I am passionate about three things. Food. Children. Adventures. This is a list of my favorite charities that represent those three things. - My City Adventures

Charities that Represent the Things I Am Most Passionate About

I am passionate about three things. Food. Children. Adventures. Here is a list of my favorite charities that represent those three things. This post also has sponsored links. I hope you enjoy reading and will take the time to explore these charities further.

When I say I’m passionate about food, I don’t just mean eating it. Although, that’s where it started! I constantly advocate for people to learn just how easy and inexpensive it is to eat healthy foods. Whenever someone tells me how hard it is to afford quality foods I always recommend two places. The first is their local farmers market. The second is Thrive Market.

I am passionate about three things. Food. Children. Adventures. This is a list of my favorite charities that represent those three things. - My City Adventures

Thrive Market is a membership community that uses the power of direct buying to deliver the world’s best healthy food and natural products to members at wholesale prices. At 25-50% off retail, most Thrive members make back their $60 membership fee in savings within their first two orders. Their mission is to make healthy living easy and affordable for everyone. That’s why, in addition to already affordable health foods and products, Thrive Market’s Spread the Health program donates a membership to low-income families, teachers, veterans, and students for every purchased membership. More than 23 million Americans today still live in “food deserts”—low-income neighborhoods without healthy food. This leads to low-income families resorting to buying food they know isn’t healthy just to make ends meet. The lack of access contributes to a number of illnesses, including diabetes and heart disease. By donating, you help food-insecure families stock up on wholesome pantry essentials and kick-start their journey to good health. Use my Thrive Market link to enjoy a 30 day free membership trial.

It wasn’t until my daughter was born that I realized just how awesome and amazing a privilege it is to raise a child. Children are capable of being the most intelligent, compassionate human beings. If we as their parents, teachers, and role models don’t hinder them from fulfilling their potential. Unbound and Show Me Shoes Foundation, both based in Kansas City, MO, are two charities that are on a mission to help children and the families that raise them.

I am passionate about three things. Food. Children. Adventures. This is a list of my favorite charities that represent those three things. - My City Adventures

Unbound is an international nonprofit bringing people together to challenge poverty in new and innovative ways. They deliver financial assistance to people in 19 countries. Each sponsorship directly benefits an individual and helps pay for education, skills training and livelihood programs. They believe families and communities can overcome the challenges that face them when we all work together. Unbound also creates opportunities right in my hometown of Kansas City, MO. Every week, Operation Breakthrough cares for more than 400 children. More than 20 percent of the children are homeless or at risk for becoming homeless — living in battered women’s or homeless shelters or transitional living programs in Kansas City. Unbound provides funding for mental health care for those kids and family services to help their parents give a better life. Unbound staff members also volunteer weekly by tutoring children at Chalet Manor public housing in the Argentine neighborhood of Kansas City, KS. The Learning Club of KCK serves more than 100 children, focusing on homework help and enrichment activities. Unbound and the Learning Club of KCK share the goal of helping children who live in poverty meet their highest potential through one-on-one relationships.

I am passionate about three things. Food. Children. Adventures. This is a list of my favorite charities that represent those three things. - My City Adventures

Show Me Shoes Foundation launched when friends Anneka Maquay and Shiv’on Bullock shared a vision to inspire young girls to follow their dreams and to help build confidence from the “Sole”. Show Me Shoes Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with a goal to create a movement of confidence through self-love, mentors and sisterhood. Show Me Shoes has served young girls and women in chapters in Atlanta, GA, Los Angeles, CA and Kansas City, MO. With the support of volunteers and donations, they are able to make a difference by restoring strength and self-love through the “sole”.

When it comes to adventures the more unique they are the more I like them! I don’t just mean bungee jumping of a cliff or flying off top a getaway on the beach in Bali. Sometimes the most treasured explorations are to be had right where you call home. Social Heart provides a myriad of my kind of adventures all year-long.

I am passionate about three things. Food. Children. Adventures. This is a list of my favorite charities that represent those three things. - My City Adventures

Social Heart is a non-profit organization that is 100% volunteer managed. Their purpose is to create a better community by supporting all local charities in the Greater Kansas City area in uniquely impactful ways. Social Heart is helping to improve the city through creatively fun events, promotions, marketing, donations, and volunteer support. A few of their biggest events are the annual Mardi Gras celebration, Laugh Your Ass Off comedy show, and National Volunteer Appreciation Month. They also host monthly happy hours at a variety of local places. The best thing about Social Heart is that all funds raised go directly to the charities.

