Page 1

Covering the South Kansas City Area

Vol. 4 - No. 6

Jaunary 8, 2019


O’Reilly Auto Parts Opens in Martin City

To little fanfare, O’Reilly Auto Parts opened on January 2 at its new location at 13110 Holmes Rd. in Martin City. The opening just missed the lucrative Christmas shopping season. “The opening was pushed back for the stockholder’s sake,” says store manager Kyle Macey. “We can only open 200 stores a year. And they had already reached that for 2018.” A ribbon cutting and grand opening is planned for the first part of February.

a welcomed addition to the Martin City community.

When asked why the Martin City location was chosen, Eric Bird, a spokesperson for O’Reilly Auto Parts headquartered in Springfield, MO, says, “Location choices go through extreme evaluations. One of the things we look for is an area with a growing and thriving market.” Stores typically employ eight to 12 people.

This new store joins the Martin City Community Improvement DisThe 7,200 square foot building trict (CID) where a portion of retail began construction in late spring. sales help to maintain and build the The undeveloped property, located community including such projects next to QuikTrip, was purchased as the development of 135th Street An a-peel-ing addition! During unseasonably tropical weather, Trevor Goldin 2017. Freshly landscaped, it is and soon Holmes Rd. en dressed as a banana to draw attention to the newly opened O’Reilly Auto Parts store at 131st and Holmes Rd in Martin City. Photo by Bill Rankin.

South KC Perspective

And they’re off! Candidates file to run for mayor By John Sharp

With one day left to file at press time January 7, there were already 10 candidates who have filed to run for KCMO mayor in the April 2 nonpartisan primary election to replace term-limited Mayor Sly James, including six current members of the 12-member City Council.

the 3rd District-at-Large to replace Councilman Lucas; Councilwoman Katheryn Shields, Austin Strassle and Robert Westfall for the 4th District-at-Large; Councilman Lee Barnes and Erik Dickinson for the 5th District-at-Large; and Andrea Voters will be able to vote for Bough and Stacey Johnson-Cosby mayor, six at-large City Council for the 6th District-at-Large to recandidates and a Council candidate place Councilman Taylor. from their own district in April. The Two at-large candidates were two top vote getters in each race will advance to the June 18 general unopposed at press time: Kevin election, and the winners will take O’Neill for the 1st District-at-Large office for 4-year terms on August 1. to replace Councilman Wagner and Councilwoman Teresa Loar for the At press time, 6th District Coun- 2nd District-at-Large. cilman Kevin McManus whose disA few more candidates were extrict covers most of south Kansas City was unopposed for reelection. pected to file January 8. since Councilwoman Canady and Councilman Lucas filed at the same time at different locations there will be a coin flip to determine who is second and who is third on the ballot.

The candidates for mayor who had filed by press time are Councilwoman Alissia Canady, Phillip Glynn, Councilwoman Jolie Justus, Henry Klein, Vincent Lee, Councilman Quinton Lucas, Steve Miller, Councilman Jermaine Reed, CounIn the 5th District that also covers cilman Scott Taylor and Councila substantial portion of south Kanman Scott Wagner. sas City (primarily east of Troost Candidates are listed on the ballot or Holmes Rd. and north of Iin the order they file for office. Reli- 435/I-470) five candidates had filed able sources report that 6th District- at press time to replace Councilat-Large Councilman Taylor will be woman Canady. They are: Edward listed first on the crowded ballot for Bell, Bryan Dial, Stephen Gordon, mayor. Political consultants gener- Ryana Parks-Shaw and Mitchell ally feel that being first on the bal- Sudduth. lot, particularly in a crowded field, The candidates in the four concan give candidates a 2-4 percent tested at-large races are: Rev. Walbump in votes. lace Hartsfield, II, and State RepThe sources also reported that resentative Brandon Ellington for

The killings in KCMO in 2017 resulted in our city being ranked 5th in the nation in murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rates per 100,000 residents among major cities in the U.S. based on figures submitted to the FBI, only trailing St. Louis (1st), Baltimore (2nd), Detroit (3rd) and New Orleans (4th). KCMO’s 2017 murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate of 30.9 such crimes per 100,000 residents was over two and a half times the average rate of 12.1 such crimes per 100,000 residents reported to the FBI for all U.S. cities with a population of 250,000 to 499,999.

