Culinary Crossroads: Kansas City’s Westport area
A recent KCQ explored Westport’s transformation from “sleepy neighborhood” to social hub. It also sent many readers down memory lane.
The focus of the article was pre-1980 and the early days with Kelly’s Westport Inn, but it generated a lot of reader recollections from the ‘80s and ‘90s.
Anybody who grew up in Kansas City has Westport stories. I saw my first French film at the Bijou Theater with my French class; played my first Pac-Man game at Torre’s Pizza.; got lost looking through the shelves of Whistler’s Books; and kicked back on summer evenings on the courtyard behind what is now Harpo’s. And for that special celebration? The Prospect of Westport.
What are your favorite Westport memories? Email them to email@example.com under the subject “Westport memories.”
Readers have already shared some of theirs. Many fondly remember Fuzzy’s Sports Bar & Grill, at 4113 Pennsylvania Ave. It first shows up in The Star’s archives in October 1982. One Westport business owner said it was the first time he ever heard the term “sports bar.”
A 1988 review mentioned Fuzzy’s surprising variations on the burger and frank categories, including a four-bagger burger topped with barbecue sauce, cheddar cheese, sauteed onions and mushrooms. A tender T-bone could be had for $9.95.
Steve Robinson of Overland Park said he remembers Fuzzy’s had a few TVs around the bar — all featuring sports.
“After work my friends and I would meet and spend time at Kelly’s, then across the street to the Harris House for a bit, then down to Fuzzy’s to catch a ball game,” he said.
Another spot readers remembered: Former Green Bay Packers quarterback Lynn Dickey — who was raised in Osawatamie, Kansas, and played football at Kansas State — operated the 8,000-square-foot namesake Lynn Dickey’s Sports Cafe at 535 Westport Road for nearly four years. It featured a whopping 18 televisions. World Market now operates on the site.
For live rock ‘n’ roll, readers recalled Lone Star, at 4117 Mill St. And Natural Wear was a beloved retailer that operated in Westport for nearly 30 years. It was founded in 1975, offering natural fiber clothing and Earth Shoes, and it was said to be the first store in Kansas City to offer Birkenstocks.
So tell me your Westport memories. Remember, email them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
BEHIND OUR REPORTING
How does KCQ work?
The Star and the Kansas City Public Library are interested in answering your questions about KC. Submit your questions on The Star’s or the Library’s website. (See the module below.) Then we will investigate and report out the answers to your KC curiosities. We’ll show you who we talked to and how we found the answer. We’ll also teach you about the available resources. Read more by clicking the arrow in the upper right.
How did KCQ get started?
The Star started its relationship with the Kansas City Public Library through its work with the News Co/Lab at Arizona State’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication. We are working with ASU to educate the public on how journalism happens, how stories are reported and the importance of transparency in our work.
Do you have a question?
Do you have a burning question about the Kansas City area? The “What’s Your KCQ?” series, in partnership with the Kansas City Library, is ready to find the answers. Visit kansascity.com/kcq to submit your questions.