Kansas City Prepares for Edgar Snow Symposium with Chinese Visitors

Dinner by Bo Lings, keynote by Crosby Kemper III

The unique cultural ties between Kansas City and China will be celebrated at a “countdown party” November 13, setting the stage for the next Edgar Snow Symposium in Kansas City.

And what a party that will be.

Snow, a Kansas City-born journalist, was one of the first westerners to observe and report on the Chinese revolution of the 1940s and its aftermath. His historic travels and stories, from the front lines to Mao’s encampment, gave western readers their earliest glimpse into this nation on the brink of monumental change.

Snow’s feats became the foundation of an abiding connection that is celebrated with a biennial symposium, alternating between Beijing and Kansas City. Although the symposium is not until October, 2014, activities at the countdown party are designed to celebrate “Edgar Snow’s Kansas City – Where the Arts and Entrepreneurship Intersect.”

The party at historic Union Station will be a night packed with food, music and art drawing from East and West. It will include a sit-down dinner for 200, catered by Bo Ling’s; keynote address by Kansas City Library Director Crosby Kemper III, recounting a year spent teaching in China; and local artists featured in video clips. Music will alternate between modern Latin rhythms and traditional Chinese compositions.

“Edgar Snow opened the world’s eyes to China and in the process taught us a valuable lesson,” said Edgar Snow Board member Nancy Hill. “When we make an honest attempt to learn about other cultures and get to know their people, so many doubts and misunderstandings are diffused. In the end we all want pretty much the same things: the best education for our children; a good job; a clean and safe environment, not to mention great food, art, and music. Join us for a taste of those things Nov. 13!”

The event will be in the Station’s Chamber of Commerce Boardroom, 30 West Pershing in Kansas City. Reservations are $25, and may be made on the UMKC Alumni Association webpage or by mail to Diastole, 2501 Holmes Road, KCMO, 64108. For more information, call 816.235.8855.

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