Federal Government Remains a Large Source of Jobs in KC

By | December 14, 2012

People wouldn’t think of Kansas City as a central source of government jobs…but they should. Blair Stover looks into the story a little more below.

For over six decades, the city has been a vital place for providing jobs to the federal base and it continues to do so today. In fact, the U.S. government contracts at least 41,000 people just in Kansas City alone and pays out more $3 billion a year. But the good news does not stop there. For every government job that Uncle Sam provides, there is at least one private spinoff job attached to it and possibly more.

Just last month, the federal authorities stated that they will need another 800+ people over the span of the next year. This is on top of the fact that the NNSA (Nat’l Nuclear Security Admin.) is scheduled to start moving nuclear weapons parts into a new facility located near the area. This will also keep about 2,500 jobs around for another 5-10 years.

Here are some other jobs that the government keeps around:

1.       Agribusiness. With increasing world population, the search for food is greater and the government wants to stay on top of this.

  1. 2.      Construction. State and federal governments are always looking to build, so they need workers to do so.
  2. 3.      Power. To grow any country needs energy. The two main sources today are oil and renewable energy sources.
  3. 4.      Environment. This type of business is the type the government wants to be exploited in a conscious and responsible way to generate wealth to companies who need the materials available in the environment.
  4. 5.      Health. Concern about the quality of life only increases, as life expectancy in the country.


The great thing about generating jobs, whether they are new or sustaining the old, is that they help generate money for the area and that is exactly what every place like Kansas City needs.

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Visit Independence During the Holidays

By | December 10, 2012

The winter holidays have officially arrived and there is no more of a festive place in the world than Independence, Missouri.

The smell of gingerbread in the air and chasing it down with eggnog is on everyone’s mind as people walk from door to door caroling every chilly night. Memories stack up and new traditions are made but, as Blair Stover points out below, Independence has plenty more to show:

Santa Sightings: The mall at Independence Center and the nearby Bass Pro Shops are prime locations to find Santa, so if you have little ones that want to meet Santa, this is a great time to give them the chance.

Shopping: Shopping during the holidays is easier when you know what you want and there is a yearly “Holiday Open House” for people that love arts and crafts. Stop by on December 21st and visit the Englewood Art Walks.

Frontier Fun: The National Frontier Trail Museum holds a “Holiday Kickoff” every Thursday at 2pm where you can experience a walk featured through the Museum’s “Christmas in the West.

Historic Home Tours: Now until December 30 (with the exception of December 23 through 25), you can see some of the most historic homes and buildings in Independence. Some of these include the Bingham-Waggoner Estate, Marshal’s Home at the 1859 Jail and the Vaile Mansion. You can see all three homes for $15 or just one for $6.

There are plenty of things that are going on in the city of Independence and if you need to find out more about these or a number of other things, you can call 800-748-7323 or you can visit www.visitindependence.com.

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Kansas City Ballet Featuring The Nutcracker

By | December 7, 2012

“The Nutcracker”, performed by Kansas City’s own professional Ballet group, has reached the 40-year mark. However, the one thing that you will notice is that the version is like a fine wine—it seems to never lose its great taste. The drama, the beauty, the added tidbits of humor and nostalgic favorites have stood ballet’s test of time. Blair Stover has more on this story below.

Todd Bolender, who choreographs this version based on the great George Balachine’s work, uses his artistic mastermind to pull off some of the most inspirational ballet work of the 21st century. Peter Tchaikovsky’s melodies and renditions are perfectly portrayed while William Whitener, who is the artistic director, calls this his final season.

The production, which is staged at the beautiful Muriel Kauffman Theatre, has multiple casts, in which three dancers can play a single role. There are about 200 dancers from the University of Missouri at Kansas and the KC Ballet School who play a role in the production of “The Nutcracker”.

This version is one that will leave an impression. Considered as one of the most endearing and whimsical of all productions of “The Nutcracker” ever produced, every scene will leave you on the edge of you seat waiting to see what happens next. There will always be elements that you can look forward to, like the children’s chorus when the snowflakes dance happens or the angels and their orchestra of make believe. One thing is sure—it is a must see.

“The Nutcracker” will continue on through December 23rd and will stay at the Kauffman Center. You can visit KCBallet.org for more information or call 816-931-2232

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A Look at RevolveKC

By | December 3, 2012

RevolveKC, the converted nonprofit bike shop for the community of Kansas City, used to be an old Standard Oil gas station at the corner of Troost Avenue and 51st Street. When it opened back in 1930, no one would’ve guessed that 80 years later it would’ve turned into one of the most important nonprofit organizations that the area would ever need. Blair Stover has more on this amazing transformation below.

