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2009-10 | IMAGESLEESSUMMIT.COM ®

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LEE’S SUMMIT, MISSOURI

What’s s Online e Video tour of the new Cultural Arts Center

JUST WHAT THE DOCTOR ORDERED Top-notch medical facilities foster health-care hub

MOLTO DELIZIOSO! Eatery brings a taste of Italy to downtown

Families Flourish Here National media lauds city as best for raising kids SPONSORED BY THE LEE’S SUMMIT CHAMBER OF COMMERCE


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imagesleessummit.com THE DEFINITIVE RELOCATION RESOURCE

What’s Onl Online n

LEE’S SUMMIT, MISSOURI SENIOR EDITOR JESSY YANCEY COPY EDITOR JOYCE CARUTHERS ASSOCIATE EDITORS LISA BATTLES, SUSAN CHAPPELL STAFF WRITERS CAROL COWAN, KEVIN LITWIN CONTRIBUTING WRITERS SHARON H. FITZGERALD, MICHAELA JACKSON, JOE MORRIS, JESSICA MOZO DATA MANAGER CHANDRA BRADSHAW SALES SUPPORT MANAGER CINDY HALL SENIOR PHOTOGRAPHER BRIAN McCORD STAFF PHOTOGRAPHERS JEFF ADKINS, TODD BENNETT, ANTONY BOSHIER, IAN CURCIO, J. KYLE KEENER PHOTOGRAPHY PROJECT MANAGER ANNE WHITLOW CREATIVE DIRECTOR KEITH HARRIS ASSOCIATE PRODUCTION DIRECTOR CHRISTINA CARDEN PRODUCTION PROJECT MANAGERS MELISSA BRACEWELL, KATIE MIDDENDORF, JILL WYATT SENIOR GRAPHIC DESIGNERS LAURA GALLAGHER, KRIS SEXTON, CANDICE SWEET, VIKKI WILLIAMS GRAPHIC DESIGN ERICA HINES, ALISON HUNTER, JESSICA MANNER, JANINE MARYLAND, AMY NELSON, MARCUS SNYDER WEB DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR BRIAN SMITH WEB IMPLEMENTATION DIRECTOR ANDY HARTLEY WEB DESIGN DIRECTOR FRANCO SCARAMUZZA

CULTURAL ARTS CENTER

WEB PROJECT MANAGER YAMEL RUIZ WEB DESIGN CARL SCHULZ WEB PRODUCTION JENNIFER GRAVES

Tour the MCC-Longview Cultural Arts Center, the city’s newly opened arts and entertainment venue that doubles as an emergency shelter. Watch this and other quick videos in the Interactive section.

COLOR IMAGING TECHNICIAN TWILA ALLEN AD TRAFFIC MARCIA MILLAR, PATRICIA MOISAN, RAVEN PETTY

CHAIRMAN GREG THURMAN PRESIDENT/PUBLISHER BOB SCHWARTZMAN EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT RAY LANGEN

RELOCATION Considering a move to this community? We can help. Use our Relocation Tools to discover tips, including how to make your move green, advice about moving pets and help with booking movers.

SR. V.P./CLIENT DEVELOPMENT JEFF HEEFNER SR. V.P./SALES CARLA H. THURMAN SR. V.P./OPERATIONS CASEY E. HESTER V.P./SALES HERB HARPER V.P./SALES TODD POTTER V.P./VISUAL CONTENT MARK FORESTER V.P./EDITORIAL DIRECTOR TEREE CARUTHERS V.P./CUSTOM PUBLISHING KIM NEWSOM MANAGING EDITOR/BUSINESS BILL McMEEKIN MANAGING EDITOR/COMMUNITY KIM MADLOM PRODUCTION DIRECTOR NATASHA LORENS PHOTOGRAPHY DIRECTOR JEFFREY S. OTTO CONTROLLER CHRIS DUDLEY ACCOUNTING MORIAH DOMBY, DIANA GUZMAN, MARIA McFARLAND, LISA OWENS

PHOTOS

RECRUITING/TRAINING DIRECTOR SUZY WALDRIP DISTRIBUTION DIRECTOR GARY SMITH

We’ve added even more prize-winning photography to our online gallery. To see these spectacular photos, click on Photo Gallery.

INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY DIRECTOR YANCEY TURTURICE NETWORK ADMINISTRATOR JAMES SCOLLARD IT SERVICE TECHNICIAN RYAN SWEENEY HUMAN RESOURCES MANAGER PEGGY BLAKE SALES SUPPORT RACHAEL GOLDSBERRY SALES/MARKETING COORDINATOR RACHEL MATHEIS EXECUTIVE SECRETARY/SALES SUPPORT KRISTY DUNCAN OFFICE MANAGER SHELLY GRISSOM RECEPTIONIST LINDA BISHOP

FACTS & STATS

CU S TO M M AG A Z INE M ED I A

Go online to learn even more about: • Schools • Health care

LOCAL FLAVOR

• Utilities

From Italian fare at Ciao! Bella to cinnamon rolls at Neighbor’s Café, you’ll never go hungry here. Get a taste of local flavor in our food section.

• Parks • Taxes

Images Lee’s Summit is published annually by Journal Communications Inc. and is distributed through the Lee’s Summit Chamber of Commerce and its member businesses. For advertising information or to direct questions or comments about the magazine, contact Journal Communications Inc. at (615) 771-0080 or by e-mail at info@jnlcom.com. FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT: Lee’s Summit Chamber of Commerce 220 S.E. Main St. • Lee’s Summit, MO 64063 Phone: (816) 524-2424 • Fax: (816) 524-5246 www.lschamber.com VISIT IMAGES LEE’S SUMMIT ONLINE AT IMAGESLEESSUMMIT.COM

ABOUT THIS MAGAZINE Images gives readers a taste of what makes Lee’s Summit tick – from business and education to sports, health care and the arts. “Find the good – and praise it.”

