The Group Travel Leader

MAY 2017

The online home of The Group Travel Leader, America's leading publication for the group travel industry. Articles on hot destinations, attractions, news and travel trends from across the country and around the world.

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Page 31 of 67

GROUP TRAVEL LE ADER T H E W ith threatening slave hunt- ers camped at the edge of Quindaro, Clarina Nichols nervously hid a runaway slave named Caroline in an empty cistern before sneak- ing her north to freedom. This harrowing tale of former Quindaro, a historic town started by abolitionists in 1856, is one of many similar tales of escape preserved in Kansas City, Kansas. Kansas City may be known today for its modern sports facilities, which include the Kansas Speedway, but it retains its fascinating past, which spans all the way back to the Hopewell Native American culture 3,000 years ago. The city's historic attractions tell stories through guided tours and customiz- able group programming such as the Wyandotte County Museum's educational programming and Strawberry Hill's culturally authentic Tea Room experiences. From a forgotten town on the Underground Railroad to an early camp site for the Lewis and Clark Expedition, Kansas City's historic sites will keep any group captivated. B Y E L I Z A M Y E R S K A N S A S C I T Y , K A N S A S , I S A R I V E R P O R T W I T H A P A S T H I S T O R I C Q U I N D A R O In the 1980s, an archaeological study in Kansas City uncovered the remnants of a legendary portal for fugitive slaves. Residents of the former town of Quindaro originally helped stop the westward spread of slavery. The town's citizens aided escaped slaves from Missouri and linked them to the Underground Railroad. Though the town was later abandoned, in its heyday, citizens chartered the first black school west of the Mississippi River and invited former slaves to gather in the residential commu- nity. Today, groups can learn this intriguing piece of Kansas City's history at the Quindaro Ruins and Overlook, the Old Quindaro Museum and the Quindaro Underground Railroad Museum, all within a block of one another. Tours generally start at the Quindaro Underground Museum to learn about the town and the historic school through artifacts, documents and a knowledgeable docent. Afterward, visitors can wander through the Quindaro Ruins and Overlook to see the stone and brick foundations of homes that welcomed fleeing slaves. A John Brown statue also stands GROUPS CAN EXPLORE 16 EUROPEAN NATIONAL CULTURES AT THE STRAWBERRY HILL MUSEUM IN KANSAS CITY, KANSAS. All photos courtesy KCK CVB C U L T U R E S Confluent OLD QUINDARO MUSEUM KAW POINT RIVERFRONT PARK

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