This wave of deadly violence in 2017 continues to plague our city’s School board elections also will image nationally despite the signifibe held on April 2, but candidates cant progress made in 2018. have until 5 p.m. Tuesday, January 15, to file for those seats. Neighborhood Scout on January 2 released its annual report titled Murder Rate Drops “Top 30 Murder Capitals of America” based on 2017 crime statistics The number of homicides in reported to the FBI. It noted that KCMO last year dropped 10.6 per- among all U.S. cities with a popucent from the 151 reported for 2017 lation of 25,000 or more, KCMO’s to 135 in 2018, but that number still 2017 murder and non-negligent exceeded the homicides recorded in manslaughter rate per 1,000 resithe three years prior to 2017 – 131 dents resulted in our city being in 2016, 111 in 2015 and only 82 in Continued South KC on Page 2 2014.

If ThIs Ground Could Talk The early history of South Kansas City presented by

Historian and Telegraph columnist

Diane Euston

Friday, January 11 • 6:00 pm • $25 St. Thomas More Hall • 118th & Holmes Rd.

Martin City Telegraph 13356 Holmes Rd. Kansas City, MO 64145

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2 | January 8, 2019 Local News

South KC

more about KCMO’s free program to identify and correct prohibited connections of downspouts, sump pumps or any other drainage devices to the city’s sanitary sewer system should consider attending a 10 a.m. meeting Saturday, January 12, of the Waldo Tower Neighborhood Association in meeting room A of the Waldo Library.

Continued from Cover ranked 27th in the U.S. with a rate that Neighborhood Scout ranked 5.8 times higher than the U.S. average for cities of that size. The following data based on Kansas City Police Department reports should give readers a better understanding of the recent history of homicides in our city and some of the factors that have contributed to such a high rate of homicides. For 2018, to date 78 of the 135 homicides (57.8 percent) have been cleared due to arrests, filing of charges or due to exceptional circumstances such as the death of the offender, or have been solved but charges have not yet been filed. This rate is 50.3 percent for 2017 homicides, 47.3 percent for 2016 homicides, 60.4 percent for 2015 homicides and 62.2 percent for 2014 homicides. In 2018, a firearm was used in 129 of the 135 homicides. A firearm was used in 128 of the 151 homicides in 2017, 116 of the 131 homicides in 2016, 91 of the 111 homicides in 2015 and 62 of the 82 homicides in 2014. Arguments were cited by the Police Department as by far the biggest known cause of homicides for each of the last five years. Domestic violence and robbery traded places during the prior four years as the second and third biggest causes. In 2014, drugs were cited as the second biggest cause, and retaliation was cited as the third biggest cause. There were 16 homicides reported in the South Patrol Division in 2018, compared to 15 in 2017, 12 in 2016, 11 in 2015 and 15 in 2014. The East Patrol Division had the highest number of homicides for each of the past five years, followed by the Metro Division which had the second highest number for the last four years and the Central 816-492-7229 Kathy Feist: Publisher / Editor 816-309-9248 Jill Draper: Editorial Assistant

Kansas City Police Chief Rick Smith (left) poses with “Elvis”, also known as Deputy Chief Karl Oakman, and City Councilman Scott Taylor following the Cops Versus Kids talent show that preceded the January 5 showing of the first free movie of the year at the South Patrol Police Station which drew well over 100 people.

