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Winter 2017

Union Station Kansas City


Holidays Come Alive

Complete Season Event Schedule Inside



We’re Proud to Enhance Your Union Station Holiday Event WWW.BRANCATOSCATERING.COM


816.460.2274 HarveysKC.com Contactus@HarveysKC.com

Dazzle your guests this holiday season!

Your guests will enjoy the festive holiday atmosphere of Union Station when you host your upcoming holiday celebration at Harvey’s! Weekday bookings available, contact us to reserve your spot!

Mon-Fri 7am to 3pm Sat-Sun 8am to 3pm

our award-winning Sunday Brunch 10am-3pm

2016 Visitor’s Choice: Favorite Landmark/Monument by Visit KC


Science City Unveils Plans To Grow Younger


Early Childhood Learning Will Expand


New Branding Reflects Bold Vision

VML Develops New Design 18 Years After Creating Original Science City Logo CHIEF MARKETING OFFICER

Michael Tritt


Lauren Hypse


Burns & Mcdonnell “Battle Of The Brains” is Back The Winners are Greater Kansas City Kids


“One Of The World’s Must-See Exhibitions” Coming To Union Station

Leigh Culbert

Science Meets Art in Spectacular Display of Creativity




Exclusive Highlights from the Research

Abby Rufkahr Dalton Liu

Team Of International Experts Unravel Mummy Bundle Mysteries


“All Aboard!” the Tradition of Trains and the Holidays Explore the Nostalgia and Shared Love of Trains at Union Station

Proud to be a


Appreciation For two long-Standing Board Members

Internationally Awarded

Smithsonian Affiliate

Copyright © 2017 Union Station Kansas City, Inc. 30 W Pershing Rd, Suite 400 | Kansas City, MO 64108 816.460.2020 | UnionStation.org

To subscribe: ON TRACK subscription is a benefit of Union Station Membership! For more details, visit UnionStation.org/Membership.

To advertise: To advertise your company, organization, or foundation in ON TRACK, e-mail OnTrack@UnionStation.org.


Holidays Come Alive Exciting Calendar of Events


New Technology Illuminates Station in Brilliant Fashion

High-Tech Outdoor Lighting Investment Ready for the Holidays


Astro Botanicals “Blooming” in Haverty Family Yards Take a Walk Through This Other-Worldly Wonder


Trombone Christmas Set to Slide into Union Station For A KC Debut

More Than 100 Trombones Will Fill Historic Halls FOLLOW UNION STATION:


Holiday Movie Favorites Return to the Station Science Says Holiday Nostalgia Good for Your Health

ON TRACK IS AVAILABLE ONLINE: UnionStation.org/OnTrack The information contained in this magazine is for informational purposes only. Union Station Kansas City, Inc. assumes no liability or responsibility for any inaccurate, delayed or incomplete information.


The Biggest Movies on the Biggest Screen Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi Opens December 15th


Own a Timeless Piece of Union Station History

Architect Jarvis Hunt’s Iconic Illustration is Available for the First Time

33 Mission Statement Union Station Kansas City, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, is dedicated to science education, celebration of community and preservation of history.

Unique Holiday Gift Guide We’re Your One Stop Shop!

COVER: Holidays Come Alive 2016. Courtesy: Roy Inman Photographs © ABOVE: Courtesy: M. Norcross



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Science City Unveils Plans To Grow Younger! Bold Vision Will Expand Early Childhood Learning in Greater Kansas City Bold visions are driving forces across the fields of science. A vision

to solve a complex problem. To build something big. To cure, make safer or simply experience the world in brand new ways. Such bold visions also help transform organizations to stay on the cutting edge of service and solutions. Science City’s recent and remarkable Early Learning Initiative announcement is a perfect example. The backdrop is the recent and dramatic growth in the number of families with infants and toddlers visiting science museums across the country. Along with that reality is fascinating developmental research indicating science learning can be encouraged and stimulated as early as infancy. Science City thinks that’s both remarkable and inspiring! So what to do with that excitement? Focus it. Develop a robust and informed-by-experts plan. Then take action. And that’s exactly what Union Station and Science City have done. On the morning of October 10th — on the expansive ground floor of our internationally-awarded Science City — over 100 leaders from the early childhood, academic, business, civic and funding community gathered for the unveiling of plans to greatly expand critical early childhood learning in Kansas City. And to put these plans into immediate action, a significant $4 million grant from the Hall Family Foundation was announced to help propel the massive $7 million initiative forward. But before we look ahead, let’s look back to December of last year when the initial study — also generously funded by the Hall Family Foundation — to inform this new and important initiative started taking shape . . .


Union Station On Track • Winter 2017

On December 15, 2016, Union Station’s Board announced plans to develop a blueprint for interactive science learning experiences for children age 0 - 7 years old. The first step toward that ambitious goal was taken by retaining the renowned Boston Children’s Museum to conduct a multi-month planning phase that would result in specific recommendations regarding new exhibition and programming spaces for early childhood development. “As one of the largest and oldest children’s museums in the world, Boston Children’s Museum is also one of the most influential,” George Guastello, president and CEO of Union Station, says. “They have earned a celebrated status for engaging children in discovery experiences that develop foundational skills and spark a lifelong love of learning. We could not have made a better choice in that first planning phase and we are now in position to partner with their experts in early and informal learning throughout this make-it-a-reality phase.”

Officials from Union Station, Boston Children’s Museum and Hall Family Foundation on stage for big announcement. Above: Courtesy: Roy Inman Photographs©

Above and Right: Courtesy: Boston Child

ren’s Museum

Carol Charnow, president and CEO, Boston Children’s Museum also expresses professional pride in the success of the planning phase . . . “Learning opportunities specifically designed for children play an important role for most modern science centers,” Charnow, says. “We’ve brought to bear our own decades of experience in engaging our youngest children along with the latest research from MIT, Harvard and other leading research institutions on how infants and toddlers learn. What Kansas City is about to do — through the proven Science City platform — is exciting, vitally important and leading-edge. It’s been an extreme pleasure to have had our teams collaborate during the early planning phase and now going forward to complete the vision.” Ramón Murguía, Union Station Board Vice Chairman, goes on to comment about the advantages Science City has moving into the build-out phase . . .

“We’re in a very enviable position to maximize our community impact and return on funder investment,” Murguía, explains. “The wealth of proven results from the Boston Children’s Museum is paying off for the entire Kansas City community. The plans unveiled on October 10th will drive our next 21 months of action and will result in world-class early learning experiences for our most valuable resources . . . the young minds who will, in turn, shape our futures.” And those experiences will soon start taking form in three new, dedicated and programmed early learning areas within Science City. In total, these areas will fill 13,000 dedicated square feet with a

complete programmatic footprint of nearly 35,000 square feet. More importantly, these investments will greatly expand Science City’s community commitment to kindergarten readiness. The STEM pipeline will grow and in so doing, will help ensure Kansas City’s reputation nationally for aggressively focusing on the human element of what it takes to be a world-class city. Specifically, the three new areas are to be organized in the following way . . . • The Children’s Zone is dedicated specifically to the developmental needs of children from infancy through age 3, and to the critical role adults play in the child’s learning. • Messy Arts is a multisensory area that can be programmed for infants through 3 year olds and infants to 7 year olds, depending on the day and demand. Through open-ended arts and STEAM experiences, children explore materials, develop fine motor skills, and try out art-making processes, while also developing science process thinking. • All Aboard! is an immersive environmental concept for 4-7 year old children and their teachers and guardians, featuring evocative contemporary designs and interactives that encourage dramatic play, exploration, observation, cooperative and collaborative problem solving, and discovery — the basis of STEM learning. “Taken together with the award-winning, existing Science City programs, this Early Learning strategy has a tremendous multiplier effect,” Jerry Baber, Union Station executive vice president and COO, says. “Now, we’ll effectively serve children from the pre-walking age through young teens. That’s a huge benefit to the families, educators and care-givers who regularly turn to us for out-of-home and outof-classroom, high-value learning experiences. Legitimately, we’ll powerfully serve, in a unique way, the full family life cycle of kids interested in STEM and age-focused discovery. This is a very exciting leap forward for not only Union Station, but our entire community and region.”

Continued 0




Of course, the total $7 million plan counts on significant community involvement. And, as mentioned, the generosity of the Hall Family Foundation — highlighted by their $4 million project grant — has been and is essential to Union Station’s confidence in moving ahead. Rebecca Hall, program officer at the Hall Family Foundation, provided further perspective . . .

“We know the promise of long-term community success starts with investing in early childhood learning,” Rebecca Hall, program officer at the Hall Family Foundation, shares. “We applaud this bold step by the leadership of Union Station. As one of our areas of focus is Pre-K through 12 education, we appreciate the impact these types of initiatives can have in stimulating imagination and encouraging early learning.”

