KC Summer Guide: The BEST Annual Events

We might be biased, but we’re pretty sure Kansas City has some of the best festivals and family-friendly events, especially in the summer. Mark your calendar for these favorites you can look forward to every year.

Annual Marble Day

The Annual Marble Day Celebration on May 5 in downtown Bonner Springs celebrates marble games and other old-fashioned outdoor games and activities. Highlights include a tractor cruise, wacky parade, Running of the Pinkys, cake walk, mountain of hay bales, food vendors and other traditional games & activities.

National Train Day – Frank Vaydik Park

Celebrate National Train Day on Saturday, May 19 with the KC Northern Railroad. The event includes free train rides from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m., music, crafts, face painting, Imagination Playground and other train-loving kid fun.

Troost Festival

The Troost Festival, held this year on May 19, is dedicated to celebrating the diversity of the Troost community and celebrating unity in diversity. This year’s celebration includes children’s activities, music, dance and vendors.

Old Shawnee Days 

Each year Old Shawnee Days, this year May 31-June 3, marks the start of summer for thousands of families who enjoy this amazing weekend-long Midwest celebration. With yearly attendance of nearly 100,000 people, there’s something everyone in the family can enjoy, and with free admission to all concerts and events this is one weekend you don’t want to miss!

Prairie Village Art Show

We like this art fair (held June 1–3) because it feels more manageable than other options for families with young children. Held at the Village Shops, activities for kids are plentiful. Plan to attend the Pancake Breakfast with the Artists from 8:30 – 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, June 2. Chris Cakes will be serving up all you can eat pancakes for $5 at the Clock Tower.

Special Events at Deanna Rose Farmstead

We love feeding bottles to the little goats at Deanna Rose, but there are several special days you won’t want to miss this summer. Kick off the Farmstead’s summer evening hours with the June Bug Ball (6/5) focused on learning all about insects or Georgia’s Chicken Run (7/28), a run/walk race for babies, toddlers, kids and adults.  The Farmstead can get HOT so reward yourself with some Sheridan’s or Foo’s on your way home. Don’t miss these Hidden Gems at Deanna Rose, secrets you might not know even as a regular.

Dragon Boat Festival – Brush Creek

The annual International Dragon Boat Festival held on Saturday, June 9 includes races, both amateur and professional along the Plaza’s Brush Creek.


Beer, food, music… and..well, beer. BUT! It’s a family friendly festival complete with kid’s activities. We’ve taken the kids including babies and toddlers, and even had fun. June 15-16 in the West Bottoms.

Citywide Summer Reading Celebration

Hosted by Turn the Page KC and Mayor Sly James, join in a FREE summer reading celebration at Sprint Center. Mayor James and Turn the Page KC volunteers will lead an afternoon full of STEAM – science, technology, engineering, arts, and math – activities. Every child will take home a bag of FREE books and resources!

Fourth of July in Kansas City

Don’t miss our annual guide to 4th of July celebrations across the metro area, with tips for planning ahead with your family in mind. Coming soon!

KCMB Fifth Birthday Party!

Kansas City Moms Blog is turning 5, and we want our readers to help us celebrate! Join us for a family fun day on Saturday, July 28, at the new Emler Swim School in Westwood for swimming, cool treats, fun giveaways, and more. Check back for more details so you don’t miss the party.

Truck and Car Show – Ag Hall of Fame

For the vehicle enthusiasts, check out all the Ag Hall of Fame has to offer on July 28. Living history demonstrations and train rides, too. 

Festival of the Butterflies – Powell Gardens

Another one of the best! See hundreds of colorful butterflies in the indoor conservatory July 27 – August 12. Children’s activities include a caterpillar hunt, catch-and-release, costume parade, crafts, storytelling and a petting zoo.

Ethnic Enrichment Festival – Swope Park

One of the best local festivals of the year! This event features more than 60 different cultures along with native food, crafts and performances. Held August 17-18 in Swope Park.

Parkville Days  

One of downtown Parkville’s biggest festivals, the annual Parkville Days offers great family entertainment and fun in historic downtown Parkville. Admission is free and you’ll spend the day enjoying a carnival, arts and crafts, family entertainment, food, live music, beer garden and a great parade! Bring lawn chairs to enjoy a relaxing day at English Landing Park!


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