Published June 16th, 2022 at 11:00 AM
Outdoor events like Boulevardia and Juneteenth celebrations dominate the final weekend before the official start of summer.
Sunscreen is still required.
7 p.m. The new outdoor amphitheater at Ernie Miller Park, 909 North Kansas 7, is the venue for Friday night’s Stories in the Park. All ages are welcome to check out the nature-centered storytelling session. Park staff will share stories of animal encounters and more wild tales as the sun sinks low over the Olathe, Kansas, natural space. Tickets are $4. No pets allowed.
Friday & Saturday Kansas City’s premier two-day music (and beer) festival, Boulevardia, is back for 2022 and better than ever. The weekend will bring dozens of local and national artists to four stages up and down Grand Boulevard in front of Crown Center, 2450 Grand Blvd., including The Phantastics, Hembree, Frogpond, Valerie June, Making Movies, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats and Dashboard Confessional, to name a few.
Outside of wall-to-wall live music, Boulevardia 2022 has plans for a podcast stage, skating party, silent disco, bottomless brunch, plus exclusive “Taps & Tastes” food and drink experiences and so much more. General admission tickets are still available for $45 per day in advance of the festival. General admission tickets the day of the event are $55. Be sure to check online or download the Boulevardia App for the complete schedule of music, experiences, VIP options and more.
7 a.m. – 8 p.m. Speaking of music, there’s another Record Store Day Drop this weekend and The Vinyl Underground, 7621 Troost Ave., is all over it. The record shop will have all 87 RSD releases in its basement — all of them below retail price and spread out alphabetically to ensure swift pickup and minimal crowds.
10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Juneteenth OP is a day of unity, education and celebration coming to Prairiefire in Overland Park, Kansas, 5661 W. 135th St. Free and open to the public, the event is complete with a parade, live musical and dance performances, storytelling, vendor booths and family-friendly activities, plus appearances by Overland Park Mayor Curt Skoog, KC Wolf and local TikTok star Phoebe Hines.
Noon – 9 p.m. On the Missouri side, the JuneteenthKC Heritage Festival throughout the 18th & Vine District will have a little something for everyone. Join the celebration for live music, poetry and dance across multiple stages, plus carnival games, vendor booths, pony rides, face painting and a lot more. Cool off by lending your taste buds to Margarita Wars starting at 6 p.m, as local bartenders try to craft the best marg in the district. Tickets for Margarita Wars are $25. The Heritage Festival is free.
3 – 6 p.m. Do you have a hidden talent? Head over to Saturday’s Talent Show and Open Mic at PH Coffee, 2200 Lexington Ave. Open to all ages, anyone willing to step up to the mic is invited to show the coffee shop and community gathering space audience what they’ve got, in a non-judgemental safe space. Liquid courage will be available for those of legal drinking age.
5 – 9 p.m. Fandom Fest at The Plaza Library, 4801 Main St., should be a good time, especially if you’re good at Super Smash Bros. Plans include a “Smash Bros” tournament, cosplay contest, free food, art, activities and more, aimed at those ages 12 to 18. The free Fandom Fest does not permit re-entry. May the fastest thumbs win.
10 a.m. – 5 p.m. The National WWI Museum and Memorial, 2 Memorial Drive, commemorates Juneteenth this weekend with free admission to its Black Citizenship in the Age of Jim Crow exhibit Sunday and Monday, June 20. The special exhibit in the Wylie Gallery examines the struggle for Black citizenship and racial equality in the United States between the Civil War and the start of World War I. Additionally, there will be a “Taps at the Tower” ceremony dedicated to fallen Black soldiers and Black veterans Sunday night at 8:45 p.m.
11 a.m. – 8 p.m. You’re invited to the Juneteenth Celebration, happening Sunday in Lawrence, Kansas. The day starts with a parade on Massachusetts Street and rolls on with food, swag, local vendors and artists, games, crafts and more in South Park, 1100 Massachusetts St. All kids eat free.
Noon – 9 p.m. Spend Sunday with dad at KC Bier Co.’s, 310 W. 79th St., Father’s Day Weekend Celebration. The weekend of beer specials and live music at the Bierhalle will have $14 Welt Bester Papa (World’s Best Dad) mugs, plus a pour and plenty of space to raise a glass to the old man. Jazz with Bram & Co. is live from KC Bier Co. Sunday, 3-5 p.m. There is no cover.
Flatland contributor Clarence Dennis also is a social media manager for 90.9 The Bridge.