By Editor | Posted in Uncategorized on Friday, February 5th, 2021 at 3:15 PM

Once you learn more about this luxury SUV with it’s turbo-charged engine you’ll want to experience it for yourself.

Many luxury SUVs sacrifice good driving dynamics for the commanding seating position SUV enthusiasts love, but with the Jaguar E-PACE you can have both. Up against familiar rivals, the E-PACE more than holds its own with its own selection of powerful turbocharged engines, captivating style and impressive capabilities both on- and off-road. And with pricing starting at just $39,950, the 2020 Jaguar E-PACE provides an abundance of luxury for your investment.

Performance Specifications and Interior Highlights of the 2020 Jaguar E-PACE Luxury SUV

When you browse from our selection of 2020 Jaguar E-PACE models, you’ll experience the luxury SUV in six premium grades – E-PACE, SE, R-Dynamic S, R-Dynamic SE, R-Dynamic HSE and the all-new Checkered Flag Edition. The SUV features luxurious seating for five passengers with 24.2 cubic feet of standard cargo space behind the rear seats. All versions are fitted with a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine, which generates 246 horsepower on E-Pace, S and SE models. On R-Dynamic S, SE and HSE models, the engine gets retuned to 296 horsepower.

With its athletic platform and power-packed roster of turbocharged engines, the Jaguar E-PACE has become somewhat of a favorite for our Kansas City clients. Even at its most basic form the 2020 Jaguar E-PACE features 18-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights, full-grain leather-trimmed seats, a rearview camera and a 10-inch Jaguar Touch Pro™ touchscreen. Standard driver assists include automated emergency braking, front/rear parking sensors and lane-keeping assist.

Visit us online to view our remaining 2020 inventory but also to discover our current financing deals on all remaining 2020 Jaguars.

What Is the Maserati Trofeo Collection?

By Editor | Posted in Uncategorized on Thursday, January 28th, 2021 at 5:56 PM

When the Maserati Levante Trofeo launched in 2018, it sent a shockwave through the segment as the most extreme Levante to ever see the street. This year a legend becomes a collection as Maserati places the Trofeo badge on what we can confidently call the fastest, most powerful versions of the iconic Quattroporte and Ghibli sports sedans.

At the crossroads of power and Italian craftsmanship, the Maserati Trofeo Collection is a refined declaration of performance. Each entry in the Maserati Trofeo Collection is engineered for driving perfection, pairing massive power with a driver-centric technology package. Features are designed to engage and excite the senses with the Launch Control electronic aid, Integrated Vehicle Control (IVC), Level 2 Advanced Driving Assistance Systems, and a “Corsa Mode” that enables faster throttle response, instantaneous gear shifts, and a powerful exhaust soundtrack.

Quattroporte Trofeo

3.8L V8 Twin Turbo  

580 hp @ 6,750 rpm 

0-60 mph in 4.2 sec. 

Top speed of 203 mph 

Levante Trofeo

3.8L V8 Twin Turbo  

580 hp @ 6,750 rpm  

0-60 mph in 3.7 sec. 

Top speed of 187 mph

Ghibli Trofeo 

3.8L V8 Twin Turbo  

580 hp @ 6,750 rpm 

0-60 mph in 4.0 sec.
Top speed of 203 mph  

The entries of the Maserati Trofeo Collection are masters of the pavement, and they look just as stunning as they perform. Each design is inspired by the concept of speed through the lens of timeless Italian beauty. In nature, some animals have flashy traits that signal a warning to potential challengers. There’s no need to hide if you can fight, after all. The details of the Trofeo Collection confirm what you already know to be true – these are sports cars of the highest order. There are aerodynamic details in high-gloss carbon fiber, dark finish taillights, race-inspired wheels, and air vents accentuated by red accents.  

The Trofeo Collection may be inspired by the world of racing, but it is uncompromising when it comes to luxury and comfort. Each interior in the collection features sculpted natural leather sports seats, carbon fiber patterns, a Trofeo-specific instrument cluster, cutting-edge technology, and a concert-hall sound system.  

Schedule a test drive today!

Giving Kids a Head Start.

