Happy In Bag

Friday, June 30, 2006

The Kansas City River Conspiracy

River currents are deadly. Giant maneating catfish are lurking just below the surface. Rivers are for commercial barges only. The water is dirty.

Lies. It’s all lies. Well, except for the part about the water. It is dirty.

I’ll let you in on a little secret. Two majestic rivers wind through the Kansas City metropolis. But when’s the last time you dipped your toes into either the Kansas or Missouri Rivers? Wouldn’t it have been great to spend part of last weekend on this little boat docked in Kansas City, Kansas?

How did this river aversion happen? Did old J.C. Nichols convince people that they should think only about his housing developments instead of next weekend’s fishing expedition? Or maybe the Corps of Engineers hid the rivers from Kansas Citians to enhance their land speculation at the Lake of the Ozarks. Or could there be a psychotropic additive in our water supply that makes us believe that rivers are scary?

Let’s reclaim the rivers. Let’s get wet.


  • At 10:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    You know what I love about rivers? I could throw a bottle with a note in here at Parkville, you could get it in KC, and so on. I love the water's wanderlust.

  • At 10:54 AM, Blogger Happy In Bag said…

    Kristine: Parkville, and to a much lesser extent, Riverside, are the only area municipalities that make a serious effort to allow people access to the water.

  • At 11:09 AM, Blogger jdoublep said…

    kck's got a sweet spot too:
    kaw point riverfront park

  • At 12:57 PM, Blogger Happy In Bag said…

    You're even more on target than you realize, JD. I took this photo from that location when I was at the KCK blues fest. And while's it's sweet, as you say, it's hidden; you have to know it's there.

  • At 2:44 PM, Blogger jdoublep said…

    true. hidden is even an understatement. it took sarah and i 30 minutes to find the damned entrance. but now that i know where it is, and that it's right up the street from our house, i'mma do some photo essaying from that spot and on down the river.

  • At 9:01 AM, Blogger FletcherDodge said…

    For the past couple of years I've wanted to rent some kayaks, drive upstream to Atchison or St. Jo and boat down the Big Muddy to KC.

    Anyone know where I can rent the gear?

  • At 4:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Let's divert the Mighty Mo to clean out all the all-ages venues in town, a la Hercules and the Aegean Stables or those Starburst candy commercials from the late 80s where dude bites into rectangular fruit candy and the immediate vicinity floods. A river ain't too much to love.

  • At 10:52 AM, Blogger Top of the Bottoms said…

    Back when I was in high school, I liked to ski and my parents owned a boat and Smithville lake was getting too crowded, so we started putting in at the ramp in Leavenworth and skiing all up and down the river to Parkville. Let me tell you all, it's the best kept watersports secret EVER. The best thing about skiing on the river is that because of the narrow, tree-lined channels, if wind chops up, say, your water on a N-S running channel, just pull around the bend to an E-W running channel and it'll be glass-smooth again.

    Nothing is quite as awesome as pulling a giant rooster tail as your boat pulls around the corner where the Kansas hits the Missouri river and the downtown skyline pops into view.

    Supposedly, the ramp down by Isle of Capris is very nice, but I've no occaision to use it.

    Several times some drunk freinds and I have climbed down the rock slopes at Berkeley park to get to the water. While it is very fast moving water right there, and maybe a bit dangerous, we've had no trouble. Just have to use the buddy system and be careful. Believe me, on ahot July night, the water is really nice, absolutely NO ONE around and very quiet and scenic.

    While I suppose it'd be nice for the area to start reusing the rivers once again, I also suppose it'd bum me out bacause I consider the rivers my little "hidey-hole" spot that noone knows about...


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