There used to be a common misconception of Kansas City: “a cowtown.” Maybe it’s due to the classic tale of Dorothy and a tornado, set on a farm in Kansas before the heroine travels to a new magical land. A decade or so ago, that magical land could have been a California or New York to the younger generation.
But today, Kansas City residents have watched as their city has transformed into one of the best cities for millenials to live, according to a recent survey by the Brookings Institution. 2,200 young adults moved to the area annually between 2009 and 2012, 14th among the 51 American metros with more than a million people. It’s also gotten good buzz from social media, including Vocativ, which ranked Kansas City 21st on a list of “35 Best U.S. Cities for People Under 35.”
An article from the KC Star noted that Ashley Voss, a 33-year old Business Development Manager at Sporting Kansas City, grew up in the area but left after graduating in 2003 to live in California. A desire to be closer to her family brought her back in 2008.
“I felt differently about the city when I returned,” she said. “There was life in downtown, Westport had changed, and there were award-winning chefs here.”
And it’s true – the development of the downtown Power and Light District and Sprint Center, the rebirth of the Crossroads as an artistic meeting point, and even the state of the art Kauffman Center have changed the experience of living and visiting KC, among many other new attractions and both cultural and educational additions.
To continue this growth, a movement started by the executives at Sporting KC simply called “LiveKC” have a mission to “make Kansas City a more attractive place for Millennials to live, work and play.” This includes several events and Think Tank companies working together to not only draw in more millenials, but also keep the current residents happy and loving life in Kansas City.
The LiveKC site states, “We will create events, generate buzz, captivate interest and drive millennials to help shape the culture and environment that is Kansas City.”
The next KCLive event will be held at Liberty Memorial, aptly named “Fiery Stick Open” – The centerpiece of the party will be a 170-yard, par 3 golf hole laid out on the lawn of Liberty Memorial. More than 2,500 people are expected, and a drawing will be held to select 150 pariticpants who will be able to compete for a million-dollar, hole-in-one shootout.