Much of south Kansas City is included in areas where the program vision which had the third highest to further significant reductions in is being conducted. Persons may number for the last four years and the years ahead; and what citizens, call 816-513-0200 or email water. the second highest number in 2014 neighborhood groups and elected to see if their resiwith the Metro Division ranking officials can do to assist in these ef- dence is eligible and when crews will be inspecting properties in their third. forts. area. The combined number of homi- Complex Demolition cides for the two patrol divisions Leaf/Brush Drop-Off in the northland was lower than the Nearly half (47 percent of the KCMO residents with proof of number of homicides in each of the square footage) of the former Banresidency may drop off leaves, other four patrol divisions for the nister Federal Complex including past five years. 45 individual buildings and sig- brush and yard waste for free from nificant portions of the main manu- 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays, JanuDespite such overall high homi- facturing building have now been ary 12 and 19, at the city’s drop-off cide rates, the strength of the demolished, according to the latest site at 10301 Raytown Rd. before it Kansas City Police Department update from Bannister Transforma- closes for the remainder of the winincluding police officers, officer tion & Development (BT&D), the ter, reopening on Saturday, March candidates and civilian employees private firm that owns the site and 9, according to Missouri Organic, has remained relatively stagnant plans to redevelop it. the company that operates the site. before increasing during the current Brush does not need to be bunfiscal year. “We continue to make good progress and remain on, or even ahead dled, and leaves do not need to be The Police Department is cur- of schedule,” said David Schauer, sacked. Persons will be asked to rently working with the U.S. Attor- project manager for Brandenburg empty their bags to show they don’t ney’s office for the Western District Industrial Services Company that contain trash and to take any plastic of Missouri, Jackson County Pros- is handling the demolition. He es- bags with them. If paper yard waste ecutor Jean Peters Baker and other timated that all buildings scheduled sacks are sealed, that should only be organizations that focus on reduc- for demolition will be leveled be- done with masking tape, not plastic ing violent crime locally to develop fore the end of this year. or duct tape. Tree stumps are pronew initiatives to reduce violent hibited. crime, particularly homicides and BT&D plans to redevelop the vast Persons may pick up first ground aggravated assaults, which are ex- majority of the site into an industrimulch at the site for no charge. pected to be announced in coming al park for light manufacturing and months. warehouse use. Company officials have said some retail uses on the KCPS School Tours In the next issue’s column, I will east side of Troost outside the flood Parents and guardians who may discuss the strategies that law en- wall also are possible. be interested in enrolling their forcement and public health offichildren in schools in the Kansas cials feel helped reduce homicides Keep Out The Rain City School District may particiin 2018; what new approaches they City residents wishing to find out pate in free bus tours of schools on feel have the most promise to lead Wednesdays, January 16, 23 and 30 and February 6.

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Subscriptions: $35/year. Send check to: Address: Martin City Telegraph, 13356 Holmes Rd Kansas City, MO 64145 The Martin City Telegraph is locally owned and managed by Feist Ink L.L.C. and is published every other Tuesday. ©All articles are the property of this publication and cannot be reused without proper consent from the publisher or writer.

Representatives of the city’s Keep Out the Rain program will explain the program and schedule short sewer connection check-ups for eligible properties. If improper connections are discovered, the city will pay for a licensed, pre-qualified plumber to correct the problem at no cost to the resident.

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Persons may make reservations at and may go on as many of the tours as they would like. Participants will meet at the Kansas City Public Schools Board of Education building at 2901 Troost at 8 a.m. and board the buses at 8:30. The tours will return to the building at 1:45 p.m. for lunch.

Mobile Food Pantry Free fresh produce will be distributed to persons in need from 4 to 5:30 p.m. Thursday, January 17, at Ruskin High School. The produce is supplied by HarContinued South KC on Page 4


January 8, 2019 | 3

Andrea Bough runs for city council By Samuel Ast

In her first interview since launching her campaign for Kansas City City Council, Andrea Bough spoke with the Martin City Telegraph about her childhood, her interest in politics, and how she plans to solve some of the city’s most pressing issues if elected in June. Born in southeast Missouri to a rural school teacher and federal employee, Bough grew up in a small community surrounded by farmland where she was taught to care for others and give back to the community. Before she was born, Bough’s parents adopted two foster children, which gave her a unique perspective on what it truly looks like to be a part of something bigger than one’s self. Because her adopted siblings were so much older, she grew up as an only child. Her mother’s service in the U.S. Department of Agriculture, her father’s teaching career, and his time working for the state Division of Family Services, all provided a firm foundation of public service on which Bough was determined to build. Andrea learned much from her parents, but her interest in politics can be traced back to her aunt. Bough remembers hearing many stories about her aunt’s political involvement over their annual Friday night fried chicken dinners. Whether it was working for JFK’s presidential campaign or participating in the Scott County Democratic Women’s Club, it was not only her Aunt’s politics that excited Andrea, but also the confident and outspo-

ken manner in which she carried herself.

