Independence Day is the hottest attraction of the coming week, but Downtown Kansas City is home to a healthy diet of tasty arts and entertainment celebrations for the week ahead. Here is the highlight reel of what’s happening in Downtown KC from Monday to Sunday, July 3-9:
CrossroadsKC at Grinders will celebrates its independence this week with two awesome outdoor shows:
- 311 – a mix rock, rap, reggae and funk into their own unique sound – has developed a reputation as one of the hardest working, most influential and most entertaining live bands in the U.S. 311 returns to Downtown at 7:30 p.m. Monday. Special guests include New Politics and The Skints.
- Future Fields, A New Sensory Experience, will feature Le Youth, Quixotic, Sheppa, Blk Mario, Casio McCombs & more will take flight at 8 p.m. Saturday.
First Friday – one of the KC’s coolest/hottest events of the year – returns for its July festivities with visual and performing arts bursting throughout Downtown with:
- The full First Friday experiences at the Crossroads Arts District and the 18th & Vine Jazz District from 5-9 p.m.
- One of the country’s most complete vintage marketplaces – First Friday Warehouse Weekends – returns to the West Bottoms on Friday through Sunday.
Hollywood the Musical, a melodrama stage musical, is a story that’s meant to inspire young artists to find their true identity and to be true to who they are. This family production hits the stage at 2:30 and 7 p.m. Saturday at the Folly Theater.
Jill Scott – the tour de force Grammy-winning singer-songwriter, New York Times best selling poet, and critically acclaimed actress – will perform in concert at 8 p.m. Thursday at the Midland Theatre.
KC Riverfest – Kansas City’s Independence Day celebration – featuring fireworks (beginning at 9:40 p.m.), music, food, drinks and family fun is set for Tuesday, July 4 in Berkley Riverfront Park. Entertainment begins at 4:45 p.m. with two stages of bands and DJs, plus a National Wrasslin’ League matches. headlining the entertainment will be Members Only at 8:15 p.m. and Flanagan’s Right Hook at 7 p.m.. For ticket information, parking tips, entertainment schedule and more, visit KCRiverfest.com.
Lunchtime Arts Series – Catch one of two free, lunchtime arts events this week:
- Sky Smeed performs from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Wednesday aboard the KC Streetcar, as part of the Art on the Line series presented by Art in the Loop.
- Mnemosyne Quartet from noon to 1 p.m. Thursday at the Charlotte Street Performing Arts Showcase, 23 E. 12th St. Free live performances and pizza. The weekly series continues through July 13.
Mummies of the World: The Exhibition has arrived at Union Station! Described as “fascinating, intriguing, and inspiring,” by NBC, “absolutely extraordinary,” by NPR and “a must see,” by FOX TV, Mummies of the World instills a sense of curiosity and wonder in each and every visitor. Having been visited by more than 1.6 million people nationwide, Mummies of the World: The Exhibition is one of the most popular museum exhibitions traveling North America. For tickets and more information, visit UnionStation.org/Mummies.
OneRepublic, one of the country’s hottest pop rock bands, has its sights set of Downtown Kansas City this week with a concert date at 7 p.m. Friday at the Sprint Center. Opening acts include Fitz & The Tantrums and James Arthur.
Power & Light District will light up Downtown with back-to-back nights of live music:
- Noe Palma will get the weekend cookin’ with a free concert – part of the summer Hot Country Nights series – at 7 p.m. Thursday at Kansas City Live! All ages and families are welcome. Anyone under 21 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. 21+ and over after 9 p.m.
- Pirates Party – Sprint Family Fun Days offers a free opportunity for families to explore Downtown KC through a treasure find, drums with Brandon Draper’s Drum Safari, climbing to the top of the Lost Temple and splashing through the Super Splash Slide. Activities include live music, bounce houses, games, arts & crafts and more. This free party is set for 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday on 14th Street between Main & Walnut streets.
