Boulevardia takes on Kansas City (2016)
As always, this summer in the Kansas City area will be filled from stem to stern with festivals: community, county, ethnic and other traditional events.
In fact, you could attend one or more every weekend through early September, kicking off with Festa Italiana (May 31-June 2, Zona Rosa) and Old Shawnee Days (June 6-9, Shawnee) and running through SantaCaliGon Days (Aug. 30-Sept. 2, Independence Square) and the Spinach Festival (Sept. 7, Sar-Ko-Par Trails Park).
That’s not to mention annual favorites such as Boulevardia (June 14-15, West Bottoms), Riverfest (July 4, Berkley Riverfront Park) and the Ethnic Enrichment Festival (Aug. 16-18, Swope Park).
But the summer calendar also will feature some less-traditional festivals and fairs.
Two new ones will be TinyFest Midwest, a salute to the living-small trend that has become a national phenomenon, and Grand Carnivale, a three-week international celebration at Worlds of Fun.
And, for one time only, “Sesame Street” will celebrate its 50th anniversary with a special event in Kansas City.
Here are some of the summer highlights, plus our mega-list of summer festivals.
Tumbleweed Music Festival
May 30-June 1, La Cygne. tumbleweedcountry.com
The camping and socializing is as much of a draw as the music, which will include Alabama, Blackberry Smoke, the Marshall Tucker Band, Whiskey Myers, Reckless Kelly and more.
June 8-9, Louisburg Cider Mill. tinyfestmidwest.com
If you like TV shows such as “Tiny House Nation,” “Tiny House, Big Living” and “Tiny House Hunters,” you might have a tiny problem. In any case, this event is for you and all lovers of tiny living.
Heartland Yoga Festival
June 21-22, Unity Village. heartlandyogafest.com
This is mostly a chance for people to delve deep into yoga through classes and other sessions, but there also will be a Summer Solstice Party and, after the closing ceremony, a concert by Calvin Arsenia (7:30 p.m. June 22).
July 13-Aug. 4, Worlds of Fun. worldsoffun.com
Worlds of Fun bills this as the largest summer event in park history. The festivities will start at 5 p.m. each evening as sections of the park will transform into worldly regions with native food, beverages, music, dance, crafts and entertainment.
“Sesame Street” festival
July 13, Theis Park. sesameworkshop.org
As part of a nationwide road trip sponsored by Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit organization behind “Sesame Street,” characters from the PBS children’s program will be in Kansas City for several days to celebrate the TV show’s 50th anniversary. The visit will be capped by a free family festival and stage show.
Water Lantern Festival
July 27, Theis Park. waterlanternfestival.com
With dozens of events around the nation, the Water Lantern Festival is based on a simple idea: people pay for floating lanterns that they launch on the water after dark to create a haunting and memorable scene. Food and music will also be part of the equation.
Baby Love: KC’s Only Baby Fair
Aug. 4, Overland Park Convention Center. kcbabyfair.com
No, this event isn’t a giant party for toddlers. It is geared more for mothers-to-be, with baby and children’s businesses putting their goods and services on display. There also will be freebies and contests.
Tails on the Trails Pet Festival
Aug. 10, Ad Astra Pool and Park, Lenexa. lenexa.com
Humans are welcome, but Tails on the Trails is all about dogs, who will be able to participate in a talent show and pool plunge and can visit vendors’ booths and watch demonstrations. OK, those last two are geared more for humans.