Rebecca Hall

ation – Hall Family Found

Ramón Murguía –

Union Station Board

Vice Chairman

Fundraising outreach toward the total financial investment required is now underway and is emphasized as both a priority and opportunity by Union Station leadership. “With the generous $4 million grant from the Hall Family Foundation, we are once again in position to reshape the local and regional landscape as it relates to strengthening our community, this time starting with our youngest citizens,” Guastello, says. “We simply can’t thank Kansas City enough for challenging us, then giving us the room and resources to regularly exceed expectations. We now are reimagining the future by growing younger. With the involvement of business leaders, foundations, educators, early childhood advocates, and family-focused individuals, we will deliver something truly amazing . . . for generations to come. We invite all of Kansas City to invest with us and help shape and ensure the success of Greater Kansas City’s next and future generations.” Those interested in reviewing the complete plan and lending support to the project are encouraged to call or email Christy Nitsche, Director of Advancement & Community Engagement at (816) 460-2208 or cnitsche@unionstation.org ■

Boston Children’s Museum is the second oldest, and one of the most influential children’s museums in the world. It was founded in 1913 by the Science Teachers’ Bureau, a group of visionary educators dedicated to providing new resources for both teachers and students, as a


Union Station On Track • Winter 2017

center for the exchange of materials and ideas to advance the teaching of science. For over 100 years it has been engaging children in joyful discovery experiences that instill an appreciation of our world, develop foundational skills, and spark a lifelong love of learning. 

VML Develops New Design 18 Years after Creating Original Science City Logo U

nion Station unveiled new branding for Kansas City’s internationally-awarded Science City on October 5th. Reimagined for the first time in 18 years, the fresh, new design signaled the transformational moment on October 10th when Science City announced an historic Early Learning Initiative. “This is a very exciting time for Science City,” George Guastello, Union Station president and CEO, says. “The bold new logo represents where Science City is today as well as our vision for the future. It celebrates Science City’s place in Kansas City. And we can’t thank the talented team at VML enough for their insights and execution of this powerful new branding which instantly garnered rave reviews.” The modern rebranding embraces not only Science City’s vitality in Downtown, but the substantial and fast-growing focus on STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) learning across the education spectrum. The new branding is meant to convey: • The iconic architecture of Science City’s roof, designed to mimic the historic train sheds and passenger platforms originally extending east and west from Union Station • Union Station’s and Science City’s strong position in the center of Kansas City’s skyline, shouting vibrancy, creativity and commitment to growth • Simple, bold, timeless design to convey the fun of Science City’s informal learning format “This new logo evokes creativity, discovery, imagination, and exploration,” Jon Cook, VML global CEO, says. “Science City has earned a place of prominence that is fresh, vibrant, approachable and fun. It’s all about inspiring lifelong learners — and we’re proud the new branding reflects just that.” Look for the new branding to be rolled out across our venues in the coming months! ■

Ray Kowalik, CEO Burns & McDonnell and Julee Koncak, Director, Burns & McDonnell Foundation

The Winners Are Greater Kansas City Kids!

It’s Kansas City’s most exciting K-12 STEM competition and

participating area schools are hoping to earn a piece of the $155,000plus pie and the thrill of working alongside Burns & McDonnell professionals to bring their concept to life at Science City. “The drive to strengthen the community is the heartbeat of Burns & McDonnell,” Julee Koncak, Director, Burns & McDonnell Foundation, says. “Every day, our employee-owners rely on STEM skills, passion and a lifelong curiosity to change the world. The opportunity to light the same spark and build the same foundation in kids is pretty amazing.” The Battle of the Brains competition fosters exploring new things, thinking big, and collaboration, all while making STEM education fun! With no cost to schools to participate – the benefits are enormous. And each year – since the first Battle of the Brains in 2011 – the participation has soared . . . 7000 6000 Students

New Branding Reflects Bold Vision

Burns & McDonnell Battle of the Brains is Back

5000 4000 3000 2000 Year

“The Burns & McDonnell Battle of the Brains has helped transform Science City into the Internationally Awarded Science Center it is today,” George Guastello, president & CEO, Union Station, says. “With the winning school announced at the awards ceremony on November 30, we’ll get a glimpse into the next big exhibit imagined by our next generation of STEM professionals. This entire process is so exciting and affirming. Burns & McDonnell continues to be a tremendous partner in bringing world-class content to Science City and involving the entire community in doing so.” Want to get involved? On November 16, the Top 20 finalists will be announced, then public voting is open November 17-24. For more information visit botbkc.com. ■

Special thanks to the very talented VML team responsible for bringing our new Science City branding to life. The team included; Jon Cook, Shali Wade, Suba Nadarajah, Linda Bumgarner, Emily Dore and John Mulvihill.




“One of the World’s Must See Exhibitions” Coming to Union Station Science Meets Art in Spectacular Display of Creativity Conde Nast Traveler proclaimed, “The Art Of The Brick Is

Pretty Much Blowing Our Minds.” And CNN calls it “One of the World’s Must See Exhibitions.”  That’s pretty high praise and, based on sentiment from audiences around the globe, an accurate portrayal of this new blockbuster Union Station exhibition. Set to open January 25 and run through May 28th, The Art of the Brick is already producing big buzz among school groups, art enthusiasts, families of every age and just about everyone who’s ever created something with LEGO bricks. That’s a huge audience and Union Station leaders are planning for another winner with this one . . . “The Art of the Brick is one of those rare experiences that’s nearly impossible to describe,” George Guastello, Union Station president and CEO, explains. “It’s unexpected and inspiring.  Massive and intimate. Brilliantly simple and complex all at once. It’s unlike anything you’ve ever seen. In the last few years, we’ve focused on ancient history and science (Da Vinci, Body Worlds, Pompeii and Mummies of the World) and enjoyed tremendous response. With The Art of the Brick, we’re bringing a totally unique blend of art, science, engineering and pure imagination — filling 10 complete galleries — to life in one of the most amazing exhibitions you’ll experience. But it’s only here for a short run, so make plans early!” The Art of the Brick is the creation of super-builder and LEGO artist, Nathan Sawaya. As a child, Sawaya — like so many of us — spent countless hours creating boats, spaceships, race cars, super heroes, skyscrapers and a myriad of “masterpieces” born of our creativity. Sawaya describes the joy of LEGOs as one of those shared experiences that bind us together.  Back then, of course, the “brick” was not


Union Station On Track • Winter 2017

only the basic form, but the primary shape available from which to build. And thus, The Art of the Brick displays breathtaking creations constructed of that simplest form.  And in that simplicity, the basic brick is transformed into “thought-provoking, visceral, playful and inspired” works of genius, according to Time Out NYC. “The playfulness is contagious,” says The New York Times.  It’s “anything but child’s play,” says the Wall Street Journal. The Art of the Brick features more than 100 original pieces of inspiring sculpture as well as re-imagined versions of the world’s most famous art masterpieces made exclusively from LEGO bricks.  Bigger than life and amazingly life-like, these creations have drawn fans from Brazil to Taiwan, Russia to Spain and Australia to France. Did you know LEGO is a combination of the Danish words Leg and Godt, which means “play well?” While play is an essential element for LEGO enthusiasts, the exhibition stimulates much bigger concepts rooted in science, technology, engineering, art and math (STEAM). “The exhibition is accessible because it engages the child in all of us while simultaneously illuminating sophisticated and complex concepts,” Sawaya, says. Some of those concepts include conceiving and executing something intricate that begins simply by putting two bricks together with intention.

This family-friendly exhibition fills the Bank of America Gallery and includes a gift shop and hands-on building area that invites visitors to create something amazing for a special rotating “Guest Gallery.” “One of the many things we do so well is engage the mind as well as the hands,” Jerry Baber, Union Station executive vice president and COO, shares. “We know by bringing this powerful combination together, we create lasting and meaningful learning moments and provide hard-to-beat entertainment options for Greater Kansas City and beyond. The Art of the Brick is a perfect example of how we maintain a reputation for world-class content that’s creatively interactive, inspiring and impactful.  The Art of the Brick will absolutely delight guests of every age and interest.”

The Art of the Brick ’s Nathan Sawaya FUN FACTS • Once a corporate lawyer, he left that profession in 2004 to build with LEGOS full time

• Sawaya spends six figures on LEGO bricks every year

• He regularly uses from 15,000 to 25,000 bricks for his life-size figures • He once used 500,000 bricks to create a life-size billboard • Nathan does not work for LEGO, but is the only person ever to be recognized as both a LEGO Master Builder and a LEGO Certified Professional

As an early bonus to The Art of the Brick at Union Station, Sawaya will make a rare artist appearance as the exhibition opens and construct a creation just for Kansas City, reflecting a unique aspect of our hometown. You’ll be invited to submit ideas and even witness the creative process as it happens. Watch the Union Station Facebook page for upcoming details. The Art of the Brick opens at Union Station on January 25 and runs thru May 28.  Tickets are available now at UnionStation.org or in person at the Union Station ticket office. Union Station Members and groups of 15 or more enjoy special discounts. For group details, call Katlyn Baker at 816-460-2093 or email kbaker@unionstation.org.■ UnionStation.org


Dr. Randall Thompson examines mummy bundle using CT technology.

