The mayor and city council of Kansas City, Missouri, like to talk at each other. And sometimes the noisemaking leads to them being really rude hosts.
The girls golf team at Notre Dame de Sion went to City Hall on Thursday to be recognized for winning their fourth consecutive Class 2 state title. But an hour after the 3 p.m. council meeting was scheduled to begin, the council was nowhere in sight. So the golfers left.
City leaders were talking about whatever it is they talk about when the Channel 2 cameras are off. The mayor and council went behind closed doors after the business session, which takes place on a different floor prior to the 3 p.m. legislative meeting.
The closed sessions run long when the council is in the mood to micromanage, as appeared to be the case on Thursday. City clerk Vickie Thompson and other city staff apologized to the golfers and their adult supervisors as they waited in the drafty chamber.
To pass the time, the girls visited the vending machines on the 8th floor. A photographer took their picture as they stood behind the podium that Mayor Mark Funkhouser uses when the council decides to conduct business in public. Finally, a staff person presented the golfers with bound versions of the resolution recognizing their achievement.
The golfers and their entourage headed for the exit a little after 4 p.m. Things to do, places to go. Dana Hoeper, the golf coach at Sion, had been down this road before. She brought her '07 team to City Hall only to have to wait for the council to get its act together. "They finally stared at a quarter of 5," Hoeper said. She did not take her golfers downtown after they won championships in '08 and '09.
Hoeper's 2010 team was especially impressive. On the first day of the two-day tournament in Springfield, the Sion golfers shot an average score of 74.75, which is college-player territory.
The team was senior-led. "Rebuilding year next year," Hoeper said. Whatever the outcome of 2011 season, a return appearance to City Hall seems unlikely.