added to our cost, but in the end it was worth it. Be aware of admission prices to the places you want to go and the age cut-offs between kids and adults. Most everywhere in Branson, the cutoff is 12.

Plan time to relax. This is one of my tips for any vacation, but especially in a destination like Branson. The main part of the city is so busy and vibrant and there is so much to see and do that it’s easy to keep going and going until you’re all exhausted. But, both the kids and you (the parents) will be in much better moods if the kids get pool time and you get some downtime. It’ll make your excursions that much better.

Lost Canyon WOWM
Lost Canyon

Get outside the city. There is so much to do within Branson that in essence you don’t need to leave, but I assure you that you will want to! On our last day exploring Branson, we headed outside the city to Top of the Rock and Lost Canyon. We are so glad we did! It was great to get away from the hustle and bustle and enjoy nature. The boys also partook in a fishing adventure on Table Rock Lake that took them away from all the excitement and they enjoyed that just as much.

Visit The Landing. While the main part of Branson and its attractions are where the theaters and museums are (along Hwy 76), there is a fantastic are along Lake Taneycomo called, “The Landing”. It’s an open mall consisting of stores, restaurants, pop-up vendors, a few little adventures, and the fountains. The fountain show is complete with fountains, fire, and music. It’s also only a few blocks from historic downtown Branson which is another great area to explore. It’s different than the rest of the city, but all four of us thoroughly enjoyed our time at The Landing!

the landing WOWM
The Landing

There is so much to see and do that it’s easy to be overwhelmed! Hopefully these few simple tips will help make your trip a success! Let me know if you do venture to Branson, I’d love to hear about it!

14081347_10153650927742237_71061657_nKaty blogs at Learning As I Go about life as a wife, a step-mom, and an adult. Follow her adventures around Iowa and the midwest with her family as well as their love for gardening and food!