My 2 cents: KCMO: Jackson County is consisted of the Plaza, Westport, Midtown, Downtown, West Bottoms, and other areas that others have mentioned. Personally if I lived in an urban setting, I would live in the Plaza as opposed to the other areas. Older age but still young. Close to everything and has shopping (Halls, Tiffany's, Tivol, Burberry, etc, etc), also few blocks away from Nelson-Atkins Art Museum. Westport and Midtown has your share of hippies and drifters. Westport used to be a nice area but has deteriorated in the last few years (not going to state the reasons here, don't want to be labeled a racist). Downtown has be rebuilt since I moved here 7 years ago. The main attractions are Power and Light District, the Sprint Center, the Art District, KC symphony, and other typical downtown attractions. Downside: dead during weekdays, lots of drunk hicks on the weekends. The jazz district by 12th and vine has Arthur Bryant's BBq, but I wouldn't live there. Don't want to get shot at night (drug infested apartments on the east and prospect/troost on the west). Troost was featured on MTV as one of the most dangerous streets in the nation before. The burbs consists of North KC, Independence, Blue Springs, Lee's Summit, etc. I wouldn't recommend the burbs unless you like driving. KCKS: not much in downtown area except drug holes, factories, run-down houses. The burbs are nice. Overland Park is a huge area which consists many smaller neighborhoods, I currently live in Leawood. Mission Hills is also nice if you spend a mil to buy a house. The Garmin guy grew up in Mission Hills. OP has your fair share of suburban restaurants/bars. Not so much night life, but if you have a kids or a family, definitely an area to consider. Good points: BBq, steak, beer (boulevard and other smaller micro-breweries), Mexican food, white girls, lots of Vietnamese, good jazz, some decent colleges around, people are generally nicer and more relaxed, good schools to raise kids and family. Cost of living is cheap, but nice things can be had. Bad points: nothing to do at night, no culture, close-mindedness, white girls, lots of northface/uggs/abercrombie/hollister/true religion (horrible dressers), highest meth users in the nation (might be a good thing if you want the occasional hit), cold winters but hot summers, no massive transit, obesity. Feel free to add or change.