Mayors to celebrate Freedom Trail completion

Kansas City Mayor Sly James and Unified Government Mayor Joe Reardon will join other community leaders today to celebrate completion of the bi-state Freedom Trail.

The trail is part of the larger Riverfront Heritage Trail, which runs along the Missouri River waterfront through Richard L. Berkley Park and winds its way through River Market and parts of downtown.

The $1.4 million Freedom Trail portion begins at West 8th Street and Belleview Avenue, near the Faultless Starch headquarters. The trailhead features a park with native grasses, benches, sculpture, a large caboose and information about Kansas City history — including the role of the railroads and the story of Missouri slaves making their way to freedom in Kansas before the Civil War.

The completed trail follows the route of the Louis and Clark Viaduct through the West Bottoms. It connects to the Kansas portion of the trail, which was built on a new deck over the old Woodswether Bridge, crossing the Kansas River.

The celebration today will be at 5:30 p.m. at the Faultless Starch event space at 1009 W. Eighth St.

More information and a good map of the trail, both completed and planned phases, are available at