Team of International Experts Unravel Mummy Bundle Mysteries

CT scan image from “Runa” showing abnormal skull shape resulting from annular modification.

Real science reveals new information in real time Before dawn on the morning of September 6, 2017, two ancient

mummy bundles (on loan from the Kansas City Museum and currently on display in Mummies of the World at Union Station) arrived at Saint Luke’s Hospital. For the first time, these mummies underwent extensive computerized tomography (CT) scanning. News cameras and reporters from across the city crowded the inner and outer lobbies of the high-tech scanning room to capture this first step on a fascinating journey of discovery. Aside from a general idea of origin in South America, these two mummies held more mysteries than nearly any other of the 35 mummy examples on display in the Mummies of the World international tour. “As an institution grounded in science, this exhibition and research project has been particularly rewarding for Union Station,” George Guastello, Union Station president and CEO, says. “Nearly 75,000 people have already visited Mummies of the World and expressed their shared fascination and appreciation for the scientific, historic and cultural value of this content. In fact, since the two mummy bundles were scanned and featured in the media, guests to the exhibition have expressed great anticipation for the findings. All of us have been waiting to hear the real story to be revealed by the real science.” Led by renowned cardiologist, Dr. Randall Thompson – a member of the international HORUS Group of mummy researchers – experts from Kansas City, Minnesota, California, Miami, Egypt, Europe, Mexico and Peru have studied the scans and applied their extensive knowledge to uncover the secrets of the two mummy bundles. “Studying ancient mummies is like opening a window into a world long gone,” Dr. Thompson, Saint Luke’s Mid America Heart Institute cardiologist, says. “The application of modern science now allows a unique view to reveal details previously not possible. Over the last few months, we’ve worked to unlock the mummy bundle secrets. We not


Union Station On Track • Winter 2017

only researched the actual mummies, but also studied the cultures from which they likely came. Together, we’ve assembled an informed and fascinating glimpse into the lives of these ancient people. What we do helps complete the journey these two individuals have taken from the time they lived to today, as they continue to offer silent perspective to our modern scientific understandings and innate human curiosity.” Highlights from the current research – which is still ongoing – include . . .

Runa* – MUMMY A • Male – young adult at time of death – 20 to 30 years old • Complete skeleton with no obvious signs of trauma • Suffered from a tooth abscess in the left maxilla • Abnormal skull shape (oblong), a result of ancient cultural skull modifications using textiles to warp and shape the skull from very young age – a technique called annular modification. • The skull also has two burr holes, also called trepanations. Although ancient people in South America performed trepanations, characteristics of these holes suggest they were created post mortem. • The skeleton of a small animal with a long tail is also found inside the bundle.

Warmi* – MUMMY B • Female – young adult at time of death – 20 to 30 years old • Skeleton without skull – in upright, sitting crossed position • The bones are low in mineral density, possibly because of numerous pregnancies or poor nutrition, although post mortem changes are a possibility. There is a compression fracture in one of the vertebrae, likely caused by the poor bone density. • She was short in stature, about 4-feet 9-inches tall, based on measurements of the leg bones.

BURIAL BASKETS • Indicative of Alpine Mummy Baskets – although more intricately crafted than in other cases – suggests these individuals were revered in their community and certainly had sufficient family wealth to put toward such elaborate funerary treatment • Made from two layers woven fibers of native plants – similar to the Furcraea plant • These baskets did not typically contain burial trinkets, jewelry or other adornments as was the case in other cultures, such as lowland Peruvian mummies • Were likely placed and found in a “Chullpa” or funerary tower with other family members LIKELY ORIGIN • Alpine or highland area between modern Peru and Bolivia – near Lake Titicaca • Area was part of Tiwanaku Empire dating from 300 - 1150 • Became part of Inca Empire starting in about 1471 through the time of Spanish conquest Note: Additional research – including carbon-14 Dating and Stable Isotope Analysis – is being done at the time of this writing. As conclusive data is available, current partial research findings will be updated. Dr. Thompson describes these mummy bundles as, “culturally very valuable”, due to their rarity. As the territories where these individuals originated were conquered by the Spanish between 1532 and 1572, many of these mummy bundles were burned and

destroyed by the Spanish who feared they were used in idolatry. Indeed, the Incas included many things in their religious worships, including ancestors in the form of mummy bundles. Members of the research team further elaborated on the ancient cultures surrounding Lake Titicaca. Highlights include . . . • At an altitude of 3,800 meters (12,500 feet), Lake Titicaca is the world’s highest navigable lake. The surrounding tundra plain was the location of Tiwanaku, the capital of one of the most important Andean cultures during the first millennium CE. The lake was also considered to be the center of the cosmos and origin of the sun, moon, stars, and humankind and, consequently, was one of the most sacred sites for the Inca civilization. • The area around the lake was first settled in the mid-second millennium BCE. As with other similar cultures, the llama, vicuna, and alpaca were a source of wool, transport, and, if necessary, food. The lake provided fish and totora reeds which were used to make boats, roofs and mats. Potatoes, quinoa, and oca were also cultivated and metals such as gold, copper and tin were extracted from the nearby mountains. • After a long decline, Lake Titicaca once again became an important area with the rise of the Inca Empire during the 15th and 16th centuries CE. • Evidence points to a system of ancestor worship at Tiwanaku. The preservation, use, and reconfiguration of mummy bundles and skeletal remains, as with the later Inca, suggests this is the case. Later cultures within the area made use of large “above ground burial chambers or towers for the social elite . . . known as chullpas.” The first towers can be dated back to 200 BC, but the practice only becomes widespread in the Andes in the Late Intermediate period between 1000 AD and 1476. Most of the chullpas around Lake Titicaca appear to have been built in between the 14th and the 15th century. THE KANSAS CITY CONNECTION The two mummy bundles arrived in Kansas City in 1921, obtained by one of the Kansas City Museum’s first board members, R. Bryson Jones. Jones acquired the mummy bundles during a trip to La Paz, Bolivia. The mummies were on display between 1940 and 1960 at the Kansas City Museum, where they were a reliable guest favorite. They haven’t been seen by the public since, until they became part of the national touring exhibition, Mummies of the World. Mummies of the World is currently featured in the Bank of America Gallery at Union Station and is open daily for public visits thru early January, 2018. Individual and group tickets are available, with prices starting at $12.95* for Union Station Members and $10* for students in school groups. ■ *Excludes Taxes & Fees.

*Names assigned to mummies come from Amyra language spoken historically around Lake Titicaca. “Runa” meaning Man. “Warmi” meaning Woman. UnionStation.org


“All Aboard!” The Tradition of Trains and the Holidays W

hat is it about trains and the holidays that stirs so many emotions and nudges nearly all of us with feelings of nostalgia? Being tied to all things “train,” Union Station staff wondered the same thing. Here are a few thoughts we gathered . . . • In Western culture, Christmas has long been associated with going home. And for much of America’s history, going home meant taking the train to leave the big city and return to the small town where one was born. By the mid-20th century, the association hadn’t changed, but the journey shifted to include older generations taking the train to cities to visit kids and grandkids. Either way, train travel bookended holidays spent with family and friends. • In addition to trains moving people for the holidays, railroads also moved packages and mail . . . as in Christmas presents ordered from catalogs and cards sent from one family member to another. Trains – in a sense – did the delivery business of Santa and symbolized the anticipation and satisfaction of receiving something special. • And, of course, the model electric train running ‘round the base of Christmas trees has got to be part of the connection. First appearing in 1901 in a New York storefront window (and the brainchild of Joshua Lionel Cowen and partner Harry C. Grant) the crudely fashioned “Electric Express” had evolved into mythical status by the 1920’s. Lionel Trains became not only a treasured gift, but part of the annual holiday rituals of preparing for Christmas. Toys, trains and the holidays became part of our collective experience.


