Plaza Lighting Ceremony
5 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 23, at Country Club Plaza
For those willing to brave the weather and the crowds, this is the ultimate Kansas City holiday tradition. The flip of the switch for the 88th annual Plaza Lighting Ceremony, from the main stage at Nichols Road and Pennsylvania Avenue, is scheduled for 6:45 p.m. Giveaways and performances will precede the big moment, which will be followed by fireworks and a concert by the Elders. Lights will shine 5 p.m.-3 a.m. daily through Jan. 14. countryclubplaza.com/event/plaza-lights.
Mayor’s Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony
5:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 24, at Crown Center Square
The 100-foot tree, to be illuminated by Mayor Sly James and a celebrity guest, is just one of the many holiday attractions at Crown Center. Also Friday, Santa will arrive by horse-drawn carriage at Crown Center Shops at 10 a.m., and two displays — Santa’s Gingerbread Station and EBT Santa’s Countdown to Christmas — will open. Other holiday entertainment options include the Crown Center Ice Terrace and “A Charlie Brown Christmas” at the Coterie. 816-274-8444. crowncenter.com. Free.
“A Christmas Bette!”
Opens 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 24, at Martin City Melodrama & Vaudeville Co.
The Martin City Melodrama & Vaudeville Co. will open its 33rd season in a new home with an original musical spoof of “A Christmas Carol.” An aging Bette Davis decides to make a comeback in the middle of the production and proceeds to upstage everyone else in the cast. Martin City’s artistic director, Jeanne Beechwood, will portray Bette. Runs through Jan. 1. 913-642-7576. Tickets are $11.99-$13.99 through martincitymelodrama.org.
Christmas Candlelight Tour
6-8:30 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Nov. 24-25, at Harris-Kearney House
It’s Christmas Eve 1860, and Col. John and Henrietta Harris and their children are welcoming friends and family to their Greek revival house just east of the town of West Port. The Westport Historical Society will provide the decorations and refreshments for the enjoyment of modern-day interlopers, who can depart on tours of the historic house every 15 minutes. 816-561-1821. westporthistorical.com. $7-$10.
“Christmas in Song”
Opens 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 24, at Quality Hill Playhouse
Vocalists LaTeesha McDonald Jackson, Joseph Carr and Sarah LaBarr will join pianist and emcee J. Kent Barnhart for a cabaret revue that is sure to be enjoyed by the entire family. They will perform holiday songs and carols covering the entire musical spectrum, from sacred and secular to popular and traditional to gospel and classical. Runs through Dec. 24. 816-421-1700. Tickets are $35-$38 through qualityhillplayhouse.com.
Kansas City Symphony, “Romantic Royalty: Tchaikovsky and Chopin”
8 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Nov. 24-25, and 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 26, at Helzberg Hall
The Symphony will perform three Romantic-era works, including Chopin’s Second Piano Concerto with solo pianist Andrew Tyson. Also on the program will be Tchaikovsky’s “Pathétique” symphony, of which the composer said he “loved it as I have never loved any of my other musical offspring,” and Borodin’s “Overture to Prince Igor.” Kauffman Center. 816-471-0400. Tickets are $30-$90 through kcsymphony.org.
1 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 25, at Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland
Shopkins and Shoppies will evolve from thumb-size toys to life-size performers as the popular grocery store-themed collectibles come to life onstage through urban style music, song and dance. In the Shopkins’ first theatrical show, Shady Diva will showcase her latest fashion designs, Lippy Lips will dispense advice at the nail salon and Kooky Cookie will try to get in a beauty nap. 816-283-9921. Tickets are $32.50-$42.50 through midlandkc.com.
Chiefs vs. Buffalo
Noon Sunday, Nov. 26, at Arrowhead
The Sunday after Thanksgiving will certainly be a day on which Chiefs fans will give thanks — for the chance to actually see their team play in person. This matchup with the Bills will be the Chiefs’ first home game in nearly a month and their only home game in a stretch between Oct. 30 (vs. Broncos) and Dec. 10 (vs. Raiders). On the other hand, it also begins a season-closing six-week slate featuring four games at Arrowhead. 816-920-9300. Tickets are $43-$250 through chiefs.com.
“Raggedy Ann & Andy’s Christmas Adventure”
Opens 10 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 28, at H&R Block City Stage Theater
Raggedy Ann has been around for more than 100 years, and her brother Andy for nearly as long. But the two red-headed rag dolls will embark on their first Christmas stage adventure as part of a Theatre for Young America production at Union Station. They will enter the Deep Woods to rescue light, warmth and the spirit of Christmas for the diverse population that lives inside Marcella’s toy chest. Runs through Dec. 30. 816-460-2020 or 816-460-2083. Tickets are $11 through unionstation.org or tya.org.
Cantus, “Three Tales of Christmas”
7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 29, at Lied Center
In “Three Tales of Christmas,” Cantus reimagines familiar stories through traditional carols and new holiday songs. The performance by the eight-man vocal chamber ensemble based in Minneapolis-St. Paul will feature narrated passages from three classic holiday tales that reveal the meaning and joy of the season with a fresh perspective. 785-864-2787. Tickets are $11-$35 through lied.ku.edu.
“Fine Lines: Whistler and the American Etching Revival”
Opens Wednesday, Nov. 29, at Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
James Abbott McNeill Whistler (born in 1834 in Lowell, Mass.) is known far and wide for the 1871 painting of his mother. But Whistler also was America’s premier etcher, and this installation celebrates his achievements in the craft. It showcases works from the American Etching Revival of the late-19th and early-20th centuries and beyond. Runs through May 27. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Wednesday and Saturday-Sunday, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Thursday-Friday. 816-751-1278. nelson-atkins.org. Free.
“Stupid F---ing Bird”
Opens 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 29, at Unicorn Theatre
Co-produced by Unicorn and UMKC Theatre, this play by Aaron Posner that reimagines Chekhov’s “The Seagull” has a full title that isn’t suited for a family newspaper. But then, children are not its target audience. It follows an aspiring director, a young actress, an aging Hollywood star and a famous author who discover the joys and heartbreaks of creating art. Runs through Dec. 23. 816-531-7529. Tickets are $32-$42 through unicorntheatre.org.
Also this week
Aries Spears, Nov. 22 and 24-26, Kansas City Improv. improvkc.com
You’ll Stay Laughin’ Tour, Nov. 29, Kansas City Improv. improvkc.com
Music (rock, pop, jazz)
Ramon Ayala, Nov. 23, Blvd Nights. ticketmaster.com
Rittz with Sam Lachow and Eric Biddines, Nov. 25, Riot Room. theriotroom.com
Michael Jackson Tribute Show, Nov. 26, Granada. thegranada.com
Straight No Chaser, Nov. 29, Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland. midlandkc.com
Holidays Come Alive ceremony, Nov. 23, Union Station. unionstation.org/holidays
Downtown Dazzle, Nov. 24-Jan. 1, downtown Kansas City. dazzlekc.com
I’ll Be Home for Christmas, Nov. 24-Dec. 30, Bingham-Waggoner Estate. bwestate.org
Victorian Holiday Elegance, Nov. 24-Dec. 30, Vaile Mansion. vailemansion.org
Winterfest, Nov. 24-Dec. 30, Worlds of Fun. worldsoffun.com
Kansas City Mavericks vs. Quad City, Nov. 26; vs. Kalamazoo, Nov. 29. Silverstein Eye Centers Arena. kcmavericks.com