Something that makes Kansas City unique is that it is a bi-state city. Kansas City is partially located in both Kansas and Missouri. Since it sits at the junction site of two rivers, it was a stopping point and an end point for a lot of wagon trains heading west. Lewis and Clark also visited this area during their explorations. Many notable people hail from around the Kansas City area, including Walt Disney, Count Basie, Amelia Earhart, Ernest Hemingway, Wild Bill Hickok, George Washington Carver, and President Harry S. Truman. Kansas City once boasted one of the largest streetcar systems in the country. Now, it is home to a light rail. Kansas City is a city of fountains, with more than 200 in operation. With a history of stockyards, Kansas City is of course known for barbecue. The world’s biggest barbecue contest is held each fall in Kansas City. Sports are also a part of Kansas City, with football and baseball the most well-known.
With more than 100 federal agencies present in Kansas City, the federal government is one of the largest employers in the city. The University of Kansas Hospital is also one the largest employers, due to the school being in Kansas City. Ford Motor Company and General Motors have manufacturing plants in Kansas City. Medical and agricultural companies also have a presence in the business community of Kansas City, as well as Hallmark, Applebee’s, and Russell Stover Candies. Google selected Kansas City as an experimental fiber-optic network, which has now become a business. Auto racing at the Kansas Speedway became the centerpiece of a large business and entertainment district called Village West. Village west is home to Hollywood Casino, Great Wolf Lodge, and the Sporting Kansas City Major League Soccer team, just to name a few. The Power and Light District is another area of business and entertainment in Kansas City. The Power and Light District is home to a couple of arenas, a performing arts center, and a large convention center. All of this and more contribute to the economic development of Kansas City.