– Alex Haley (1921-1992), Journal Communications co-founder

©Copyright 2009 Journal Communications Inc., 725 Cool Springs Blvd., Suite 400, Franklin, TN 37067, (615) 771-0080. All rights reserved. No portion of this magazine may be reproduced in whole or in part without written consent. Member

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Custom Publishing Council

Member Lee’s Summit Chamber of Commerce


2009-10 EDITION | VOLUME 5 ®

LEE’S SUMMIT, MISSOURI

CO NTE NT S

LEE’S SUMMIT BUSINESS

F E AT U R E S

12 Biz Briefs

4 FAMILIES FLOURISH HERE Lee’s Summit has been lauded as the quintessential place for families.

6 JUST WHAT THE DOCTOR ORDERED Top-notch medical facilities make Lee’s Summit a hub for health care.

14 Chamber Report 15 Economic Profile

D E PA R TM E NT S 2 Almanac: a colorful sampling of Lee’s Summit’s culture

9 Portfolio: people, places and

8 MOLTO DELIZIOSO! An Italian restaurant brings Old World taste to downtown Lee’s Summit.

9 LIFE IS BUT A DREAM Local lawyer discovers his talent as a wooden-boat builder.

events that define Lee’s Summit

17 Health & Wellness 19 Arts & Culture 20 Community Profile: facts, stats and important numbers to know

All or part of this magazine is printed with soy ink on recycled paper containing 10% post-consumer waste.

ON THE COVER Unity Village Photo by Todd Bennett

LEE’S SUMMIT

PLEASE RECYCLE THIS MAGAZINE

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Almanac

Grip It and Rip It Everything’s par for the course at Lakewood Oaks Golf Club. The 18-hole private club celebrates its 30th birthday in 2009, making it one of the oldest in the Lee’s Summit area. Designed by famed golf course architect Jay Riviere, the attraction’s 6,300 yards feature Cato-Crenshaw bentgrass greens, bluegrass roughs, and zoysia fairways and tees. In honor of its founding, the club will offer special promotions throughout the year. It’s located in the Lakewood community, which turns 35 this year.

Peek Into the Past In these modern times‚ it’s interesting to see what life was like in the 1800s. Missouri Town 1855 in Fleming Park features a 30-acre farming community that resembles those in the 19th century. There are 25 buildings that originally date from 1820-1860. Guides in period costumes show visitors how to use old-time farm equipment and display field and garden crops from that time period. Jackson County Parks and Recreation operates the living history destination, which is located on East Park Road in Lee’s Summit.

On the Right Track Train stations are a thing of the past in many cities, but Amtrak still stops in downtown Lee’s Summit. The Amtrak train takes passengers daily to nearby Kansas City, or as far away as St. Louis and Chicago on the Missouri River Runner route. There’s even free parking and free wireless Internet while you wait. The sheltered platform is located at 220 S.W. Main St.

What’s Online e Take a journey through history at Missouri Town 1855 in a quick video at imagesleessummit.com.

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Fast Facts Q Lee’s Summit was ranked 79th on Money magazine’s list of Best Places to Live for 2008.

Downtown Bound

Q The city’s most infamous citizen was Cole Younger, who joined with Jesse James to form the James-Younger gang and is buried in Lee’s Summit Historical Cemetery.

Forget all your troubles, forget all your cares and go downtown. Shop, dine and play in downtown Lee’s Summit, which features charming boutiques and specialty shops in addition to several locally owned restaurants. More than 100 specialty shops inhabit the 18-block downtown area overall‚ where the city has built a new $20 million city hall and parking complex. In all, downtown streetscape improvements completed in 2008 totaled around $10 million. The Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street organization works to maintain the district’s resounding revitalization.

Q The “summit” in Lee’s Summit comes from the fact that the town’s elevation was once the highest point on the railroad between Kansas City and Warrensburg.

Lee’s Summit At A Glance POPULATION (2008) City Population: 91,586

Q Jackson County boasts more lakes than any other county in Missouri.

Lee’s Summit

LOCATION Lee’s Summit is in west-central Missouri, about 15 miles southeast of downtown Kansas City. BEGINNINGS Lee’s Summit was incorporated as a town in 1868 and proclaimed to be a city in 1877. There are two theories about its naming: It was either named for Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee or prominent physician Dr. Pleasant Lea, who lived in the area from 1850 until his murder in 1862. FOR MORE INFORMATION Lee’s Summit Chamber of Commerce 220 S.E. Main St. Lee’s Summit, MO 64063 Phone: (816) 524-2424 Fax: (816) 524-5246 www.lschamber.com

LEE’S SUMMIT

Q Lee’s Summit was originally called the Town of Strother.

Sugar Creek 24

Independence

Kansas City

70

JACKSON

Blue Springs

Unity Village 470

71

Lee’s Summit

Grandview

50

B Belton

What’s Online e Take a virtual tour of Lee’s Summit, courtesy of our awardwinning photographers, at imagesleessummit.com.

