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Weekend Possibilities | Mardi Gras, Miles Davis and a Japanese Film Fest Here to Help You Fill the Winter Months

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Above image credit: The Gem Theater in Kansas City's 18th & Vine District. (Clarence Dennis | Flatland)
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Multiple Mardi Gras celebrations, a Japanese film fest and a “Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool” premiere make up a busy mid-February weekend in Kansas City. 

Friday, Feb. 21

12 – 11 p.m. Border Brewing Company, 406 E. 18th St., is celebrating its Five Year Anniversary all weekend with a few new beer releases and $5 pours across the board.The Crossroads brewery is celebrating Friday with a release you can feel — a 12.6% imperial stout made just for the anniversary. As for Saturday, look forward to the “Better Late Release,” the return of a dark kettle sour with roasted dates. On Sunday, there will be free live music 2-4 p.m. with David Knopf.

7 p.m. The good times will roll Friday night at the Mardi Gras Masquerade Ball, featuring The Freedom Affair and The MGDs at the Uptown Theater, 3700 Broadway Blvd. The party starts at 7 p.m., with music scheduled to start around 8 p.m. Proper Mardi Gras attire is recommended, as there’ll be a competition for king and queen of the evening. A portion of each ticket will go to the Midwest Innocence Project. There’s an after-party at The Ship in the West Bottoms, 1217 Union Ave. A VIP Masquerade ticket ($37) will get you into the after-party for free. After-party cover will be discounted for those with GA tickets ($17).

A trumpet in a parade
A trumpeter plays during Kansas City Mardi Gras street festivities. (Courtesy | Rachel Sky)

8 – 10 p.m. Urban Air Adventure Park, 14401 Metcalf Ave., Overland Park, Kansas, is keeping its doors open late for Night Owl Jump, every Friday 8-10 p.m. The indoor trampoline park, featuring a tumble track, slam dunk zone, warrior obstacle course, freestyle zone, children’s area and more offers $16.99 ultimate passes for the two-hour slot. 

Saturday, Feb. 22

8:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. Community members from across the metro area are coming together at the 8th Annual Community Development Workshop at the Kauffman Foundation Conference Center, 4801 Rockhill Road. There will be a morning session led by Dr. Marvia Jones, violence prevention and policy manager with the Kansas City Health Department, followed by a set of discussions surrounding policy and equitable neighborhoods, health and built environment, neighborhood climate action and businesses building better neighborhoods. The event is free and open to anyone, though registration is recommended. 

10 a.m. – 10 p.m. Day 2 of Autorama/World of Wheels/Cavalcade Customs World of Wheels is at the Kansas City Convention Center, 301 W. 13th St. Car enthusiasts can take in chop shop demonstrations, learn car care tips, meet former Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles, and check out all the classic and custom cars at the 60th annual show. General admission adult tickets at the door are $19, while kids are $9. Discount tickets are available at participating O’Reilly Auto Parts locations. 

8 – 11 p.m. The Mardi Gras Bar Crawl returns to Kansas City Live! in the Power and Light District, 13th Street and Grand Boulevard. The all-inclusive party extends across more than 14 bars, restaurants and clubs in KC Live!, including Mosaic Ultra Lounge and No Other Pub by Sporting KC. Expect plenty of live music, crawfish-eating contests, street performers and more. The event is for those 21 and older. Tickets are $30 for GA, $70 for VIP. VIP tickets include a Mardi Gras-themed food crawl across five locations and more.

Sunday, Feb. 23

10:45 a.m. – 8:45 p.m. Spend Sunday at the movies, enjoying the 2020 Kansas City Japanese Film Fest at Alamo Drafthouse, 1400 Main St. The festival will show four back-to-back Japanese films, starting with animation fantasy “My Neighbor Totoro,” followed by “Summer Days With Coo” and “Wolf Children” before the night wraps up with “Rurouni Kenshin Part I: Origins.” Be sure to check online for movie times and descriptions. Proceeds from this festival goes to the Taylor Anderson Foundation, a charity to help schools that were affected by the 2011 Earthquake and Tsunami in Japan. Ticket prices vary.

3 – 4 p.m. The Kansas City Library Waldo Branch, 201 E. 75th St., is inviting little ones to join Sunday’s Coterie Theater Interactive Stories event. Kids will listen to a classic story book read by Coterie Theater professionals, before bringing the book to life by acting as the characters. The program is ideal for children between the ages of 4 and 7. 

3:30 – 5 p.m. Join KCPT Kansas City PBS for an early screening of “Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool” in the heart of 18th and Vine District at the Gem Theater, 1615 E. 18th St. Part of the “American Master’s” series, the doc will take a behind-the-scenes look into the Miles Davis estate, including never-before-seen media and outtakes from recording sessions, plus interviews from Quincy Jones, Carlos Santana, Clive Davis, Wayne Shorter, Davis’s son Erin Davis and many more. The event is free. “American Masters: Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool,” will premiere Feb. 25 on Kansas City PBS.

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