Thursday at the Lied Center
The final episode of “Parks and Recreation” is scheduled to air on Feb. 24. In anticipation of the show’s conclusion, many admirers have suggested that “Parks and Recreation” ranks alongside “Seinfeld,” “I Love Lucy” and “M*A*S*H” as one of the greatest comedy series in the history of television. In the role of Ron Swanson, Nick Offerman is a big part of the program’s success. In addition to offering insights into the show’s conclusion, Offerman’s presentation is likely to reference his passion for woodworking and popular music.
7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb.12. Lied Center. 1600 Stewart, Lawrence. 785-864-2787. lied.ku.edu. The show is officially sold out.
Thursday at the Sprint Center
Although Barry Manilow is 71, he still possesses the cheerful exuberance of the young man who initially dazzled the world with a string of sunny pop songs in the 1970s. Released in 1978, Manilow’s first greatest hits album contained gems like “Mandy,” “Looks Like We Made It” and “I Write the Songs.” The latter composition, a ditty about creating a “worldwide symphony,” is Manilow’s statement of purpose. Manilow has pledged that his current One Last Time tour is his final arena campaign. Smooth jazz saxophonist Dave Koz opens the show.
7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 12. Sprint Center. 816-949-7000. sprintcenter.com. $19.75-$129.75.
Chinese New Year celebration
Friday at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
The Chinese New Year will be celebrated a few days early at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. While the calendar doesn’t officially change over until Feb. 19, a full evening of activities are planned on Feb. 13. The musical offerings include two performances on the pipa, an ancient Chinese instrument, by Hon Ki Cheung in the Chinese Main Gallery. A troupe of acrobats from Yinchuan, China, will astound audiences during three demonstrations in Atkins Auditorium. The Shaolin Lohan Pai Lion Dance Troupe of St. Louis are among the entertainers appearing in Kirkwood Hall. Visitors may also indulge in tea tastings, play Chinese board games and take selfies while dressed in Chinese robes.
5-9 p.m. Friday, Feb. 13. Nelson-Atkins Museum. 816-751-1278. nelson-atkins.org. Free.
The Beach Boys
Friday at Ameristar Casino
Surf’s up! Landlocked area residents may still be in winter’s clutches, but their daydreams about California sunshine and perfect waves will be enlivened by the Beach Boys’ appearance at Ameristar Casino. Fans who don’t care for Brian Wilson’s sonic experiments will be in luck. The eccentric genius isn’t expected to participate in the current tour. Bruce Johnston and Mike Love are likely to be the only original members of the group on the stage. Consequently, the set list will favor early fun-filled hits such as “Help Me, Rhonda,” “Surfer Girl,” “Be True to Your School” and “Surfin’ Safari.”
8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 13. Ameristar Casino. 816-414-7000. ameristar.com. $45-$65.
World of Wheels
Friday-Sunday at the Kansas City Convention Center
For many people, cars and motorcycles represent little more than a means of transportation. World of Wheels isn’t organized with them in mind. Men and women who love flashy, rare and high-performance vehicles, however, excitedly attend the exhibition as if they’re kids in a candy shop. This weekend’s showcase of “America’s finest hot rods, customs, trucks and motorcycles” features special showings of lowriders and muscle cars. A bit of Hollywood-style flash will be provided by the appearance of teen actress Peyton List and a collection of vehicles featured in the “The Fast and the Furious” films.
3-10 p.m. Friday, Feb. 13; 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 14; 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 15. Kansas City Convention Center. 248-373-1700. autorama.com. $18 per day, $6 for children 6-12, children 5 and under are free.
Mardi Gras Kansas City
While few endeavors can fully replicate the sights, sounds and tastes of New Orleans, this weekend’s Mardi Gras Kansas City celebration at the Power & Light District is an admirable attempt to conjure the lively atmosphere of the Crescent City. The festivities kick off with Friday’s masquerade ball. Masked revelers will be entertained by a jazz band, a DJ and a performance by students from the Quixotic School of Performing Arts, the beneficiary of the charitable bash. Hardy celebrants may opt to participate in the Mardi Gras 5K Run/Walk on Saturday morning. The day’s street festival in the Power & Light District includes live music, a Cajun cook-off, eating contests and the tasty beverages associated with New Orleans.
