Former Kansas City Star building to become entertainment center with sand volleyball

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — There’s a new idea for one of the metro’s old buildings.

The former home of the Kansas City Star will soon become a downtown entertainment destination known as Star Bar + Rec, featuring outdoor sand volleyball courts in the heart of downtown.

The trash bags and dust bunnies found in the building’s parking lot and century-old building won`t be there for long. Organizers said Star Bar And Rec is expected to open close to this year’s end.

The building at 17th and McGee will be transformed into an indoor/outdoor entertainment center and office complex.

Luke Wade, one of KC Crew`s founders, leads a nonprofit that organizes adult athletic and rec leagues in the metro. He said his group will be instrumental in providing programming at the forthcoming fun center.

“This parking lot will be transformed into three sand volleyball courts,” Wade said Wednesday.

The building itself is getting a major facelift. On Wednesday afternoon, a crew of workers toiled away with machines that stirred up the dust amid a hissing noise.

Wade said Star Bar + Rec will also be home to a bar, office space and an indoor fun center with games. KC Crew is circulating a viral video that shows Wade giving a virtual tour of the building. The video clip also shows artists’ renderings of what the future may hold.

“Gone are the days when I’m just sitting at a bar staring at the wall. People want things to do, and that’s what we’re trying to do. KC Crew loves keeping keeping people active in the community, and we’re basically helping to build that space for that entire idea,” Wade said.

Wade points to that section of downtown Kansas City as a center of residential and commercial growth. He pointed to a bevy of new businesses and homes that have popped up here, furthering the trend of the next generation moving downtown.

The Kansas City Star kept offices in that building until last May when it consolidated in its printing press complex near the downtown loop. The newspaper had ownership of that location for more than a century.

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