Other fairs and festivals
Festa Italiana, May 31-June 2, Zona Rosa. zonarosa.com
KCPrideFest, May 31-June 2, Berkley Riverfront Park. kcpridefest.org
Prairie Village Art Show, May 31-June 2, Village Shopping Center. pvartshow.com
Enchanted Faire, June 1, Overland Park Arboretum & Botanical Gardens. artsandrec-op.org/arboretum
Jesse James Wine & Brew Festival, June 1, Jesse James Park, Kearney. lionsclubkearney.com/wine-festival-2019
KC Summer Brew Fest, June 1, Arrowhead. kcsummerbeerfest.com
Levee Fest, June 1, Armourdale Levee Trail. facebook.com/events/190635068214660
Party on the Prairie, June 1, Jerry Smith Park. kcparks.org/event/party-on-the-prairie-19
Strawberry Festival, June 1, Vaile Mansion. vailemansion.org
Westport Community Festival, June 2, Guardian Angels Church. guardianangelskc.org/events/westport-community-festival
Old Shawnee Days, June 6-9, Shawnee. oldshawneedays.org
Downtown Days Festival, June 7-9, Downtown Lee’s Summit. leessummitdowntowndays.com
Greek Festival, June 7-9, St. Dionysios Greek Orthodox Christian Church. stdionysios.org
Sugar Creek Slavic Festival, June 7-8, Mike Onka Memorial Building. slavicfest.com
VegFest Kansas City, June 7-9, City Market Park. veglifekc.org/vegfest
Dragon Boat Festival & Races, June 8, Brush Creek on Country Club Plaza. chinagardensociety-kc.org
Festival on the Trails, June 8, downtown Gardner. festivalonthetrails.com
Gladstone Summertime Bluesfest, June 7-8, Oak Grove Park. gladstonechamber.com/bluesfest
Juneteenth Celebration, June 8, Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. nelson-atkins.org
Outpace Poverty Family Festival, June 8, Theis Park. outpacepoverty.org
Soul Yoga Fest, June 8, Brush Creek Community Center and Freedom Fountain. eventbrite.com/event/58036493715
Heart of America Shakespeare Festival, “Shakespeare in Love,” June 11-July 7, Southmoreland Park. kcshakes.org
Arts in the Park Artist and Maker Festival, June 14-15 at Macken Park, North Kansas City. artsinthepark.org
Boulevardia, June 14-15, West Bottoms. boulevardia.com
Frontier Days, June 14-15, Edgerton. frontier-days.com
Antique Festival, June 15-16, Crown Center. crowncenter.com
Brew-B-Que Kansas City, June 15, Kansas City Renaissance Festival. kcrenfest.com/brew-b-que
SummerFest, June 15, Belton Memorial Park. beltonparks.org
Wine Festival, June 15, East Valley Park, Excelsior Springs. visitexcelsior.com/winefestival.html
Future Stages Festival, June 16, Kauffman Center. kauffmancenter.org
Food. Art. Drink., June 21-22, downtown Gladstone. lindensquare.info/foodartdrink
Great Lenexa BBQ Battle, June 21-22, Sar-Ko-Par Trails Park. lenexa.com
Kansas City LGBT Film Festival, June 21-25, Unity Temple on the Plaza. outherenow.com
Waterfest, June 21-22, Excelsior Springs. exspgschamber.com/waterfest.html
Fiesta Filipina, June 22-23, Filipino Cultural Center. filipino-association.org
Maker Faire, June 22-23, Union Station. kansascity.makerfaire.com
KC BassFest, June 24-29, multiple venues. kcbassworkshop.com
Lights on the Lake, June 27-29, Osawatomie. ozlightsonthelake.com
Parked! Music, Food Trucks and Fireworks! June 28, Stump Park, Shawnee. visitshawneeks.com
Booms & Blooms, June 29, Powell Gardens. powellgardens.org
Crossroads Beer Fest, June 29, CrossroadsKC. crossroadskc.com
Freedom Fest, June 29, Greenwood. greenwoodmoparks.com
