Chiefs, Union Station join together for big Red Friday celebrati - KCTV5

Chiefs, Union Station join together for big Red Friday celebration

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The Kansas City Chiefs are hosting their annual Red Friday Pep Rally in conjunction with a giant celebration in honor of Union Station's 100-year anniversary.

The free and open to the public centennial celebration will feature music, lights, fireworks and football at the Kansas City landmark, located at West Pershing Road and Main Street. It begins at 5 p.m. and ends shortly after 9 p.m. Food and beverages available for purchase.

For the 22nd consecutive year, the Chiefs will celebrate Red Friday, the official kickoff to the start of the football season before the team takes on the Titans Sunday.

"This Red Friday Pep Rally will be one of the most unique celebrations we've had in the past 22 years of our Red Friday tradition," Chiefs Chairman and CEO Clark Hunt said. "Union Station, just like the Chiefs, is a time-honored part of the fabric of Kansas City, and we are delighted to be able to help celebrate the centennial of this Kansas City landmark in conjunction with the start of the 2014 football season."

The on-stage celebration begins with a live concert at 6:30 p.m. The Chiefs will take the stage at 7:30 p.m. for the club's annual Red Friday Pep Rally, which will include appearances by a number of Chiefs players, coaches, cheerleaders, staff and other team personalities, such as KC Wolf.

Following the Chiefs Red Friday Pep Rally, Quixotic - the Kansas City-based innovative performance company - will partner with Bazillion Pictures to display Union Station Revealed: The Monument Comes Alive in Breathtaking Multimedia Outdoor Digital Show presented by Ivy Funds, Waddell & Reed, Inc. and National World War I Museum. The laser-based video show displayed on the façade of Union Station uses 12 digital projectors to trace the history of Union Station all the way from the golden age of railroads.

The display will be 10-stories tall and one city block wide. It will begin at 8:45 p.m. and pay tribute to a century of Kansas City history based around the iconic structure.

The special celebration will conclude with a spectacular fireworks extravaganza.

"Sept. 5 marks the start of 60 days of celebrating our 100th anniversary and it's an honor to have the Kansas City Chiefs joining us," Union Station President and CEO George Guastello said. "This evening outdoor event will offer something for everyone as we bring together history, music, a breathtaking digital 3D show, fireworks and the tremendous energy of the Chiefs Red Friday Pep Rally. We invite all of Kansas City and those throughout the region to come celebrate. Something like this only happens once every 100 years and we are anticipating an unforgettable evening."

In addition to the 100-year anniversary of Union Station, 2014 marks the beginning of the centennial of the outbreak of World War I. The National World War I Museum, which houses the most diverse collection of Great War artifacts in the world, is uniquely connected to its neighbor across the street as more than half of all soldiers who served in World War I passed through Union Station.

"No places in Kansas City are better loved than Union Station and Liberty Memorial on the grounds of the National World War I Museum - two iconic structures united in their ties to servicemen and women that serve as community gathering places," National World War I Museum President and CEO Dr. Matthew Naylor said. "We are thrilled to be joining with Union Station and the Chiefs to celebrate the 100 years of the Station as we enter the 100 year commemoration of the Great War."

The streets and parking areas around Union Station will be packed. Organizers say the station's regular parking garages will be open as usual.

In addition, parking will be available in the streets and surface lots surrounding Union Station, as well as at Crown Center.

Drivers can also park in the Crossroads area and walk across Haverty Bridge to the station. Pershing Street in front of Union Station will be closed.

Organizers say the rain won't stop a thing. There may be some changes if there is a downpour, but they'll be ready for that if it happens.

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