Union Station On Track • Winter 2017

So, what to do with all this nostalgia and shared love of trains? Well, if you’re Union Station, you celebrate it in the biggest way possible in what is now the second largest operating train depot in the United States. And, that’s exactly what we’re doing! For the 2017 Holiday Season, you’ll see trains of every size and everywhere you turn. Amtrak will be bringing loved ones home for the holidays. The Kansas City Southern Holiday Express will signal the arrival of Santa, Mrs. Claus and their elves. And miles of scale model trains and track will fill imaginations of journeys long-ago taken and perhaps dreams of adventures still to come. Here are a few “All Aboard” Moments not to be missed at Union Station this holiday season . . . • Holiday-Themed Model Train displays will fill over 10,000 square feet with stunning new elements to discover for free and open every day. • Mini Holiday Ride-On Train (original Jones Store Train) will circle the north end of Grand Plaza and provide rides for your little ones from November 19, 2017 to January 1, 2018. Be sure to check online at UnionStation. org/Holidays for specific times and occasional closed dates. Schedule also shown on pages 16-17 of this ON TRACK Magazine. Free for Members and $5 for non-members. • Polar Express PJ Party will happen daily December 8-14 in our Regnier Extreme Screen Theatre. Kids are encouraged to wear their pajamas as they enjoy the holiday movie classic on Kansas City’s largest movie screen. $3/ ticket and reserve your tickets early, as this is our most popular holiday classic. • Kansas City Southern Holiday Express – a Union Station tradition and back for the 17th year. This enchanted walk-thru train brings Santa, Mrs. Claus and their elves to Union Station for visits from December 15-19. Admission is FREE but reservations are STRONGLY recommended and available online at UnionStation.org/Holidays beginning December 3 with Member Reservations starting November 30. ■ Above: Courtesy: Roy Inman Photographs©

Union Station Board of Directors says “Thank You” to Two Long-Standing Members Greg M. Graves Union Station Board of Directors 2011-2017 • Greg Graves arrived in Kansas City in 1980 as a new engineering graduate from the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology. • He accepted a job at the engineering and construction firm, Burns & McDonnell, which became the only place he worked through his retirement in 2017. Rising to become CEO, he oversaw the significant growth of the company in revenue, number of employees and cultural influence throughout Kansas City, including Union Station’s Science City. “Greg’s standing as a significant leader in the metropolitan area added prestige and structure on our Board,” says Board Chairman, Bob Regnier. “He is a strategic thinker and was a participant in the development of the longterm strategic plan for the Station. And when Greg proclaimed that Kansas City deserved a world-class science center – then followed his words with bold actions – 2017 Union Station Board of Directors Science City was put back on track to become the award-winning destination it is today.” • Graves was the initial supporter of the Burns & McDonnell Battle of the Brains, where students compete for grants and a chance to develop the next world-class interactive exhibit at Science City. Over the course of three rounds of Battle of the Brains challenges, more than 10,000 area students have participated, resulting in the wildly popular Every Last Drop, Genetics: Unlock the Code, The Science of Energy Featuring Unplugged and the newest exhibit – outdoor Simple Machines At Play. Having now retired from Burns & McDonnell, Graves reflects back on a particularly meaningful moment in his young career. He had just arrived in Kansas City and went to visit a former calculus teacher who he suspected would have good advice to share. The former teacher offered Greg, “The only thing that matters in life . . . is to matter.” Well, Greg, we can confirm in the most profound way that you have mattered and still do matter a great deal to us and all of Kansas City.

Jack Ovel Union Station Board of Directors 2015-2017 • Jack Ovel moved to Kansas City in 1988 with his wife Jean Ann and four children. He worked more than 40 years in the financial services industry. In his position as regional head of Bank of America, Jack’s commitment to Union Station was especially evident in Presenting Sponsorships of The Discovery of King Tut exhibition and the Station’s Centennial Celebration Weekend in 2014. “Jack has been a consistent member of the Board and provided great counsel throughout the years,” says Bob Regnier, Board Chairman. “Being on the Board allowed him to experience the quality of each exhibit and program at the Station from an up-close perspective. In return, Jack responded to opportunities in very meaningful ways.” “Union Station continues to be a place where people connect and learn more about the rich history of Kansas City,” Ovel says. “While the trains don’t run as often or as far, the families that come here experience wonderful exhibits from around the world.” • Retired Regional Vice Chairman at U.S. Trust Company, Ovel has five grandchildren who now experience the variety and quality of all Union Station attractions, including Science City. He adds, “If something important is happening in Kansas City, it’s happening at Union Station!” Thanks to people like Jack Ovel, we like to think that is true. ■  

Robert D. Regnier, Chairman Bank of Blue Valley Ramón Murguía, Vice Chairman Murguía Law Offices Mayor Peggy J. Dunn, Treasurer City of Leawood, KS Danette Wilson, Secretary Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Kansas City Bucky Brooks Copaken Brooks Jon Cook VML Mayor Michael Copeland City of Olathe, KS Michael R. Haverty Civic Leader R. Crosby Kemper III Kansas City Public Library Ray Kowalik Burns & McDonnell Dan Lowe Legacy Development Leo Morton DeBruce Companies Dr. Thomas Sack MRIGlobal Mayor Sly James (Ex-Officio) City of Kansas City, MO George Guastello, President & CEO Union Station Kansas City, Inc. For more on Union Station’s current Board of Directors, visit UnionStation.org/About.



Also, opening Dec 15: Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi with a special showing available on Dec 14. Check UnionStation.org for showtimes.

Nov 17-22: National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation Nov 24-30: Elf Dec 1-7: Home Alone Dec 8-14: Polar Express PJ Party

Bring the family for only $3/ticket and enjoy these seasonal throw-backs on the Region’s Biggest Screen.

Holiday Classic Movie Series

An encore appearance of this premiere event with more than 100 hand-made and vintage vendors, food trucks and a visit from Mrs. Claus. See page 26 for details.

Dec 10: Strawberry Swing’s “Holiday Swing” Indie Craft Fair

Don’t miss holiday science demos, workshops and more at KC’s Internationally Awarded Science City. Stop by Santa’s workshop (Maker Studio) and the Test Kitchen for cookie decorating with Mrs. Claus!

Dec 9: “Merry Science Day” in Science City with Special Guest, Mrs. Claus

with Special Guest, Mrs. Claus

Dec 1 - 3: Piano Recitals in Grand Hall Dec 3: Holiday Dance Showcase in Grand Plaza

presented by Theatre for Young America

Nov 28 - Dec 30: Raggedy Ann & Andy’s Christmas Adventure

Returning for its 4th year, Kansas City will bustle with special holiday experiences, activities, attractions, dining, and businesses all connected by the KC Streetcar. For details, visit DazzleKC.com.

Nov 24 - Jan 1: Downtown Dazzle

for Thanksgiving

Nov 23: All Union Station Attractions including Science City Closed

Line-Up Includes: • Dance and musical stage performances, Letters to Santa, Stories with Mrs. Claus, hands-on Maker Studio and Strawberry Swing activities, face painting, balloon artist and more beginning at 10 a.m. • Largest indoor lighting ceremony as we kick off the season with a “Holidays Come Alive” performance by Quixotic in Grand Plaza (formerly Sprint Festival Plaza) and Grand Hall at 6:30 p.m. • Mini Holiday Ride-On Train opens in Grand Plaza and is free for all riders 7 - 9 p.m. (fee applies remainder of season). • *NEW* Astro Botanicals opens in Haverty Family Yards at 7 p.m. Learn more on page 22.

Nov 18: “Holidays Come Alive” Kickoff Ceremony

Sponsored By:

at Union Station


Dec 19 - Jan 1, 2018: 10 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. and 2 - 5 p.m.

Dec 16 - 18: Friday thru Monday 10 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.; 2 - 4:30 p.m. and 5 - 8 p.m.

November 30: 1 p.m. - 4 p.m.

Nov 19 - Dec 15: Tuesdays thru Saturdays 10 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. and 2 - 4 p.m.; Sundays Noon - 1:30 p.m. and 2 - 5 p.m.

Nov 18: Free for ALL riders, 7 - 9 p.m.

for the latest details.

Schedule is subject to change. Check UnionStation.org/Holidays

*Closed on Mondays, November 23 and December 24, 25 and 31.

Members ride FREE! Non-Members $5

Mini Holiday Express Train Schedule

Images: Courtesy: Roy Inman Photographs ©

For complete details and full line-up, visit UnionStation.org/Holidays.

Science meets art at the world’s largest display of LEGO art. This unique blend of engineering and pure imagination comes to life in the Bank of America Gallery.

Jan 25: The Art of the Brick Opens

Ring in 2018 with festivities that kick off at 8 p.m. in Grand Plaza.

New Year’s Swingin’ Eve with Dave Stephens & the Kansas City Jazz Orchestra 7

End 2017 with STEAM fun, 2000+ balloons and more at this 5th Annual event from Noon - 7 p.m. Don’t miss out on the balloon drop at 6 p.m.!

Dec 31: Noon Year’s Eve at Science City

Extreme Screen closed for Christmas

Dec 25: All Union Station Attractions excluding

Performed by The Academy of the Arts in City Stage • Dec 16 at 7:30 p.m. • Dec 17 at 2 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.

Dec 16 - 17: “Nutcracker: All Jazz’d Up”

Snow Globe Musical Performance in Grand Plaza, 1 p.m. - 2 p.m.

Calling all trombonists…See page 25 for details.

Dec 16: Trombone Christmas Concert in Grand Hall, 11 a.m. - Noon

For more information, visit page 27.

Dec 16 - Jan 7: Holiday Magic Laser Show at the Arvin Gottlieb Planetarium

*Astro Botanicals will also be open during these dates and times. Be sure to bring your camera!

• Dec 16: 10 a.m. - 8 p.m. • Dec 17: 10 a.m. - 8 p.m. • Dec 18: 11 a.m. - 8 p.m. • Dec 19: 11 a.m. - 5 p.m.