By Editor | Posted in Uncategorized on Monday, December 28th, 2020 at 8:42 PM

When Growing Futures launched in 1965, it was one of the
first Head Start programs in the country. More than 50 years
later, the Johnson County nonprofit is still providing early
education opportunities and family support services to the
community – and the job is only getting bigger, says Director
of Development and Community Relations Jessica Hoffman.
“Poverty has continued to increase,” she says. “Right now,
there are over 32,000 people in Johnson County who are
living below the poverty threshold.”
More than 3,000 of those Johnson County residents are
children 5 and under, according to United Community Services
of Johnson County data, and thousands more people
earn just over the threshold, which is $21,780 for a family of
three. During the past decade, Johnson County’s population
grew by 20 percent, but the number of people living in poverty
increased by 134 percent. While Growing Futures started
by serving 17 preschoolers in 1965, today it serves over 222
kids annually and maintains a waitlist filled with other kids
and families who have need of the nonprofit’s services.


Growing Futures is one of several Head Start programs
serving Johnson County. President Lyndon B. Johnson announced
the Head Start program in the same year Growing
Futures was founded, and although offerings have evolved
over the decades, the nationwide program aims to promote
the health and school readiness of infants, toddlers, and preschool-
aged children from low-income families in communities
around the country.
Growing Futures offers numerous programs to address
those needs. Home-based Early Head Start serves pregnant
women, infants, and toddlers up to age 3, providing home
visits and group socialization activities that promote secure
parent-child relationships and supports parents in offering
quality early-learning experiences. Children 6 weeks to 3
years old can participate in the Early Head Start, a program
based on site at Growing Future’s Early Education Center.
An on-site preschool program is also available for kids 3 to
5 years old.

Staff members observe children for mental health or behavioral
concerns and work closely with parents to support
children through consultations, counseling, and play therapy.
Additionally, Growing Futures’ disabilities and school readiness
specialists identify kids with disabilities and coordinate
services to help them be successful.

But the organization doesn’t just work to help kids – it can
connect participating families with community resources
and support systems, whether they’re facing food insecurity
or want help reviewing a resume. Comprehensive family
services also ensure families receive dental exams and vision
“They’re essentially getting their head start, as well,” Hoffman
says of parents.


Already contending with increased need in the community,
Growing Futures has been further challenged by
COVID-19. In the spring, the nonprofit shifted its programming
to offer remote virtual learning opportunities to children
and families. Children came back to school in early
September to a hybrid virtual and in-person model.
“We have a phenomenal staff, and they have been very
flexible and very able to pivot on very short notice in these
ever-changing times,” Hoffman says. “They’ve been so
creative and so adaptive.”
But the program experience is far from the only facet
of operations affected by the pandemic. Hoffman says
an increasing number of families have been applying to
Growing Futures programs this year as households lose
sources of income. Meanwhile, funding options are becoming
more limited.

Although Growing Futures receives federal funding,
they’re responsible for raising more than $400,000 annually
through monetary donations, in-kind donations, or
volunteer hours, which requires support from community
partners, corporate sponsors, and individuals. Grants the
organization normally could have applied for have shifted
to provide more targeted COVID relief, and individual
donors and community partners may be hesitant to make
a donation during a period of such economic uncertainty.

“Donations are slowly trickling in, but it’s taking a lot of creativity to host fundraisers now in a virtual climate,” Hoffman says. Growing Futures accepts monetary donations online, but there are plenty of other ways community members can get involved, from volunteering on outdoor
projects at the center, to donating supplies on the organization’s wish list, which range from classroom items like paper and books to health supplies such as diapers and disinfecting wipes. Growing Futures has also partnered with The Ripple, which Hoffman describes as an online marketplace where people can sell items and have the proceeds go directly to a nonprofit of their choice.

Help is needed now more than
ever as new families continue to apply to Growing Futures’ programs, Hoffman says. “We have a waitlist we maintain
of at least 100 children at
all times, so the need is definitely there, and that’s leading us to try to grow and expand, as well,” she
explains. “We’re hoping to launch a capital campaign soon for a new facility.”

To learn more about Growing Futures, including how to help, visit

Kelsey Cipolla is a local writer, editor, and social media specialist. Kelsey has covered
everything from the Kansas City culinary scene to home design, health, fitness trends,
hidden gems, and nonprofit in the Kansas City community.

The Enduring Power of Art and How It Helps Us Move Forward in Challenging Times

By Editor | Posted in Uncategorized on Thursday, December 3rd, 2020 at 6:20 PM

The phrase “man of the world” could have been coined with Julián Zugazagoitia in mind. He was born in Mexico City into a family steeped in history, creativity, and culture. He has lived in Paris, Rome, and New York. Since 2010, when he was named director of the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Julián Zugazagoitia has called Kansas City his home.