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Where

Families Flourish NATIONAL MEDIA EXTOLS FAMILY LIFE IN LEE’S SUMMIT

The neighborhood of New Longview

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PHOTO BY ANTONY BOSHIER

LEE’S SUMMIT


PHOTOS BY TODD BENNETT

STORY BY CAROL COWAN

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ee’s Summit has been in the national spotlight lately for what its residents have recognized all along. This thriving community of about 90,000, located southeast of Kansas City, boasts award-winning schools, affordable housing in gracious neighborhoods, job growth, a low crime rate, diversity, proximity to major-city attractions, a small-town vibe, and first-rate recreational and cultural amenities such as abundant parks, museums and performing arts venues. In short, Lee’s Summit is the quintessential perfect place to raise a family. In fact, in its second annual list of Best Places in America To Raise Kids, published in November 2008, BusinessWeek magazine named Lee’s Summit the top pick for Missouri. That’s not the only accolade the community has garnered. In August 2008, Money magazine ranked the town 79th among the 100 towns named America’s Best Small Cities. In the same issue, Money named Lee’s Summit R-7 School District as No. 7 in the nation. Local residents agree that the school system’s caliber is a big part of what makes Lee’s Summit so family friendly. Jon Ellis, CEO of family entertainment center Paradise Park, came to the area with his wife to start a family 20 years ago. “Lee’s Summit is such a family-oriented community, and a lot of that is because of the quality of the schools,” he says. Seconding that is Julie Doane, a Lee’s Summit resident with two daughters in high school. “Education is a big deal here,” she says. And the schools have the scores to prove it. Students in the Lee’s Summit R-7 School District consistently score above state and national averages on standardized tests. The district has achieved a perfect score for eight years running on criteria for the Distinction in Performance Award, Missouri’s highest

recognition for academic achievement. R-7 has also been a leader in adopting new technologies and earned accolades for its childcare program. All three district high schools offer the rigorous International Baccalaureate program. The graduating class of 2008 was offered $20.2 million in college scholarships for the next four years, and in fall 2008, 10 seniors qualified as National Merit Scholarship semi-finalists. But its long list of achievements would not be possible without strong community support. “Lee’s Summit R-7 schools have a long tradition of excellence that can be directly tied to the support we receive from our parents and citizens as well as our outstanding staff members,” says Dr. David McGehee, superintendent. In the past 20 years, residents have approved 10 bond issues, funding construction of 15 new schools and an early education center to accommodate the growing student population. In addition, PTA volunteers and numerous parent and community groups donate thousands of hours and millions of dollars to the schools. “We are grateful that our community values education and has high expectations for its schools,” McGehee says. “We do our best to ensure that each child is successful.” Meanwhile, families here have plenty of choices for extracurricular enjoyment – for instance, Ellis’ Paradise Park. Other options include golfing, boating, league sports, concerts and events. Independent living facilities and a senior center ensure the family friendliness extends to grandparents, too. With a diverse business climate, families find everything they need close to home. “We’ve grown enough to have great shopping – downtown growth and big-box stores right in our hometown,” Doane says. “But even though it’s grown, we still have a small-town feel.”

From left: Seniors participate in a woodworking class at John Knox Village; The Doane family enjoys a card game.

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Just What the

Doctor Ordered TOP-NOTCH MEDICAL FACILITIES MAKE LEE’S SUMMIT A HUB FOR HEALTH CARE

STORY BY JESSICA MOZO | PHOTOGRAPHY BY TODD BENNETT

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ee’s Summit has a long list of attributes, not the least of which is its burgeoning healthcare industry. With three hospitals, dozens of specialty physicians, and a new medical corridor with 500,000 square feet of doctors’ office space in Chapel Ridge Business Park, you’d be hard-pressed to find a medical challenge that local health-care professionals haven’t treated before. The small city boasts three fullservice hospitals – Saint Luke’s EastLee’s Summit, Truman Medical Center Lakewood and Lee’s Summit Medical Center, which is housed in a new $90 million hospital campus. “Our heart and stroke care are a particular strength for us,” says Robin Dawson, director of business development for LSMC. “We recently received a bronze award for stroke and silver for cardiac designation from the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association for meeting their stringent guidelines.”

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In 2009, LSMC plans to add a new pain clinic, expand its orthopedics services and bring a new vascular surgeon on site. The Lee’s Summit Chamber of Commerce also helps citizens keep track of the community’s plethora of healthcare resources by publishing an annual health-care directory, filled with the names and numbers of local physicians, clinics and other medical services. But traditional medicine isn’t the only health-related sector Lee’s Summit is strong in. The community also reaches out to mental health and substance abuse patients through ReDiscover, a nonprofit organization that is celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2009. “ReDiscover’s mission is to deliver mental health and substance abuse services to help individuals and families achieve healthier and more productive lives,” says Alan Flory, president of ReDiscover. “It started as the dream of a small group of volunteers who met in the basement of a local church. Now we

serve more than 500 individuals daily.” Annually seeing more than 33,000 local children, adults and families, ReDiscover partners with area schools, police, hospitals and other organizations to offer help before, during and after crises connected to depression, bipolar disorder, drug addiction, alcoholism or suicide. Treatment focuses on wellness and recovery. One ReDiscover patient, Jason Ward, intimately knows the obstacles and challenges of mental illness. He was diagnosed with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, but with ReDiscover’s help, he was able to earn a college degree, find a job and live independently. “ReDiscover provided Jason with medication, education about his disease, therapy and the opportunity to contribute to the community by becoming a volunteer,” Flory says. “With the help of ongoing treatment, Jason has dreams for his future and is steadily carving out the life he wants to live. He is a recipient of the Mayor’s Reflections of Character LEE’S SUMMIT


