Here is the highlight reel of what’s happening in arts and entertainment in Downtown KC from Monday to Sunday, June 26-July 2:
CrossroadsKC at Grinders will be rockin’ this week with two outdoor shows, featuring:
- Dark Star Orchestra brings its signature Grateful Dead concert experience back to KC at 8 p.m. Friday
- Dirty Heads headlines a powerhouse show – featuring SOJA, The Green and RDGLDGRN – that begins at 7 p.m. Saturday
Ed Sheeran – Global superstar and multi-GRAMMY winner Ed Sheeran has quickly established himself as one of the world’s biggest musical artists with more than 22 million albums sold. He will perform in a sold out show at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at Sprint Center.
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 next 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.
KKFI Collaborations – A night of innovative original music, film, and dance. Seven sets of arts organizations will perform a series of original, spectacular, and unique collaborative artistic creations, live on the world famous Folly Theater stage. The evening, a fundraiser for KKFI 90.1FM, Kansas City Community Radio, is set for 6-10 p.m. Friday at the Folly Theater.
Lucile Bluford Day – Lucile Bluford, for whom the Kansas City Public Library’s L.H. Bluford Branch is named, was a leading voice in the civil rights movement in Kansas City and helped make The Call one of the largest and most important African-American newspapers in the nation. In recognition a year ago, the state of Missouri designated July 1—her birthday—as Lucile Bluford Day. Her legacy will be celebrated with special exhibits and a program beginning at 11 a.m. Saturday at the Lucile H. Bluford Branch. RSVP here.
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.
Movies in City Market Park makes its summer debut with Bill Murray and Owen Wilson in The Life Aquatic, showing this Friday. Come early and enjoy dinner at your favorite City Market restaurants and then head over to City Market Park for the Alamo Drafthouse pre-show at 8:30 p.m. Bring your lawn chair, blanket and cooler. Sweet treats will be available for purchase from Alamo Drafthouse concessions. City Market Park is at 3rd & Main. Admission is free and the film begins at 9 p.m.
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.
Power & Light District will light up Downtown with back-to-back nights of live music:
- Josh Abbott Band will get things 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.
- Bleachers kicks off the weekend with a concert from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Friday at Kansas City Live! Ages 21+ only. Special guest is Muna, Tickets are available through Ticketfly.com.
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.
- Musical Monday & Tuesday features 2017 Tony Award Musicals and songs from this year’s selection of Broadway’s top musicals, including unes from Dear Evan Hansen, Groundhog Day, Come From Away, The Great Comet, Hello, Dolly!, Falsettos, and Miss Saigon. Performances are set for 7:30 p.m. today (Monday) and Tuesday at MTH Theater at Crown Center.
- Nelly Don – The Musical – This workshop concert-reading is part of MTH’s “New Musical Incubator” initiative that began in 2016 with the original musical HURRICANE. This event is free to the public; however, reservations are required. Nelly Don takes center stage at 8 p.m. Saturday at MTH Theater at Crown Center.
- Priscilla Queen of the Desert – Come along on a musical journey of self-discovery and the road trip of a lifetime that will have you dancing in the aisles! Priscilla runs (or, dances) through Sunday at the Unicorn Theatre.
- 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