Though the city's name would seem to suggest otherwise, Independence residents must still—by law—interact with each other occasionally. Luckily, Independence Events Center serves to bring the community together, hosting everything from national concert tours to youth hockey leagues within its walls. Such stars as Kelly Clarkson have graced the stage within the 5,800-seat arena, also home to local sports teams such as the Central Hockey League's Missouri Mavericks and the Major Indoor Soccer League's Missouri Comets. Additionally, a community rink lets residents and nonresidents alike hit the ice for programs ranging from open-skating sessions and lessons to private rentals for Civil War reenactments.
While a part of the NAIA, the William Jewell Cardinals athletic teams were a force. The football team was the association’s first to reach 500 victories, and the women’s soccer team appeared in the NAIA National Soccer Championship five times between 2003 and 2010. William Jewell has since transitioned to the Division II level of the NCAA, where it competes as part of the Great Lakes Valley Conference. The move brought upon several changes, most notably a slate of new opponents and permission to open the "Division II" chapter of their playbooks. The Cardinals continue to host visiting squads at Greene Stadium for football and soccer contests and Talley Baseball Stadium for nine-inning duels.
Harlem Globetrotters Playing Three-on-Five
Since forming in the 1920s, the Harlem Globetrotters have continued to entertain millions of parents, children, and general basketball admirers with a trademark blend of athletic precision and razzle-dazzle showmanship. For the team's 2014 tour, a rotating [roster](http://gr.pn/PHdb6w) of Globetrotter favorites?including three female players?takes to the hardwood each game. Spectators might spot veteran guard [TNT](http://gr.pn/rOe0P4) sharing a behind-the-back pass with dunker [Quake](http://gr.pn/QTIGVh), whose high jump once cleared 7 feet, cruelly dashing his dreams of working in a ceiling-fan store. The Globetrotters might also present a study in contrasts with 5-foot-2 [Too Tall](http://gr.pn/PHdmPh) and 7-foot-4 [Stretch](http://gr.pn/1dYrbUt), the team?s tallest member. During each Globetrotters game, youngsters laugh along and witness the jovial jocks performing classic routines of unconventional passing and sudden transmutations of water into confetti. To infuse their visits with an extra shot of unpredictability, the Globetrotters also let fans in each city vote on special rules for every game; past rules have included the use of a four-point shot and the installation of a penalty box. Over the years, similar antics have followed the Globetrotters around the world, including to 122 countries and territories and all six continents on which basketballs grow naturally. The Globetrotters? extensive travels haven?t gone unnoticed: they?re one of the few teams to earn a spot in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as ambassadors of the sport.
The late-October sun shining down on the stadium illuminates the 76,000 or so fans around you?fans who only pause their whooping, screaming, clapping, and whistling to yell for the Chiefs as another football game begins.
Arrowhead Stadium might initially impress visitors with its upgraded sound and scoreboard systems, expanded concourses, 360-degree video-ribbon board, and upgraded snack choices. But what keeps them coming back to the place is the camaraderie they feel watching their favorite football team catch a touchdown pass or stop an opponent short of the goal line.
The Hunt family recognizes this spirit, which is why when the time came to make decisions about the future of Arrowhead several years ago, they knew that, unlike other teams, who were tearing down and completely rebuilding their venues to better fit the modern world, they needed to preserve their iconic stadium. So with the help of Jackson County's loyal citizens, they raised $375 million and added such features as the Founder's Plaza, the luxurious Scout Investments Club Level, the Chiefs Hall of Honor presented by Time Warner Cable, and a new team store.