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New wagon set to grace historic corner in Kansas City’s Westport neighborhood

Old and New Westport Wagon.jpg
Posted at 12:01 PM, May 15, 2024
and last updated 2024-05-15 13:06:21-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — After more than 60 years of serving as the historic centerpiece of Westport, the covered wagon at the corner of Westport Road and Southwest Trafficway was starting to show its age.

The location of the wagon, which has served as a meeting point for generations of Kansas Citians, has long been part of the parking lot at the Westport Shopping Center.

“Everyone who lives around here says, ‘Meet me at the wagon,’” Westport Shopping Center owner Cooper Weeks said Wednesday.

When Weeks bought the shopping center in 1981, the wagon, which was originally installed in 1960, was already falling into disrepair. Weeks said the previous owners didn’t do much to maintain it, something he vowed to do after he bought it.

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Westport Shopping Center owner Cooper Weeks inspects damage on the old wagon in Westport.

But that maintenance could only last for so long, and Weeks decided 2024 would be the year for replacement.

So about a year ago, Weeks bought a “new” wagon to swap in for the aging wagon.

The new wagon, which was hoisted into place Wednesday morning, isn’t that new. It was built in 1976 to celebrate the United States’ bicentennial.

The old wagon will largely be dismantled, though one of the wagon wheels will be donated to the Westport Historical Society.

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