No one does a celebration quite like Kansas City, and American Royal is the city’s three-month celebration of agriculture and the cowboy culture. With so much to see and do, you should consider staying at a fine American Royal hotel so you can enjoy several days of fun. Each of the host hotels is just minutes from Kemper Arena and the legendary stockyards, two areas sponsoring a multitude of Royal events.
A parade in late September kicks off the event and draws millions of visitors to Kansas City, but the fun continues for weeks with rodeos, horse shows, auctions and a variety of dining experiences guaranteeing fun for the adults. Families will also find plenty of excitement for the kids with petting zoos, children’s rodeo events and educational and exploration booths set up to teach youngsters all there is to know about agriculture, livestock and the great American West. Also, concerts provide great music and the opportunity to dance a bit in a variety of settings from come-as-you-are casual to black tie elegance.
American Royal Dining Adventures
Some of the best events at American Royal involve food. On October 1-4, the world’s largest barbeque contest takes up twenty acres of the Stockyards District. Over five hundred barbeque experts from around the world gather to compete in four competitions to earn the right to call themselves American Royal Barbeque Champions. An American Royal hotel will be the perfect place to unwind after sampling miles of barbeque beef, pork or lamb. So be sure to book a room where you can relax and take a nap between lunch and dinner. There’s no way to get through all of the barbeque stands in one meal!
If you’re interested in a gentleman’s night out with traditional top shelf drinks and dining, consider Tablesteaks. This exclusive men’s only evening features the finest whiskeys and cigars as a lead-in to a dinner of Kansas City’s finest steaks. You’ll enjoy an evening learning the secrets of fine whiskey and cigars with the leaders of American Royal while contributing to their annual scholarship fund.
For the ultimate in drinking and dining pleasure, book a room at an American Royal hotel for the weekend of the annual Black Tie and Tails Finale on November 21. You’ll want to stay late and enjoy the final night’s outstanding celebration including a black tie buffet dinner and cocktails followed by the final rodeo of the American Royal’s 2009 season. After the rodeo, a beautiful candlelight dessert and coffee bar will end the evening on a gracious note.
Bring the Children to American Royal
If you’re looking for family fun, the American Royal has a day set aside just for you. Family Fun Day is October 24, and you’ll be busy from sun-up to bedtime with activities for all ages. Rodeo University will give every little cow poke the opportunity to learn a little bit about roping and riding. Follow this up with a trip to one of the best petting zoos in the west.
Hands-on activities and demonstrations at the ADM World of Agriculture will give your children a new appreciation for all that our agricultural families do for us. The Community Stage will feature lots of music and entertainment all day long, and you can drop by the Western Marketplace for everything from jewelry to cowboy boots. One of the most anticipated exhibits each year is the K-State piglet birthing clinic, sure to elicit squeals of delight.
Pure Western Fun
Of course, one of the most popular features of American Royal is the rodeo and other competitions. Whether you love barrel racing or bronco busting, there’s always plenty of excitement and friendly competition. This year you’ll want to stay at least three or four days so you can catch as much of the action as you can.
The ultimate event is the official American Royal Pro Rodeo, running October 22-24, with over $150,000 in prize money. Bull Riding is featured on October 31 and November 1, with Women’s Barrel Racing running November 5 through the 8. The Youth Rodeo Invitational from October 19-24 features the best student rodeo participants from across the country in events like bronco busting, barrel racing and mutton busting for the youngest cowboys and cowgirls.
With so much to see and do at American Royal 2009, you can’t simply come for the day. Plan on staying for at least a long weekend, and if you really want to soak up the atmosphere, plan on making a week of it. Luxurious accommodations are waiting at an American Royal hotel to guarantee you’ll be right at home in Kansas City.