Most of us already know how to have a good time byspending some dough. But don’t overlook all the great ways to stayentertained in KC, without all the expense. Here’s an itinerary ofthe best free things to do on the weekend, featuring Crown Center’sWeekEnder.
1. Listen to live music
Whether you’re hoping to discovernew talent or just want to see artists at work, you can catch freemusical performances throughout the area on most Friday nights.Venues such as the Green Lady Lounge, Gaslight Grill, The KillDevil Club and the Mutual Musicians Foundation have no cover chargeto hear live jazz. You can also attend summer concert series atlocal venues in Olathe, Overland Park and Lee’s Summit each Friday,with a wide range of genres from classic country to alternativerock. In the heart of the city, Crown Center’s WeekEnder showcaseslocal artists from 6 to 9 p.m. each Friday in July and the firstFriday in August.
2. See a new art exhibit
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Kansas City has no shortageof great museums, and a number of them offer free admission throughthe weekend. On Fridays, the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Artoffers free admission and parking until 9 p.m., as does theNelson-Atkins Museum of Art. Several galleries in the Crossroads,including Todd Weiner Gallery and Jones Gallery, are free to visitfrom 5 to 9 p.m. on First Friday nights.
3. Become one with nature
Getacquainted with the wildlife in Kansas City at Lakeside NatureCenter, which is open Friday and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.You can hike the center’s trails, take a stroll through thePrairie, Savannah and Butterfly Gardens or even meet Wilma, thecenter’s ornate box turtle. Or, if you’re interested in burningsome extra calories, Swope Park offers mountain biking trails and asprawling disc golf course with free admission.
4. Take a tour
You maybe familiar with the taste of Boulevard beer, but are you familiarwith the brewery’s history? The hometown beer company offers free60-minute walking tours daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., followed bysamples in the tasting room. If you’ve been there, done that, seehow the coffee gets made at The Roasterie. Complimentary tours takeabout 45 minutes and include a behind-the-scenes look at thefactory and a coffee brewing demonstration. Tours are offeredFridays at 10 a.m. and 12:30 p.m., and throughout the day Saturday.
5. Catch an outdoor movie
Grab your lawn chairs, blankets, candy andpopcorn for a free film on Crown Center’s lawn each Friday in Julyand the first Friday in August. Before the movie begins at 9 p.m.,enjoy local bands and bites from local food trucks and beer, wineand canned margaritas are available at Crown Center Square. Go tocrowncenter.com/WeekEnder to see the full schedule of films.