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Weekend Possibilities | American Royal, Cinco de Mayo, Star Wars The Force Is Strong

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Above image credit: The American Royal professional rodeo is Friday night at the American Royal Center in the West Bottoms. (Contributed | American Royal)
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3 minute read

Spring is in full swing and there is no shortage of celebration in May’s first weekend. In the West Bottoms, there’s the American Royal, a massive plant sale and Maria The Mexican at The Ship. Over on 18th & Vine, pick from Saturday’s Monarch Walk or Hip-Hop & Hot Wings at Vine Street Brewing Co.

Friday, May 3

5 – 9 p.m. Get down for a good cause Friday night at The Don Bosco Centers’ Bosco Block Party Don Bosco Community Center, 526 Campbell St. The third-annual all-ages event will kick off the summer with food, a cash bar, live music games and more. Admission is free. Food and drink proceeds will support Don Bosco Centers.

7 p.m. It’s American Royal weekend in Kansas City. This year’s schedule is packed with youth and pro rodeos, livestock shows, barbeque, equine showcases, live music and more at the American Royal Center, 1701 American Royal Ct. Be sure to check out the full schedule of events online in advance to plan your trip. General admission tickets to Friday night’s Pro Rodeo are available starting at $30, plus tax and fees.

Saturday, May 4

9 a.m. Pay a visit to Saturday’s Blooms in the Bottoms Plant Sale in the West Bottoms, 1401 W 13th St., to add a little green to your life. A few dozen local plant vendors and tents will be set up along Hickory Street with everything from basic houseplants to rare varieties and gardening tools available to peruse or purchase. Organizers plan for live music, food trucks and more. The sale is free to attend.

9 a.m. May 4th is unofficially “Star Wars Day” and Screenland Armour, 408 Armour Rd., will celebrate with screenings of “A New Hope,” “The Empire Strikes Back” and “Return of the Jedi,” from the original trilogy. Tickets to the individual movies are $10 each. Be sure to check out showtimes online in advance.

Noon – 3:30 p.m. Round up your team and join the free March of the Monarchs family walk, honoring an old Kansas City baseball tradition. Held on the anniversary of Jackie Robinson’s first game with the team, the walk recreates the tradition of Monarchs Opening Day, when a marching band would lead fans from 18th & Vine St. to Municipal Stadium. Saturday’s walk starts at 22nd & Brooklyn Ave. and proceeds to the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, where live entertainment, food trucks, mascots and yard games will continue into the afternoon. Participants are encouraged to park near the NLBM and ride a shuttle to the former Municipal Stadium site for the walk.

6 – 9 p.m. The first-ever Hip-Hop & Hot Wings, a collaboration between DJ Skeme, Timeless Refinery and Vine Street Brewing Co., 2010 Vine St., is set for this weekend at the brewery. A celebration of music, culture and great food, the evening will bring DJ FK Menace and DJ Skeme to the stage, along with emcees Kadesh Flow and Kemet Coleman. Wing Stand will be set up in the taphouse if you’re hungry. There is no cover. Minors must be accompanied by an adult.

6 – 9 p.m. Why wait for Sunday? Saturday evening’s Cinco de Mayo Dinner Matinee Show featuring Maria The Mexican at The Ship, 1221 Union Ave., will be a fiesta. Table reservations are available and will enjoy full food and drink service throughout the show. A small table is $10 per person, booth reservation is $12 per person. General admission standing tickets are $10.

Sunday, May 5

10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Before tuning up your ride for summer, swing by Sunday’s BicycleSwap KC spring event in the West Bottoms, 1400 W 14th St. The meetup will give cyclists of all levels the chance to check out bargains like used bikes, cycling clothing, parts, equipment and more. It’s free to browse and shop. If you’d like to set up your own vending space, it’s $10.

Noon Soccer fans will have the chance to root on the undefeated KC Current as they take on Houston Dash at this season’s first Watch Party inside CPKC Stadium, 1460 Front St. Supporters can catch the away game on the stadium big screen while enjoying DJ performances, Boulevard Fling Paloma and Southwest Blvd. lager samples, plus Cinco de Mayo specials like elotes-street corn cups, nachos and prickly pear margaritas. Gates open an hour before kick at 11 a.m. Watch party tickets are $13. Parking is free.

Noon – 8 p.m. Three days of celebration ends with a bang Sunday at Guadalupe Centers Cinco de May Fiesta! at the Guadalupe Administrative Building, 1015 Avenida Cesar E. Chavez. This year’s party includes a petting zoo, kids’ activities, vendors, a variety of food options, local artists, contests, raffles and more. Local and national dance and musical acts will perform throughout the weekend. Sunday’s headliner is Mike Gonzalez & The Iconiczz. The festival is free to attend.

Clarence Dennis is audience and digital content strategist with Flatland.

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