“She could not have been more different from my parents,” Andrea remarked. “She smoked, she cussed, she wore red lipstick, and I thought she walked on water.” After high school, Bough attended Missouri State University in Springfield, where she graduated cum laude in 1993 with a major in political science and a minor in history. Post graduation, Bough and her husband --also an MSU grad- moved to Kansas City in 1994, and soon after, they both became involved in local politics through Andrea Bough is running for City Councilman Scott Taylor’s seat. their volunteer work on various campaigns and their presence at in- (CIDs) or Tax Increment Financing make sure the tools are used as in(TIFs) to ensure taxpayer dollars are tended, to manage their use across numerable political events. used appropriately and effectively. the city, and to make sure that they After graduating from the UMKC Continued Bough on Page 4 “The role of the Council is to School of Law in 2000, Bough found work at the law firm Lewis Rice. During her time there, she specialized in economic development, land use, zoning, and appeared before local governments on behalf of clients who spearheaded complex redevelopment proposals. The topic of redevelopment--and Kansas City’s changing economic landscape, writ large-- comes up frequently not only during the city’s mayoral debates but also when looking at budgetary issues and the granting of tax incentives for new construction projects throughout the city. Bough says that City Hall can play a more active role in administering and monitoring the use of special taxing programs like Community Improvement Districts

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4 | January 8, 2019 Local News

South KC

Wednesday, January 30, to discuss its efforts to reduce crime in south Continued from page 2 Kansas City in 2018 and to establish vesters, the community food net- crime prevention goals for 2019. work that sends a semi-truck filled Neighborhood groups, homes aswith fresh produce to the school sociations, businesses, churches, every month. schools and individuals are invited. Vehicles may begin lining up at 4 Complimentary hamburgers and p.m. on Ruskin Way on the east side hot dogs will be served at 6 p.m., of the school for the food distribu- and the town hall meeting will betion sponsored by the school and gin promptly at 6:30. the Community Assistance Council. Those wishing to attend are asked to RSVP to Mary.McCall@kcpd. Town Hall Meeting org or The South Patrol Division of the John Sharp is the former city Kansas City Police Department is councilman for the 6th District. hosting a Shared Responsibility Town Hall meeting at its facility on


public safety.

On the issue of crime, Bough beContinued from page 3 lieves that more officers, combined do not have a harmful impact on the with a better understanding of mencity as a whole,” Bough states. tal health could help the problem. Bough is quick to point out the “I don’t know why people choose positive intent most of these pro- to pick up a gun and shoot somejects have, noting that many are a one, but I would like to address that success and result in nothing more if elected. People are using guns than their desired effects. However, instead of words to solve disputes, she does submit that some projects and we have to figure out why.” have been “questionable” in both Bough also believes that a lack of intent and management while not- education and economic opportuniing that the attention of both devel- ties contribute to high crime rates. opers and the City Council often To this point, Bough says that she centers too much around areas like is supportive of expanded access Power and Light at the expense of to more affordable early childhood large portions of the city arguably education. She sees solving educamore in need of revitalization, like tional inequities as one way to bring areas east of Troost. down crime. “I would hope that it “I think there are certain things would help with the violence, but I that can be done to ensure our city don’t know. This is something I am is taking a closer look at whether or looking forward to exploring furnot the projects being incentivized ther once on the Council.” are not only viable, but are located Among some of Bough’s other in areas that are really in need, as top priorities include expanding well,” Bough said. the streetcar route and making sure Though much of her professional the KCI single-terminal project is experience involves urban devel- completed on time and on budget. opment, Bough has a keen under- Bough is supportive of the direction standing of government ethics, and these initiatives are heading. “These a desire to learn more about what are two issues that have started with the City Council can do to improve previous Councils and will continue

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through this one,” Bough said while maintaining that the city could do more to keep constituents who overwhelmingly supported both projects informed during the process. “We cannot lose that support. We need to keep the public engaged in a positive way.”

Scott Taylor, who is a candidate for mayor. Councilman Taylor is barred from running for re-election in 2019, as he has already served two consecutive terms. Kansas City’s municipal general election is on June 18.

