Charlie Parker Celebration
6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 17, through Aug. 29 at multiple venues
The multi-day event recognizing the legacy of saxophonist and jazz icon Charlie Parker, a Kansas City native, will begin with an opening night reception at the American Jazz Museum and will culminate when Bobby Watson joins “12th Street Jump” at Musical Theater Heritage for a concert on Parker’s birthday. In between will be music, workshops, tours and more, including the KC Jazz Ambassadors BBQ on Saturday, Aug. 19, at Theis Park. Tickets can be purchased through charlieparkercelebration.org.
Kansas City Improv Festival
Never miss a local story.
Opens 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 17, at Kick Comedy Theater
If you have an aversion to laughter, you best avoid the 17th version of the Kansas City Improv Festival. Among those appearing in past years have been Jason Sudekis, Mick Napier, Susan Messing and Jill Bernard. This year’s headliners will include “Here! The Improvised Musical,” Laurelly (Laura Pritchard and Kelly Vrooman) and Sheldon, a two-man improv show. Also, 7 and 10 p.m. Friday, Aug. 18; 5, 7 and 10 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 19; 7 p.m. Aug. 24; 7 and 10 p.m. Aug. 25; 5, 7 and 10 p.m. Aug. 26. Tickets are $12-$20 through kcimprovfestival.com ($15-$25 at door).
7:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 17, at Sprint Center
Hillary Scott, Charles Kelley and Dave Haywood are touring in support of “Heart Break,” their sixth album but their first since 2014’s “747.” Lady Antebellum, which formed in 2006, has had nine No. 1 singles on the country charts, has won seven Grammy Awards and became the first artists to win the CMA Awards’ single of the year in back-to-back years. Kelsea Ballerini and Brett Young will open. 816-949-7000. Tickets are $29.50-$66.25 through sprintcenter.com.
Ethnic Enrichment Festival
6-10 p.m. Friday, Aug. 18; noon-10 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 19; noon-6 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 20; at Swope Park
Be sure to arrive hungry, because the choices of cuisine at the Ethnic Enrichment Festival will be mind-boggling. Representatives of more than 60 cultures will sell their native foods and crafts and will perform ethnic music and dances at one of the largest festivals of its kind in the country. Another highlight will be the free Kids’ World. $5 at gate. eeckc.net/events/ethnic-enrichment-festival.
Royals vs. Cleveland
7:15 p.m. Friday, Aug. 18; 6:15 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 19; 1:15 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 20; at Kauffman Stadium
The Royals will play probably the biggest series of the season in their effort to gain ground in the American League Central. These are their last home games against the Indians, although they have seven games remaining in Cleveland. Friday will be KU Night, Saturday will be Kevin Appier bobblehead night and Sunday will feature a classic car show. Also vs. Colorado, Aug. 22-24. 800-676-9257. Tickets are $19-$199 through kansascity.royals.mlb.com.
6-10 p.m. Friday, Aug. 18; 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 19; 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 20; at English Landing Park
Downtown Parkville is well worth a visit even when there is nothing special going on. But throw in all the activities associated with Parkville Days, and you have an almost can’t-miss event. Among the draws will be a carnival, arts and crafts, food, music and other live entertainment, a beer garden, Bargains on the Bricks and a parade (10 a.m. Saturday). 816-505-2227. parkvillemo.org/event/parkville-days-2. Free.
6 p.m. Friday, Aug. 18, at Helzberg Hall
“Perspective: Where You Stand Matters” will be the evening’s theme, with talks by researchers, inventors, best-selling authors, engineers, poets, activists, artists and musicians. Among them will be Angela Speck, the co-chair of a national task force preparing the nation for the Aug. 21 total eclipse of the sun; Louis Rosenberg, an expert on artificial intelligence; and actress Nia Orms, who will discuss love in a man’s world. Afterward, the Act III Reception will feature food, refreshments, live music, art and experiential happenings. Kauffman Center. Tickets are $55 ($28 for simulcast in Muriel Kauffman Theatre) through tedxkc.org.
9 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 19, at Ameristar Casino
Although he’s married and the father of two (daughter April June May and son August James May), Ralphie May has described his comedy act thusly: “I’m a filthy dirty animal.” May, who finished second in the first season of “Last Comic Standing” in 2003, has had a residency this year at Harrah’s in Las Vegas but still finds time to tour. He also starred in a Netflix special that was released in February. 816-414-7000. Tickets are $25-$45 through ameristar.com.
