Of Kansas City's 200 fountains, one of the biggest and most well-known to locals is the Crown Center Square Fountain, across from the Crown Center. When you're exploring KC, you may have already visited this shopping center and neighborhood, which includes the Legoland Discovery Center as well as several hotels.
The fountain features 49 jets that spray columns of water and an additional 48 that shoot pulses of water up to 60 feet in the air. At certain times of day, the jets "dance," spraying patterns choreographed to special music recorded by members of the KC Symphony Orchestra. The fountain sits over a 37,500-gallon underground reservoir, and water cycles through it at a rate of 2,200 gallons per minute.
Though it looks similar to the city's "spraygrounds," where kids are allowed to cool off during hot weather, the fountain is meant to be enjoyed for its beauty, and playing in the Crown Center Square Fountain is not permitted. During the holiday season, the fountain plaza lights up with the mayor's annual Christmas tree display. The water has also been dyed blue in honor of the Kansas City Royals baseball team.
Hallmark Cards was founded in the neighborhood in 1922 and has had its corporate headquarters there ever since. In the early 1960s, the neighborhood was considered a slum, and Hallmark CEO Joyce Hall (son of founder Donald Hall) worked with the city to redevelop it. They envisioned a "city within a city" that would include residential, retail, and office space. Construction of the Crown Center (named for Hallmark's logo) began in 1967, and the fountain was added in 1983.
The dancing water shows are at noon and on the hour from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. weekdays. On Friday and Saturday, the displays are on the hour from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Sunday.
Tap on the video below to see the waters dance to the Tritsch-Tratsch Polka!
Cover image by Crazybananas is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.