Mega guide to summer festivals around Kansas City

Boulevardia takes on Kansas City (2016)

Boulevardia, Boulevard Brewing Co.'s three-day West Bottoms street festival, kicked into high gear on Saturday, the second day of a three-day run. It features live music, beer, food trucks, handmade and vintage goods, family-friendly carnival ride
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Boulevardia, Boulevard Brewing Co.'s three-day West Bottoms street festival, kicked into high gear on Saturday, the second day of a three-day run. It features live music, beer, food trucks, handmade and vintage goods, family-friendly carnival ride

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.

TinyFest Midwest on June 8-9 celebrates tiny living. File photo

TinyFest Midwest

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).

Grand Carnivale

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.

TV-Sesame Street-Tour
Big Bird, Elmo and stars of “Sesame Street” are hitting the road for a 10-city trip to celebrate the show’s 50th anniversary campaign with free park festivals, live performances and kid-friendly activities. HBO via AP

“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 comes to Ad Astra Pool and Park in Lenexa on Aug. 10. Mike Ransdell The Kansas City Star

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

The Dragon Boat Festival & Races will return to Brush Creek on Country Club Plaza June 8. FRED BLOCHER /The Kansas City Star

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

Kansas City Kansas Latino Arts Festival, Sept. 7, Bethany Park. visitkansascityks.com or latinoartsfoundationkc.com

Spinach Festival, Sept. 7, Sar-Ko-Par Trails Park. lenexa.com