Elizabeth Bejan, the CEO of the nonprofit organization, is all about getting bicycle safety out there to the public, one way or the other.

Bejan is someone that you would normally see playing sports or doing outdoor activities too. Standing at six feet tall, she has a slender but strong build that fears no one and nothing. She is definitely the person you want in front of your bicycle group leading the pack, especially if you are a beginner.

You would think that she only instructs children, right? Well that isn’t the case. With money being as tight as it is, more and more people are turning to bicycles for an alternative mode of transportation. But the old saying that, “once you ride a bike, you never forget how”, isn’t exactly true. Bejan says that everyone needs a little brushing up sometimes and that is what she is there for.

Bejan has volunteers that help her from Rockhurst University who help with locking up the bikes and even help out with training and tutorials. Volunteers will do everything from rocking infants and taking care of toddlers to translating so they can understand what Bejan is saying.

With the goal to get people outside, out of cars, and on bikes, RevolveKC continues to push bicycle education under Bejan’s leadership. Today, the bike shop is not only loved by the community but so is the cause.

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Kansas City Yoga & Healing Arts Festival

By | November 28, 2012

yogaIf you didn’t make it this year plan on it for 2013, as the Kansas City Yoga & Healing Arts festival is an amazing opportunity to celebrate good health and the healing arts. Blair Stover encourages you to invite those friends of yours who are fitness fanatics, as well as those who are ready to simply improve their health. Take a look at what you missed!

Held at InBliss Yoga on Waukomis Drive in Kansas City. The cost was only ten dollars per person and was designed with a variety of individuals in mind.

The main goal of the event was to assist people in taking in differing healing modalities and giving new things a try. After all, how many people do you know partake regularly in yoga or one of the more obscure healing arts? The festival gave attendees the chance to try all of the many things you have always wanted to try, including chair massages, yoga, and acupuncture.

Other more relaxing elements were offered as well, such as energy healing, Angel healing, or Tarot Readings. For ten dollars, the chance to try so many different healing arts is not only a great investment financially but mentally as well as individuals were able to find those arts that did, and did not, work for them.

With a raffle featuring prizes form local vendors, clothing available from Eclektic Bliss, and Flannery designer jewelry displayed and available as well, the festival had something sure to fit numerous tastes. Attendees were able to get some holiday shopping done and purchase meaningful gifts to promote a healthy lifestyle to their loved ones.

Did you make it out to the festival this year? Tell us what you thought!

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KC Fall Harvest and Craft Show

By | November 23, 2012

Were you able to get to the Kansas City’s Fall Harvest and Craft Show this year? This year’s event was held on November 2nd and November 3rd and was a great time for kids and adults a like. Not only was the mood vibrant, but creativity flowed and offered a wonderful spirit to start the holiday season.

The festival is a great place to get an early start on Christmas shopping, especially for hard to find for guests or family as well as finding small things for the office part. For those looking for a more personal touch, many artists attend and offer contact information to get in touch about commissioning something truly special. And for many others, the festival is a great way to get their name out there and present their unique and beautiful treasures.

The festival featured an assortment of extremely talented artisans. Along with this, some very creative crafters attended with many of their creations. More than ninety vendors were present and visitors enjoyed hand-made crafts, home made food, and original art. This is a fabulous way to get into the holiday spirit, and maybe even get a bit of holiday shopping done.

Craft show in 1 week!The show was held at The Pavilion at John Knox Village, on Murray Road in Lees Summit and while it is over this year there are plans to return next year with new wares and artists. For more information about future festivals please call, (816) 347-2999.

If you attended be sure to share in the comments below what you bought and what you didn’t that you wish you did! We’d love to know what to look for next year here on Ablairstover.

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Folly Benefit 2012: “Light the Lights!”

By | November 20, 2012

Kansas City is known for a lot of things – its sports, its jazz, its barbecue. Many people, however, do not recall that the performing arts play a large role in the community. For years, plenty of stars have come through Kansas City on their way to bigger and better things and the Folly Benefit of 2012 was the perfect spotlight to generate the next possible star in performing arts. Blair Stover has more on the “Light the Lights” festival below.

The Folly Theater’s rich history only continues to get better and on Saturday November 3 at 8pm, the “Light the Lights” festival celebrated another year of festivities. Sam Harris, the original Star Search winner, electrified the crowd again with hits by John Lennon and other well known artists.

The evening also included some recognition events of civic leaders like William Dermus III and Joan Kent Dillon, who took it upon themselves to save and renovate then Folly Theater in the 1970’s. They re-opened the theater back in 1981 and it has been going strong ever since.

After the concert  concluded, a number of festivities took place outside and a champagne toast occurred outside where the Folly unveiled their new sign for the theater.