More Insight LEE’S SUMMIT MEDICAL CENTER 2100 S.E. Blue Parkway Lee’s Summit, MO 64063 (816) 282-5000 www.leessummitmedicalcenter.com SAINT LUKE’S EAST-LEE’S SUMMIT 100 N.E. Saint Luke’s Blvd. Lee’s Summit, MO 64086 (816) 347-5000 www.saintlukeshealthsystem.org TRUMAN MEDICAL CENTER LAKEWOOD 7900 Lee’s Summit Road Kansas City, MO 64139 (816) 404-7000 www.trumed.org REDISCOVER 901 N.E. Independence Ave. Lee’s Summit, MO 64086 (816) 246-8000 www.rediscovermh.org

Pharmacy technician Minna Harrison dispenses medication in the newly opened pharmacy at ReDiscover.

award for his courage.” Senior citizens also have plenty of health-care options in Lee’s Summit. John Knox Village, for example, is a continuing-care retirement community that provides residential care and assisted living housing, skilled-nursing care, memory care for those with Alzheimer’s or dementia, home health, private duty care and end-of-life hospice services. The retirement community, which is home to nearly 1,800 residents and employs 1,000 associates, prides itself in its amiable, family atmosphere where associates commonly stop what they’re doing to engage in a friendly chat with a resident. “Enriching lives and building community – that’s what it’s all about at John Knox Village,” says Marybeth Roberts, the facility’s director of sales, marketing and communications. “Our mission is to help older adults live fuller, richer, healthier lives. We are there for each other during good times and challenging times.” LEE’S SUMMIT

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Local Flavor

Chow Down at Ciao! Bella ITALIAN EATERY BRINGS A TASTE OF THE OLD WORLD TO DOWNTOWN

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Crab Stuffed Tilapia at Ciao! Bella Ristorante

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aybe it was a conspiracy. Dan Phelps, who owns Ciao! Bella Ristorante along with his wife, Lynn, says they “had never even considered the possibility” of a downtown Lee’s Summit eatery. The couple already owned Perazelli’s Italian Ristorante in nearby Greenwood and were doing just fine, thank you. Then Phelps walked into Cameron’s Home Furnishings on Main Street in the hunt for bar stools for Perazelli’s, and the owner asked when the couple planned to open a restaurant in downtown Lee’s Summit. “Never,” was his reply. “Then, a week later, the guy who owned the building we’re in called me,” Phelps says. The Main Street building, which was once home to another bistro, had been renovated. So Phelps and son Eric Brooks took a look. “Once I saw it, I thought, ‘Wow! I could do a good restaurant here,’” he recalls. Ciao! Bella opened on Nov. 13, 2007, featuring the same type of southern Italian cuisine that had made Perazelli’s a successful venture. Brooks, a culinary school graduate, is head chef. “We try to do all the standards, and then a few other things along with it,” Phelps says of the menu. Ciao! Bella features classic entrées such as lasagna and fettuccine Alfredo, as well as Old World favorites like Tuscan eggplant and what’s called Mange Mange, a heaping bowl of pasta topped with big meatballs, sausage links and meat sauce. The menu also includes a Seafood section with items such as the Crab Stuffed Tilapia, in which the fish is pan-fried, filled with juicy crab meat and smothered in a shrimp and rosa sauce. Save room for the dessert sampler platter, a tasty trio of crème brûlée, tiramisu and a cannoli. Add to that an impressive wine list, and just about any meal will end with someone saying, “Molto delizioso!” – Sharon H. Fitzgerald LEE’S SUMMIT


PHOTOS BY TODD BENNETT

Portfolio

Carl Chinnery has a notable pastime – boat building. His next venture is working on a sailboat with his grandchildren.

Life Is but a Dream LEE’S SUMMIT LAWYER DISCOVERS HIS TALENT OF BUILDING WOODEN BOATS

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hile Carl Chinnery is known in Lee’s Summit as a civic-minded attorney who has led several community and charitable organizations, there’s something else that also floats his boat: Chinnery is an accomplished woodenboat builder. In 1966, while still a law student at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, Chinnery bought property on Lake Lotawana, and that’s where he’s lived ever since. On the 3 acres are a home, several outbuildings and “a plethora of boat docks,” Chinnery says. “We have 11 boats. We’re highly active in water sports of all kinds.” LEE’S SUMMIT

The boat-building bug bit about a dozen years ago when the avid reader of WoodenBoat magazine decided to take a summer vacation to Brooklin, Maine, where he attended the renowned WoodenBoat School on the Atlantic coast. Brooklin is known as the home of children’s author E.B. White, who penned Charlotte’s Web and Stuart Little. The sailboat Chinnery built there was designed by White’s son, Joel. Chinnery and his wife, Jean, pulled the boat home on a trailer hitched to the car. After that, Chinnery built two canoes and now is working on a second sailboat, this model known as the Optimist. “It

was designed for kids to sail, and it was designed to be as simple to put together as you could make a boat, which is not real simple,” Chinnery says. “It’s become the biggest class of sailboat. There are 350,000 of these things all over the world.” Chinnery has a rule about the Optimist dinghy under construction. “Actually, I don’t work on this new boat until the grandkids are with me. That’s one of the requirements. They have to build it with me,” he says. There are certainly enough hands on deck for the job – between them, he and his wife have 17 grandchildren. I M AG E S L E E S S U M M I T. C O M

