Leaders of KC sports universe to share luncheon spotlight + Garment Grooves

The Downtown Council Annual Luncheon will light up Downtown KC from 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m. on Friday at the Loews Kansas City Hotel.

Downtown Council luncheon to shine a spotlight on Downtown KC

One of Kansas City’s signature business and civic events – the Downtown Council Annual Luncheon – returns this Friday to shine a spotlight on the future of Downtown Kansas City.

The 2022 DTC Annual Luncheon will showcase progress stemming from the rollout of the Imagine Downtown KC 2030 Strategic Plan in January. The program is loaded with highlights, including a star-studded conversation with heads of the Kansas City Chiefs, Royals, Sporting, Current, Sports Commission, and T-Mobile Center. 

The 2022 program is set for 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Friday at the Loews Kansas City Hotel. The Annual Luncheon is co-chaired by Lynn Carlton, HOK, and Richard Wetzel, Centric. Jon Copaken of Copaken Brooks, is the 2022 honorary chair.

The DTC luncheon is expected to attract 1,000+ business and civic leaders to celebrate Downtown accomplishments and explore opportunities and challenges in the year(s) ahead. It will shine the spotlight on the Imagine Downtown Strategic Plan, released in January before a celebratory audience at the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum.

“The Imagine Downtown KC strategic plan is the primary vision-setting and policy blueprint for shaping a stronger, better, more resilient urban community,” said Bill Dietrich, DTC President & CEO.

This year’s luncheon features a grand slam of highlights, including the sports/entertainment panel discussion; a colorful update on implementation of the Imagine Downtown KC Strategic Plan; presentation of awards for community service and leadership; and the largest Downtown networking event of the year. 

Inspired by the Imagine Downtown KC Plan – which envisions a Downtown Ballpark as one of eight game-changing goals over the next decade – the panel features six powerhouse leaders to contemplate the future. Confirmed speakers include:

  • Mark Donovan, President, Kansas City Chiefs
  • Angie Long, Co-Owner & Co-Founder, Kansas City Current
  • Kathy Nelson, President & CEO, KC Sports Commission and Visit KC
  • Jake Reid, President & CEO, Sporting KC
  • Brooks Sherman, Senior Vice President & COO, Kansas City Royals

The Annual Luncheon will feature a special announcement about the South Loop Link catalytic project from U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt and U.S. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II; remarks by Mayor Quinton Lucas; and presentations of annual awards that recognize business and civic leaders who have shaped Downtown KC. 

Annual awards will be presented in three categories:

J. Philip Kirk, Jr. lifetime achievement award in recognition of Downtown stewardship and community will be presented to Vincent P. Dasta, Jr., Vice President, SS&C Technologies Inc.; President of MC Realty Group, LLC; and former President of DST Realty Inc.

Urban Hero Awards to honor small businesses and individuals who are passionate about making the urban community a more vibrant place to live, work, play, and stay throughout the 22 adjacent neighborhoods and districts of greater Downtown. This year’s recipients include:

    • KC Art on the Block: A Black Lives Matter Project 
    • Jason Parson, President & CEO, Parson + Associates, Historic Jazz District
    • Elizabeth Rosin, President/Owner, Rosin Preservation, Crossroads Arts Dist
    • Michael Smith, Executive Chef, Extra Virgin and Farina, Crossroads
    • Marqueia Watson, Exec. Dir., Greater KC Coalition to End Homelessness

Harvey Fried Award for outstanding service by a Community Improvement District Ambassador for maintaining a clean and safe environment will be presented to Kim Hert and Sheila Tatum, honoring their work in 2022 and 2021

Annual Luncheon festivities begin at 11 a.m. Friday with the Spirit of Downtown Kansas City networking exhibition highlighting businesses, cultural developments and non-profits. 

The Annual Luncheon is made possible by presenting sponsor JE Dunn Construction; and platinum sponsors Centric, HOK, the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. Click here for a complete list of sponsoring organizations.


Free concert series opens new season Wednesday

Spring is in the air… as evidenced by the return of the Garment District Grooves free concert series beginning this week.

Make plans for the free, concerts from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the third Wednesday of the month, April-October, in the quaint Garment District park, located at 8th & Broadway. Each event features a musical performance and a food truck. You can purchase from the food truck or bring your own lunch.

Here is the 2022 season lineup… which opens this Wednesday:

Apr. 20 – Max Groove/2Hot2HandleBBQ
May 18 – River Cow Orchestra/Jadabay’s Tasty Kitchen
Jun. 15 – Max Groove & eCoustic Duo/2Hot2HandleBBQ
Jul. 20 – Stan Kessler & Friends/451 Pizza
Aug. 17 – Jazzy Jams/The Melt Truck
Sept. 21 – Max Levy, Sax/Sugar Skull Grill
Oct. 19 – Jackie Myers/Tony Rico’s

Garment District Grooves concert series is presented by KC Parks, the Downtown Council, Downtown Neighborhood Association, and Crossroads Charter School.