Look for an upcoming interview Bough, who lives in Brookside, is with the other candidate vying for one of two women running to rep- the Sixth District at Large seat, Staresent the 6th District at-large on cey Johnson-Cosby the Kansas City Council. The seat is currently held by Councilman

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January 8, 2019 | 5


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6 | January 8, 2019 Sports News

Eyes on the prize By Sam Kombrink

It was a cold gloomy day at Arrowhead on Sunday, December 6th, 1996. The Kansas City Chiefs lost to the Indianapolis Colts 107. Since then the Chiefs and Colts have played each other four times. The Chiefs are 0-4 vs Indy in the postseason, but that is about to change. As we have seen recently, the road to Atlanta will be tedious. As it stands the Chiefs have a record of (12-4) leading the AFC. This Chiefs team is a Super Bowl contender, despite their many penalties. The Chiefs lead the league with 137. In order to win games in January, the Chiefs need to leave all of their mistakes in 2018. Blessed with an “elite” QB like Patrick Mahomes, you can go ahead and close the history book. He now leads the NFL with 50 touchdowns, joining Peyton Manning and Tom Brady. The NFL has not seen a young dynamic gunslinger like Mahomes since 1984. Dan Marino, at the age of 23, threw for 48 touchdowns, 5,084 yards, with a passer rating of 108.9, winning him the 1984 MVP Award. Mahomes has thrown 50 touchdowns, 5,097 yards, and holds

a passer rating of 113.8. Mahomes is the current front runner to win MVP. Tight End Travis Kelce also broke records this season with 1,336 receiving yards as well as 103 receptions. In order to make it to Atlanta for the Super Bowl, the Chiefs’ defense needs to continue to make plays at the right time. During the last game against Oakland, I saw improvements on our pass rush and defensive line. I think we will see this squad rise up with All-Pro Safety Eric Berry back on the field. Berry sets the tone for the younger players.

there saying that the Chiefs don’t have all of the tools to bring home the Lombardi Trophy. The fact of the matter is that the Kansas City Chiefs currently stand atop the AFC The defense is doing a good job at 12-4, and I will quote the great of getting to the quarterback. The Bill Parcells: “You are as good as Chiefs tied the Pittsburgh Steelers your record says you are”. No team for the league high, (52 sacks) this in 2018 scored more points than the season. Defensive Lineman Chris Chiefs who scored 565 points. That Jones lead the team with (15.5 is the most by any team in the Super sacks). Dating back to 1982, when Bowl era. sacks came into fruition as an ofHaters also like to point out that ficial stat, nobody in NFL history we seem to not have a running game has constantly hit the QB like Chris all of a sudden because of what Jones. Jones has recorded a sack in happened with Kareem Hunt. This 11 straight games, passing Demar- is simply not true. The “Williams cus Ware, and Simon Fletcher at Brothers” (not really brothers), (10). Linebacker Dee Ford is sec- Damien Williams (#26) and Darrel ond on the team with 13 total sacks Williams (#31), do a good enough

a healthy Spencer Ware (#32) and Charcandrick West (#30). The Chiefs have been waiting to get back to the promised land since January 11th, 1970, where they took down the Minnesota Vikings, 23-7 to win Super Bowl IV. All this Chiefs team has to do is not make mistakes, run the ball efficiently, make plays on defense, and trust that Andy Reid will draw up the right plays for Mahomes. If we do those things I believe we will see the Kansas City Chiefs playing in the Super Bowl.

Coming up in my next article, an exclusive interview with Chiefs Defensive Tackle, and former Grandview Bulldog, Xavier Williams. Twitter: @Samborooski There are a lot of skeptics out job in the running game alongside

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January 8, 2019 | 7 Health News

Changes at area fitness centers take shape in 2019 KC Running Company - In February, KC Running Company will be moving its Leawood store to its Martin City headquarters at 200 E. 135 St. (in the old Hardee’s building). The Leawood store sells sporting goods and footwear and provides training and fun events for runners. After the move, training runs will be offered at the Martin City location on Thursday evenings and Sunday mornings.

By Kathy Feist

There are exciting changes taking place at area fitness centers in 2019. Some may contain the motivation necessary to make changes to your own health. Blue Bicycle Fitness - Blue Bicycle Fitness, 11128 Holmes Rd., continues to renovate, adding a full front window in the cycling room and scenic landscape murals on various walls throughout the facility. The yoga room has been painted an earth tone green to match rustic gray brick wallpaper and a mural depicting a river and mountain scene. Further changes include eliminating old carpet, painting the purple walls blue and obtaining a healthy food vending machine. Blue Bicycle currently welcomes new partnerships with personal trainers or groups exercise leaders who can use the facility.