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Portfolio

STAFF PHOTO

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hat was once a 700-acre cattle farm is now Legacy Park, Lee’s Summit’s recreation crown jewel. Purchased in 1998, the rolling prairie land and its abundant recreation facilities make the park a true legacy indeed. “Modesty aside, this is quite an outstanding development in the way it was designed and the materials used,� says Tom Lovell, administrator for the Lee’s Summit Parks and Recreation Board. “It also represents some good green design. All the water on the site is retained in the lake and then used to irrigate all the fields, and we also use that water to charge the fire hydrants throughout the park.� That 27-acre lake, stocked with fish, was constructed as one of the park’s standout amenities. Legacy Park features a 5-mile asphalt walking and biking trail, two large picnic shelters, an 18-hole disc golf course, five soccer fields, 16 boys baseball diamonds and six girls softball fields. Under construction during 2009 are four more soccer fields, three football fields, eight additional baseball diamonds and two more softball fields. An all-inclusive playground offers outdoor fun for all children, including those with special needs. In January 2009, construction wrapped up on an outdoor amphitheater that opened for concerts and other performances in the spring. The grassy, tiered levels offer seating space for between 4,000 and 5,000 audience members. The 50,000-square-foot Legacy Park Community Center houses basketball and racquetball courts, a fitness center, a running track, an aerobics center, meeting rooms, an indoor pool with water slides and rooms for way-cool birthday parties. “The park is a nice mix of very active areas, yet those only cover about 200 of the 700 acres,� Lovell says. “The rest has been left as native prairie-type habitat.� Turkey, fox, deer and hawks are among the wildlife that call Legacy Park home. LEE’S SUMMIT


Festivities Fuel Downtown Vitality W

ith 14 downtown events and festivals sprinkled throughout the Lee’s Summit calendar, it’s no wonder the catch phrase for the Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street organization is “It All Starts Here!” Actually, two of the community’s top gatherings, Oktoberfest and Downtown Days, were both launched in 1989 and thus are celebrating 20-year anniversaries. Sponsored by the chamber of commerce, Oktoberfest is an extravaganza of live entertainment on multiple stages, authentic German meals, arts and crafts vendors, a street of children’s activities, a carnival and the everpopular Biergärten. On the first weekend in June, Downtown Days, formerly known as Old Tyme Days, draws vendors from all 50 states and between 85,000 and 100,000 people. “It has grown into one of the most successful festivals that we have and really in the Midwest,” says Jeanine Rann, Main Street executive director. “It has also grown to be the biggest fundraiser for our nonprofit, which works to revitalize downtown.” When Oktoberfest and Downtown Days began, the heart of Lee’s Summit “was really in a cycle of disinvestment. We had 19 empty storefronts,” Rann

recalls. The events helped change that. “There are some festivals just aimed at bringing families to the downtown, and then there are others that are retailoriented events designed to make cash registers ring,” Rann explains. Other good-time downtown happenings include the Valentine-themed Chocolate Crawl, the Emerald Isle-St. Patrick’s Day Parade, the Bunny Hop and Third Thursdays on Third, which is a monthly

What’s Online e See one of the community’s favorite holiday events in a quick video at imagesleessummit.com. Music in the Park

A Hearty ‘High’ Five

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xecutive director of Lee’s Summit Social Services since its inception in 1992, Geneva High enjoyed a banner year in 2008. That’s when she received two awards for her selfless service to the community. In January, High was named Humanitarian of the Year by the city’s Human Relations Commission, which cited how she has “positively touched the lives of thousands of people during their most acute times of need.” She was recognized at the annual Lee’s Summit Martin Luther King Jr. celebration on Jan. 21, and the Missouri House of Representatives passed a resolution in her honor that same month. Then, in September, High received a Citizen of the Year award from the Truman Heartland Community Foundation, a regional philanthropic organization. “It really has been humbling. I have a fantastic staff, and if it wasn’t for them, I wouldn’t be recognized. These awards should belong to everyone because everyone helps, everyone does their part,” says High, who runs the

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downtown art walk. Lee’s Summit also enjoys Christmas in the Park, featuring more than 300,000 twinkling lights at the Longview Lake Campgrounds, and free, live music Friday evenings during the summer at Howard Station Park. “Festivals are a form of economic development,” Rann says. “They bring in new visitors and bring out residents. They’re truly an economic engine.”

operation with three full-time and six part-time staff members and more than 100 volunteers. Lee’s Summit Social Services is the community’s only emergency-assistance agency, and High was instrumental in getting the not-for-profit organization off the ground. “We take care of needs that are acute, things such as food, utilities, rent and prescriptions,” she explains. “We also do small home repairs for senior citizens to make it possible for them to stay in their homes longer.” Social Services receives funds from United Way and from the city as the result of a federal grant, but most of its money is donated by citizens and businesses in the community. A thrift store selling donated clothing and household items is a moneymaker, too. Social Services sponsors a back-to-school program that provides needy children with new shoes, jeans, T-shirts, underwear and socks, as well as a backpack full of supplies. The organization also sponsors the Christmas Store, where parents may choose clothing and toys free of charge for their children. – Stories by Sharon H. Fitzgerald

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Business

Biz Briefs BUSINESSES – BOTH LARGE AND SMALL – THAT HELP DEFINE LEE’S SUMMIT’S ECONOMIC CLIMATE

Scorecard BUSINESS AT A GLANCE

$12,237 Retail sales per capita

$914,129 Retail sales ($1,000)

$90,910 Accommodation and foodservices sales ($1,000)

7,052 Total number of firms Source: U.S. Census Bureau QuickFacts

TOSHIBA BUSINESS SOLUTIONS Biz: office equipment dealer Buzz: In November 2008, the Missouri-Kansas division of Toshiba Business Solutions moved from Kansas City to Lakewood Business Center in Lee’s Summit. The business solutions arm of the international firm offers office products such as copiers, printers and fax machines, as well as services for distributing, managing and organizing documents. www.tbsmoks.toshiba.com 12