Thank you so much for reading! What are you most passionate about? What are some of your favorite charities? Leave a comment below.

Summit Grill is a casually chic eatery in the Waldo neighborhood of Kansas City, MO. The menu highlights American classics, weekend brunch, and happy hours.

A Delectable Lesson in American Cuisine from Summit Grill

What is an American meal? I always ask myself that question when I see a restaurant boasting its food as “American”. Honestly, I normally think of cheeseburgers. Is that all American food is cracked up to be? A hunk of beef between two slices of bread. Um, thank but no thanks. I’m not that big a fan. But Summit Grill redefined my understanding of what the good old USA considers its traditional dishes. This meal also marks the second “meeting” for the KC Foodie Club.

Summit Grill is a casually chic eatery in the Waldo neighborhood of Kansas City, MO. The menu highlights American classics, weekend brunch, and happy hours.

Summit Grill is a casual eatery with two locations in Lee’s Summit, MO and Kansas City’s historic Waldo neighborhood. The menu features brunch, lunch, happy hour and dinner with a range of options including hand-cut steaks, fresh seafood, salads, burgers and dessert creations made by pastry chef Nicolette Foster. Summit Grill is led by restaurateurs Andy Lock and Domhnall Molloy, who also dreamed up Third Street Social and Boru Ramen.

What We Ordered at Summit Grill

Summit Grill is a casually chic eatery in the Waldo neighborhood of Kansas City, MO. The menu highlights American classics, weekend brunch, and happy hours.
Photo credit: @Miss_KC_Foodie
  • Buttermilk biscuits with cheesy scrambled eggs, and Fritz’s sausage gravy – $8.95.
  • Fried chicken salad under a bed of cheddar jack cheese, bacon, carrots, tomatoes, and honey mustard dressing – $9.95.
  • Jalapeño cheese grits with thick slabs of Nueske’s bacon, Fritz’s sausage, and soft poached eggs – $10.95. Note that the grits were gluten-free and presented in the cutest mason jar.
  • Corned beef brisket hash with eggs, bell peppers, onions, and. Hollandaise – $9.95. The hash was also gluten-free.
  • Slow roasted prime rib dip on a hoagie with au jus, horseradish cream, and french fries – $15.95
  • Bottomless Mimosas – $9.95.

Summit Grill is a casually chic eatery in the Waldo neighborhood of Kansas City, MO. The menu highlights American classics, weekend brunch, and happy hours.

By the end of the meal, each of us was completely stuffed with no room for dessert. However I did manage to fit in one last mouth-watering photo of the sweets before we left. Pictured are their Vanilla Bean Creme Brûlée, Candy Bar Cake, Carrot Cake, and Peppermint Cheesecake.

Party Time at Summit Grill

Summit Grill in Lee’s Summit offers two private event spaces. The Back Bar, which accommodates groups up to 125, features a private cocktail bar, dining area and patio. A second, more intimate, dining space is also available and seats up to 30 people. The Annex is a private event space at the Waldo site which can hold up to 75. Complete with a fully stocked bar, it’s the perfect place for meetings, parties and special events.

Summit Grill is a casually chic eatery in the Waldo neighborhood of Kansas City, MO. The menu highlights American classics, weekend brunch, and happy hours.

Summit Grill is a deliciously comforting reminder of what’s good about American food. Thank you so much for reading!

Blogging about Random Thoughts, Rants, and Expressing my General Opinions

Every Wednesday evening, after Lily has gone to sleep and I finally have some quiet moments to myself, I ask the same question. What subject should I start blogging about for next week? Thus starts the laborious process of giving birth to a new blog post. That’s how I affectionately describe it because that’s what it feels like mentally.

At first I’m super excited with the idea of exploring the city and experiencing so much I can share with others, just like a couple who begins to contemplate having a baby. Just picture it! Won’t it be so wonderful! Next I go through the stages of searching, finding, and doing interesting things around the city much like women going through her 10 months of pregnancy. Did you think it was 9 months? No, it’s 10! 40 weeks = 10 months. For me it was actually 41.5 weeks.

