Inexpensive eateries typify the restaurant scene in Raytown. Several fast-food chains and moderately priced, casual restaurants exist all over the city. Many restaurants sit along Blue Parkway, Raytown Road and 63rd Street. At least six bars give residents a chance to unwind late into the night. Eclipse Bar & Grill has weekly DJs and live music, while Funky Town marks Raytown's true dance club with a retro-disco feel from the 1970s.
Blue Yuu serves exotic Asian dishes with a variety of flavors found nowhere else in Raytown. The sweet-and-sour sauce has a citrus flavor that enhances whatever meat comes with the condiment. For an appetizer, the sweet potato with shrimp represents a savory dish that almost makes an entire meal. Another shrimp dish comes with tomato and onion sauce, or try shrimp with mango for a sweet take on good seafood. Steamed sea bass has a huge fillet that takes up the whole plate. For sides, pineapple fried rice comes cooked with cashews, raisins and pineapples.
Specialties of Las Chilis include large burritos and Mexican pizza. However, the cheeseburger serves as the hidden gem of the restaurant. A simple patty, this establishment fries the meat between two slices of cheese and serves it on a bun. French fries or onion rings come on the side, but you can try those covered in nacho cheese sauce, too. Burritos cover the entire diameter of the plate, and they come with shredded chicken or ground beef, refried beans and cheese. Outside, the burrito gets covered in more cheese and pork enchilada sauce. Garnish the entrée with green onions, black olives, sour cream and tomatoes. The daily lunch buffet has all-you-can-eat tacos.
Fun House Pizza & Pub features family friendly fun alongside great pizza and chicken. Kids have a game room to relax, while adults can order their favorite drinks from the bar. Order a half of all-white chicken with sides of fries and garlic toast. Livers or gizzards arrive tender and juicy with the same sides. The Big Daddy pizza rates as the specialty of the house. This humongous pie contains ham, pepperoni and Italian sausage for meats, and green peppers, onions, mushrooms and tomatoes alongside pineapples for something sweet.
Irish Pub House has six televisions and plenty of wacky themed events to keep patrons coming back. The bar even opens on holidays, such as Thanksgiving. Owners often donate proceeds from some events to local charities. Regular drink specials include beer, shots, drafts, bottles and wells. Service-Industry night occurs every Monday. Stop by for a drink with your friends in this local bar open to 1:30 a.m. nightly.
Raytown once belonged to the Osage Indians before European settlers moved in from the east during the 1820s. Farmers, blacksmiths and suppliers set up in Raytown due to its location as a jumping-off point for the Santa Fe trail as people moved westward. William Ray owned a blacksmith shop on the Santa Fe Trail, and eventually the town was named after him. A historical marker near 63rd and Raytown Road marks the place where the shop stood.
Residents can view artifacts pertaining to the city at the Raytown Historical Society Museum at 9705 E. 63rd Street. The former red-brick firehouse contains displays about Ray's blacksmith shop, an old school room and the fire station itself.
The Raytown Arts Council coordinates art displays, performing groups and sponsors summer theatrical performances. Anyone can try out for the summer play to be part of the community's ongoing dedication to the arts.
Bring a car to traverse the city's 10 square miles. Busy thoroughfares include Raytown Road, Blue Ridge Boulevard and Blue Parkway. If your vehicle breaks down and goes to the shop, taxi drivers can come down from Kansas City can take you places. Parks, businesses and government buildings have plenty of parking spots.
Feel free to ride bicycles on residential streets. Larger roads, such as Raytown Road, Blue Ridge Cutoff and 59th Street, remain cyclist-friendly. Some areas have sidewalks for daylight walking through residential streets.
KCATA buses on Route 28X, the Blue Ridge Express, stop at Blue Ridge and 87th in the southwest corner of town. Buses pick up and drop off passengers from 5:13 a.m. to 7:49 a.m. and then again from 3:47 p.m. to 6:19 p.m. weekdays. Route 28 buses make stops along Blue Ridge at 87th, Gregory and 51st. This route starts at 5:01 a.m. and runs to 10:07 p.m.
Living costs less in Raytown than in downtown Kansas City due to much lower housing costs. A one-bedroom apartment averages $471 per month.
A pint of beer runs $2 at local bars during happy hour. A day pass on KCATA buses costs $3 to go anywhere in the huge metro area. A gallon of gas typically goes for 19 percent below the national average.
A few major shopping centers scatter around Raytown, including Blue Ridge Plaza on the north side of the city. National discount chains have stores scattered around town, as well. Hy-Vee, Apple Market, a Wal-Mart Supercenter and Price Chopper characterize the grocery stores in the city. For locally grown fruits and vegetables, travel 7 miles due west to Farmers Community Market at Brookside.
Dirty Don's Bargain Center has a warehouse full of items to stock your home when you need household items in a pinch. Aluminum foil, toothpaste, bottled water, laundry detergent and food represent just a few of the necessities you find here. Buy plenty of canned foods to fill your pantry, and save a lot at Dirty Don's Bargain Center.
BB Archery Sales, in the southern part of Raytown, sells all types of bows that staff custom fits to your size and strength. Repair guys service what they sell, and repair your bow when it needs a tune up or realignment. The store also carries supplies, arrows and equipment you need to maintain your shooter's form.
C. Lee Kenagy Park has something for everyone, including a skate park, two playgrounds, a half-mile walking trail, one lighted softball field and a fishing pond. Add in four lighted tennis courts for a complete package of sporting-related activities.
Several events occur at different parks throughout the year. A fishing derby at Kenagy Lake every June lets youngsters enjoy the art of catching fish with a rod and reel. Kenagy Park also hosts free movies once per month at dusk from May to September. The Raytown Arts & Music Festival also occurs at Kenagy over one Saturday in September.