Upcoming in Kansas City, Mo.
Canoeing the Great Plains – A Missouri River Summer
Presentation by author and historian Patrick Dobson, PhD
Tired of an unfulfilling life in Kansas City, Missouri, Patrick Dobson left his job and set off on foot across the Great Plains. After two and a half months, 1,450 miles, and numerous encounters with the people of the heartland, Patrick arrived in Montana. He then set a canoe on the Missouri and asked the river to carry him safely back to Kansas City, hoping this enigmatic watercourse would help reconnect him with his life. Patrick will share the story he recounts in his book “Canoeing the Great Plains – A Missouri River Summer”.
Time and Place
Tuesday, May 26, 2015
Westport CoffeeHouse Theater
View on map
Presentation by author and historian Patrick Dobson, PhD, Johnson County Community College
Tuesday, May 26, 2015
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
Presentation is FREE and open to the public! Click here for event flier (pdf)
Tired of an unfulfilling life in Kansas City, Missouri, Patrick Dobson left his job and set off on foot across the Great Plains. After two and a half months, 1,450 miles, and numerous encounters with the people of the heartland, Patrick arrived in Helena, Montana. He then set a canoe on the Missouri and asked the river to carry him safely back to Kansas City, hoping this enigmatic watercourse would help reconnect him with his life.
Patrick will discuss his new book Canoeing the Great Plains: A Missouri River Summer and a journey undertaken nearly 20 years ago that proved to be transformative. Dobson, a novice canoeist when he begins his trip, faces the Missouri at a time of dangerous flooding and must learn to trust himself to the powerful flows of the river and its stark and serenely beautiful countryside. He meets a cast of characters along the river who assist him both with the mundane tasks of canoeing—portaging around dams and reservoirs and finding campsites—and with his own personal transformation. Mishaps, mistakes, and misadventures plague his trip, but over time the river shifts from being a frightening adversary to a welcome companion.
Patrick Dobson, PhD, is a writer, historian, and ironworker. When not teaching at Johnson County Community College, where he is an adjunct associate professor, he works as a bridge builder doing structural, reinforcing, and ornamental ironwork.
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.
- Click here for event flier (pdf)
- Patrick Dobson’s Website
- His author page on Facebook
- Purchase “Canoeing the Great Plains – A Missouri River Summer”
- Interview with Patrick on KCUR “Central Standard” (50:55) April 17, 2015
- VIDEO – “Changing the River’s Course: Water, Conservation and Reform in the Progressive Era” – an hour long presentation by Patrick Dobson, March 4, 2015
- Review in Kansas City Star – “Readorama: A Kansas City man and his 2,200-mile canoe trip on the Missouri”
Some more articles and books by Patrick Dobson –
- Editorial in Pitch Weekly – “Mud Money”, Oct. 12, 2000 – regarding navigation’s influence on Missouri River policy
- Purchase Patrick’s other book, “Seldom Seen – A Journey into the Great Plains”
- “More than a River – Using Nature for Reform in the Progressive Era” – PhD Dissertation
The Big Muddy Speakers Series in Kansas City
is hosted by these wonderful partners!
- Little Blue River Watershed Coalition
- Friends of Lakeside Nature Center
- Missouri River Relief
- Healthy Rivers Partnership
- Kansas City Digital Video
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.