Queen + Adam Lambert – Since their first meeting on the final of American Idol in May 2009, Queen + Adam Lambert’s magical combination has been recognized worldwide. Brian May, Roger Taylor + Adam Lambert will debut a brand new show specially designed and created for this outing, bringing fans all their favorite Queen hits. The much-anticipated tour will rock KC at 8 p.m. Sunday at Sprint Center.
Remembering the Great War – Historian James Heiman examines the Liberty Memorial’s place among the city’s Great War memorials. He draws from his book Voices in Bronze and Stone: Kansas City’s World War I Monuments and Memorials is this presentation at 2 p.m. Sunday in the Central Library. RSVP now.
Weekender: The Parent Trap – Cap off your week with top local bands and favorite food trucks. Shop the wares of KC artisans and finish the evening with a famous flick under the stars. Festivities begin at 6 p.m., with the movie starting at approximately 9 p.m. FREE admission. Only at Crown Center.
LIVE THEATER is thriving on Downtown stages, which feature these three performances this week:
- Garfield – The Musical with Cattitude – Everyone’s favorite feline and his friends are on stage this summer to perform a musical for all ages. Garfield runs through Aug. 6 at The Coterie at Crown Center.
- You’ve Got A Friend – Turn back the clock to the 1960s and 70s for this cabaret celebration of the music of the Baby Boomer generation. Enjoy hearing favorites from Carole King, James Taylor, Bob Dylan, Janis Ian, and Peter, Paul and Mary, all performed by a dynamite vocal trio backed by piano, bass, and drums. Performances continue through Sunday, July 9 at the Quality Hill Playhouse.
ARTS – your guide to arts and culture in greater Kansas City:
- ArtsKCGo is the new, online guide to arts and cultural events in greater Kansas City – including First Fridays, Art in the Loop, Charlotte Street and all other Downtown-centric events. ArtsKCGo.com is a service of ArtsKC, the Regional Arts Council of Kansas City. Check it out!
LIVE MUSIC – of all tastes and flavors – is performed at these Downtown venues on most nights:
- Angel’s Rock Bar in the Power & Light District
- Blue Room in the Historic 18th & Vine Jazz District
- The Brick in the Crossroads Arts District
- The Dubliner in the Power & Light District
- Gem Theater in the Historic 18th & Vine Jazz District
- Green Lady Lounge in the Crossroads
- Haverty Family Yards at Union Station
- Howl at the Moon in the Power & Light District
- KC Live Block! in the Power & Light District
- Kill Devil Club in the Power & Light District
- Knuckleheads Saloon in the East Bottoms
- Leinenkugel’s Kansas City in the Power & Light District
- The Majestic in the Downtown Loop
- The Midland in the Downtown Loop
- Mosaic Ultra Lounge in the Power & Light District
- Mutual Musicians Foundation in the 18th & Vine Jazz District
- The Phoenix in the Downtown Loop
- PBR Big Sky in the Power & Light District
- Prohibition Hall in the Downtown Loop
- Record Bar in the Crossroads
- The Ship in the West Bottoms
- Stockyards Brewing Company in the West Bottoms
- The Tank Room in the Crossroads
- The Truman in the East Crossroads – Coming soon!
MUSEUMS are alive and well throughout Downtown, including these 16 destinations:
- Airline History Museum in Hangar 9 at the Downtown Airport
- American Jazz Museum in the historic 18th & Vine Jazz District
- American Royal Museum in the West Bottoms
- Arabia Steamboat Museum in the City Market
- Black Archives of Mid-America in the historic 18th & Vine Jazz District
- Hallmark Visitors Center at Crown Center
- Historic Garment District Museum in the Downtown Loop at 801 Broadway
- Kansas City Museum in northeast KC at 3218 Gladstone Blvd.
- Money Museum at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City
- National Archives of Kansas City, west of Union Station
- National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame at the Sprint Center
- The National WWI Museum and Memorial at Liberty Memorial
- Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in the historic 18th & Vine Jazz District
- Science City at Union Station
- TWA Museum at the Downtown Airport
- Union Station Gallery at Union Station
For more of what’s happening in Downtown and Kansas City, check out our friends at VisitKC.com
Public Parking Maps of Downtown KC are available at DowntownKC.org.