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PAVEGUARD TECHNOLOGIES Biz: solar-heated system for paved surfaces Buzz: This innovative Lee’s Summitbased company has revolutionized winter driving. PaveGuard uses a solar energy system to heat pavement – including parking lots, roads and bridges – to prevent snow and ice formation. www.paveguardtech.com KOKAM AMERICA Biz: lithium polymer batteries Buzz: Founded in South Korea in 1989, the international corporation Kokam bases its U.S. offices in Lee’s Summit, where it develops and manufactures superior lithium polymer batteries that are small, lightweight and can be recharged quickly. In December 2008, Kokam America secured a major investment to focus on the electric vehicle industry. www.kokamamerica.com SUMMIT FAIR Biz: shopping complex slated for fall 2009 opening Buzz: RED Development broke ground in 2007 on a new mall located southeast of Interstate 470. The 55,000-squarefoot lifestyle center is designed as a Main Street shopping district complete with landscaping and pedestrian areas. Retailers signed on include JCPenney and Macy’s. www.summitfairshopping.com VOGUE CONDOMINIUMS Biz: downtown residences Buzz: The former Vogue Theater has been transformed into 18 residential units, from sleek, modern-style onebedroom lofts to larger residences spanning two and three stories. The condos offer rooftop patios, a gated courtyard, covered parking area and a view of historic downtown Lee’s Summit. www.pyciorco.com LEE’S SUMMIT

Free Deluxe Continental Breakfast Free Wireless Internet Indoor Swimming Pool & Hot Tub ÂˆĂŒÂ˜iĂƒĂƒĂŠ iÂ˜ĂŒiÀÊUĂŠ Ă•ĂƒÂˆÂ˜iĂƒĂƒĂŠ iÂ˜ĂŒiĂ€ £™™ä£Ê °Ê6>Â?Â?iÞÊ6ˆiĂœĂŠ*ÂŽĂœĂžÂ°ĂŠUĂŠ˜`iÂŤi˜`i˜Vi]ĂŠÂˆĂƒĂƒÂœĂ•Ă€Âˆ

I-70, Exit 17

WWWZMCHOTELSCOMs   I M AG E S L E E S S U M M I T. C O M

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Business | Chamber Report

Best of the Best CHAMBER AWARDED NATIONAL, STATE HONORS

W Your Professional Area Realtor Serving ALL of Greater Kansas City

RONDA MARCHANT Help, Help Me, Ronda!

(816) 564-9800

Business Accreditations: GRI (Graduate of Realty Institute) Member of the Multi-Million Dollar Club Licensed in both Missouri and Kansas Assisted by a Licensed Buyer’s Agent

hen you’re No. 1., what do you do for an encore? At the Lee’s Summit Chamber of Commerce, the answer is more. After receiving the 2008 Missouri Chamber of the Year award from the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry and a four-star accreditation rating from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, officials quickly resolved to make 2009 an even bigger year. “I think receiving the national accreditation pushed us over the top, because there are only three or four other chambers in the state that have any kind of rating,” says Nancy Bruns, chamber president. “That was a huge accomplishment for us. The state chamber also knows how active we are in legislative efforts locally and at the state level for our business community.” The Missouri chamber also made specific mention of Lee’s Summit’s exclusive programs such as the Chamber University, which provides targeted learning on a variety of issues, and the Partners in Education program, which connects educators and business leaders. The success of these efforts is serving as a springboard for similar programs as well as some entirely new ventures, Bruns says. “During our planning process in fall 2008, we did a series of 10 focus groups

with members,” she says. “We questioned them about what we are doing, where we had weaknesses or areas that needed improvement. We took that information to the board, and now we are starting three separate task forces to see what new programs and initiatives we can offer.” Those groups will focus on technology, networking and the environment, and all will look at what’s on the books now, as well as what could be implemented, to make the chamber more successful in what are some very broad, far-reaching areas. The chamber also has partnered with Humana to offer small-business health insurance to members as a group, allowing members with at least two employees to buy coverage at a discounted rate. Additionally, the organization has revamped its Web site to include a jobsposting area for members, where both resumes and employment listings can be placed for public viewing. “We continue to offer new programs, events and services, because we know we can’t just sit back and be complacent,” Bruns says. “That’s how we’ve gotten our membership up to around 950, and that’s how we’re going to get the fivestar rating when we can go through the accreditation process again in four years.” – Joe Morris

Year Established: 1999

METRO ONE 1201 N.E. Windsor Dr. Lee’s Summit, MO 64086 (816) 875-1721 Fax: (816) 875-1685 rondamarchant@realtyexecutives.com TODD BENNETT

WWW.RONDAMARCHANT.COM

The Lee’s Summit Chamber of Commerce staff

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Business | Economic Profile

LEE’S SUMMIT BUSINESS CLIMATE Lee’s Summit enjoys a vibrant, thriving economic environment that sustains existing business and encourages new growth.