Martin City Crossfit - MC Crossfit has begun a late evening First Friday workout. Normally closed by 7 pm on Fridays, the First Friday will remain open for focused training sessions, such as yoga or weightlifting.. MC Crossfit is located at 201 W 135 St. www.

Owner Jan Schmidt shows off a renovated yoga room at Blue Bicycle Fitness at Red Bridge Shopping Center. Photo by Kathy Feist.

is introducing Coaching Connections, where members and coaches work together to form a customized plan for a successful outcome. Red Bridge YMCA - The Red There will be three sessions which Bridge YMCA, 11300 Holmes Rd., are free to members. January Jumpstart, which starts January 17, is one

of six small group training sessions that last four to eight weeks. Each session has a different focal point. The January one focuses on core and stability. For more information, check out its Facebook page.

“You definitely make friends,” she said. “Each group becomes a the ability of each member of the small community.” group. She said group sessions gener“It’s like having a personal trainer ally last about an hour or less, inthat you share with a small group at cluding a warm-up period, a 15-20 a much lower cost than having your minute high intensity workout and own,” says Burns. a cooling down period. She said the Burns said unlike in most tradi- groups are open to everyone from tional gyms where people work out on their own, in crossfit training groups everybody supports each other.

teenagers to persons in their 70s or older.

New Crossfit facility to open at 99th & Holmes trained coaches and scaled to

By John Sharp

Change Now CrossFit is remodeling the former Charles D. Jones Co. building at 611 E. 99th St. into a gym and fitness center that it hopes to open late January or early February. Page Burns, an owner who will serve as head coach at the facility, explained crossfit training as short high intensity small group workouts that are supervised by

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8 | January 8, 2019 Business News

Martin City Brewery and Shatto Milk release new “Brooo” By Jill Draper

Don’t wait until Valentine’s Day to try the new chocolate milk stout from Martin City Brewery. It’s expected to sell fast when it hits the liquor and grocery stores along with bars and restaurants in the metro area beginning Monday, Jan. 14. Called Brooo, the limited release dark beer is described by the company’s marketing department as mellow and decadent with a fullmouthed feel—“the perfect ‘box of chocolates’ for your Valentine’s Boo!” The drink has an alcohol level of 6.3 percent and comes in at 9 or 10 on the IBU scale—in other words, it’s not very bitter. Brewery owner Matt Moore says the idea for the beer happened during a brainstorming session on an unrelated topic with representatives of Shatto Milk Company. “It just kind of hit me, and I suggested a partnership during that meeting,” he says.

milk. There’s no real milk in a milk stout, though. The name comes from the use of lactose, a type of milk sugar that does not ferment when exposed to beer yeast, resulting in a slightly sweet flavor.

Martin City Brewery owner Matt Moore samples a new brew called Brooo. It will be available in cans at stores and on tap in bars.

tritious than other beers, although authorities later disputed that claim. Other than the addition of lactose, Milk stouts, also known as cream milk stouts are brewed like any othstouts, first became popular in the er stout with measures of roasted barley and chocolate malts decided According to Moore, Brooo uses 1800s in England when customers by each brewer’s recipe. the same raw, kosher, organic ca- were looking for a fresh, mild taste. cao that Shatto puts in its chocolate Milk stouts were touted as more nuIs it a dessert beer? Not neces-

sarily, says Moore. “It’s sweet, but not overly sweet. It pairs well with something like tiramisu, but also pizza and wings. I drink beers more with the season than with food,” he says. “Basically, it pairs with winter.”

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January 8, 2019 | 9

Restaurant Week in Kansas City

The 10th Annual Kansas City Restaurant Week has hit an all time high with 200 restaurants in the metropolitan area participating with multi-course lunch and dinner menus under $15 and $33 respectively. Restaurant Week runs January 1120. Nine restaurants in south Kansas City are included: Blue Moose, Charleston’s, Jack Stack, Jarocho South, Jess & Jim’s, Longhorn-Belton, Luther’s BBQ, MidiCi and RC’s

There are numerous restaurants

across the state line in the area. For further information on menus and other participating restaurants, go to Ten percent of proceeds from all KCRW meals will benefit three local charitable beneficiaries: Boys & Girls Clubs, Kansas City Regional Destination Development Fund, and the Greater Kansas City Restaurant Association Education Foundation. Over the course of its first nine years, KCRW has raised more than $2.2 million for local charities.

