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Weekend Possibilities | Last-Minute NYE Plans, Alabama: An American Story, and Kwanzaa in KC

Champagne on ice The champagne is on ice. (Courtesy | The Fontaine)
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4 minute read

The final weekend of the decade in Kansas City has plenty to do, including live music, theater, movies and a citywide Kwanzaa celebration. Laying low until the ball drops? Check out a last-minute list of New Year’s Eve options that should do the trick for anyone ready to bid au revoir to 2019.

Friday, Dec. 27

8 – 9 p.m. Keep Friday night clear for an evening at The Improv Shop’s That’s No Movie! 1 -Hour Film Fest, 3810 Broadway Blvd. The shotgun film festival features short flicks from various genres, plus a special guest performance from improv comedy team Todd’s Friends. Tickets are $6.

9 p.m. – 1 a.m. Celebrate survival of the holiday season (so far) with a night of live music from Kansas City funk and blues band, The MGDs. The seven-piece group fronted by Matt Davis is a fourth Friday of the month staple at The Phoenix, 302 W. 8th St. You can find The MGDs records at Vinyl Renaissance, It’s a Beautiful Day or Records with Merritt.

Saturday, Dec. 28

9 a.m. – 8 p.m. Holiday cheer is alive and well underwater at Sea Life KC, 2475 Grand Blvd. Check out the aquarium’s Sea of Lights installment as it dazzles land lovers with thousands of lights strewn throughout its 11 exhibits. Be sure to check online for more information, as admission prices and packages vary.

10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Kind Food KC, a plant-based and earth-friendly spot in North Kansas City’s Iron District, 1599 Iron St., Suite G, is saying so long to the 2010s with a Farwell Decade! Biscuits and Gravy Brunch. In addition to vegan B&G, the shipping container turned restaurant rolls out a Winter Brunch menu that features Banana French Toast, Gateway Nachos and a Coco BLT Wrap. Get there early! The biscuits and soy sausage gravy sells out fast.

1:30 – 2:30 p.m. Martha Lafite Thompson Nature Sanctuary, 407 N. La Frenz Road in Liberty, is inviting children ages 3 and up to Nature Story Time. Kiddos will hear a tale from a naturalist, before making a related craft to take home and hang on the fridge. Donations are appreciated. Be sure to call and register your little one’s spot ahead of time.  

7 p.m. Get tickets to see rapper and producer Craig Smith take audience members to the middle of the 1950’s civil rights movement with Alabama: An American Story on stage at Black Box on Troost, 4001 Troost Ave. The one-man musical tells the story of a man’s rebellion against segregation and hatred in the 1950s, accompanied by hip hop beats, with several characters portrayed by Smith — who also wrote the musical. Beverages and light snacks are provided. Tickets start at $20.

Sunday, Dec. 29

2 – 5 p.m. Sip some wine and put your music memory to the test with 80’s Music Bingo at KC Wine Co. , 13875 S. Gardner Road in Olathe. Pair your free afternoon of fun with one of the winery’s reds, whites or ciders. Head to KC Wine Co.’s website for full look at current pours. 

6 – 10 p.m. Join the party at the American Jazz Museum’s, 1616 E. 18 St., 38th Annual City-Wide Kwanzaa: Ujamaa Celebration in the heart of the 18th & Vine district. Ujamaa marks the fourth night of the week-long festival and focuses on cooperative economics, as part of Kwanzaa’s greater celebration of the African and African American family, community, history, traditions and culture. An African market featuring local vendors and performances will take over the museum each night of Kwanzaa. Admission is free.

New Year’s Eve, Tuesday, Dec. 31

8 p.m. – 1 a.m. Toast 2020 with New Year’s at The Fontaine, 901 W. 48th Place. A ticket to the Country Club Plaza’s hotel party includes a night of dancing thanks to DJ Hydan & Company, an unlimited happy hour, snacks all night long, plus some bubbly at midnight. Tickets are $75.

8 p.m. – 1:30 a.m. Crossroads food hall Parlor KC, 1707 Locust St., is also ringing in the new year with its second-annual New Year’s Eve Social. The popular lunch spot will transform into three floors of entertainment, featuring two DJs and a live band. Parlor offers a variety of bites, from Korean comfort food at Sura Eats, to Nashville hot chicken at Mother Cluckers, along with plenty of specialty cocktails and craft shots. Tickets start at $40. 

Making Movies is pulling out all the stops NYE at The Truman. (Courtesy | The Truman)

9 p.m. Kansas City’s own Latinx rockers aren’t waiting until the midnight hour to get things moving at The Truman, 601 E. Truman Road. Join Enrique Javier Chi and the gang for their Punky Draggy NYE Party, as the band takes on tunes from The Clash alongside several special guests. Actor and storyteller David Wayne Reed will play host, the band will be joined by Wick & The Tricks, pus drag performers Jaharia Von Du, Moltyn Decadence, Dick Von Dyke and more! Tickets are still available and start at $22. The show is all ages.

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