• Dec 15: 2 p.m. - 5 p.m. & Union Station Members Only 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.

The Kansas City Southern Holiday Express Train rolls in with Santa, Mrs. Claus and their elves to deliver magical memories and holiday cheer.

Dec 15 - 19: 17th Annual Kansas City Southern Holiday Express Train

Be sure to visit and cast your vote for your favorite gingerbread house.

Gingerbread House Display

Dec 14 - Jan 1: Kansas City Culinary Arts School’s

Magical Memories Created Daily . . .

at Kansas City’s Home for the Holidays

UNPACKING FAMILY TREASURES Decorating our homes for the holidays is one of those beloved traditions that transcend time and place. As we unpack our boxes of ornaments, lights and trimming to begin dressing our spaces, most of us very likely have a few family treasures in the mix. Could be an antique holiday embroidery. Perhaps a set of heirloom candlesticks or handmade ornament. Regardless of size, shape or age, unpacking those treasures and once again experiencing those moments encourages us to personalize the holidays and connect with people we love. But it’s not always just the familiar things that get unpacked. We watch the same corny movies, eat wonderful seasonal foods and seek out the most colorful lights because it feels good to connect with our happiest memories. It’s really no different here at Union Station. Maybe that’s why hundreds of thousands of Kansas Citians embrace our historic home as an essential destination during the season . . . a holiday treasure in and of itself. All of us at Union Station enjoy your generous affection with gratitude and a sense of joyful responsibility. That’s why we’re constantly working to bring you the most festive holiday music, the most extraordinary decorations and unforgettable performances imaginable . . . and doing so year after wonderful year. For more than 100 years, Union Station has brought you the best of the holidays, and 100 years from now, Kansas City will still be talking about how it’s THE place to visit during the holiday season. Ready to experience the treasures we’ve unpacked for this 2017 holiday season? We sure hope so!


HOLIDAYS Union Station On Track • Winter 2017

Above: Left and Right Courtesy: Roy Inman Photographs©

ic an ce ot r an ix fo rm Qu rns rfo tu Pe Re re co


TRADITIONS AT UNION STATION So you don’t miss any of them, here’s a quick check list of a few of our favorites . . . • Family photos around our huge holiday tree in the Grand Hall • Visits with Santa and Mrs. Claus during the KC Southern Holiday Express stopover • Kid-size rides on our historic Jones Store Train • Miles and miles of enchanting and themed scale model train displays • An adventure walk thru the Astro Botanical Garden (new for 2017) • Stunning illuminations on the outside of the Station (new for 2017) • 100+ decorated trombones on December 16 • And on and on BTW: Be sure to share your favorite Union Station holiday photos using the hashtag #USKCHolidays

Courtesy: Jason Atherton

HOLIDAY PREP IS A GIANT COLLABORATION Union Station is Holiday Central for Kansas Citians, and doing things in grand fashion takes months of planning and countless total hours of installation. Plus, more than 175 volunteers spend over 1,000 hours to ensure every guest has the best experience possible. Another 20 talented volunteers make sure the Model Trains run on time and fuel fantasies for both young and old alike. And, nearly 100 volunteers ensure the Kansas City Southern Holiday Express is a magical journey of imagination aboard her enchanted cars. Oh, and what about our enormous tree? Well, the tallest decorated indoor tree in Kansas City is right here in the center of the Station. Standing nearly 40 feet tall, it features more than 25,000 lights. Plus, another 70 trees in Grand Hall and Grand Plaza display over 300 feet of decorated garland. And, each life-sized toy in the ride-on mini train area is handmade, built by our talented Union Station Engineers. Continued 0

Experience a Magical Kansas City Tradition Full Schedule at UnionStation.org


Courtesy: Roy Inman Photographs©


“RUDY” RETURNS FOR A 17TH WONDERFUL VISIT Oh the magic of the Kansas City Southern Holiday Express . . . The most loved holiday train of them all once again is scheduled to stop at Union Station this holiday season. After Rudy travels through 6 states and stops at 21 communities along the journey, Rudy (the engine) will pull into Union Station for the 17th time, to the absolute delight of families across our community. And once again, we’re expecting enthusiastic crowds anxious to board and tour decorated train cars and even catch a visit with Santa, Mrs. Claus and their elves. December 15-19: Mark your calendars and plan your visit FREE OF CHARGE. It’s “All Aboard” for one of Kansas City’s favorite family traditions. (See pages 16-17 for more details of dates and times.) Magical moments await you, your friends and family at Union Station this holiday season. Don’t miss them. Each is a wonderful opportunity to reconnect, create new memories and discover new holiday treasures! ■



816.525.0810 • SUMMITLITHO.COM 20

Union Station On Track • Winter 2017

New Technology Illuminates Station in Brilliant Fashion

High-tech lighting investment ready to come alive for the holidays!

Kansas City is known nationwide for spectacular holiday lights.

It’s part of our DNA. And when those millions of colorful bulbs light up around town, we know the season is officially here. The City of Fountains seems to literally bubble over with magical illuminations of every shape and color. When you see the displays, you can’t help but feel connected to the city and its glorious traditions. And when you are here, you just feel at home. Union Station has long contributed to this wonderful tradition with one of the most dramatic and cherished lighting and décor displays in Kansas City. With a focus on constant innovation, this year we’ve brought science and technology to the lighting equation to deliver even more brilliance while also becoming more efficient.  Earlier this year, a major lighting technology upgrade took place. In the following months, testing and refinement occurred in preparation for the holidays. Now, it’s ready to wow guests and create yet another reason to make Union Station a highlight holiday destination.  “Our exterior lighting has been beautiful for a number of years,” explains Nick Cline, Union Station’s AV and Technical Manager. “Illuminating one of the most beautiful buildings in town has been a privilege, but the effort was always cumbersome.  A simple color change used to take 3 ½ hours. We literally would have to touch every outdoor fixture, climbing multiple rooflines and braving the elements. That same operation can now be complete in a fraction of the time . . . all by dialing in settings on an iPad. Additionally, what used to be the limitations of static lighting has now transformed into being able to create 3D displays where lighting appears to dance across the building. The possibilities are limitless. I don’t want to give too much away, but guests will be blown away by what we have planned for the holidays.”   In addition to the time savings and artistic options, the new hightech system is significantly more energy efficient to run. “Previously,

we used incandescent lights between 500-1000 watts,” explains Duane Erickson, Union Station Director of Building and Technical Operations. “But the new energy efficient LED bulbs cost a fraction to operate.” While this will be the first holiday season to use the new lighting system, Cline has been warming it up during the last few months for special events. “I

remember earlier this year, a military couple was planning to be married here. They wanted a red, white and blue theme to celebrate their big night,” he says. “Working on that meant a lot to me. It was really special and so appreciated.” The entire Union Station staff takes great pride in making everything just right for the hundreds of thousands of holiday visitors. For Nick, it’s even a bit more personal. “My 7-year-old son, Jack, refers to Union Station as ‘Daddy’s Station’,” he says with a smile.   When Union Station first opened its doors, the light bulb was still a relatively new technology. Architect Jarvis Hunt likely never conceived we’d be illuminating his creation in quite this way. We hope you’ll drop by again and again to see our newest and best light shows yet, while warming in that special Kansas City nostalgia. The shows run intermittently from dusk until dawn. ■ Note: Union Station now accepts custom lighting requests from 501(c)3 organizations. There is an expense associated with these custom displays.  If you or your non-profit organization want more details, see our Building Light Policy link at the bottom of UnionStation.org homepage. ABOVE: Courtesy: Roy Inman Photographs© BELOW: Courtesy: Kent Auf Der Heide

Experience a Magical Kansas City Tradition Full Schedule at UnionStation.org


A First for KC and Exclusively at Union Station: Astro Botanicals “Blooming” in Haverty Family Yards

Take a walk through this other-worldly wonder . . . From

November 18th through December 31st, guests will experience a bold, new sculpture garden that’s going to catch the eye of nature lovers, art enthusiasts and will capture the hearts of the playful. Just outside Science City in the new Haverty Family Yards, eight inflatable sculptures between eight and 15 feet tall will “grow” in a unique and fantastical exhibition. Astro Botanicals are the brainchild of California-based Stan Clark, a fabric artist who hand sews these giant ornamental pieces where architecture, geometry and nature come together. His inflatable designs are purposefully massive in scale, so their multi-colored light displays give off a magical aura.

