KC Fringe Festival
Various locations from Thursday to July 26
Like channel surfers exploring the nether regions of the expansive offerings of a satellite television provider, attendees of the KC Fringe Festival are likely to encounter entertainment options ranging from the sublime to the absurd. Careful vetting of the dozens of options is strongly recommended. Among the most promising music-based presentations is an appearance by the India-based sitar master Arup Ratan Mukherjee. “Burlesque on the Rocks” is one of six burlesque-oriented programs. Theatrical stagings include jazz vocalist Lisa Henry’s “Dear White People: The Racism Monologues Set to Music.”
Thursday, July 16-Sunday, July 26. Multiple venues. 816-359-9195. kcfringe.org. $5 buttons are required to purchase tickets and gain access to free shows.
Fiery Stick Open
Friday at the National World War I Museum and Memorial
LiveKC, the organization that presented a surprise concert by Salt-N-Pepa at the Midnight Underground Circus in the basement of Municipal Auditorium in February, are staging the second edition of the Fiery Stick Open on Friday. Some attendees will view the event as an opportunity to win a million dollars by making a hole-in-one on the temporary golf range. Others will be on hand to dance to Girl Talk, the project of Gregg Gillis, the popular mashup DJ. Others will socialize at the millennial-targeted event while playing games of bocce ball and “giant beer pong.”
5-11 p.m. Friday, July 17. National World War I Museum and Memorial. fierystick.com. $20-$75.
Amelia Earhart Festival and Lakefest
Amelia Earhart Festival: Friday and Saturday in Atchison
LakeFest: Friday at Warnock Lake in Atchison
Atchison, the quaint town about an hour’s drive northwest of downtown Kansas City, will be transformed into a country music mecca on Friday. Lakefest features a terrific triple bill of the Eli Young Band, Easton Corbin and Cassadee Pope. Each act has racked up several appealing mainstream country hits. The gates open at 4 p.m. for the 7 p.m. concert, a schedule that provides revelers plenty of time to line up dance partners. The concert threatens to overshadow the remainder of the Amelia Earhart Festival. The event dedicated to the hometown heroine includes an airplane display, a carnival and a fireworks show.
Amelia Earhart Festival: Friday, July 17-Saturday, July 18. Atchison. 800-234-1854. atchisonkansas.net. Various prices.
LakeFest: 7 p.m. Friday, July 17. Warnock Lake, Atchison. 800-234-1854. atchisonkansas.net. $25 in advance or $30 at the gate.
Friday at Muriel Kauffman Theatre
There was a time when the thought of Patti LaBelle appearing at a formal concert hall like the Muriel Kauffman Theatre was preposterous. She and her collaborators specialized in earthy variations of popular music during much the 1960s and 1970s. She finally broke into the mainstream in 1975 with a scandalous song about prostitution. LaBelle’s dance hit “Lady Marmalade” initially appealed primarily to the jeans and T-shirt set. She has since become an expert interpreter of middle-of-the-road fare like the lush duet with Michael McDonald “On My Own” and the gorgeous ballad “If Only You Knew.”
7:30 p.m. Friday, July 17. Muriel Kauffman Theatre, Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts. 816-994-7200. kauffmancenter.org. $69-$129.
Miami County Fair and Rodeo, Wyandotte County Fair and the Platte County Fair
Miami County Fair and Rodeo: Saturday through July 26 in Paola
Wyandotte County Fair: Tuesday through July 25 at the Wyandotte County Fairgrounds
Platte County Fair: Wednesday through July 25 at the Platte County Fairgrounds
Connoisseurs of fried food, carnival midways and livestock shows in the greater Kansas City area can pick from an embarrassment of riches in the coming days. Fairs in Miami, Platte and Wyandotte counties will vie for the patronage of area residents. Each of the fairs offers a few distinctive elements. Organizers of the event boast that Platte County is the “home of the oldest continuously operating fair west of the Mississippi River.” Helicopter rides ($40 per person) are available at the Wyandotte County Fair. The Miami County Fair hosts an antique tractor and truck pull on Sunday.
Miami County Fair and Rodeo: Saturday, July 18-Sunday, July 26. Paola. 913-294-5090. miamicountykansasfair.com. Various prices.
Wyandotte County Fair, Tuesday, July 21-Saturday, July 25. Wyandotte County Fairgrounds. 913-788-7898. wycofair.com. Various prices.
Platte County Fair, Wednesday, July 22-Saturday, July 25. Platte County Fairgrounds, Tracy. plattecountyfair.com. Various prices.
“Flowers to Frost: Four Seasons in East Asian Art”
Opens Saturday at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
Not every area art lover has embraced Philip Haas’ enormous sculptures in the Donald J. Hall Sculpture Park at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. The 15-foot works inspired by Giuseppe Arcimboldo’s paintings depicting spring, summer, fall and winter are intentionally garish. A new exhibition at the museum showcases entirely different renderings of the four seasons. While it includes a video by contemporary Korean artist Lee Lee-Nam, most of the 56 items in the “Flowers to Frost: Four Seasons in East Asian Art” exhibition are delicate, centuries-old Japanese and Chinese paintings, prints and textiles.
Saturday, July 18-July 17, 2016. Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. 816-751-1278. nelson-atkins.org. Free.