ECONOMIC RESOURCES Lee’s Summit Chamber of Commerce 220 S.E. Main St. Lee’s Summit, MO 64063 (816) 524-2424 (888) 647-5470 www.lschamber.com

TAX STRUCTURE

2.25% City Sales and Use Tax

1.125%

Median Household Income $70,900

GOVERNMENT OFFICES

Company, No. of Employees Lee’s Summit R-7 School District, 1,850

Lee’s Summit City Hall 220 S.E. Green St. Lee’s Summit, MO 64063 (816) 969-1013 www.lees-summit.mo.us

AT&T, 1,146

State Sales Tax

7.6% Total Sales Tax

INCOME

Lee’s Summit Economic Development Council 218 S.E. Main St. Lee’s Summit, MO 64063 (816) 525-6617 www.leessummit.org

County Sales Tax

4.225%

Jackson County 415 E. 12th St. Lee’s Summit, MO 64106 (816) 881-3000 www.co.jackson.mo.us

Median Family Income $72,283

MAJOR EMPLOYERS

Truman Medical Center Lakewood, 1,044 John Knox Village, 1,035

TRANSPORTATION

MORE EO ONLINE

Lee’s Summit Municipal Airport 2751 N.E. Douglas St. Lee’s Summit, MO 64064 (816) 969-1186

imagesleessummit.com m More facts, stats and community information, including relocation tools and links to resources.

Amtrak - Lee’s Summit Station 220 S.W. Main St. Lee’s Summit, MO 64063 (800) 872-7245

questions

answers

©2002 American Cancer Society, Inc.

8 0 0 . A C S . 2 3 4 5 / c a n c e r. o r g

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Bank of Lee’s Summit www.bankoeessummit.com

John Knox Village www.johnknoxvillage.org

Blue Springs School District www.bluesprings-schools.net

Lakewood Property Owners Association www.lpoa.com

Chief Heating & Cooling Inc. www.chiefheatingandcooling.com City of Lee’s Summit www.lees-summit.mo.us Comfort Suites www.comfortsuites.com Hilton Garden Inn Independence www.independencegardeninn.com Holiday Inn Express www.ichotelsgroup.com

Lee’s Summit Community Christian School www.lsccs.org Red Development LLC www.reddevelopment.com Ronda Marchant www.rondamarchant.com Summit East Plaza Apartments www.summiteastapts.com

Janet L. Sanders

Truman Medical Centers www.trumed.org

Jeerson Health Care

Wilshire at Lakewood

LEE’S SUMMIT


TODD BENNETT

Health & Wellness

Here’s to a Speedy Recovery EMERGENT CARE PLUS GOES THE EXTRA MILE TO MAKE PATIENTS COMFORTABLE

L

ee’s Summit residents have a new place to turn to when an urgent medical need arises, and it’s unlike any hospital emergency room. Emergent Care Plus was formed in October 2008 by four emergency room physicians. The facility just off Interstate 470 features customer-focused amenities such as a free coffee bar, large flat-screen TVs, online check-in, an on-site pharmacy and a cozy environment with hardwood floors. “We provide a more personal experience than the typical ER – people say it feels warm and inviting here, and they appreciate that they don’t have to wait forever to see a doctor,” says Rob Kutch, Emergent Care Plus office manager. “The average wait time is seven to 12 minutes on weekdays and a little longer on weekends, but we try to get people in as fast as we can. It’s definitely not a threehour wait.” Emergent Care Plus can handle a wide variety of medical needs, from LEE’S SUMMIT

broken bones and burns to bronchitis and the flu. Appointments are not needed – patients can simply walk in or check in online. “We deal with injuries and ear, nose and throat issues as well as orthopedics, dermatology, gastrointestinal, respiratory, neurological, gynecologic and pediatric issues,” Kutch says. “Some people tell us it takes a week to get in to see their pediatrician, so they’ll bring their kids to us for faster service.” The urgent care center is also considerably more affordable than a trip to the emergency room. “We all saw there was a definite overuse of the ER for urgent care complaints, so we felt Lee’s Summit needed a place like this to relieve wait times at local hospital ERs,” says Kyla Kutch, Rob’s wife and one of the founding ER physicians at Emergent Care Plus. “We’ve been very pleased with the response from patients, and we’ve been busier than we expected. Patients enjoy the little extras

we offer because they make going to the doctor a much more pleasant experience.” The coffee bar at Emergent Care Plus offers about 10 types of gourmet coffee and three creamers. Rob Kutch says it’s just one way the urgent care center tries to make patients feel at home. “A lot of places preach about customer care, but these doctors absolutely put the customer first,” he says. “They really do care about the patients. We have monthly staff meetings where we focus on ways to give people an even better experience.” In addition to urgent care, Emergent Care Plus also provides workers’ compensation services, physicals, drug screening, physical therapy, lab services and digital X-rays. “We’ve had tons of calls, e-mails and letters from people in appreciation of our services – I have at least 60 of those e-mails in my inbox now,” Kutch says. “This is a very good work environment that’s cheerful and clean. I’m thrilled to be here.” – Jessica Mozo I M AG E S L E E S S U M M I T. C O M

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Arts & Culture

New Arts Venue Draws a Crowd CAMPUS CULTURAL CENTER DOUBLES AS EMERGENCY SHELTER

O

n the drawing board, the MCC-Longview Cultural Arts Center was designed to be an arts and entertainment venue as well as a community safety facility. In reality, it’s proving to be those things and more. The 18,500-square-foot center opened in October 2008, with part of its $6 million cost borne by the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Project Impact: Building DisasterResistant Communities program. If storm clouds gather the center can swing into its other role, that of emergency shelter. “Thankfully, we have not had to use the facility as a tornado shelter yet, although during the fall 2008 semester we did experience high winds in Lee’s Summit and were prepared to move to the Cultural Arts Center, if needed,” says Dr. Beth Lindquist, dean of instructional services. Its safety features, however, are justifiably overshadowed by cultural aspects that include a 185-seat, flexible-format theater, dressing room, scenery and costume workshops, dance classroom, and lecture and meeting space. There’s also an art gallery, which along with the theater space is having an impact both on campus and in the surrounding community. So far, the facility has hosted public community concerts, meetings and several art exhibits. “We have plans for a public theater performance by one of [Kansas City’s] stellar theater companies, and we are in