What is it about Kansas City that has made it feel so much like home for you?

The most beautiful surprise that this city has given me is to have the murals at UMKC by Spanish painter Luis Quintanilla. He was exiled because of the Spanish civil war and he ends up in Kansas City painting some murals. He dedicated them to my grandfather. [Julián’s grandfather fought the Fascists in Spain of the 1930s. He was eventually captured by the Gestapo and executed.] Those murals make me feel that this is really home.

Does your family’s amazing history impact you and what you do, on a daily basis?

It’s different moments of consciousness in which you start realizing the complexity of your own identity. Growing up in Mexico City there were not a lot of questions, but I left for the UK for the first time when I was 12 and that was the first big shock. It was the beginning of my understanding that we’re all immigrants all the time. Identity is such a complex thing.

As we speak, the museum is closed due to COVID-19, and the world is also seeing protests demanding equal treatment and opportunity for all people. What does a place like the Nelson-Atkins mean in times like these?

When society and humankind come to moments that really challenge us, humankind needs to express itself. Art has found ways to tackle even these things. We have had pandemics in the past. Our collections have examples of artists creating art during very difficult moments. What I see is art that goes beyond the forms we normally celebrate. New generations expressing so much through social media and digital form. People can connect with us in the digital world.

The inside part of the museum is closed but people can still come and enjoy the landscaping and the sculptures. I trust that just being in the environment, in front of the art, is inspiring.

Some may look at places like the Nelson-Atkins and think, ‘Well, that isn’t really for me because of my socio-economic status or education or skin color.’

I know you and your staff work hard to make this a place for everyone.

We have made a lot of efforts to be a place of openness, of inclusivity, of making sure that everyone feels ownership of the museum’s legacy. Today’s events call for more effort.  I would say from the moment we opened this building in 1933, the first speech at that time said this place is for all groups, all races, all creeds. This is work that has to be done by society at large and work that we have to do together. We have a wonderful and wide diversity of people enjoying the museum and that is something we need to continue to foster.

We are using this time to look at ourselves as staff, look at our history as an institution, to reassess our collections, how collections have come to be. We need to be more cognizant, more attuned to our times. We also need to understand that we are part of a stream of history, knowing others have also faced times like these. Society today is waking up to many things. The younger generations are making us more aware of where we should be going.

In these uncertain, unsteady, unchartered times, should we look to art and places like the Nelson-Atkins as some sort of constant?

The nature of expression is always going to be there and museums like ours provide the ability to travel, not only the geographies of distant cultures but also in time. To see how time and different cultures and different civilizations and different ways of thinking are represented through art. A museum like ours can teach you that there’s hundreds of ways of thinking. That should give us a sense of awe. A museum like ours gives you a variety of possibilities. You see that humanity has so many ways of expressing and being. We can engage in dialogues that enrich and enlarge our perceptions and make us have more points of view than one.

Article taken from Fall 2020 edition of Today Kansas City Magazine, a publication of Soave Automotive Group. Interview by Joel Nichols.

The All-New 2020 Defender

By Editor | Posted in Vehicles on Tuesday, October 27th, 2020 at 5:28 PM

Land Rover redesigns an icon for the future

Redesigning an icon is never easy, but Land Rover has succeeded in crafting a new Defender that embodies 70 years of Land Rover DNA in a package that is both handsome and practical.

“The new Defender is respectful of its past but is not harnessed by it,” said Gerry McGovern, Land Rover’s chief design officer, in press materials. “This is a new Defender for a New Age. Its unique personality is accentuated by its distinctive silhouette and optimum proportions, which make it both highly desirable and seriously capable – a visually compelling 4×4 that wears its design and engineering integrity with uncompromised commitment.”

The Defender has a lightweight all-aluminum monocoque, or unibody, structure that is three times more rigid than a traditional body-on-frame design.

There are two versions: a short-wheelbase two-door Defender 90 that will be available later in the year and a four-door, long-wheelbase Defender 110. The base Defender, with a turbocharged four-cylinder engine that puts out 296 horsepower, begins at $49,900. The Defender S starts at $53,350. Moving up to the Defender SE P400, with a mild-hybrid-electric six-cylinder engine pumping out 395 horsepower, the base price is $62,250. The Defender HSE is $68,350, the Defender First Edition is $68,650 and the Defender X begins at $80,900. The vehicle driven here was a Defender SE with a sticker price of $71,230.

