Crown Center

Crown Center is a shopping center and neighborhood located near Downtown Kansas City, Missouri between Gillham Road and Main Street to the east and west, between OK/E 22nd St and E 27th St to the north and south. The shopping center is anchored by Halls, a department store, owned and operated by Hallmark Cards; the neighborhood contains numerous residences, retail establishments, entertainment venues, restaurants. It is home to Hallmark Cards, the headquarters of Shook, Hardy & Bacon and Lathrop & Gage, two of Kansas City's largest law firms. Before the First World War, Downtown Kansas City was populated and bustling; the area today home to Crown Center was an extension of the Union Hill historic neighborhood. However, the center of population for the metro area moved south, by the Second World War the area today comprising Crown Center had become dilapidated. Although Hallmark had maintained its headquarters at 26th Street and Grand Boulevard since 1922, the headquarters itself and nearby Union Station comprised the only non-slum in the area.

Instead there were old warehouses, used car lots, vacant buildings. In 1966, Donald J. Hall, Sr. became President and CEO of Hallmark Cards, taking over from his father, Joyce Hall. Joyce Hall had long wished to develop the area around the corporate headquarters, with his new leadership Donald Hall made it known that he wished to renew the area entirely. Hallmark began acquiring all the property surrounding its headquarters, consulted with urban planning experts about the possibility of creating an experimental "city within a city" on the property; the City of Kansas City formally approved the plans for Crown Center by the end of 1967. The master design was prepared by Edward Larrabee Barnes. Harry Weese designed Westin Crown Center Hotel. Henry Cobb of the I. M. Pei firm designed 2600 Grand office and Dan Kiley laid out the park in the south area of the complex. Warren Plattner, designer of Windows on the World, designed the interior space at the American Restaurant when it was operated by Joseph Baum.

In 2016, the restaurant announced plans to close and to become a special event venue. The original concept for the shops was an international bazaar, part of, a maze-like area known as West Village. Designed by architects François Dallegret and Joseph Baker, West Village proved unsuccessful and was replaced by a more conventional layout. In addition to the Westin, the Crown Center complex is home to the Sheraton Kansas City Hotel at Crown Center. Opened July 1, 1980, as the Hyatt Regency, the hotel was the site of the Hyatt Regency walkway collapse on July 17, 1981, in which 114 people died. Today, the shopping and entertainment complex features three levels of shops and restaurants, a set of grand open air fountains, live theaters, an ice skating rink and over-street walkways leading throughout the complex and to Kansas City's Union Station. One of the most notable stores is the Halls department store designed by Paul László; the complex includes the 45-story Sheraton Kansas City Hotel at Crown Center, a Westin hotel, two upscale residential apartment skyscrapers.

Kansas City's three largest law firms maintain their headquarters in other skyscrapers in the neighborhood. The neighborhood's grounds are replete with parks, green spaces and unique sculptures; the global headquarters campus for Hallmark Cards is located on the eastern side of Crown Center. A century-old tradition, the Mayor's Christmas Tree at Hallmark Cards’ Crown Center is strung with more than 7,200 white lights during the winter holidays and stands 100 feet tall, taller than the famous National Christmas Tree and Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree, as well as the White House Christmas Tree. A special guest or celebrity "flips the switch" each year. For example, in 2010 Chef Celina Tio on Food Network's The Next Iron Chef, joined Kansas City's Mayor Mark Funkhouser to light the tree; the lighting ceremony is held the day after Thanksgiving and the annual Country Club Plaza Lighting Ceremony. After the holidays, the tree is cut into commemorative ornaments and sold to benefit the Mayor's Christmas Tree Fund, which assists city residents in poverty.