 

Anyway, here I am simply glowing! I’m on a fantastic adventure and life is just plain amazing! Then the pains start. Uh oh! The weekend is over. Now is the time for me to buckle down, get to work, and push this blog post out. As I wheel myself into the blogging (labor) room I know what’s coming and yet I’m not ready. Come on, Kiara! Push! This post has to done by Monday night! Ugh! What did I do last week? How can I turn it into a story? Did I take enough decent photos?

Finally after hours and hours of battling through SEO, grammar checks, and photo editing I’m ready for one last push. The publish button. With sheer happiness I sit back for a moment and cherish all the hard work I just endured. As I look at my brand new beautiful blog post a sense of pride washes over me. I did it! Here’s my wonderful new story for the world to see. Then, as with all parents who have a slight degree of insanity, I think, “How about going on another adventure?” So the cycle begins again.

Back to what I was talking about at the beginning. Every Wednesday I start to think about what my next blog post will be about. This week I had nothing. Not exactly nothing. I did plenty. I just had nothing I wanted to write about. If you were hoping this story would be about my latest adventure simply head over to My City Adventures on Instagram. That’s where I share all our explorations everyday. While you’re there hit that good old follow button! 👍

When I got serious about blogging the focus of my several of my first posts was restaurant reviews. In trying to describe the foods I ate with more words than delicious and tasty I searched online for synonyms. These are my favorites. Ambrosial. Delectable. Gratifying. Luscious. Mouth-watering. Nectarous. Palatable. Piquant. Sapid. Scrumptious. Toothsome. I must use those words more often. Or rather, I should utilize such vernacular in my vocabulary at a greater frequency. See what I did there?

Please excuse me now. This exhausted mama of 133 is about to birth 134. Thank you for reading! Did you enjoy my random thoughts on blogging? Subscribe to My City Adventures so you won’t miss next Monday’s post. I’m sure you’ll find it most toothsome!

10 Amazing Companies that Created Unique Sightseeing Tours in Kansas City

Maybe it’s that I love history. Learning about where things got started has always interested me. Lucky for me, where I live, there is plenty to learn and explore. Here are 10 amazing companies that created unique sightseeing tours in Kansas City.

1. American Jazz Museum Tour

Located in the Historic 18th & Vine Jazz District, the American Jazz Museum showcases the sights and sounds of jazz through visual arts, interactive exhibitions, films, and performing arts. Public programming for all ages enliven the history and music at the center of the American Jazz Museum. The engaging Museum tours bring Charlie Parker, Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong, and Duke Ellington to life. Admission is $10 for adults, $9 for 65+, $6 for children 5-12. Discounts are available for groups of 25 or more. Tours are perfect for family reunions, corporate outings, networking events, and more. Call 816-474-8463 for scheduling.

2. Boulevard Brewing Company Tour

The Boulevard Brewing Company Tour and 9 other amazing companies that created unique sightseeing tours in Kansas City, MO
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Founded in 1989, Boulevard Brewing Company has grown to become the largest specialty craft beer brewer in the Midwest. The brewery offers two options for tours of its factory. Enjoy free public one hour walking tours of the brewery, which close with samples in their Tasting Room. The entire day’s tickets become available at 10 am each day, and are on a first-come, first-served basis from the Tours & Rec Center Welcome Desk. Public tours are open to ages 6 and older and offered at regular intervals from 10 am to 4 pm. Thirsty for more? Then the Smokestack Tour & Tasting is for you. Join Boulevard for a two-hour experience including the tour plus guided food and beer pairings. Smokestack tours are available Sunday through Friday for guests 21 and older. Tickets are $25 per person and released online the first Monday of each month for the following month’s tours.

3. Chocology Tour

Chips Chocolate Factory, in Crown Center, makes more than 200 chocolate confections by hand including over 40 flavors of Kansas City fudge. Their Chocology tours are a unique experience where you learn the history of chocolate, where is it grown, how is it harvested, and how is it made. You’ll also watch the resident candy makers transform fresh ingredients into a loaf of smooth, creamy fudge. Scheduled group visits are between 10:30 am and 5 pm, excluding Tuesday and Sunday. The cost for the visit is $5.00 per person and includes a bag filled with yummy Chips Chocolate Factory goodies. Tours need a minimum of 10 people. Each visit lasts about 45 minutes. To schedule your group visit, call 816-421-0012.