Kansas City Kansas Street Blues Festival, June 29, Lavender’s Circle L Ranch. kckblues.com
Parkville 4th of July Carnival, July 3-6, Parkville. parkvillemo.org
Independence Day at Missouri Town 1855, July 4, Missouri Town 1855. makeyourdayhere.com
Riverfest, July 4, Berkley Riverfront Park. kcriverfest.com
Village Fest, July 4, Prairie Village. pvkansas.com/leisure-and-lifestyle/things-to-do/villagefest
Wyandotte County Fair, July 9-13, Wyandotte County Fairgrounds. wycofair.com
Salute! A Festival of Wine and Food, July 11-13, Lawrence. salutewinefest.com
Teddy Bear Picnic, July 12, Roanoke Park. kcparks.org
Bingham-Waggoner Antique and Craft Fair, July 13, Bingham-Waggoner Estate. bwestate.net
KC Taco Fest, July 13, CrossroadsKC. crossroadskc.com
KC Fringe Festival, July 14-28, multiple venues. kcfringe.org
Cass County Fair, July 16-21, Pleasant Hill. casscountyfairmo.com
Amelia Earhart Festival, July 19-20, Atchison. visitatchison.com/event/amelia-earhart-festival
Kansas City’s Reggae Music & Jerk Festival, July 19-20, Island Spice Caribbean Restaurant. eventbrite.com/event/60644186394
Kansas City’s Big Picnic, July 21, Donald J. Hall Sculpture Park and Theis Park. kcparks.org/event/kansas-citys-big-picnic-2019
Miami County Fair, July 21-28, Paola. miamicountykansasfair.com
Platte County Fair, July 24-27, Platte County Fairgrounds, Tracy. plattecountyfair.com
Festival of Butterflies, July 27-Aug. 11, Powell Gardens. powellgardens.org
Heartland Chamber Music Festival, July 26-Aug. 3, Johnson County Community College. heartlandchambermusic.org
Johnson County Fair, July 28-Aug. 3, Gardner. jocokansasfair.com
Hip Hops Hooray Beer Festival, Aug. 3, DeLeon Event Space. eventbrite.com/event/59670687633
Atchison County Fair, Aug. 6-10, Effingham. atchisonkansas.net
Heart of America Hot Dog Festival, Aug. 10, Negro Leagues Baseball Museum. nlbm.com
UNICO Microbrew Festival, Aug. 10, Zona Rosa. unicokc.org/microbrew-festival
Summer Swing, Aug. 11, Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. thestrawberryswing.org
Kansas City Improv Festival, Aug. 15-17 and 22-24, Kick Comedy Theater. kcimprovfestival.com
Ethnic Enrichment Festival, Aug. 16-18, Swope Park. eeckc.org
Future Fields Festival with Minnesota, Quixotic, My Brothers & Sisters, Prismada and more, Aug. 16, CrossroadsKC. crossroadskc.com
Tiblow Days, Aug. 22-24, Downtown Bonner Springs. bsedwchamber.org /tiblowdays
Mission Sunflower Festival, Aug. 23-24, Downtown Mission. missionsunflowerfestival.com
Parkville Days, Aug. 23-25, English Landing Park. parkvillemo.org
Roots Festival, Aug. 23-24, Paola. rootsfestival.org
Block Party, Aug. 24, Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art. kemperart.org
Raytown Arts & Music Festival, Aug. 24, C. Lee Kenagy Park. unctionmedia.com/rp2019/index.php/community-events
India Fest, Aug. 25, Overland Park Convention Center. iakc.org/india-fest
De Soto Days Festival, Aug. 29-31, De Soto. desotodays.com
Kansas City Irish Fest, Aug. 30-Sept. 1, Crown Center. kcirishfest.com
SantaCaliGon Days, Aug. 30-Sept. 2, Independence Square. santacaligon.com
Kansas City Renaissance Festival, Aug. 31-Oct. 14, Bonner Springs. kcrenfest.com
Johnson County Old Settlers, Sept. 5-7, Downtown Olathe. johnsoncountyoldsettlers.com
Kansas City Cigar Festival, Sept 7, Diebel’s. kccigarfestival.com
Spinach Festival, Sept. 7, Sar-Ko-Par Trails Park. lenexa.com