The Defender 110 comes in five-, six-, or seven-passenger configurations. The seven-passenger configuration has a third-row seat with room for two. The six-passenger model has a front bench seat with a middle section that can fold forward to create an armrest. Three-across front seating is very rare these days.

The Defender 110 is big inside. The back seat has tons of legroom, and the cargo area is substantial. The exposed powder-coated magnesium cross-car beam that spans the instrument panel is integral to the overall strength of the body structure. It is available in a range of finishes and has integrated grab handles to aid entry. There are ample storage bins and cubbies throughout the interior, a phone charging pad and several plugs for phones, tablets, or laptops.

The functional heart of the cabin is the Pivi Pro system, accessed through a 10-inch high-resolution touchscreen, which allows customers to control numerous aspects of the vehicle using the same processing hardware as the latest smartphones. In addition, customers can connect two mobile devices at once using Bluetooth2.

The system accepts over-the-air software updates and various apps such as music streaming. Learning the touchscreen takes some time but it is not much different than most cell phones.

Let’s take a closer look at the powertrain options. The four-cylinder has a twin-scroll turbocharger that delivers 296 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. It can accelerate the vehicle to 60 miles per hour in 7.7 seconds. The more interesting engine is the mild-hybrid six-cylinder that has both a twin-scroll turbocharger and a 48-volt electric supercharger. The starter motor replaces the alternator to assist the engine under acceleration, while the 48-volt lithium-ion battery stores energy captured as the vehicle slows down. Total power output is 395 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque. This engine propels the vehicle to 60 miles per hour in 5.8 seconds. The Defender can tow 8,201 pounds with either engine. Both engines are coupled to an eight-speed automatic transmission, and a two-speed transfer case that provides extra-low gearing for towing and off-road use.

The six-cylinder engine delivers excellent power right from idle. Full-throttle acceleration is quite impressive for a vehicle that weighs 5,034 pounds. The eight-speed transmission always seems to be in the right gear for any circumstance and the shifts are smooth.

While I did not have an opportunity to try the Defender off-road, Land Rovers are known for their off-road capability, and if history is an indicator, the Defender should be outstanding. An actuator-controlled piston operated by the foot pedal applies braking effort, delivering much finer control. Land Rover says this new system is handy during low-speed off-road maneuvers and when the traction control and emergency braking systems are triggered, because it can lock a wheel within 150 milliseconds, twice as fast as the 300 milliseconds with a conventional set-up.

The Terrain Response system is activated by the touchscreen and it has settings for various off-road conditions. It also has an automatic function that recognizes the driving surface and configures the vehicle with no driver input.

The high sills, short overhangs, and externally mounted rear wheel facilitate the vehicle’s off-road capability. For serious going, such as mud or sand, the driver can adjust cross-axle slip using center and rear slip controls on the central touchscreen. There are three settings that control throttle, gearbox, steering, and traction control, allowing the driver to tailor the vehicle for a particular situation.

A unique feature is a wade setting that enables the drivers to observe the depth of water under the vehicle on the vehicle infotainment screen. The wade setting also softens the throttle response, sets the ventilation system to recirculate cabin air, locks the drive, and adjusts the ride height. The Defender can wade through 35.4 inches of water. Once out of water, the vehicle automatically drags the brakes to clean and dry the discs.
A new option is a factory-fitted satin protective film that is available on Indus Silver, Gondwana Stone, and Pangea Green paint finishes. The wrap gives the body a satin finish and enhances durability because it can be repaired more easily than paint.

Want to test drive a Defender, or any of our other in-stock Land Rovers? Contact us today.

The Mercedes-Benz GLB250 4Matic

By Editor | Posted in Vehicles on Saturday, October 3rd, 2020 at 10:00 AM

A compact SUV with innovative technology

The 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLB250 crossover utility vehicle sits smack in between the company’s GLA and GLC, which is a pretty nice place to be because it offers the room of a larger vehicle with the maneuverability of a smaller one, and it does so at an affordable price. The GLB appears to be aimed directly at young families who want a spacious cabin, good fuel economy, a small third-seat option, and Mercedes-Benz styling.