negotiations for a ballet performance as well,” Lindquist says, noting that both arts organizations are planning to offer master classes for performing arts students. The community education unit also plans to offer non-credit ballet classes. In addition to specific performances and exhibits, the center is also being used for more pancultural activities that further tie together the campus and the town. “During the fall term the CAC provided a backdrop for the Longview Art and World Music Festival, including a student art exhibit focused on multicultural themes,” Lindquist says. “We also have had excellent attendance at our academic theater and music performances. In October 2008, we had a public performance from a Kansas City Symphony string quartet plus clarinet that was very successful and well attended.” The center stays busy with these and other functions, including art exhibits and student performances. And as the word spreads, its calendar will likely get even more crowded. “As news of the new facility gets around, we are receiving more and more inquiries from potential partners,” Lindquist says. “Groups in the Kansas City metro area are interested in partnerships with us to bring cultural events to eastern Jackson County. That trend is especially evident in the area of children’s programming for the arts.” – Joe Morris

What’s Online e

TODD BENNETT

Take a virtual tour of the Cultural Arts Center in a quick video in the Interactive section at imagesleessummit.com.

The art gallery at MCC-Longview Cultural Arts Center

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Community Profile

LEE’S SUMMIT SNAPSHOT Renowned for its state and national award-winning schools and community college, comprehensive parks, lakes and recreation amenities, diverse housing choices, preservation of its history and pedestrian-friendly downtown, Lee’s Summit is cited among the Best Places To Live by Money magazine and America’s Best Places To Raise Kids by BusinessWeek magazine.

CLIMATE OVERVIEW Lee’s Summit enjoys a beautiful and temperate fourseason climate, with many opportunities for outdoor recreation.

15 F January Low Temperature

34 F

recognized as Time magazine’s community college of the year; 15 four-year and graduate degree granting schools are also within an easy commute.

HEALTH CARE Lee’s Summit enjoys excellent health care, with a wide array of physicians and specialists and its own hospitals.

January High Temperature

66 F July Low Temperature

87 F

LOCAL UTILITIES

Gas Missouri Gas Energy (816) 756-5252 Telephone Southwestern Bell Telephone Co. (800) 400-9050 Electricity KCP&L, (816) 556-2200

REAL ESTATE

$284,391 Average Home Price

Cable Comcast, (816) 795-1100 Time Warner, (816) 358-5360

16.66% Home Turnover Percentage

July High Temperature

EDUCATION The Lee’s Summit R-7 and Blue Springs R-4 School Districts serve Lee’s Summit elementary and secondary educational needs. Collegelevel work begins locally at MCC-Longview, previously

MORE EO ONLINE imagesleessummit.com m More facts, stats and community information, including relocation tools and links to resources.

THIS SECTION IS SPONSORED BY

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Ad Index 1 8 BA N K O F LEE’ S S U M M IT 1 5 B LU E S P R I N G S SCHOOL DISTRICT 1 0 C H I E F H E ATI N G & CO O LI N G I N C .

1 6 J O H N K N OX V I L L AG E C 3 L A K E WO O D P RO P E RT Y OW N E R S A S S O C I ATI O N 1 8 L E E ’ S S U M M IT CO M M U N IT Y C H R I S TI A N S C H O O L

2 0 C IT Y O F L E E ’ S S U M M IT 1 8 R E D D E V E LO P M E N T L LC C 4 CO M FO RT S U IT E S 1 4 RO N DA M A RC H A N T C 3 H I LTO N GA R D E N INN INDEPENDENCE 13 H O LI DAY I N N E X P R E S S C 3 JA N E T L . SA N D E R S C 3 J E F F E R S O N H E A LT H C A R E

C 3 S U M M IT E A S T P L A Z A A PA RT M E N TS C4 TRUMAN MEDICAL CENTERS 1 6 W I L S H I R E AT L A K E WO O D


Large one and two-bedroom apartments with 1 1/2 baths Beyond spacious Serene, park-like country setting Professional, friendly staff

Summit East Plaza Apartments 217 N.E. Independence Ave. Lee’s Summit, MO 64063

816.524.8222 www.summiteastapts.com

JEFFERSON HEALTH CARE Skilled & Long-Term Care People you trust caring for people you love. Let us care for your loved one in a calm, homelike environment. Services provided to ensure comfort and independence. 615 SW Oldham Pkwy. Lee’s Summit, MO 64081 (816) 524-3328

Family Matters JANET SANDERS ~ Attorney ~ Plaza 3rd Center 704 SE 3rd St., Ste. C Lee’s Summit, MO 816.525.7977 !DMINISTRATIVE#HILD3UPPORTs!DMINISTRATIVE0ATERNITY !DULT!BUSEs!NNULMENTs#HILD!BUSE.EGLECT #HILD0ROTECTIONs$ISSOLUTIONOF-ARRIAGE &AMILY!CCESS-OTIONs'RANDPARENTS6ISITATION 'UARDIANSHIPs,EGAL3EPARATIONs-OTIONFOR#ONTEMPT -OTIONTO-ODIFYs-OTIONTO4ERMINATEs0ATERNITY 0RENUPTIAL!GREEMENTs3TEPPARENT!DOPTION

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Images Lee's Summit, MO: 2009