Sheila and I both attended a travel media conference last week, where most of the tourism bureau people we met with over two days let loose with a litany of superlatives. It seems every town or region has something that is the biggest, highest, longest, tallest, or widest in the country or even the world. Since these attractions or items are seldom reason enough on their own to visit a place, I’ll going to bring them to you virtually on this blog every once in a while.

The conference was in Kansas City, so let’s start there. This is the city of fountains because it supposedly has the most fountains of any city in the world—at least 200 of them.

kansas city fountain

I’m not sure if anyone has gone and done a count elsewhere to challenge that title, but it is indeed hard to walk more than a block or two in K.C. without seeing a fountain and every time a new building goes up, so does a new fountain. Here’s one of the best-known ones, at the entrance to Country Club Plaza, but some others are more modern in scope and the one by Union Station is the dancing waters type.

Speaking of Union Station, that is the “second largest train station in the U.S.”

union station kansas city

I have a soft spot for these grand old train stations and this one is a real beauty. Built in 1914, it has the kind of grandeur and workmanship that is hard to duplicate now unless you’ve got crazy oil money to burn, like in Dubai. And hey, you can catch a train to California or even Canada from this still-working train station if you’re so inclined.

I’m sure Kansas City can lay claim to some more dubious superlatives (the 5,500-pound shuttlecocks in the sculpture garden of the Nelson-Atkins Museum would likely qualify for some kind of Ripley’s mention), but no need to bring up those in a city with plenty else to talk about.