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Life in Kansas City…300 Million Years Ago

Presentation by Richard Gentile, PhD, Professor Emeritus of Geosciences at UMKC

Dr. Richard Gentile will join us for a peek beneath the surface and back in time at the forces that shaped the geology of the Kansas City area, and what effect that geology has on our lives today.

NOTE – This presentation is a reschedule of a talk originally scheduled for June

A diorama by John Babcock of what the fossil record suggests was living the Kansas City area during the Pennsylvanian Period. www.babcockillustrationanddesign.com

Time and Place

Tuesday, July 7, 2015
7:00 pm

Westport CoffeeHouse Theater
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Presentation by Richard J. Gentile, Ph.D, Professor Emeritus, Dept. of Geosciences, University of Missouri- Kansas City

Tuesday, July 7, 2015 (rescheduled)

Where – Westport Coffeehouse Theater – 4010 Pennsylvania Ave. Kansas City, MO

6 p.m. – Social Hour
7 p.m. – Presentation. Presentation will be filmed – After 7 PM, Please enter through Green Room Burgers

Click here to download flier (pdf)

PLUS – This presentation audio will be streaming live on KCDV.tv!
(See past videos here)

Presentation is FREE and open to the public!

KC Mastodons

Life in Downtown Kansas City 2.5 million years ago.
Illustration by John Babcock. www.babcockillustrationanddesign.com

2.6 million summers ago, Kansas City was beachfront property: oceans, rain forests, palm trees and giant ferns. Not to mention a strange array of giant creatures — mastodons, mammoths, grizzly-sized sloths — stomping through town. Cruise even further back in time – oh, say 300 million more years, and the area was a shallow sea teeming with aquatic life. Now, fast forward to the start of summer of 2015, when the geology of Kansas City is hidden by a forest of buildings and rivers of concrete and asphalt.

Dr. Richard Gentile will join us for a peek beneath the surface and back in time at the forces that shaped the geology of the Kansas City area, and what effect that geology has on our lives today.

June 22 through Sept. 12, 2015, an exhibit curated by Dr. Gentile called “Paleo Kansas City -Geology and Paleontology of the Great Plains Region” will be on view at Linda Hall Library (West Exhibition Gallery); 5109 Cherry Street, Kansas City, Mo. 64110. The exhibit features fossils from the Pennsylvanian Period and the Pliestocene Epoch.


This drawing was done for the presentation by George Martin

Dr. Gentile, Professor Emeritus of Geosciences at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, has published over 50 books and five geologic maps.  He has done extensive fossil collecting and is an expert on the geology of the Greater Kansas City area.  His research specialty is the cyclical stratiagraphy and paleontology of the Pennsylvanian-age rocks of western and northwestern Missouri, especially the Greater Kansas City area. He is currently the Curator of the Richard L. Sutton Geosciences Museum at UMKC.


Westport CoffeeHouse – 4010 Pennsylvania Kansas City, Mo – www.westportcoffeehouse.com

The Westport CoffeeHouse is in the Westport entertainment area, midtown KC, south of downtown and north of the Plaza.  The main intersection is Westport Rd and Broadway.  From this intersection, go west on Westport Rd one block to Pennsylvania. Turn north (right).

OR you can get there from the intersection of Southwest Trafficway and Westport Rd.  Go east on Westport Rd to Pennsylvania. Turn north (left).

Westport Coffee House is approximately one block down on the west side of Pennsylvania.  Parking can be had either south of the coffee house in the large parking lot or just north of the coffee house alongside the building.  Enter through Green Room Burgers or Westport CoffeeHouse.

Resources and Links

Dig deeper for more info.

Additional KC Geology on the Web

The Big Muddy Speakers Series in Kansas City

is hosted by these wonderful partners!

Thanks to all of our venue hosts for making this possible! Click here for a list of upcoming presentations» The Big Muddy Speaker Series is also held monthly in Rocheport and St. Charles.

Recordings of Presentations

Kansas City Digital Video has been recording Big Muddy Speaker Series presentations. These are available on their website at this link. Some contain synchronized powerpoint presentations. We will be posting these to the archived presentation pages on bigmuddyspeakers.org. Thanks Micheal Morgan and crew for putting this important archive online! The Big Muddy Speaker Series is partially funded by the Columbia Ecological Services Field Office (USFWS) and the Mo. Dept. of Conservation.