The Great Mid-West

From Abilene, we made our way to Kearney, Missouri, home of John & Judy Brown. They are our neighbors across the street and 3 doors up at Desert Shores. It was an absolutely delightful couple of days spent on their ranch, touring Kansas City and, most of all, enjoying their company and getting to know them better.

We settled into a First Class RV site on John’s driveway, complete with 50 amp service! After a delightful lunch prepared by Judy, we were off to tour Kansas City beginning with the World War I Museum & Memorial.

National World War I Museum & Memorial

Just two weeks after the signing of the Armistice ending WWI, Kansas City leaders met to discuss the need for a lasting monument to the men and women who served and died in the war. Amazingly, their first two weeks of fund-raising yielded over $2.5M which was an incredible amount in those days! What a reflection of the people’s passion for commemoration of the Great War.

Our first stop was the top of the tower, which fortunately has an elevator for all but the last 66 steps. The view of Kansas City was amazing!

On November 11, 1926, the Liberty Memorial was dedicated by President Coolidge. The museum is very well done with both the first years of 1914-1917 prior to the US involvement and then 1917-1919 when US joined forces with their allies. The docents were a crucial part of this museum, excited to share information and insights on the lives and battles. On December 19, 2014, the Memorial was recognized as the National WWI Memorial by Congress.

Our next stop was Union Station. Train travel is an essential part of Kansas City’s history and remains a gateway to the west today. In 1997, the Mayor asked five prominent businessmen in Kansas City to spearhead the restoration of Union Station, after many years of neglect. Our own John Brown was one of those five men – and a glorious job they did in compiling the right craftsmen and raising the amazing resources necessary to achieve the goal. It is now a vibrant part of the City, with a Science Center for children and a fabulous steakhouse that we certainly enjoyed!

The following day, John & Bill spent the morning and early afternoon on the golf course – a joy for both of them on a day that had almost perfect weather for their round. Late that afternoon, we were joined by John’s brother Ed and Joan – and another memorable evening was launched. First, we HAD to have Kansas City Barbeque – and certainly were not disappointed! Ed then gave us a great tour of town, complete with a “drive-by” of his business (Cullen & Brown) and commercial developments by John & his company.

One of our last stops was to capture this beautiful cloud formation – with such a defined line! Guess we should have known that it would bring interesting weather.

It WAS the precursor to some wicked weather!

Storms rolled in during the night, but took a well-appreciated break about 8:30a so we could get Contessa & The Toad Hitched. We then bade our friends “adios & safe travels” – with great anticipation of reuniting in Desert Shores in the fall.

Our travels took us to St. Charles MO (northwest of St. Louis) for the night and a welcome sight it was with a day full of wicked rain, wind and lightning. We reflected on the fact that this was a first day of “unpleasant” weather in all our travels this spring – so we are very blessed.

The next morning, we departed with great anticipation for three days at Land Between the Lakes, a National Recreation Area that we had thoroughly enjoyed during our Loop Trip in 2015. Everything worked flawlessly and we stayed ahead of the storms chasing us, until we pulled up to the check-in station about 1:00p Friday afternoon. We were greeted with the information that there had been a bad storm the night before, leaving the campground without power, water or sewer – and they did not anticipate resolution until at least Monday but probably Tuesday.

Now, we have become accustomed to “glamping” – and had not prepared the coach for 4 days of no resources, meaning we had not come in with holding tanks empty and water tank full! So, our three night stay transitioned to a one night stay – and an early arrival in Nashville.

There is much to see and do in the Music City – and to visit with Niece Christy & her guy, Chris! It will be a delightful “finale” to our journey!

Author: Contessa & The Toad Get Hitched

After years traveling this beautiful country by boat, the Captain and the Admiral are bound for land adventures. Whenever Contessa (the motorcoach) and the Toad (Jeep Grand Cherokee) get hitched (towing the car) - we’ll post our adventures!

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