Throughout the Plaza are lights-like 280,000 strung up around and on the buildings. That is as long as 80 miles of lights strung. The tradition began in 1930, and now has compounded into an annual event that draws 500,000 people to come down on Thanksgiving evening to see the beginning of the light show being turned on. What a spectacular event, but very crowded. These pics are not good, but the dark and long range threw the spectrum off.
The whole 12+ block and 55 acre complex was developed by J.C. Nichols to try and replicate the lovely and ornate feeling of Europe. They traveled extensively in Europe and brought back many treasures as well as setting the stage to build a retail shopping complex in the 1922 that would not be rivaled in the US. He tried to follow the structures and architecture of Seville. It worked, and this is one of the more popular spots for visitors to come to shop, eat and enjoy the numerous Old World style buildings, with even tiles, statues, fountains and much color. It mostly seems to have a Spanish style motif, but a number of sculptures are Italian designed and made. Craftsmen were imported from Europe to do much of the intricate work on the buildings and art here. The main architect was Edward Delk, who planned this in 1922 after mostly trips to Spain and Mexico for the vision of stucco building and tile motifs.
Is was designed by J.C. Nichols people in 1922, and was the first shopping center in the US. Besides the Spanish influence, there is Italian sculptures. Nichols got wealthy by building around the area and further to the south. This transformed a swampy and flooding area into a mecca.
Throughout the complex are statues, monuments and colorful tiles on the facades of buildings and roofs. Architect Delk designed much of this wonder along with input from Nichols. he went to Europe many times and brought back ideas as well as artifacts and items to display in the shopping center.
It was an idea created by J. C. Nichols, a real estate developer in the area. After he started building some of the first subdivisions to the south of the city, he believed they needed an upscale place to shop and stroll, while he made money form that in addition. In 1922 he worked over an area that before was a swamp, and converted it into a show place and the country's first shopping center. Today it has over 150 shops and restaurants, and many office facilities interspersed around. Prices are still upscale, and many tourists come here to shop for the high end and locals come here to be seen and be in the know. The architecture is form a pattern styled from Spain, where Nichols took trips. He also brought back many artifacts, statues, and murals and they are displayed throughout the 55 acre site. The theme is a pattern taken form Seville Spain
Public parking is available. Great area to explore on foot. There are many unique shops and restuarants. The architechture is beautiful. Kansas City is noted for it's fountains and Country Club Plaza has one of the best. It is beautifully lit during the Christmas season.
The Kansas City Country Club Plaza is one of the must see areas of Kansas City. This place has a little bit of something for everyone. There are multiple shops from low to high end prices. There are numerous great restaurants and coffee shops. You can catch a movie, stop in a pub/bar or bookstore, or even catch a boat ride on brush creek or a horse drawn carriage ride through the streets. Tennis courts are located right off the plaza. There are multiple hotels lining the plaza as well including the Ritz. This area has beautiful parks and fountains. The plaza really becomes packed at Thanksgiving. Every building is decked out in lights for the holiday season and the turning on ceremony is very popular but crowded. Numerous festivals are held on the plaza streets during the year. This area is very popular for romantic dates.
Every day the carriages make their way down across the Nelsen Atkins musuem and to the Country Club plaza. Although I have not yet been on one of these, if you like being carted around by a horse on the streets of an outdoor mall, one might like this. They do this year round if you can imagine....even when its freezing out you see people bundled up and trying to stay warm for the "experience" lol.
The 76th Annual Plaza Lighting Ceremony takes place on Thanksgiving evening, November 24th, 2005. The ceremony begins at 7:00 pm and the lights come on at 7:30.
In celebration of the event, there will also be a fireworks display above the stage as well as at the Fairmont Hotel following the ceremony at 8 p.m.
The Plaza Lighting Ceremony carries on its long tradition of helping Kansas City welcome the festive holiday season. 2005 marks the 76th Annual Plaza Lighting Ceremony.
Each year, a special celebrity guest affiliated with Kansas City will do the honors of flipping the switch and illuminating the Plaza with colorful Christmas lights...previous celebs have been designer Kate Spade and Kansas City Chiefs' Trent Green.
Kansas City Power & Light is very excited to sponsor such a long-standing Kansas City tradition for thesixth year. Kansas City Power & Light employees and their families will be collecting donations on Thanksgiving night
for Salvation Army. Listen to that familiar sound of jingling bells.
The Lighting Ceremony stage is located at 47th and Wyandotte, in front of Mark Shale and Restoration Hardware.
The Roman god of the sea and his three attributes, the trident, dolphin and sea-horse, is one of the more popular fountains on the plaza. The fountain was transported from its original site at Bromsgrove Guild, Worcestershire, England, 1911. During the cold of winter, greenery replaces the water fountains, as seen in this photo.
One of many courtyards on the Country Club Plaza, this is often a place to hear some of KC's fine musicians perform. The stylized penguin sculptures have a special appeal for children and have provided many a parent with an excellent photo opp.
In 1858 John Wornall completed this brick farmhouse. During the Battle of Westport in 1864, (America's Civil War) both Union and Confederate armies used the farmhouse as a field hospital. Today the house has been restored to its original period to interpret the daily lives of a frontier farm family. Tours available.