2014 KC Magazine City’s Best Awards: People

Best Local Musician or Band: Making Movies

Built on a heavy foundation of Afro-Latino rhythms and psychedelic roots, the band’s English-Spanish hybrid sound is further influenced by the Panamian, Mexican and Kansas City upbringings of its members. The quartet composed of Juan Carlos Chaurand, Enrique Chi, Diego Chi and Brendan Culp has opened for a variety of national acts, including Grammy Award winners Los Lobos, which helped produce Making Movies’ latest album.

2nd Place: Travis Reid  |  3rd Place: Trampled Under Foot

Best News Anchor: Abby Eden, Fox 4

A former participant in KC Magazine’s annual “Most Wanted” singles auction, the late-night news anchor is much more than a pretty face. The native Nebraskan and Mizzou journalism grad has received honorable mentions from various professional affiliations and was nominated for an Emmy Award while working for a Texas station, but she’s already a winner in our minds.

2nd Place: Mark Alford, Fox 4 News  |  3rd Place: Christa Dubill 41 Action News

Best Radio Personality: Johnny Dare, 98.9 The Rock

As the host of 98.9 The Rock’s morning show he wakes up and shakes up Kansas Citians with often-risque banter. The shock jock also hosts the station’s annual Rockfest, one of the biggest one-day music festivals in the country.

2nd Place: Lazlo, 96.5 The Buzz  |  3rd Place: Scott Parks, 98.1 KMBZ

Best Meterologist: Kalee Dionne, 41 Action News

She may not always tell us what we want to hear, but our local NBC affiliate’s morning news gal delivers accurate reports with a smile that seems to put a little sunshine in even the dreariest forecast.

2nd Place: Gary Lezak 41 Action News  |  3rd Place: Bryan Busby KMBC 9 News

Best Local Blog: Sadie & Stella

Bridging the gap between home design and fashion with a sprinkling of entertaining and cuisine-related posts thrown in for good measure, Prairie Village resident Lindsay Dress’ blog is a must-read for those committed to living a stylish life.

2nd Place: Le Stylo Rouge  | 3rd Place: Recommended Daily

Most Powerful Kansas Citian: Sly James

He’s served as the lead singer of a band, a United States Marine, and the president of the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association, but he’s made the biggest impact in his current role as the mayor of Kansas City, Mo. During his first three years in office, James has spearheaded a program to offer safe events for local youths, implemented a women’s empowerment initiative, invested in the city’s water and street infrastructure, lent his support to the downtown streetcar project and helped cement KC’s position as a hub of the Silicon Prairie by leading the efforts to bring Google Fiber to town.

2nd Place: Don Hall  |  3rd Place: Neal Patterson

Best Local Power Couple: Ryan Maybee and Jenny Prohaska Maybee

He makes the room spin as the master mixologist behind one of the country’s coolest cocktail bars and she puts a unique spin on fitness as an acrobatics and aerial arts instructor. Together, the owner of Manifesto and the owner of Lucia Aerial Performing Arts, who married in Tuscany this summer, turn heads all over town.

2nd Place: Brent Thompson and Keith Buck  |  3rd Place: Michael and Nancy Smith

KC’s Favorite Philanthropist: Donald J. Hall, Sr.

The chairman of the board of one of the world’s largest privately held companies, Hallmark Cards, Inc., holds the same title for one of the largest philanthropic organizations in the United States. The Hall Family Foundation is dedicated to supporting the community and enhancing the lives of its people by issuing grants to local programs that focus on education, at-risk children and families, and the arts.

2nd Place: Barnett & Shirley Helzberg; 3rd Place: Julia Irene Kauffman

The Biggest Heart in KC: Bacchus Foundation

As Kansas City’s oldest philanthropic organization for young professionals, Bacchus has been bringing volunteers together to network and raise funds for community charities through a series of events—including happy hours, golf tournaments and the annual Bacchus Ball—for more than half a century.

2nd Place: Darryl Woods  |  3rd Place: Shirley Helzberg

Best Park: Loose Park

The third-largest park in Kansas City is the perfect place for some people watching and alfresco fun. Get your heart pumping with a run on the rubber track along the park’s perimeter, a match on one of its public tennis courts or just throwing the Frisbee around. If you’re looking for a more relaxing form of (in)activity, a stroll around the picturesque Laura Conyers Smith Rose Garden or the willow-fringed pond, and a picnic (perhaps followed by a snooze) on the park’s expansive lawns are just the ticket.

2nd Place: Shawnee Mission Park | 3rd Place: Swope Park

See some of the other winners in our 2014 City’s Best Awards