“In the daytime they appear to be bigger-than-life ice sculptures, and at night, Astro Botanicals are illuminated in holiday colors for a dreamy winter wonderland feel,” says Tammy Ruder, Special Events Manager at Union Station. This newest addition to “Holidays Come Alive” will be visible from the West Yards Garage pedestrian bridge, but to truly be immersed with them, guest should plan to walk among them. During regular daytime hours, Science City guests are invited into the “garden” via Science City outdoor gates. For evening hours, Haverty Family Yards gates will be your access point. Either way, you won’t want to miss interacting and taking pictures with the sculptures titled, Magnolia Starship, Asparagus and Dragon Lotus. (You’ll have the coolest holiday selfies imaginable!) “All ages absolutely love it, including the youngest kids,” Clark says of his creations. “It’s so fun to see the interactions, even a game of hide-and-seek within [the sculptures].” The Magnolia Starship is a standing lotus flower with five legs and curly tops. Underneath is a sitting place so kids and adults can gaze up through a clear window at the beautiful geometries inside the color changing light. Astro Botanicals visits Kansas City for the first time and ONLY at Union Station. Union Station Members will experience it for FREE and non-members can expect a nominal charge. Green thumb or not, this is a “garden walk” you won’t want to miss! ■ Clear some memory for truly amazing photo ops, then #USKCholidays


HOLIDAYS Union Station On Track • Winter 2017

Let the Sounds of Union Station Take You on a Nostalgic Holiday Journey S

ince 1914 when Union Station first threw open her doors, it’s been a place of marvelous sights and sounds. Listen carefully to history and hear excited travelers having lively conversations while waiting for trains to arrive and depart. The massive mahogany benches that once filled the North Waiting Room invited that kind of atmosphere. Now layer in the sounds coming from the shoe shiner’s stand, the barber shop, the newsstand, candy store and lunch counters at Fred Harvey’s restaurant. Finally, listen to the call for trains and the conductor’s familiar “All Aboard.” What terrific nostalgia. Today, inside these historic halls, the sounds of the day coming to life are still a magical part of the Union Station experience. Conversations between friends waiting for their movie to begin. Children growing more excited as they move toward their discovery of Science City and the Planetarium. And, of course, the familiar mealtime sounds coming from Harvey’s or Pierpont’s. In fact, you’ll still hear trains being called and luggage being wheeled across the marble floors of Grand Hall. Union Station has always been more than just a building.  It has a wonderful and unique life pulse and there’s no time that’s truer than during the holidays. Singalongs, recitals, choirs and performances of every variety. Shopping, mini train rides, company parties and a million family photos around the largest and most beautiful indoor holiday tree in Kansas City. They all make up the Union Station experience. And, every year the experience grows bigger . . . because people like you keep coming back for the nostalgia and excitement of it all.  You give the holidays meaning. So, what’s in store for this holiday season? MORE entertainment. MORE celebrations. MORE discovery and more sheer spectacle than ever. Be sure to be part of it many times as this wonder-filled season unfolds! Join us for a holiday movie classic in our Regnier Extreme Screen Theatre. Experience a laser rock show in our state-of-the-art Arvin Gottlieb Planetarium. Bring your out-of-town guests to see Mummies of the World: The Exhibition before it closes. Play at Science City. Shop for amazing and funky, handcrafted items at our Indie Craft Fair and on and on. And there’s music . . . don’t miss the holiday music we have planned. For example, Kansas City’s Trombone Christmas™ debuts on December 16 and features more than 100 slide trombonists performing an unforgettable concert of familiar holiday songs. (Read more about it on page 25.) In the weeks ahead, all of us at Union Station invite you to take a break from your hectic pace and stop by for a nostalgic journey through your holidays at Kansas City’s historic home. Listen . . . we can hear you having a grand time already! ■

Courtesy: Roy Inman Photographs©

Experience a Magical Kansas City Tradition Full Schedule at UnionStation.org


Y o ur K i ds w il l l o v e it!


• Science Demonstrations • Science Stage Shows • Maker Studio Activities & Projects • Test Kitchen Activities • HUGE Balloon Drop • Visit Friendly Critters in the Nature Center • Special Guests…



Noon-7 pm

S CIENCE C ITY.COM Avoid the line.

Preorder your tickets today! Regular admission rates apply. FREE for Union Station Members!

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Dave StephenS & KC Jazz OrCheStra 7

featuring the

New Year’s Eve Celebration ONE PRICE INCLUDES: Live Music • Hot Appetizers Party Favors • Champagne Toast • Unlimited Drinks Two Dance Floors • Ball Drop • And More!

Special Hotel Package from Official Hotel Partner

Sold Out Fast Last Year! Purchase Tickets now at UnionStation.org

Trombone Christmas™ Set To Slide into Union Station for a Kansas City Debut More than 100 trombones will fill historic halls with songs of the holidays Every year at Union Station, we bring visitors the sights and

sounds of the holiday season – vocal choirs, piano performances and dance showcases to name a few. And, just when you think you’ve seen it all, we’re tuning up for something new. “It’s become a tradition to introduce our members, friends and visitors to something new and spectacular each year,” says Jerry Baber, executive vice president and COO of Union Station. “With a setting as grand and historic as Union Station, creating unexpected and memorable moments feels like our mandate. And, this holiday season is set to deliver that and more.” A perfect example of that is coming on December 16th - all thanks to one Union Station volunteer, Frank Perez. “My family moved to Kansas City from Iowa in 2014, and we were immediately drawn to Science City,” Perez explains. “We bought a membership and it became our favorite destination!” Perez is the Director of Bands and Assistant Professor of Music at Baker University in Baldwin City, KS. After spending so much time at Union Station with his three children (ages 9, 7 and 4), he decided to go through traditional volunteer training. That led to an opportunity to employ his photography hobby to take pics at events like Maker Faire and Mummies of the World: The Exhibition for publicity and documentation. As a professional musician, Perez plays slide trombone with local groups, including KC Bone Connection and Bones Midwest. “There are tuba holiday events around the country, and we trombone players were feeling a little left out,” Perez says with a laugh. Trombone Christmas™ groups have had tremendous success in California, Pennsylvania, Oregon and Colorado, so he became determined to organize the fifth one right here in Kansas City, and they are making their debut just for you at Union Station this year.

Between 100-150 trombone players – both professional musicians and slide trombone enthusiasts of all ages from around the region – will come together to play traditional holiday carols, inviting the audience to sing along. The Trombone Christmas Kansas City Facebook page has more than 130 members, and Perez expects more players of all ages to join the band. “We will provide prizes for the best trombone decoration, the youngest and most seasoned players and a special award to the band member who travels the farthest to play with us. This is going to be amazing!” Perez is sharing his conductor duties with William Biggs, Director of Bands at Gardner Edgerton High School, who is also a Union Station fan. “We regularly get our families together to visit the Station because there is so much to see and do,” Perez says. Now, these trombone band leaders are introducing what they expect will become a brilliant, new annual tradition for Kansas City. Perez is working with sponsors Meyer Music in Kansas City and Indiana-based instrument manufacturer, Conn-Selmer to provide the sheet music. He is confident the event will be a great experience for the musicians, and just the kind of heartwarming and joyful event Union Station guests have come to expect. Let the band play on! ■ Details: December 16, 2017 at 11 a.m. in Grand Hall inside Union Station. CALLING ALL TROMBONES It’s not too late to be part of this event! Visit UnionStation.org for more information or to signup!

Experience a Magical Kansas City Tradition Full Schedule at UnionStation.org


Encore Appearance of Premiere Indie Craft Fair Holiday Swing Returns to Union Station – Dec 10 H

and crafted things are a really big deal these days. Consider the popularity of craft beers, candies made in small batches, one-of-a-kind steampunk jewelry and unique, handmade furniture. In that spirit, Union Station hosts one of the biggest and best indie craft fairs in the Midwest: Strawberry Swing’s “Holiday Swing” Indie Craft Fair. The fair, which takes its name from a Coldplay song, originated in 2011. Since then, Buzzfeed has named it one of the “Top 35 Indie Craft Fairs in the WORLD.” Not just any ordinary craft show, the term INDIE refers to artisans and crafters producing works of art combining traditional craft techniques with modern, offbeat or unconventional styles and materials. The Swing made its debut at Union Station last year, and fair owner and curator, Katie Mabry van Dieren says reaction from the public was incredible. “We welcomed about 10,000 people in one day, and helped generate business for 140 local small companies,” she says. One guest who attended last year remarked, “This craft show was so unexpected! I’ve never been to anything like it. It’s hard to describe but so easy to love. Totally unique and inspiring. I left with an armful of fabulous creations.” Preparations for this fair began months ago. “We received more than 300 applications for 100 available crafter spots.” After an initial review, artists and artisans go through a juried process before being selected for this exclusive oneday event. Only the best of the best make the final cut to cover a huge spectrum of offerings. “This year we even opened it up to kids aged 4-12 as a way to inspire entrepreneurship,” she adds. “We can’t wait to bring our Swing to Union Station for a second wonderful year!” This free, family-friendly event features an area for making free kids’ holiday crafts. Raffle tickets to win a collection of handmade gifts are available for $10, and all proceeds benefit Union Station programs. The first 100 guests who donate $10 at the door will receive a swag bag with unique handmade items. ■

DETAILS: Sunday, December 10, 2017 10 a.m. – 6 p.m., free admission Top and Bottom Courtesy: Fran Mattox