Sporting Kansas City vs. Dallas
7:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 19, at Children’s Mercy Park
Sporting’s defense carried it to first place in Major League Soccer’s Western Conference, but FC Dallas has kept pace with a defense that has been nearly as stingy. This will be the third and final regular-season match between the teams — they played to a 0-0 tie here on March 11; FC Dallas won 1-0 on April 22 in Dallas — and first place could be on the line. 913-387-3400. Tickets are $42-$69 through sportingkc.com.
Play at the Park and Giant Swan Races
8 a.m. Sunday, Aug. 20, at Berkley Riverfront Park
Looking for something different to do with the kids on an August Sunday? This could be just the ticket. The day will begin with sunrise yoga, which will be followed by live music, children’s activities, picnicking and swan races on the Missouri River. Six-foot swans are available for purchase, with the grand prize race winner earning $3,000. Friends of the River KC will be host of the event. berkleyriverfrontparkkc.com/event/play-at-the-park. Free (swans for racing, $125).
Monday, Aug. 21, everywhere
Unless you live another 188 years or so, this will be your last chance to see a total solar eclipse in the Kansas City area. Locally, it will begin at 11:41 a.m., reach total eclipse at 1:08 p.m. and end at 2:35 p.m. There will be watch parties all over town. The total eclipse will last longer in a swath running from northwest of Kansas City to southeast, and areas such as St. Joseph and Lathrop will draw viewers from around the world. More information at www.eclipse2017.org and greatamericaneclipse.com.
“Motown the Musical”
Opens 8 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 22, at Starlight Theatre
This jukebox musical that premiered on Broadway in April 2013 is based on Motown founder Berry Gordy’s autobiography, but plot takes a back seat to music. The Broadway National Tour production will include dozens of classic songs that sparked the careers of Diana Ross, Michael Jackson, Smokey Robinson and others, although most of the hits are truncated versions. Runs through Aug. 27. 816-363-7827. Tickets are $14-$140 through kcstarlight.com.
Also this week
Classical music and dance
Ensemble Iberica, “Viva Sevilla,” Aug. 18, Carlsen Center Polsky Theater. ensembleiberica.org
Summer Singers of Kansas City, “Judas Maccabaeus,” Aug. 20, Grace & Holy Trinity Cathedral. festivalsingers.org
Rodney Perry, Aug. 18-20, Kansas City Improv. improvkc.com
Music (rock, pop, jazz)
The Bayou Soul Review, Aug. 17, Knuckleheads. knuckleheadskc.com
Phil Vandel, Aug. 17, Kansas City Live. powerandlightdistrict.com
Railroad Earth, Aug. 17, Uptown. uptowntheater.com
The All-American Rejects, Aug. 18, Liberty Hall. libertyhall.net
Capital Cities, Aug. 18, KC Live. powerandlightdistrict.com
Dave Rawlings Machine, Aug. 18, Folly. follytheater.org
Die Antwoord, Aug, 18, Uptown. uptowntheater.com
Marco Antonio Solís, Aug. 18, Sprint Center. sprintcenter.com
Presley, Perkins, Lewis and Cash: A Night to Remember, Aug. 18, VooDoo. voodookc.com
The Rainmakers, Aug. 18, Nerman Museum. jccc.edu/performing-arts-series
Lez Zepplin, Aug. 19, Crossroads KC. crossroadskc.com
Luke Pell with Rusty Lafoon, Aug. 19, Kanza Hall. oneblocksouthkc.com
Father John Misty, Aug. 20, Crossroads KC. crossroadskc.com
Marty Friedman with Scale the Summit and the Fine Constant, Aug. 20, Riot Room. theriotroom.com
Pat Green, Aug. 20, Kansas City Live. powerandlightdistrict.com
The Weepies, Aug. 20, Knuckleheads. knuckleheadskc.com
City and Colour, Aug. 21, Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland. midlandkc.com
Firelei Báez, Aug. 18-June 24, Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art. kemperart.org
Kemper Museum Annual Block Party, Aug. 19, Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art. kemperart.org
Tiblow Days, Aug. 17-19, Downtown Bonner Springs. bsedwchamber.org/tiblowdays
Burlesque Downtown Underground, “Heroes & Villains,” Aug. 18, Opera House. kcburlesque.com
Kansas City Adult Prom, Aug. 19, Seventh Street Event Center. eventbrite.com/event/34376300440
“Talent Lives Here” Multi Talented Festival, Aug. 19, Prohibition Hall. eventbrite.com/event/36661343064
Kansas City T-Bones vs. Gary SouthShore, Aug. 18-20; vs. Cleburne, Aug. 21-23. CommunityAmerica Ballpark. tbonesbaseball.com