2017 Guide to Holiday Festivals and Merriment in Kansas City

Crown Center Ice Terrace 
Many people see this as an annual tradition. Bringing their family to ice skate is the first thing they do each holiday season! You will definitely want to check out the entire Crown Center area this holiday season as the plaza is especially beautiful this time of year with the fountains and other decorative items on display. Plus, you’ll have a great view of the Mayor’s Christmas tree!

Gladstone’s Linden Square Skate Rink
The opening of this outdoor neighborhood rink in Gladstone coincides with the lighting of the Mayor’s Christmas Tree and provides family fun all winter long.  

Ice Skating at Burlington Creek 
If you live north of the river but still want to enjoy an evening (or day!) of outdoor ice skating, you’ll want to check out The Village at Burlington Creek. Located on 64th Street (or Tom Watson Parkway in Parkville), the area includes a quaint little shopping district that allows you to enjoy an evening out with the family before or after skating.

The Ice at Park Place
The Ice at Park Place serves as Leawood’s only outdoor ice rink and is surrounded by seasonal festivities, warm food and drink options and unique holiday shopping. The rink is open November 17-February 19, including holidays! 

Liberty Holiday Homes Tour (November 11-12)
Homes will be available for viewing on Saturday and Sunday from 1-5 p.m. each day. All proceeds from this event benefit Liberty Women’s Clinic.

Christmas Tours at Strawberry Hill Museum (beginning November 17)
Every year, each room of the main house is decorated with exhibits featuring nationalities from Croatia, Poland, Slovakia, Lithuania, Ukraine, Slovenia, The Netherlands, Russia, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Africa, Belgium, Denmark, Mexico and Hungary. The museum also offers nighttime tours November 17, December 9 and December 15 during which the museum will be illuminated using Victorian oil lamps and Christmas lighting.

Christmas in the Sky (November 22)
This event serves as the kick-off for Jackson County’s Christmas in the Park and features holiday entertainment along with an amazing fireworks display synchronized to your favorite holiday music and simulcast on The Point 99.7. Bring chairs/blankets for seating!

“I’ll Be Home for Christmas” at the Bingham-Waggoner Estate (November 24-December 30)
Tours of the estate are offered Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and Sundays 1-4 p.m. 

WinterFest at Worlds of Fun (November 24-December 30)
Begin a new family tradition with WinterFest at Worlds of Fun, billed as Kansas City’s only wholly immersive holiday event. Holiday cheer will surround you with millions of spectacular holiday lights, 10 world-class live festive shows, a 7 story tree, ice skating, a 300 foot tree of lights and SNOW every night!

Bright Light Friday (November 24)
Skip the craziness of Black Friday shopping. Make it a playful “Bright Light Friday” instead! Sing, dance and celebrate the start of the holiday season with Kansas City-based kid rocker Jim “Stinky Feet” Cosgrove. On the day of the show, Cosgrove will collect winter clothing items on behalf of the nonprofit Artists Helping the Homeless.

Sip, Shop & Support at the Kansas City Power & Light District (November 25)
Sip, shop and support to celebrate Small Business Saturday at local shops and restaurants throughout the Kansas City Power & Light District. Enjoy great deals and complimentary services, samples from local brands at the Cosentino’s Markets Vendor Fair and live music along Main Street. 

Holidays in Crestwood (November 30-December 2)
Join the Shops at Crestwood for three days of shopping, dining, music and more – all benefitting The Children’s Place. This three-day celebration includes luncheons and breakfasts, festive trees, an art auction, a visit from Santa and more.

Christmas on the River (December 1 | 6 p.m.)
If you’re looking for a picturesque Christmas experience, come to Parkville’s Christmas on the River. There are food vendors, activities for the kids, carolers and of course, Santa and Mrs. Claus. Don’t miss the fireworks over the river at 8:30 p.m.!

Rock the Red Kettle (December 1 | 6:30 p.m.)
The Salvation Army continues its family-friendly holiday tradition in Kansas City, “Rock the Red Kettle,” with a free community concert featuring national recording artist, Switchfoot. The concert will be held on the KC Live! stage in the Power & Light District.

Baldwin City Festival of Lights (December 2 | 6 p.m.)
Turn out for the annual Festival of Lights in Baldwin City – a parade, tree lighting and MUCH more. The parade begins at 6 p.m., but the day’s events include breakfast with Santa, a holiday art show and home tour, a soup supper and fireworks display.

Bubbles Off The Block (December 7 | 6 p.m.)
Join your friends for a night of champagne and sparkling wines, small bites and a charity fundraiser benefitting Kansas City CARE Clinic. In addition to night-of festivities, guests will be able to purchases cases of bubbles at a discounted rate to gift to family and friends this holiday season.

Strawberry Swing Indie Craft Fair (December 10 | 10 a.m.-6 p.m.)
This biannual indie craft fair is described as “the Midwest’s celebration of the handmade movement.” Past events have included food trucks, a photo booth, live music and more than sixty local vendors! The Strawberry Swing has become a Kansas City tradition for those with an eye for the handmade.

Holiday Market & Open House at Eighteen Ninety (December 14 | 6-9 p.m.)
Grab your family and friends and shop for the holidays at Eighteen Ninety, an historic venue just 20 minutes north of downtown Kansas City.

12 Bars of Charity (December 15 | 8 p.m.)
Last year, 12 Bars of Charity helped raise more than $15,000 for local charity. This year, they hope to shatter that record as they aim to raise more than $40,000 for eight amazing local charities.

PJ Library Hanukkah Glow Party (December 17 | 4-6 p.m.)
A celebration of lights for the whole family! Join friends at Prairiefire for a community-wide menorah lighting that includes games, a kid-friendly DJ, Kosher Sufganiyot with coffee and a hot chocolate bar. Open to everyone, but designed for families with children ages 10 and under.

Noon Year’s Eve at Pinstripes (December 30 | 9 a.m.)
Ring in the new year with the whole family – and be done before nap time! This annual sold-out event features games, entertainment, horse and carriage rides, crafts, a DJ, pizza and a milk and cookies toast during the noon balloon drop. VIP attendees are guaranteed a bowling time, early entry, and shorter lines for activities. Mark your calendar and claim your tickets on Black Friday, November 24. Noon Year’s Eve is hosted by Kansas City Moms Blog, Pinstripes and Prairiefire. To read more about last year’s Noon Year’s Eve, click here.

NYE Live! Kansas City (December 31 | 9 p.m.)
Join a crowd of thousands for the biggest New Year’s Eve celebration in Kansas City at the Kansas City Live! Block in the Power & Light District. Features exclusive access to up to 12 bars and nightclubs, premium bar packages, live DJs, NYE-themed party favors, champagne toasts, confetti canons and the city’s most anticipated countdown to midnight.

KCMB's Guide to the Holidays in Kansas City

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