The GLB’s 111.4-inch wheelbase is 5.1 inches longer than the GLA and only 1.7 inches shorter than that of the GLC. The long wheelbase not only contributes to a smooth ride but it accounts for 38 inches of back-seat legroom. The somewhat boxy exterior features an upright front section with short front and rear overhangs. The practical design allows 41 inches of headroom in the front seat, and a low step-in height makes getting in easy for youngsters or adults with their arms full of groceries.

Surprisingly, the GLB has a base price of $36,600 for two-wheel drive and $38,600 for 4Matic all-wheel drive. The base price swells with popular options, and the model I drove had a sticker price of $50,150. Competitors include the BMW X1 and Volvo XC40, among others.

Powering the GLB is a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder that has been completely updated to deliver sprightly acceleration and fuel economy that is rated at 23 miles per gallon in the city and 31 on the highway. This aluminum engine has cast-iron cylinder liners, four valves per cylinder and variable cam timing. It is paired with an eight-speed, dual-clutch automatic transmission that seems to be in the right gear at the right time whenever you need some extra punch for passing or changing lanes. One reason the engine feels so lively is because the GLB’s curb weight is a comparatively svelte 3,638 pounds.

The two-wheel-drive version sends power to the front wheels, while the 4Matic permanent all-wheel-drive system with variable torque distribution sends 80 percent of the power to the front wheels and 20 percent to the rear in “Eco/Comfort” driving mode. In Sport mode that shifts to 70 percent front and 30 percent rear. The Dynamic Select switch lets the driver choose Sport, Eco/Comfort, and Individual settings to control all-wheel drive although the system reacts intelligently to the current driving situation in any mode. In off-road mode, the all-wheel-drive clutch acts as an inter-axle differential lock, and power distribution is balanced 50:50 front to rear. An Off-Road Engineering Package further enhances the GLB’s off-road capabilities, because it adapts the engine’s power delivery and the ABS control to tackle off- road terrain away from paved roads.

For a vehicle aimed at young families, the cabin is of prime importance, not only in terms of comfort but also in terms of convenience. The split-folding rear seat, for example, can be moved closer to the front seat, making it easier for the front-seat passenger to reach a toddler in a child safety seat or to increase the rear cargo area. The sliding rear seat also improves access to the optional third seat, admittedly best suited for youngsters. The large tailgate opens to reveal a sizable cargo space (62 cubic feet with the seats folded).

The GLB has ISOFIX and TOP-Tether anchorages for child seats, and these can be used to attach up to four child seats in the rear. The third row includes two drink holders between the seats as well as two stowage compartments with a rubberized insert, each with a USB-C port. The third seat folds flush with the load compartment floor.

The Mercedes-Benz instrument panel now consists of two screens, one for a digital instrument cluster and one as a touchscreen for operating various vehicle functions such as audio, navigation, Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. The test car was equipped with the premium package that includes two larger 10.25-inch screens that sweep across the instrument panel like a large computer tablet. The gauge display can be changed in several ways, and many vehicle functions can be controlled by voice. “Hi, Mercedes” is all you need to say to get access to many functions. While the test car was not equipped with its own navigation system, I could connect my phone with Apple CarPlay and use my voice to get directions, play music, etc. Navigation with augmented video and speed limit assist adds an additional $1,150.

The GLB also offers optional driving assistance systems with functions adopted from the benchmark S-Class. Using this technology, the GLB is able to drive semi-autonomously in certain situations. To do so, it keeps a close eye on the traffic with camera and radar systems that allow it to see up to 1,640 feet ahead. The GLB also uses map and navigation data to support assistance functions. The driver assistance package of adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, evasive-steering assist, active-brake assist with cross-traffic function, emergency stop assist, lane-change assist, and active-steering assist adds $2,250.

Mercedes-Benz says that one in three of its vehicles sold worldwide is an SUV, and one in four a compact model. Thus, the GLB is poised to tackle an energized SUV market with a compact size, innovative technology, and everyday usability. For the opportunity to purchase one today, check out our Express Store.

Just the facts….

Engine: 2.0-liter, 221-horsepower four-cylinder

Transmission: 8-speed dual-clutch automatic

4Matic all-wheel drive

Wheelbase: 111.4 inches

Curb weight: 3,638 pounds

Base price: $38,600

As driven: $50,150

MPG rating: 23 in the city, 31 on the highway

Tom Strongman has a degree in photojournalism from the University of Missouri and was
formerly the director of photography and then the automotive editor of The Kansas City
Star. Tom, a member of the Missouri Press Association Photojournalism Hall of Fame, has
written about and photographed cars for more than three decades.