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On December 22, RC’s Restaurant surprised waitress Audrey Anderson on the eve if her 80th birthday. Audrey has been working at RCs for 20 years. Owner David VanNoy says his only regret about hiring Audrey is that he didn’t hire her sooner. A number of friends, family and customers joined the celebration. Photo by Kathy Feist.

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10 | January 8, 2019 Entertainment

Columnist Diane Euston to give presentation on your neighborhood history researching south Kansas City history most of her life. In addition to investigating what has already been documented, she sits down with families who carry a long legacy in the area to create more documentation.

By Kathy Feist

Diane Euston grew up down the street from the New Santa Fe Cemetery, located off Santa Fe Trail and State Line Road. She remembers playing in the cemetery with her friends and wondering why there were so many children buried there. After doing some grave rubbings with her mother, the 7-year-old historian frequently visited the Red Bridge Library to look up the families buried at New Santa Fe. “I wanted to know what happened to these kids,” she says. “Now I get to tell stories about these kids and their families.”

Diane Euston has been interested in the area’s history most of her life.

Euston, who writes the history column for the Martin City Tel- “New Santa Fe Trailer,” has been egraph, as well as her own blog,

On Friday, Jan. 11, Euston will give a presentation on the history of early south Kansas City neighborhoods at 6 p.m. The evening begins with an informal cocktail hour at St. Thomas More Hall, where light appetizers, beer and wine will be provided. At 6:30 p.m. she will speak on “If This Ground Could Talk… The History of Early South Kansas City.”

the event by private families and the Trailside Center. Euston says she will focus on the Santa Fe Trail in south Kansas City and the large landowners who profited from the area. The event is a fundraiser for STMfor-All and BMA. STM-for-All helps fund special education at St. Thomas More. “Special education classes are underfunded in most schools, let alone private schools,” says Euston.

Tickets are $25 and can be purchased on or at the St. Thomas More School office or pay at the door. Contact Elisa PomiThe program will include a slide- anek at show as well as artifacts on display. with any questions. These include rare photos lent to

Sons of Brasil spice up Jazz Vespers

its tradition of great jazz since the days of Count Basie and Charlie Parker. What is remarkable, is that this group of native Kansas Citians plays nothing but Brazilian jazz, with a flavor and passion one might think could only be found at a night club in Ipanema or Leblon. The Sons of Brasil invite you to sample Sons of Brasil is a popular jazz these sounds, which stem from their group that has performed every love and admiration of “musica week since their inception in 1991. bem brasileira.” This would not be so remarkable, KC Jazz Vespers features 100 as Kansas City is renowned for Kansas City Jazz Vespers features the “Sons of Brasil”, a KC-based group that plays Brazilian jazz. The spirited group will perform on Sunday evening, January 13, starting at 6 pm at the historic First Baptist Church of Kansas City, at the corner of Wornall and Red Bridge Roads.


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minutes of professional jazz in a concert setting! It’s free and open to all! For more information, go to or call 816/942-1866. Stan Kessler, founder of Sons of Brasil, leads the band at Sunday night’s Jazz Vespers. Photo by Larry Kopitnik.

Under the Lights Flag Football league starts On Saturday, January 12, an Under the Lights Flag Football is being formed. An enrollment party will be from 1:30 to 4:30 pm at St. Catherine’s of Siena, 4101 E 105 Terr. (off Grandview Rd). During that time there will be give-aways, food, and raffles for those who attend to learn about the game. Registration will continue through March.

Under the Lights is a youth flag football league powered by Under Armour with the emphasis on promoting a competitive, confidence building, non-contact experience for both boys and girls of all skill levels. There are eight weeks of play ending in a championship tournament.. Registration is $80 per person. Call 816-872-6622 for more information.

