Monday, December 2, 2013

The Kansas City Automotive Museum is one step closer to becoming reality

Most of us enjoy the Christmas season, but if you live in Kansas City and you like looking at old cars, cabin fever can easily set in.  It would sure be nice to have a first-class car museum here in town right about now.  And if the folks with the Kansas City Automotive Museum have their way, that scenario will happen sooner than later.  No, there is no museum yet, but these guys are serious about making it happen.  They’ve been raising money and awareness for the past couple of years, and as it turns out, progress really is being made.

According to Jeff Wagoner, president of Kansas City Automotive Museum, Inc., a temporary museum is scheduled to open in the next three months.  Jeff says that a roll out date of around February 28/March 1 is likely.  That’s pretty exciting news, because it’s one step closer to the world-class facility that this group is striving for in the next three years.

And even for a temporary space, it looks like they're planning to do it up big.  “The interim museum will have a little more than 12,000 square feet of display space, which should provide space for several historical exhibits, about 30 to 40 cars and a few motorcycles,” Jeff claims. “We hope to add on another 3,000 square feet of display space in the near future.”

40 cars would be a strong first effort, and since the museum intends to display cars that are loaned to them, there’s lots of potential to see a variety of cars.  And I know this group can get people to show off their rides.  They’ve already had displays at Union Station, Goodguys, and movie premiers.  The photos for this story are of the cars in their display at the Greater Kansas City International Auto Show earlier this year.  Many of them were on loan from Vintage Vettes in North Kansas City, but others were provided by local car enthusiasts. 

In addition to the board of directors, the museum already has three full-time people on staff.  They include executive director Earl Trout, curator Kyle Yarber, and public relations manager Vreni Fernandez.  I’m actually kind of jealous of them.  As someone with a marketing background, I can’t imagine a better assignment than building an automotive museum from the ground up.  It won’t be easy, but they are really traveling down an exciting path.

They are planning to locate the interim museum location at 116th and Strang Line Road in Olathe. I really hope that it works out for them and they generate a lot of interest.  They intend to open a “dream museum” in Kansas City within three years, so this is an important step toward that goal.

The Kansas City Automotive Museum is always looking for display cars, donations, and volunteers.  If you’d like to be a part of this exciting automotive venture, look ‘em up on the web at

Or, if you just want to look at car pictures, I can help you with that too.  The slideshow below has pictures of their display at the Kansas City Auto Show in January.  Or, click this link for a nicer version.


  1. Thanks for the story Craig. We're very excited about the future of the museum. KC deserves this and we're going to work hard to make it the best.
    Steve Hartwich
    Board member

  2. Craig,
    Great story, thanks for helping us get the word out.
    The hard work all of the Board Members have done has made this big step possible.
    There is a great interest from the whole Kansas City car community in the museum and I look forward to getting the area car clubs more involved as we move forward.

    Delbert Rhudy
    Car Club Advisory Council Director
    Kansas City Automotive Museum

  3. I had no idea they were trying to build this. Thanks for the info.

  4. This would be awesome. I visit Harrahs auto museum in Reno at least once a year, and more when friends and family come to visit. I would love to come back to my home town and visit a car museum!

    Chris Harris
    Carson City, Nevada