Position Available: Accounting Administrator

By Editor | Posted in Uncategorized on Wednesday, March 11th, 2020 at 5:05 PM

Aristocrat Motors, a leading high-end, luxury dealership in the Kansas City automotive market, is looking to add a qualified FULL TIME ACCOUNTING ADMINISTRATOR to our team! We are looking for someone with a strong accounting background, preferably in a Dealership environment. The individual should be able to multi-task and prioritize in a high-stress environment. Experience with CDK DMS system is a plus but not required.

Apply today or refer a qualified friend. You can apply by visiting the following We look forward to hearing from you!

Job duties include but are not limited to….

  • Post all retail new/used car deals in accounting
  • Send contract packages to lenders for funding
  • Receipt checks in accounting system for new/used car deals
  • Post funding notices for new/used car deals
  • Post internal charges to vehicles
  • Remit/pay/post all warranty products sold through F&I for new/used car deals
  • Process cancellations for warranty products
  • Handle payoffs for floorplan vehicles
  • Any other task, as assigned by the Controller

In addition to competitive pay, we offer our associates the following benefits:

  • Health, Dental, Vision, Life, and Disability insurance
  • 401(k) plan with company match
  • Paid Time-off
  • 5 day work week – no weekends
  • Closed for most major holidays
  • Employee Vehicle Purchase Program
  • Professional work environment, with job training and advancement opportunities
  • World class beautiful facility

Job Type: Full-time

Salary: $15.00 to $20.00 /hour

Breathe. Enjoy.

By Editor | Posted in Uncategorized on Thursday, January 2nd, 2020 at 4:19 PM


He climbed two steps toward his upper-floor New York apartment and paused to catch his breath.

Two steps more, pause, catch. He could not wait to see his wife and children who were at
home waiting for him.

Two steps, pause, catch.

He checked his
email on his phone so as to not feel like he was wasting time.

Two steps, pause, catch.

Art reflects life, which is particularly true for artist Dylan Mortimer and his current body of work. Born with Cystic Fibrosis (CF), he is currently living and breathing thanks to a third set of donated lungs. According to, CF is a progressive genetic disease affecting the lungs and digestive system. “In the lungs, the mucus clogs the airways and traps germs, like bacteria, leading to infections, inflammation, respiratory failure, and other complications. In the pancreas, the buildup of mucus prevents the release of digestive enzymes that help the body absorb food and key nutrients, resulting in malnutrition and poor growth. In the liver, the thick mucus can block the bile duct, causing liver disease.”

Dylan was born in 1979 in Ohio and grew up in St. Louis. He was 10 years old when he was diagnosed, at a time when the average lifespan of a person with CF was 17  years. As a boy, Dylan loved drawing. He drew comics and thought about art school very early on, an idea supported by his parents. When he was 14 years old, he saw a flyer for a month-long summer art program at the Chicago Art
Institute pinned to a board at his St. Louis high school. He and a friend attended that program.

After high school, he moved to Kansas City to secure a bachelor’s in fine arts in painting from the Kansas City Art Institute. He studied under the now-retired Welsh abstract painting instructor Warren Rosser. Over the course of his time there, Dylan’s figurative painting changed to mixed media and sculpture and installations. After
graduating in 2002, he moved to New York to pursue an
MFA from the School of Visual Arts, graduating in 2006. While there, he was deeply influenced by faculty member and artist Tommy Lanigan-Schmidt, who is typically associated with the American Pattern and Decoration art movement of the mid-’70s through early ’80s. (Lanigan-Schmidt is also well known for his involvement with the Stonewall Riots of 1969, which are widely considered to be the most important event leading to the modern fight for LGBTQ+ rights in America.) Pattern and Decoration was championed by New York gallery owner Holly Solomon and inspired by 1960s liberation politics, particularly feminism. Artists were producing large paintings, collages, and sculptures emphasizing pattern and all-over decoration using pipe cleaners, foil, cellophane, glitter, and other inexpensive materials.