4. The Gangster Tour

The Gangster Tour and 9 other amazing companies that created unique sightseeing tours in Kansas City, MO
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Kansas City was a favorite spot of the “old timers.” The Gangster Tour puts you hot on the trail of this city’s most notorious Goodfellas. But don’t make the guides twist your arm. Grab your chopper, hop on the bus, and you’ll spend 90 minutes immersed in a melodramatic look at mob homes and hangouts, turf wars and infamous crimes like the Union Station massacre. Tours are held every Saturday year round for $29 per person. Sorry kiddos, adults only. Dinner and a tour is also available for groups of 15 + at $69 per person. For reservations or ticket information call 816-471-1234.

5. Harley-Davidson Assembly Tour

Harley-Davidson has built a legacy of fulfilling dreams of personal freedom. Step into the process of that legacy with tours of the Vehicle and Powertrain Operations Factory. Two tour options feature a series of displays that guide you through the various manufacturing and assembly processes. Classic Factory Tour are free and offer people and small groups an intimate view of Harley-Davidson’s assembly line and fabrication areas. The Steel Toe Tour goes behind-the-scenes through areas previously unseen by the public. Tickets are $38 per person. This is the only Harley-Davidson factory tour where you will see a Harley-Davidson powertrain and vehicle assembled and brought to life.  Children under the age of 12 are not allowed on the tours. Visit website for more information, including tour times.

6. Historic Kansas City Tour

Historic Kansas City Neighborhood Walking Tours and 9 other amazing companies that created unique sightseeing tours in Kansas City, MO

Historic Kansas City is the only greater Kansas City nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation and rehabilitation of the area’s heritage, neighborhoods and historic built environment. The Historic Kansas City Foundation offers a variety of walking tours featuring the diverse architecture and history of neighborhoods across Kansas City. Trained volunteers lead tours that last between 1 and 1.5 hours. Tour pricing is $10 per person. Members of Historic Kansas receive a 50% discount. Email hkcf@historickansascity.org or call 816-931-8448, at least one week in advance, to schedule a tour date.

7. Kansas City Ballet Tour

The Todd Bolender Center for Dance & Creativity is home to the Kansas City Ballet. Located at 500 W. Pershing in downtown Kansas City, the facility houses the professional company, Kansas City Ballet School, Michael and Ginger Frost Studio Theater, and Kansas City Ballet’s artistic and administrative staff. Kansas City Ballet invites you and your group to come see the company at work. Call to arrange a tour of the studios for groups of 10 or more people. The presentation includes information about productions in progress and you can take a peek at their professional dancers in rehearsal. You’ll also be able to see costumes in the making in their costume shop. For more information about tours, please contact 816.216.5583

8. Kansas City Fun Tours

Kansas City Fun Tours and 9 other amazing companies that created unique sightseeing tours in Kansas City, MO

A Kansas City Fun Tour is the best first thing to do in Kansas City. Get acquainted with popular sites, local favorites and hidden treasures that the city has to offer during their fully narrated 75 minute, 15 mile guided tour. Take the tour in style aboard an authentic trolley. Some of the things you’ll experience are art museums, fountains and statues, where to go for the best nightlife and live music, and great restaurants to enjoy cuisine from around the world. Scheduled tours are daily at 10 am, 12 pm, and 2 pm. Tickets are $10 for children 12 and younger, $18 for 60+ and military, and $20 for adults. For scheduling book tickets online or call 816-500-5417.

9. The Roasterie Factory Café Tour

The Roasterie Factory Café goes to great lengths to bring you the best coffee in the world. Enjoy tours of the factory that gives you an up close look at their cupping, roasting and blending processes. You’ll learn about the history of the company, get a behind the scenes look at the factory, and experience a manual coffee brewing demonstration along with a Q&A. Arrive 10 to 15 minutes early for the 45 minutes long tours. The best day for a Roasterie Factory tour is Thursday. Public Cuppings (coffee tastings) are held on the first and third Thursday of the month. On these days, from 5 pm to 6 pm, you can sample a myriad of coffees from all over the world. One hour private tours are best for groups of 15 or more. Here’s a link to my last visit to the Roasterie Factory.

