Besides the rich midwestern history Kansas City retains, their creativity is always thriving. From internationally known museums to dynamic gallery districts and outstanding performances, Kansas City not only has a colorful palette, but a delicious one as well. Known for having the best barbecue restaurants in the world, Kansas City is a place where all of your senses are visually stimulated—and that includes lowriding.
This past summer we were honored to attend their annual Kansas City Latino Arts Festival, and during the festivities we were able to immerse ourselves in this festive event while experiencing their incredible culture. The festival, which went down this past summer, took place between 7th and 8th Street on Minnesota Avenue. As a parade of lowriders made their way through the streets you could feel the passion and love the community has for these vehicular canvases. From the smiles on their faces to the awe in their expression, each car delivered its fair share of joy.
The festival, sponsored by HEART ERG, KCK Chamber of Commerce, Hallmark, the Downtown Shareholders of KCK, and El Centro Inc., was free to the public. The community-organized event filled the district with a few hundred custom lowriders, and along with it, local car clubs, including some traveling show support from the Midwest Outlaws from Minnesota. There were plenty of artist booths, visual arts exhibits, vendors, great Mexican food and drinks for everyone. Live DJs and Folklorico dancers reminded everyone of the proud traditions of Mexican heritage.
As the show continues to expand, it’s become evident that Kansas City and Kansas have a profound love and admiration for art, culture, and the Lowrider scene, but this special event is also about recognizing Hispanic Pride. The festival’s curator Deanna Munoz has been on a mission to provide and showcase the rich and colorful Hispanic culture to educate and connect communities while celebrating Latino cultures and traditions. It’s an event that brings out the pride and love of traditions past in everyone, and while seeing is believing, being there is knowing. In retrospect, there are no amount of words and not enough pictures that can truly describe the ambiance, character, and personality of not only the KCK Festival but the people of Kansas City as well. It has become a large event because of the families and friends who come together and help promote and produce this annual festival. As far as the hosted by “1 of a kind” Paint & Body Car Show and judging went, well let’s just say that everyone went home as winners. We’ll see you all there next year and be sure to mark your calendars for an event that is truly deserving of its name.