In 2019, Dylan had his second full lung transplant in New York and  moved back to Kansas City with his wife and two sons. He is currently artist-in-residence at the Townsend Building in Brookside, which is full of his works. These will be shipped to the University of Iowa, where his next show is taking place. That show will will conclude with adding his work to hospital, pharmaceutical company, and medical center collections. Paper, paint, caulk, glue, and glitter covered the studio’s surfaces, ready to be made into more works depicting cells, bronchial tubes, mucus, etc., and certain moments, feelings, and memories pertaining to his experiences of living with CF. Dylan used to resent the idea of making work about CF. “I didn’t want to talk about it; I didn’t want anyone to pity me.” But now, he fully embraces it and wants doctors, caretakers, hospital staff, and fellow survivors to see it and be inspired by it. In fact, he is taking speaking en gagements about his art and is thrilled he is able to simultaneously raise awareness about CF and art.

When asked about his goals for this year, Dylan replied: “I want to be happy and healthy, to continue running and biking with my sons. It is a gift to breathe, and it’s no less a gift for anyone else. Breathe and enjoy. I highly recommend it to everyone.”

Three of Dylan’s works have been recently installed at the KU Med Health Education Building (HEB). You can see his Open Spaces project, a pink painted tree called “Tree, Broken Tree,” in Swope Park; and a sculpture and two collages in the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art collection. You can also visit his representing gallery, Haw Contemporary, and website

A Legacy in Values

By Editor | Posted in Uncategorized on Thursday, January 2nd, 2020 at 3:50 PM


Spend some time with Pat Cocherl, affectionately known to many as “Mr. C,” and a few things quickly become apparent: his love for his family, his admiration of the founding fathers (particularly Thomas Jefferson), and his desire to give back.

All these passions come together at the Cocherl Family Foundation’s Jefferson Building. The Leawood space was designed from a drawing by Jefferson that had never been built. The stately structure is filled with references to its namesake as well as other early American visionaries, mixed in with photos of the Cocherl clan: Pat, his wife of almost 50 years, Kathy, and their five children: Jennifer, Shawn, Ryan, Kristen, and Patrick.

The building opened in 2017 and serves as the headquarters for the Cocherl Family Foundation, which is run by all seven family members united to pursue a single purpose: helping kids.

The Cocherl Family Foundation’s mission is in some ways penance for a wrong choice Mr. C made decades ago, he explains.

Cocherl was serving as president of the Blue Valley School District’s board of education in the mid 1980s when a vote passed in favor of integrating students with special needs into the district’s schools. He didn’t agree, thinking it would adversely affect the quality of education, but the
board voted and he was overruled. The program launched at the school where the Cocherl family’s youngest son, Patrick, was about to start kindergarten.

After a few weeks at school, Patrick asked to invite his friend Jake over for a playdate. When the friend arrived, the Cocherls were surprised to see that he was in a wheelchair. Jake’s mother explained some of the basics they would need to know to help Jake during his time at their home, and
the kids had a blast. Meanwhile, Mr. C realized he’d made a huge mistake by rejecting the idea of making the district more inclusive.

“I went to every school in the school district and apologized for my vote and vowed that day to right that wrong,” he said. After working behind the scenes for some time, the Cocherl Family Foundation was born in 2003, a formal entity dedicated to making a difference in the lives of
local children.

“It’s the best thing I’ve ever done in my life,” Mr. C says about the foundation’s work.

The Cocherl Family Foundation is truly a family affair, starting with its funding. Mr. C’s company, Heartland Customer Solutions, offers support services for Panasonic products and put the Cocherls in a financial position to give back. The family’s own money is the lifeblood of the foundation, which also accepts donations from people who believe in its charitable mission.

Since its establishment, the nonprofit has given to numerous organizations that work to improve life for kids, including the Rose Brooks Center, Beat the Monster, and Children’s Mercy Hospital. It’s also helping to provide funding to a new Wonderscope location in South Kansas City. And in recent years, one of the biggest focuses has been Keep the Spark Alive, an organization determined to prevent suicide by funding innovative programs and initiatives in schools, starting with Blue Valley.

Additionally, the Cocherl Family Foundation offers annual scholarships to Blue Valley students who receive special education services through individual education programs, commonly known as IEPs. The awards fund
their post-high school education, whether that includes attending a college, university, or vocational school.

Mr. C estimates hundreds of area students have received the renewable scholarship since it was established. The scholarships not only set these students up for success after graduation, they also help them develop a sense of self-worth and confidence they might otherwise lack, parents have told the family.

Of course, the Cocherls haven’t been without challenges of their own. Several years ago, the family’s patriarch suffered a massive heart attack that brought him to the brink of death. Mr. C survived, but the experience put his philanthropic mission into even sharper focus.