HOLIDAYS Union Station On Track • Winter 2017

Lights, Lasers, Action! New Planetarium Dazzles With New Holiday Shows

BIG attendance numbers prove the Arvin Gottlieb Planetarium

One of the new holiday Planetarium shows is called, “Holiday Magic” and showcases the new laser system. Safe and thrilling for viewers of all ages, it promises to be an instant holiday hit. Holiday Magic features music by award-winning artists including Bing Crosby, The Spice Girls and Manheim Steamroller. Described as a “magical journey of site and sound for the whole family” and “sure to bring the holidays to life in a whole new way,” this is one everyone will want to attend. In addition to Holiday Magic, Winter Stars, and a lineup of traditional favorites, the Planetarium is bringing back another suite of musical productions including Laser Beyoncé, Michael Jackson, Queen and The Beatles. The late shows start at 11pm, so there’s not only something for everyone, but showtimes to fit every schedule. Ready for an out-of-this-world winter  experience? We are too!  Reserve your Planetarium tickets early and make plans for a new family tradition! ■

experience was already over the top, but with the addition of new lasers and stellar holiday shows, guests of all ages will be blown away! Planetarium Specialist and Educator, Patrick Hess marvels at the extreme makeover of the family-favorite destination and worldclass technology . . . “It’s been an amazing year for our Planetarium, with new twin 4K projectors, new booming surround sound, new seats, carpet and now a new state-of-the-art laser system to compliment a host of new shows,” he says. “The holidays in the Planetarium will be something very special. One of my favorite presentations is the Winter Stars show. Guests journey with us on an educator-led trip through the night sky, just as it appears overhead during these winter months. I literally hear gasps from our visitors as they experience astronomy on a brand new scale and in stunning detail. It never gets old, sharing what I love with those who love to learn.” Members enjoy a package of FREE Planetarium tickets and unlimited deep discounts.


Mem Beneber fit


Holiday Movie Favorites Return to the Station Science Says Holiday Nostalgia Good For Your Health! W

e all have them. Many of us share them.  They are holiday traditions and we yearn for them (and enjoy them) year after year. Decorating cookies. Singing holiday songs.  Getting together with family to add to our holiday scrapbooks of life. Tradition feels good. But did you know, nostalgia is actually good for you? A study done by Scientific American Magazine reports that during the holidays, it’s natural to feel a longing for times gone by. They put it this way, “Recently scientists have explored the bittersweet feeling of nostalgia, finding that it serves a positive function, improving mood and possibly mental health.” Another psychologist confirmed, “Watching the same movie reaffirms there is order in the world . . . knowing a film’s outcome creates a sense of safety and therefore comfort on a primal level.”  There you have it. Classic holiday movies are popular for a several good reasons. And Union Station is doing our part to raise your spirit and vitality with the return of some of the finest holiday nostalgia available.  Presented in our Regnier Extreme Screen Theatre (on the biggest movie screen in the region), your all-time favorites are returning for another nostalgia-stirring year.

Nov. 17-22: National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation Nov. 23: Closed for Thanksgiving Day Nov. 24-30: Elf Dec. 1-7: Home Alone Dec. 8-14: Polar Express PJ Party

$3 Ti c Bring kets the Whol e Fam ily!

Made you smile just thinking about them, didn’t we? You know the characters and their most memorable lines.  So, pack up the family and enjoy them all (only $3 per ticket and always a sell out!). Plus, don’t forget to use your Union Station membership for a big discount on popcorn. Visit UnionStation.org for showtimes and we’ll see you at the movies! ■


HOLIDAYS Union Station On Track • Winter 2017

Swing in the New Year Celebrate 2018 in style with Dave Stephens and the Kansas City Jazz Orchestra 7 at historic Union Station and spend the night across the street at The Westin Kansas City At Crown Center. Sleep in comfortably before enjoying a wake up breakfast for two. RESERVE NOW AT 816.474.4400 OR VISIT westincrowncenterkansascity.com

1 East Pershing Road Kansas City, MO, 64108

The Biggest Movies on the Biggest Screen:

Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi Opens at Union Station – December 15 Two

years to the day after Star Wars: The Force Awakens premiered at Union Station’s Regnier Extreme Screen Theatre, the second in the latest franchise trilogy, Star Wars: The Last Jedi debuts on December 15, 2017. The most anticipated movie of the year is already creating huge buzz . . . and it’s coming to the region’s largest movie screen — 53 feet tall and 80 feet wide. Other features of the Extreme Screen include 5.1 surround sound with three 9-foot tall JBL booming stage speakers, two 4K digital DCI-compliant Barco projectors, two lenses with 6.6K lamps and seating for 400 people. (That’s about as high-tech as the Millennium Falcon!) “If you are going to see an epic film like this, you need an epic location in which to experience it,” Nale Uhl, Union Station Vice President of Finance, says. “With new seating and state-of-the-art projection and sound technology, Union Station’s Regnier Extreme

Screen Theatre will be the top choice among Kansas City Star Wars fans.” And yes, you should expect to see plenty of Star Wars super fans dressed in costume at the showings. “It’s a big event for Star Wars lovers of all ages, but the spectacle of it all appeals to movie fans in general, too,” Uhl, says. Sometimes called a “space opera,” The Last Jedi stars many familiar faces in returning roles including the late Carrie Fisher. (Fisher – establishing her Star Wars career as Princess Leia — passed away in December 2016, making The Last Jedi her final film role.) ■ EXPECTED TO SELL OUT, purchase your tickets today for this must-see, epic experience at the Regnier Extreme Screen Theatre. Visit UnionStation.org for information and reservations.

Experience a Magical Kansas City Tradition Full Schedule at UnionStation.org


Own a Timeless Piece of Union Station History

Architect Jarvis Hunt’s iconic illustration is available for the first time . . . for you or as a gift! Just in time for the holidays, we are excited to announce an

exclusive opportunity to own a piece of Union Station and Kansas City history. Expertly recreated, this 42” wide x 21” tall framed illustration of Union Station’s iconic south-facing elevation is the most requested image from our historic monument collection. And, it’s now available exclusively at the Union Station Ticket Office while limited quantities last. Masterfully framed and ready to hang (hooks and hanging wire in place), this artist-aged print is beautifully matted with custom doublecut parchment and black core board, and evokes vintage style with a timeless elegance suitable for every collection and location. (A reference biography of Jarvis Hunt and his association with Union Station is also presented on the reverse side of each professionally finished frame.) “We’ve received countless requests for this historic image since featuring an original in our Building A Monument gallery,” Michael Tritt, Union Station Chief Marketing Officer, says. “There’s something stirring about seeing Jarvis Hunt’s original thoughts on paper juxtaposed with the magnificent south-facing reality of what we know


as Kansas City’s Union Station. So many memories were and still are made here. To have a piece of this history to take home is something very special and we’re thrilled to make it available this holiday season.” Valued at $240, you can purchase this stunning custom-framed piece of history for ONLY $150. And, to extend the sense of giving, you will be pleased to know proceeds from your purchase go directly into the Union Station Preservation Fund which helps preserve the historic monument. (Union Station’s current $1.7 million exterior preservation and restoration project is partially funded from the Preservation Fund. It’s this type of important project your donation will support.) This remarkably-detailed Jarvis Hunt framed print is available at the Union Station Ticket Office during regular business hours. ■ BOX OFFICE HOURS (Located on Level B): Tuesday thru Thursday: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.  (Open Monday, December 18) Friday & Saturday: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Sunday: Noon – 4 p.m.

HOLIDAYS Union Station On Track • Winter 2017

ABOVE: Courtesy: Roy Inman Photographs© LOWER MIDDLE: Courtesy: Fran Mattox

“Experience It” Consistently Beats “Consume It” The Gift of Membership Continues to Rank High for Holiday Gifting Research shows that experiences make us happier than things.

Experiences excite more senses, create more memories and tend to have strong social components. That’s huge when it comes to creating more happiness. That may explain why holiday shoppers are more and more frequently turning away from the “mall of things” and to the gift of destination membership. Giving experiences is a proven win-win gift strategy! That may also help explain why 2017 Union Station Membership has surged to now include a record high of 8,400 Greater Kansas City families . . . “Our Members tell us again and again how Union Station and Science City represent not only one of their favorite destinations, but also tremendous and ongoing value,” Christy Nitsche, Union Station Director of Advancement & Community Engagement, shares. “Regardless of season, our Member families find something wonderful and meaningful to do here. They satisfy their curiosities, they’re entertained, educated and enriched . . . and they leave feeling HAPPY! As a parent of school-aged kids, I can confirm those outcomes are prized by my entire family.” Of course, there’s another powerful layer of happiness that comes from Union Station Membership and that’s the satisfaction in knowing you’re helping to preserve one of Kansas City’s favorite historic destinations. In fact, it goes even beyond “preserving.” We’re investing, growing and blazing new trails for all to enjoy. Union Station and Science City are vibrant, vital community treasures . . . and memberships are a key component of that success.

So, as the “mall of things” dares you to discover happiness this holiday season, change up your gifting strategy and deliver the yearround experience of a Union Station Membership. The immediate and lasting benefits are BIG!

