Traci Angel discusses her book 100 Things to Do in Kansas City Before You Die

Traci Angel's Headshot

Author Traci Angel. // Courtesy of Traci Angel

Local freelance journalist and writing professor at UMKC, Traci Angel, knows that Kansas City holds many hidden gems to explore. In fact, she knows this so well, she wrote a book of 100 Things to Do in Kansas City Before You Die, published by St. Louis, MO. independent press, Reedy Press.

Originally from central Missouri, Angel relocated to Kansas City for college and fell in love with the area. She currently resides in the Waldo neighborhood with her family. Angel calls 100 Things to Do in Kansas City a chance to “celebrate” the city and “be grateful.”

The first edition of the book was released in 2015, but Angel felt the book needed to be updated, especially after the COVID pandemic. The new edition puts more emphasis on Kansas City’s natural spaces, history, and, in Angel’s words, “what might have a longer shelf life.”

According to Angel, she has done all 100 recommended Kansas City activities in the book as part of her writing process. She says her personal favorite thing to do listed in the book is floating the Missouri River. Other recommended destinations include the Renaissance Festival, the Marr Sound Archives at UMKC, and several KC restaurants. Activities are organized by theme (outdoor, culinary, music, etc.) and by season (summer, fall, winter, or spring).

Angel’s list is not a comprehensive list of things to do in Kansas City; rather, the list is just a collection of the author’s personal favorites.

“You could probably make this into 200 or 300 things to do easily,” Angel says. Angel thinks the book appeals to a general audience, and Kansas City transplants or longtime locals alike could pick it up and find something new to try.

On top of her other creative and professional endeavors, Angel is also currently a nursing student. Her Master’s in Journalism has a focus in health/science writing, so she hopes to put that knowledge to work in the field of nursing while still pursuing her passion for writing.

“I want to help people directly,” Angel says.

Categories: Culture