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January 8, 2019 | 11 Local History

Mobillion McGee’s million dollar ideas shaped early Kansas City By Diane Euston

The early history of Kansas City and the area would have taken a drastic turn without the influence of the McGee family. Mobillion W. McGee, born on Christmas Day 1817, has a story to tell that is just as unique as his name. At 11 years old, with his parents James H. and Eleanor and six siblings, they settled on land that would become the heart of the city. After inheriting some land from his father’s estate in 1840, Mobillion started to make a name for himself in Jackson County. Four years later he married Mary E. Ward and settled on 60 acres of land near blossoming Westport. His homestead sat between Broadway and Central just south of 32nd Street. This land, named “McGee’s Summit,” was platted in 1871 by the subject and today is the heart of Midtown.

Mobillion W. McGee (1817-1888). Courtesy of the McGee family.

Border Wars, Mobillion rounded up his friends and hiked the miles to Osage County to storm Kansas Mobillion followed in the steps of Territory, drink some booze and younger brother Milt and joined the vote illegally in order to ensure that Seminole Wars in Florida in 1847. those “elected” would make certain He was most likely drawn to par- Kansas was a slave state. Those illeticipating because of his knowledge gal votes elected Mobillion into the of the Native American languages. Kansas Territorial Legislature, even though he clearly lived in Missouri. The McGees were strong proOut of 597 votes cast that day in slavery supporters in the area, and this precinct, only 13 were said to Mobillion preferred to stay mobile. be from legal voters. He made at least one trip west on the trails to seek out more fortune. There once was a McGee County On a return trip, he and his brother in Kansas Territory named for MoFry could see an opportunity that billion--this member of the Bogus existed not too far from home. Legislature who was elected by his In August 1854, just months af- Missouri-resident friends. In 1860 ter Kansas was opened up to white the Free State Legislature voted settlement, Mobillion and Fry pur- to change the name to Cherokee chased property at a crossing on the County, a name it holds to this day. Santa Fe Trail. Known as 110-Mile While still trying to safeguard that Creek, their new land was named Kansas would become a slave state, for its distance of 110 miles from Mobillion hatched an interesting Fort Osage, Mo. Mobillion returned plan that today boggles the mind. to the Kansas City area and Fry With help from his friend Robert T. maintained operations of their tav- Van Horn, owner of the Enterprise ern and a toll bridge known as “Mc- newspaper, they attempted to esGee’s Crossing” in Osage County, tablish the new Town of Kansas in Kan. Kansas. On March 30, 1855, while the Van Horn and Mobillion fought area was under pressure from the to move the western border of Mis-

If ThIs Ground Could Talk

The early history of South Kansas City

presented by

Historian and Telegraph columnist

Diane Euston

Friday, January 11 • 6:00 pm • $25 St. Thomas More Hall

Saint Thomas More Parish 11822 Holmes Rd, Kansas City, MO 64131

Proceeds go to STM For All and the BMA Foundation. Tickets sold at the door or in advance at For more info, email

souri to the Blue River, meaning that all property to the west, including Westport and the future site of Kansas City, would be part of Kansas Territory. Even land that now includes Martin City would have been included in this proposition.

A member of the Knights Templar in Pasadena, Mobillion died June 11, 1888 and was loaded onto a railroad car for a final trip east to Kansas City. One week later, he was buried at Elmwood Cemetery next to his family.

Mobillion’s rationale was simple. This specific area west of the Blue River was heavily saturated with pro-slavery sentiments. When the elections decided by popular sovereignty were held, it would mean that this “new” boundary of Kansas Territory would include hundreds, if not thousands, of pro-slavery men. Needless to state, his plan did not succeed.

Although he never had his own children, he did have an adoptive daughter named Josephine Angelo Brown. A small leather-bound photo album belonging to Mobillion passed to her and then to her family where it remained virtually undiscovered until an interested family member brought this album back into the light.

Mobillion officially returned to the Kansas City area during the Civil War. In 1882 he traveled to Los Angeles County for health reasons and purchased an orange grove. He then platted part of this land into what would be known later as Pasadena. In one section he built an impressive home that entertained the Kansas City elite looking to escape to palm trees, sun and a needed vacation.

Today this album of early Kansas City pioneers is a treasure. Packed full with photos of some of the most prominent families of the era, the album showcases how Mobillion’s vested interest in Kansas City and its people played an important role in the area’s controversial early history. Diane writes a blog on the history of the area. To read the stories, go to www.newsantafetrailer.blogspot. com.

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Martin City Telegraph January 8, 2019  

Martin City Telegraph January 8, 2019