▪ Mardi Gras Masquerade Ball: 7-11 p.m. Friday, Feb. 13. Gallery Event Space and Kill Devil Club. powerandlightdistrict.com. $50.
▪ Mardi Gras 5K: 10 a.m.-noon Saturday, Feb. 14. Kansas City Live! powerandlightdistrict.com. $35.
▪ Street Festival: 11 a.m.-11:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 14. Kansas City Live! powerandlightdistrict.com. Free.
Jim Brickman with the Kansas City Symphony
Friday and Saturday at Helzberg Hall
Jim Brickman’s new album “Pure Romance” opens with a track titled “Valentine.” The pianist has long been a big draw in Kansas City, but the timing of his two concerts this weekend has made tickets to the performances one of the hottest commodities in town. The prospect of holding hands in Helzberg Hall as Brickman and the Kansas City Symphony create unabashedly romantic sounds on Valentine’s Day weekend is many couples’ idea of a perfect date. The Ohio native has been crafting New Age and easy listening compositions for more than 20 years. His fruitful collaborations with acts including Lady Antebellum in recent years have further enhanced Brickman’s appeal.
8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 13, 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 14. Helzberg Hall. 816-471-0400. kcsymphony.org. $40-$85.
Tie the Knot
Saturday at the City Market
Aficionados of weddings who tend to cry during the ceremonies will need to bring plenty of handkerchiefs to the City Market on Saturday. Weddings will be conducted every 15 minutes from 4 to 7 p.m. on Valentine’s Day. The public is invited to watch the proceedings. Some couples will renew their vows, while others will be united in matrimony for the first time. Whatever the circumstances, post-nuptial parties can be held at one or more of the many establishments at the City Market. Some may opt for the rustic chic of Harry’s Country Club. Others will prefer to celebrate with international flair at the area’s Brazilian, Chinese, Ethiopian or French establishments.
4-7 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 14. City Market. 816-842-1272. thecitymarket.org. Free, registration is required but wedding licenses are optional.
Voice, “If Music Be the Food of Love”
Saturday at Polsky Theatre
True romantics who like to cast their devotion in terms of eternal love will find no better place to celebrate Valentine’s Day than Polsky Theatre. Voice, an a cappella trio based in London acclaimed for its exquisite harmonies, specializes in timeless songs of sacred and secular love. Voice’s repertoire in a program titled “If Music Be the Food of Love” will allow members of Saturday’s audience to relish renditions of many of the same songs that enhanced the relationships of lovers throughout the past few centuries.
8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 14. Polsky Theatre, Johnson County Community College. 913-469-4445. jccc.edu/theseries. $30.
“Full Time: A Laborious Art Exhibition”
Sunday-Friday at La Esquina
The rarefied realm of artists and the daily grind experienced by people employed in industrial settings usually seem like entirely separate worlds. An unusual project that begins Sunday at La Esquina intends to break down the divide between the fine arts and the often harsh realities of many construction, textile and factory workers. “Full Time: A Laborious Art Exhibition” is a combination of an art installation and a performance art piece. Artists will “work to create an edition of 150 concrete blocks and 150 cotton pillows” during eight-hour shifts. The contextual significance of the work will be discussed at an artist talk and reception on Friday evening.
Exhibition: 10 a.m.-7 p.m. (closed for lunch 2-3 p.m.) Sunday, Feb. 15-Thursday, Feb. 19. La Esquina. 816-994-7734. charlottestreet.org. Free.
Reception and artist talk: 6-9 p.m. Friday, Feb. 20. La Esquina. 816-994-7734. charlottestreet.org. Free.