KC Wildlands is preserving spaces we didn’t even know we had: Best of KC 2019
Our annual Best of Kansas City 2019 issue is out now. Go grab a copy. Alternatively, you can browse the results of the readers’ poll here. The issue also includes a list, compiled and written by The Pitch’s editorial staff, shouting out some of our current favorite things about KC. We’ll be publishing these items online throughout the month of October.
Kansas City will never be known as a destination for outdoor enthusiasts. We’re at peace with that. But don’t let that knowledge fool you into believing we don’t have our share of beautiful wild spaces. In fact, KC has some rather high-quality wildlands, thanks in no small part to the work of the aptly named group KC Wildlands. With just a handful of small grants and a collective of volunteers, this under-the-radar organization identifies and safeguards natural resources in the metro; protects our natural prairie, glade, savanna, and forest by eradicating invasive species like honeysuckle and tree-strangling wintercreeper; collects rare seeds from native plants in KC parks that are then spread in areas at risk of being overtaken by non-native species; and literally saves our few remnant areas for migrating birds and future generations. (They’ve also taught us what a remnant area is: a space full of native plants and species that dates back to before the European settlement of this continent.) From spaces inside Swope Park to the Historic Northeast’s Cliff Drive to the untilled prairie of Jerry Smith Park near 135th and Holmes—plus much more—KC Wildlands leaves a big, green mark on the city while asking for almost nothing in return.