• Unlimited FREE admissions to Science City • FREE and discounted admissions to the Arvin Gottlieb Planetarium • Up to 50% discounts to world-class exhibitions like Mummies of the World and our upcoming The Art of The Brick • Terrific discounts on concessions, gift shop purchases, restaurants and so much more • And special early access to Science City Summer Camp and other signature events Union Station Memberships come in sizes to fit every family, and include a full year of experiences. The cost of Membership is even taxdeductible. Go online today and secure a Membership for an important family in your life . . . even your own, if you’re not already a member. Make 2018 the year to “Experience It!” ■

Experience a Magical Kansas City Tradition Full Schedule at UnionStation.org


Courtesy: Roy Inman Photographs©

When Everyone Helps, Everyone Wins!

Some simple ways to make a holiday gift to your Union Station T

hroughout the year, Union Station – a 501(c)3 Non-Profit organization – is the grateful beneficiary of gifts and donations of all sizes. And they all matter! During the holidays, that generosity surges as more memberships are purchased and individual year-end donations are made. How fortunate we are to be so beloved and recognized for our substantial community good works. Thinking about your own year-end giving? Please consider putting Union Station on your gift list. We have all sorts of ways to express your support . . . “This year we not only celebrated the largest membership in our history, we also undertook significant preservation projects to maintain and preserve our magnificent monument,” reports Christy Nitsche, Director of Advancement and Community Engagement. “Our exterior preservation alone comes with a $1.7 million price, most of which will eventually be funded with individual, corporate and foundation donations. The reality is we need those who enjoy Kansas City’s home – Union Station – to participate in keeping it vibrant for many generations to come. If you have a willingness to give, we have a way to make it happen.” PERSONALLY Prefer a live person to facilitate your gift? That’s great, because we are definitely in the people business and love to meet our supporters. Connect with Christy by phone at (816) 460-2208 or via email at cnitsche@unionstation.org.


ONLINE Visitors to UnionStation.org will find a rotating banner link shown as “Donate” in the upper right corner of our home page. By clicking that button, you’ll see a short list of current projects and campaigns open for funding. Choose what matters most to you and make a gift that will matter. DONATION BOXES Holiday visitors will notice themed donation boxes around the Station, where gifts can be made. With nearly 300,000 holiday guests, a little bit from many adds up fast. These donations help with the full suite of annual operating expenditures, including the beloved holiday model rail exhibits. AMAZONSMILE If you are one of the growing number of people shopping for groceries, clothes, books or almost anything else on Amazon.com, there is a way to support Union Station through AmazonSmile. When you are shopping, you can see which items are available for a charitable giving program, where .05% of your eligible purchases can help fund the nonprofit organization of your choice. To designate Union Station Kansas City as your charitable organization of choice, sign in at Smile.Amazon.com, go to the “Your Account” menu at the top of any page and select “Change Your Charity.” Then, indicate Union Station Kansas City as your choice, so every time you shop you automatically make a gift. Over time, that can really add up! JARVIS HUNT ARCHITECTURAL DRAWING For gifts of $150 or more, donors receive a limited-edition, framed, historic print of Union Station Architect Jarvis Hunt’s iconic 1910 drawing of the famous southern elevation. Each professionally framed print comes with a receipt showing the tax-deductible portion of your gift. Net proceeds go directly to the Union Station preservation fund. Prints are available only at the Union Station Box Office. (For more on the Jarvis Hunt historic print, see our story on page 30.) However you participate in supporting Union Station, please know how much your generosity and advocacy are appreciated. With over 850,000 square feet of historic structure, plus the modern Science City and Planetarium, we have an impressive amount of world-class space to maintain. Every dollar and source of support matters! ■

HOLIDAYS Union Station On Track • Winter 2017

Unique Holiday Gift Guide S

o, you’ve got some holiday shopping to do. You’ve secured your Union Station Membership, and made a plan to pick up the newly-available Jarvis Hunt architectural print of the Station. Both very good choices!   Now, for the rest of your list . . . check it twice, but watch out for an experience that’s not so nice: You’re a reluctant online shopper. You spend hours clicking until it all starts to become a blur. You can hope for the best, or try something else. Your backup plan is drive to the mall…to end up 20 stores deep with sore feet and little to show for it. Suddenly the trip is a bust. It’s time to back away from the mouse and bypass the mall. This year, the right gifts for those on your list can be found right here at Union Station! Check out a few here:

SCIENCE IN A BOX When you hear the kids’ cries of “I’m bored!” this winter, these boxes offer the cool factor they are looking for, and the element of brain engagement you want. Retail price: $16.99 at the Science City Store

SOLARPUFF Take the sunshine wherever you go with this flat, pop-open, solar powered light cube. Retail: $29.99 at the Kansas City Store

CHILDREN’S BOOKS ABOUT TRAINS Everyone loves story time, and Union Station is the


perfect place to begin or extend your train book collection.

Every year we bring you the coolest and most clever

Retail: Prices vary at the Kansas City Store

shirts out there – all with a science theme. (ChemisTREE . . . get it?) Retail: $24.99-$34.99 at the

SPACE FOOD A great stocking stuffer, these bags contain ready-to-

Science City Store

eat freeze-dried treats that will make you feel like a real

SNOW GLOBE This is a must-have gift for Union Station fans, train collectors, snow globe enthusiasts and hunters of KC

astronaut! Retail price: 3 for $15.00 at the Science City Store


memorabilia. Retail price: $19.99 at the Kansas

For your favorite mad scientist, Mad Mattr is a sculptable,

City Store

TIN TRAIN These collectable train engines are made from pieces of commercial use tin, so it’s like recycling

moldable sand-like substance that keep hands busy stretching, packing and building. Retail price: $16.99 or 2/$25 at the Science City Store


. . . only much cuter! Retail: $12.99 at the Kansas

It’s not really a stocking until you add candy! Retail:

City Store

$9.99 at the Mummies of the World Gift Store

SCIENCE GEEK-WEAR These are a hot item this year, as science has become culturally very cool again. Retail: Two adult shirts for $35, and many more available at the Science City Store.

To fuel your expedition, grab a latte at Parisi’s. Later, take a lunch break at Harvey’s. Then pick up something sweet and a couple of gift sets at Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory. Celebrate the end of your shopping spree with dinner at Pierpont’s. What a great day! The choices are endless and the wow-factor is off the charts. That must


be why Union Station members consistently tell us how much they love

Crazy Aaron’s Thinking Putty is perfect for a fidgety

our gift shop options. (Of course, a 10% member discount makes it even

officemate, young scientist or even a budding sculptor. Retail $15.99 at Mummies of the World Gift Store

more compelling.) So, make Union Station a destination for holiday entertainment AND shopping.

UNION STATION ORNAMENT Give a bit of the Station to someone who loves Kansas City, trains and holiday ornaments. Retail: $24.99 at the Kansas City Store

STORE HOURS: Open Monday – Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. | Sunday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Experience a Magical Kansas City Tradition Full Schedule at UnionStation.org


5,000 Years of Civilization Reborn


Dec 22–23, 2017 Music Hall THROUGH THE UNIVERSAL LANGUAGE of music and dance, Shen Yun weaves a wondrous tapestry of heavenly realms, ancient legends, and modern heroic tales, taking you on a journey through 5,000 years of Chinese culture. Its stunning beauty and tremendous energy leave audiences uplifted and inspired.

“An extraordinary experience... The level of skill, but also the power of the archetypes and the narratives were startling. And of course it was exquisitely beautiful.”

“Mesmerizing! I encourage everyone to see and all of us to learn from.”

“So inspiring! I think I may have found some new ideas for the next Avatar movie.”

— Donna Karan, creator of DKNY

— Robert Stromberg, Academy Award–winning production designer for ‘Avatar’

“The 8th Wonder of the World! This is the greatest thing I have ever seen on the stage!”

“The quintessential art form of love... It rejuvenated my heart, my mind, my body. If you think you have seen great, encouraging, wonderful, fulfilling things, then you owe to yourself to come to Shen Yun.”

— Cate Blanchett, Academy Award–winning actress

“Epic! One of the greatest performances ever existing on the planet! I will remember it for the rest of my life.” — Arion Jay Goodwin, music producer

Perfect Gift for the


— Joe Heard, former White House photographer, watched Shen Yun 6 times

— Jim Crill, producer, watched Shen Yun 4 times

Book tickets now. Get the best seats! 800-745-3000, 913-701-SHOW (7469) ShenYun.com/KC

Tickets are available walk-up at the Municipal Auditorium Box Office 10am–5pm Monday–Friday, Ticketmaster.com or charge by phone at 1-800-745-3000.



{mon. - thur.} 11AM - 9PM {fri.} 11AM - 7PM {sat.} 4PM - 6PM {sun.} 4PM - 9PM


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Profile for Union Station Kansas City

On Track – Winter 2017  


On Track – Winter 2017  



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