The Folly Benefit was a great time for all, and a great even for anyone with history or music in mind. Did you manage to get to the benefit this year? What was your favorite part? Share your memories below here at Ablairstover.

Apocalypse Meow 5: A Benefit for the Musician’s Emergency Health Care Fund

By | November 17, 2012

The annual fundraiser by the Midwest Music Foundation was set as the 5th Apocalypse Meow fundraiser, taking place on Friday, November 2 and then again on Saturday, November 3.

If you have never seen the two-day events before, you should definitely take in next year’s events, as this year’s event was a great one, for a good cause to boot. The event was held to raise capital for the Musician’s Emergency Health Care Fund. If you love music and you want to do something great for charity, this is the perfect thing to pencil in for next year.

This year’s event saw folks gather at Midwestern Musical Co. and kick it all off by seeing great bands like Cadillac Flame, The Empty Spaces and School of Rock. People came to see Dead Voice, the Blue Boot Heelers and the big sound of Tiny Horse. Everything was free, but any and all donations were encouraged.

On Saturday, the festivities  cost $10.00, a price that proved to be well worth it. The age group was nine and up until 9pm and there were  numerous bands that have frequented the area and have made their name in Kansas City.

The event this year was a popular as ever and was a fantastic way to enjoy music and help out a good cause. Did you go? If so, what was your favorite part? What are some other music events going on in KC during the holidays? Let us here at Ablairstover know!

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Upcoming Concerts in KC

By | November 14, 2012

Kansas City is known for a lot of things: history, sports and barbecue – just to name a few. But as Blair Stover points out below, there are some great concerts that will make anyone want to get up and start dancing. Check out these upcoming concerts in or around Kansas City:

The Story Tour: A Christmas Celebration
When: December 1, 2012 at 3pm

Where: 19100 East Valley View Pkwy in Independence, MO

Admission: $25 – $75

This musical journey through the Bible will send you on a historic trek starting at Genesis and ending in Revelation. It features Rawsrvnt, Natalie Grant, Mark Hall of the Casting Crowns, Matthew West, Jeremy Camp, Selah, Nichole Nordeman and renowned pastor and author Randy Frazee.

Live! In Lexington “The Young Americans

When: October 1, 2012 to November 4, 2012 from 730pm to10pm

Where: 927 Main Street in Lexington, MO

The Academy Award-winning and internationally acclaimed Young Americans are making a run at Lexington. These 18-23 year olds, which are based out of L.A., are ready to ensure that they make the Glee singers of old happy.

Live! In Lexington with “Collin Raye

When: October 2, 2012 to November 13, 2012 from 7:30 pm to 10 pm

Where: 927 Main Street in Lexington, MO

If you know anything about music in the 90’s, you know that Collin Raye was sitting on top of the charts for most of the decade. He went platinum five times and had 16 hits that saw the top spot.

Rosanne Cash

When: November 17, 2012

Where: The Folly Theater located at 300 W. 12th Street in Kansas City, MO

Admission: $30, $40, $60, $70

For the past 30 years, Rosanne has been delighting people with her country/rock music while making 14 albums and setting 11 top singles hits.

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Great Live Jazz Locations in Kansas City

By | November 10, 2012

English: Saxophone

Kansas City is known for a lot of things and its love for music is one of them. As you will see below, Kansas City and the surrounding areas have plenty of events that will impress even the youngest of music fans. Blair Stover has a list of upcoming events below.

Live Jazz Pianist at The Majestic Restaurant

When: October 17, 24 and 31. November 7, 21 and 28. December 5, 12 and 19.

Where: The Majestic Restaurant located at 931 Broadway Blvd in Kansas City.

Admission: None

If you love Jazz, then this is the venue for you. Come by to hear one of the city’s best pianists play jazz every Wednesday.

The Mark Lowery Trio

When: Every Monday night

Where: The Majestic Restaurant located at 931 Broadway Blvd in Kansas City.

Admission: None

Every Monday night, the Majestic is proud to have Mark Lowery and his trio play some of the best jazz to ever hit KC.

The Hermon Mehari Trio

When: Every Tuesday night

Where: The Majestic Restaurant located at 931 Broadway Blvd in Kansas City.

Admission: None

From 6pm to 10 pm every Tuesday, you can hear Hermon Mehari lead his trio as he plays jazz religiously for four straight hours.

The Bram Wijnands Trio

When: Every Friday and Saturday night

Where: The Majestic Restaurant located at 931 Broadway Blvd in Kansas City.

Admission: None

This famous trio will make your heart bleed with musical excitement every weekend as they play jazz for hours on end. They do recommend that you call in advance for dinner reservations because the restaurant is usually packed when these guys come to play.

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