After recovering, he wanted to ensure the work of the foundation will outlive him and Kathy through their kids, who play an active role, bringing their own projects and ideas to the family’s quarterly meetings where future commitments are decided.

With the children fully invested, the foundation is poised to make an impact for years to come. “I realized that I had more pieces to put in place to finish, and I’ve now done that,” he says, adding, “For the first time, I realized my mortality and it made me hyper-focused on what’s important.”

Kansas City’s Quixotic Roque Show

By Editor | Posted in Uncategorized on Wednesday, October 9th, 2019 at 5:34 PM

by PATRICIA O’DELL |  photos courtesy of QUIXOTIC

While many Kansas Citians have seen the artistic collaboration of Quixotic at events around town, some are unaware of the reach and scope of the performance company’s work. For the first time since its inception, the company will be offering regular shows near the Crossroads district.

Quixotic calls Kansas City home. The performance group began in 2005 as an annual creative collaboration to provide an outlet for local ballet dancers and stage professionals to work in the off season.

“We did one show a year in abandoned buildings,” says executive producer Mica Thomas, who managed production at the beginning. “We’d clean up the space and figure out a way to run power and put on a show. It was fun and people loved it.”

The community response was positive and Thomas, in conjunction with founder Anthony Magliano, began producing regular shows. About three years into the project people began approaching them to perform at events.

“They’d say, ‘We could give you $500.’ It was only $500, but that made it a paid gig.”

In 2011, they received a call from Mike Lundgren, director of innovation strategy at VML. He introduced the group to TEDx.

“That was a game-changer,” says Thomas.

The exposure from the TEDx performance led to international bookings. Suddenly, this group of local technicians and performers was traveling to Spain, China, India, and the Middle East. The bigger opportunities and bigger budgets allowed for a broader scope of work. They began to explore aerial performance, projections, and animation.

“We know that in Kansas City most people have seen us at Crossroads or the West Bottoms, the Nelson – and we love that, but I don’t think they know we’re doing video mapping for the Smithsonian.”

The company went from one performance a year to employing 15 to 20 people in a residency with a regular show in Miami, which is a riff on cabaret. It’s been remarkably successful.

While Kansas City has always been supportive of Quixotic, the group has performed some of its bigger, more complex material away from home. That is about to change. The group has two new projects launching in the fall. They are bringing Quixotic to Kansas City in a bigger way.

“Our first project is with the Overland Park Arboretum and Botanical Gardens,” says Hilary Rambeau, producer. “I know when some people think about Quixotic, they think about sitting down and watching a show. This is going to be a like a luminary walk, but times a thousand. It’s about a mile and a half path through the grounds with innovative installments, musicians, and aerialists.”

The group is excited to perform for people who might not have seen them in the heart of the city.

“This is a great way for us to get to Johnson County and have something that is for everyone. We think there may be a lot of people who don’t know who we are in this part of the city,” Magniano says.

The group is equally excited about a collaboration closer to Crossroads.

“So, we opened the show in Miami and it was supposed to run for two months,” Thomas says. “We’ve been down there for two and a half years. We’re ready to bring our performers back – and some of our new Miami family – and do a show here in Kansas City two nights a week.”

Quixotic will be performing in the Heartland Theatre at Crown Center.

“It’s going to be a very unique experience,” says Magliano. “It’s a classic cabaret format – edgy – it’s a late-night experience with an allstar cast of artists, many of whom have been with us for years.”

But it’s not only the relationship to the performers that is at the new show’s foundation, but the connection to the city, as well.

“We’re putting a Kansas City spin on it,” Magliano says. “This will be more jazz inspired than the show in Miami. Next year is the 100th anniversary of Prohibition. We want it to reflect that speakeasy vibe.”

The group sees this new concept as an exciting addition to Kansas City’s nightlife.

“Whether it’s people in from out of town as tourists or on business, or people who are taking friends for the third or fourth time – which was our experience in Miami – we really think this is going to add something unique and special to Crown Center, Crossroads, and downtown,” says Magliano.

“It’s amazing that just a few years ago Anthony and Mica were just trying to create opportunities for artists to perform full time,” Rambeau says. “Then there were ballet dancers, musicians, and technical designers. Now we have 15 to 20 people whose primary income is performing with us in Miami while still creating experiences for more than 90 clients a year with our Kansas City cast.”

“That’s been the goal the whole time,” Magliano says. “Consistent work for people in the arts.”

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