Sporting Kansas City vs. Montreal
Saturday at Sporting Park
Fans of Sporting KC hope the 6-2 drubbing of FC Dallas on July 1 may prove to be a turning point in the club’s choppy season. Dom Dwyer’s four goals in the match broke a franchise record. Sporting KC scored four goals in the first half, the first time the club had achieved that feat since 1999. Saturday’s match against the Montreal Impact represents another promising opportunity for Sporting KC to show no mercy against an opponent. The Canadian club is a laggard in the Eastern Division of Major League Soccer. The first 10,000 fans through the gates will receive a Graham Zusi poster.
7:30 p.m. Saturday, July 18. Sporting Park. 913-912-7600. sportingkc.com. $20-$275.
Saturday at Penn Valley Park
One of the most underappreciated elements of dining at Chipotle is the interesting music played at outlets of the restaurant chain. The appealing combination of food and music will be amplified at Chipotle’s Cultivate Festival at Penn Valley Park on Saturday. The free event features performances by indie-rock acts and demonstrations by celebrity chefs. Portugal The Man, St. Lucia and Max Frost are among the performers. Chefs include Tim Love, Graham Elliot and Amanda Freitag, artful masters of the kitchen who can be frequently seen sharing their knowledge on television.
11 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturday, July 18. Penn Valley Park. chipotlecultivate.com. Free.
Kansas City’s Big Picnic
Sunday at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
Area residents don’t need an excuse to relax on the south grounds of the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. The vast lawn is one of the most scenic public spaces in Kansas City. Graceful tiers, shade trees, the Shuttlecocks of Claes Oldenburg and Coojse van Bruggen, Henry Moore’s elegant sculptures and Robert Morris’ new Glass Labyrinth add to the ambiance of the grounds. That’s why the return of the annual Big Picnic event is likely to attract an enthusiastic crowd. “Human ants,” a “giant checkerboard,” oversized Adirondack chairs and games including badminton will keep picnickers entertained.
4-7 p.m. Sunday, July 19. Donald J. Hall Sculpture Park and Theis Park. 816-513-7500. kcparks.org. Free.
Kansas City Royals vs. Pittsburgh
Monday through Wednesday at Kauffman Stadium
The bevy of players representing the Kansas City Royals at the All-Star Game will be able to provide scouting reports to their teammates prior to the series against the Pittsburgh Pirates of the National League. Members of the Royals pitching staff may seek guidance on how to handle the plate appearances by versatile center fielder Andrew McCutchen. Batters are likely to listen to tips about preparing to face the Pirates’ All-Star pitchers A.J. Burnett and Mark Melancon. A very good team with the misfortune to be in the same division as the powerhouse St. Louis Cardinals, the Pirates are a formidable opponent.
7:10 p.m. Monday, July 20, through Wednesday, July 22. Kauffman Stadium. 816-921-8000. kansascity.royals.mlb.com. $9-$83.
Jenny Milchman for “As Night Falls”
Monday at Rainy Day Books
For the satisfied customers of Rainy Day Books and the people who are entertained and enlightened at the regular author events sponsored by the Fairway shop, the bookstore’s ability to thrive in the digital age isn’t a mystery. In addition to personalized customer service, the venerable retailer continues to offer enticing programming. An ambitious new venture begins Monday. The initial installment of the Rainy Day Books Mystery Book Club is a presentation by Jenny Milchman. The author will discuss “As Night Falls,” a tale about a mother and daughter in an isolated home who receive a pair of unwanted visitors.
7 p.m. Monday, July 20. Rainy Day Books, 2706 W. 53rd St., Fairway. 913-384-3126. rainydaybooks.com. $26 not including sales tax, includes a copy of “As Night Falls.”
Monday at the Sprint Center
The career path of Dwayne Johnson indicates that reality shows and televised talent contests may not offer the fastest track to stardom. The lead actor in the blockbuster disaster movie “San Andreas” and the HBO series “Ballers” rose to fame on the professional wrestling circuit. Physically imposing and enormously charismatic men including Randy Orton and Brock Lesnar will receive tremendous exposure at the Sprint Center on Monday. Their performances will be viewed by millions of television viewers. The USA cable network claims that “WWE Raw” is “the most-watched, regularly scheduled, live year-round program on cable.”
6:30 p.m. Monday, July 20. Sprint Center. 816-949-7000. sprintcenter.com. $15-$105.
Ry Cooder, Sharon White and Ricky Skaggs
Tuesday at the Uptown Theater
The only constant of Ry Cooder’s remarkably eclectic career is his knack for surrounding himself with outstanding musicians. The guitarist, bandleader and producer has played rock, R&B, soul, jazz and folk. His collaborations with Malian musician Ali Farka Toure and the Cuban artists in the Buena Vista Social Club demonstrated his fluency in international settings. He’ll play bluegrass with Sharon White and Ricky Skaggs at the Uptown Theater on Tuesday. Skaggs was a pupil of bluegrass pioneers including Ralph Stanley. Spouses Skaggs and White also achieved chart success as mainstream country artists earlier in their careers.
8 p.m. Tuesday, July 21. Uptown Theater. 816-753-8665. uptowntheater.com. $25-$85.