Family Fun at Union Station


Article by City Lifestyle

Photography by Rory Inman + Provided

Union Station Kansas City — a 501(c)3 non-profit organization — is a 104-year-old historical landmark and celebrated civic asset renovated and reopened to the public in 1999. Recently awarded “Favorite Attraction”, “Favorite Family-Friendly Attraction”, “Favorite Historic Attraction” and “Best of KC”, the organization — dedicated to science education, celebration of community and preservation of history — is home to Kansas City’s internationally-awarded Science City – Powered by Burns & McDonnell; the new Arvin Gottlieb Planetarium; the Regnier Extreme Screen Theatre; the popular Model Railroad Experience; City Stage featuring live theater, and a selection of unique shops and restaurants. Union Station is also home to prominent area civic organizations and businesses, and regularly hosts world-class traveling exhibitions. Awarded “Top Banquet Facilities in KC” by KC Business Journal, the facility annually hosts hundreds of community events and private celebrations of all sizes.

Do you need to make an appointment or call ahead?

All guests, including Union Station Members, are strongly encouraged to pre-purchase tickets to all attractions include Science City and the Arvin Gottlieb Planetarium prior to their visit at Tickets.UnionStation.org. This ensures your attraction entry into both venues during this time of guest capacity restrictions. Walk-up tickets will only be available until capacity limits are met.

What are the hours of operation?

Science City is open Wednesday thru Sunday, 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM & 2 PM to 5 PM. These are two distinct “sessions” with a 90-minute break between to allow for additional and enhanced mid-day cleaning and sanitizing. Members and guests will choose between the two daily sessions.

The Arvin Gottlieb Planetarium shows are scheduled every 90 minutes beginning at 10 AM and ending at 4 PM – again Wednesday thru Sunday.

Dinosaur Road Trip is open Wednesday thru Sunday 9AM to 5PM (last ticket at 4PM)

Regnier Extreme Screen Theatre now showing Dinosaurs Alive. Check website for show times.

Union Station’s Ticketing Office Hours are:

  • Wednesday - Sunday – 9:15 AM to 4:45 PM 
  • Union Station’s Building Hours remain 6 AM to 11 PM. 

What is the procedure for entering?

ADA Parking is available in our South Plaza parking lot and Parking Garage. 

Parking lots are located on the south side of Union Station, accessible via West Pershing Road.

For your convenience, these two parking lots are equipped with Credit Card Payment Kiosks. Cash is not accepted. Instructions are displayed on screen and all major credit/debit cards are accepted. You may also pay through the “Park Smarter” App, available on Google Play and the App Store. This option allows you to conveniently pay from your phone, track and extend parking time.

If you prefer to pay cash for parking, please use our West Yards Garage, conveniently located adjacent to Union Station and accessible via bridge from South Plaza (Kessler Street entrance) or from lower West side accessible via Pershing Road.

The Carriage Pavilion Bridge & Pedestrian Walkway to the West Yards Parking Garage is now complete. The bridge entrance is accessible via Kessler Road through the Carriage Pavilion located on the west side of Union Station’s front entrance. The West Yards Parking Garage is a four-level parking garage. It's EV (electric vehicle) ready and has a 7' clearance. The garage is located on the west side of Union Station, also accessible via Broadway Street.

Limited parking is available in front of Union Station. The east side is reserved for Union Station visitors, the west side is reserved for U.S. Post Office patrons.

To maintain comfortable social distancing, Science City has implemented a dedicated one-way entrance and exit. All guests must enter through Union Station’s B-Level (space portal) and exit through the Science City Store on Level 1.

READ MORE: Plan Your Visit

Are masks required?

Union Station Staff, including Science City educators, will be wearing protective face coverings.

With our priority to provide a safe and confident Union Station experience for our guests and associates, face coverings are now required. Guests in Union Station and all attractions are required to wear facial coverings over nose and mouth. Thank you for your help in this important effort.

What resources are available onsite?

Is anything currently unavailable?

With our massive indoor and outdoor spaces, Science City has ample space for guests to explore comfortably and confidently. However, where tight passages and enclosed spaces exist, temporary closures have been implemented including Simple Machine’s Lucky Climber and Slide, Amazing Brain’s Mindball, the Tree House Staircase and Sky Bike.

Wheelchairs are unavailable for check-out at this time.

Water fountains are unavailable throughout the entire Union Station Campus.

Water and beverage purchases, however, are available via Coca-Cola machines and from our restaurant and retail partners. Guests are free to bring their own water bottles.

Our Information Booth in Grand Hall/Main Level is not currently staffed – please look for Union Station Staff who will be happy to answer questions. 

What are some upcoming events?

Dinosaur Road Trip

July 3, 2020 - Jan. 6, 2021

  • Hours of Operation: Daily from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. (last ticket sold at 4 p.m.)
  • Pricing: July - $10 admission (children younger than 3 enter free) | Beginning August 1 - $10 for Union Station Members, $12 for general public 

Sky Station Live

June 10, 2020 - Sept. 6, 2020

  • Showtimes: Wednesday-Sunday at 11:30 a.m. and 4 p.m.
  • Pricing: $8 for general admission and $4 for Union Station Members
  • Produced by: Patrick Hess, The Arvin Gottlieb Planetarium
  • Run time: 30-40 minutes
  • Recommended ages: All ages
  • Content includes: Astronomy, mythology, history, space science, planetary science, physics, geography

The planetarium is reserved for a private event Aug. 5-7

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