10. Taste of Kansas City Food Tours

The Taste of Kansas City Food Tour and 9 other amazing companies that created unique sightseeing tours in Kansas City, MO

Taste of Kansas City Food Tours started in 2012, becoming Kansas City’s first food and culinary tour company dedicated to helping visitors and Kansas City residents enjoy the best Kansas City food and cultural experience off-the-beaten-path. In addition to tasting deliciously crafted foods, participants will learn about the history, culture, and neighborhood entertainment offerings of the Crossroads Arts District. Whether through the Crossroads, Prohibition, Sunday Brunch, or on the KC Streetcar Line, any of the four Taste of Kansas City Tours are sure to tantalize your taste buds. Ticket pricing starts at $54 per person. Visit website for more tour information and schedule.

Which tour  your favorite? Leave a comment. Thank you so much for reading!

Show Me Shoes was launched as a vision of long time friends Shiv'on and Anneka to inspire teenage girls to follow their dreams and help build confidence. -Kiara Watts, My City Adventures

Show Me Shoes Foundation Gives the Gift of Going to Prom in Style for Teen Girls

Almost 10 years ago, long time friends Shiv’on and Anneka shared a wish to inspire teenage girls to follow their dreams and help build confidence. As a result of that vision, Show Me Shoes Foundation launched in 2009.

Show Me Shoes Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, founded in Kansas City, MO. They have created a crusade for confidence through self-love, mentors and sisterhood. The organization has served over 3,000 young girls and women in chapters in Atlanta, Los Angeles, Chicago, and the founders hometown of Kansas City. With the support of volunteers and donations, they impact lives by restoring strength and self-love through the “sole”. Show Me Shoes includes several programs which work together to carry out their mission. Teen Master Class, Moguls in Heels, Camp Sole Beautiful, and Prom Project: Prom in the City.

Show Me Shoes was launched as a vision of long time friends Shiv'on and Anneka to inspire teenage girls to follow their dreams and help build confidence. -Kiara Watts, My City Adventures

I became aware of Show Me Shoes through Prom Project: Prom in the City. Prom Project aids high school teen girls who are unable to financially afford the luxury of the perfect prom. The program accepts donations of new and gently worn gowns, shoes and accessories and distributed to young women in need. The event, in its seventh year, is a fun day filled with giveaways, make overs, and lots of love!

How to Get Involved with Show Me Shoes

Show Me Shoes was launched as a vision of long time friends Shiv'on and Anneka to inspire teenage girls to follow their dreams and help build confidence. -Kiara Watts, My City Adventures

There are many ways to get involved with the Show Me Shoes Foundation. You can volunteer for all their annual events. Opportunities include event planning, social media management, mentoring, photography/video, and decorating. Donation events are held for Prom Project before prom season. Check the Show Me Shoes Facebook page for details.

The following items:

  • Any size/color/style new and gently worn formal, bridal dresses
  • New and gently worn heels
  • Accessories: shawls, necklaces, jewelry, gloves, clutches

Show Me Shoes also has several fundraising events planned throughout the year. Join the Foundation at Kendra Scott at the Country Club Plaza for an evening of shopping for a good cause on April 25, 2017, 5-7 pm. Jewelry from the new Spring Collection will be available for purchase with 20% benefiting Teen Master Class, Camp Sole Beautiful and Prom Project 2018. Enjoy light appetizers and wine  while you shop. Bring your girlfriends and make the night even sweeter! Moguls in Heels takes places September 17, 2017. This annual fundraiser and networking brunch connects local “Moguls in Heels”. The event highlights women entrepreneurs, community leaders, influencers, and small business owners in their community. Funds raised during this event will go towards the 2018 Camp Sole Beautiful.

Show Me Shoes was launched as a vision of long time friends Shiv'on and Anneka to inspire teenage girls to follow their dreams and help build confidence. -Kiara Watts, My City Adventures

Thank you so much for reading! Share this with any women you know who would love to join the Show Me Shoes mission.