List of neighborhoods in Kansas City, Missouri Crown Center

23rd Golden Raspberry Awards

The 23rd Golden Raspberry Awards were held on March 22, 2003 at the Sheraton Hotel in Santa Monica, California to recognize the worst the movie industry had to offer in 2002. Pinocchio became the first foreign language film to be nominated for a Golden Raspberry for Worst Picture, Madonna won Razzies for both Worst Actress and Supporting Actress; the one-time-only category introduced this year was "Most Flatulent Teen-Targeted Movie". 2002 in film 75th Academy Awards 56th British Academy Film Awards 60th Golden Globe Awards 9th Screen Actors Guild Awards


The Asilidae are the robber fly family called assassin flies. They are powerfully built, bristly flies with a short, stout proboscis enclosing the sharp, sucking hypopharynx; the name "robber flies" reflects their notoriously aggressive predatory habits. The Asilidae are a family in the true flies; the common name for members of the family is the robber. The Asilidae are cosmopolitan, with over 7000 described species. Latreille was the authority for establishing the family in 1802; the Asilidae, together with Bombyliidae and Therevidae, are the most representative families of the superfamily of Asiloidea and they form one of the most characteristic groups of the lower Brachycera. Robber flies have stout, spiny legs and they have three simple eyes in a characteristic depression on the top of their head between their two large compound eyes, they have a dense moustache of stiff bristles on the face. The mystax has been suggested to afford some protection for the head and face when the flies deal with struggling prey.

Some Asilidae do, specialize in smaller prey, this is reflected in their more gracile build. In general the family attacks a wide range of prey, including other flies, beetles and moths, various bees, ants and damselflies, ichneumon wasps and some spiders, they do so irrespective of any repugnatorial chemicals the prey may have at its disposal. Many Asilidae when attacked in turn do not hesitate to defend themselves with their proboscides and may deliver intensely painful bites if handled incautiously; the antennae are short, have three segments, sometimes bear a bristle-like structure called an arista. Though they are a characteristic group for such a large family, the Asilidae may be confused with the related and less known family Therevidae; some points of contrast between the families include that the labium in the Therevidae is not a piercing, predatory organ, but ends in two fleshy labella adapted to the sucking of liquid foods. Again, the Therevidae have fluffy setae above the mouthparts, unlike the stiff chaetae comprising the mystax of the Asilidae.

Furthermore, in the Asilidae the depression on the vertex between the eyes tends to be more obvious than in the Therevidae. The fly attacks its prey by stabbing it with its short, strong proboscis, injecting the victim with saliva containing neurotoxic and proteolytic enzymes which rapidly paralyze the victim and soon digest the insides. Many Asilidae have tapering abdomens, sometimes with a sword-like ovipositor. Others, for instance Laphria, are fat-bodied. Female robber flies deposit whitish-colored eggs on low-lying plants and grasses, or in crevices within soil, bark, or wood. Egg-laying habits depend on their specific habitat. After hatching, robber fly larvae seem to live in soil, rotting wood, leaf mold and similar materials, some being predatory and others detrivorous. Larvae are predacious, feeding on eggs, larvae, or other soft-bodied insects. Robber flies overwinter as pupate in the soil. Pupae migrate to the soil surface and emerge as adults leaving behind their pupal casing. Complete development ranges from one to three years, depending on species and environmental conditions.

Adults are medium to large in size, with an average body width of 1 to 1.5 cm but with a range of 3 cm to more than 5 cm in length. The shape is elongated, due to the conformation of the long tapering abdomen, however there are compact species with broad abdomens; the integument is covered with thick hair on the head and thorax and liveries are showy, with colors ranging from brown to black to grey, sometimes in contrast with other colors such as red and yellow. They are aposematic, imitating the livery of Hymenoptera; the head is free and mobile and dichoptic in both sexes and has three ocelli arranged in a characteristic depression formed by the elevation of the compound eyes. This feature is visible in the front view and is a morphological peculiarity of Asilidae; the occipital region has one or more rows of bristles aligned behind the posterior margin of the eye. The facial region has a convex profile with a characteristic dense bundle of bristles, called a "mystax"; the mystax helps face when the fly encounters prey bent on defense.

Other bristles are arranged on the ocellar tubercle. The antennae are of the aristate type, composed of five segments but sometimes from three to four, depending on the structure of the stylus; the scape and pedicel are relatively short and hairy. In some asilids, the stylus can be absent; the mouthparts are short and modified for piercing-sucking. They consist of a sclerotized proboscis which includes the labium and maxillae which form a food canal, the labrum and a piercing organ, the hypopharynx; the proboscis is rounded in cross section or laterally or dorsove