What to Do and Where to Eat in Kansas City, KS
Kansas City, Kansas, which is known as KCK to most, is an eclectic community. As the two Kansas Cities formed around the confluence of the Missouri and Kansas Rivers, immigrants from many parts of the world made this land home. The result is an area of distinct districts and vibrant cultures creating food, entertainment and business.
There may be no better way to experience what this city has to offer than by attending KCK events. Food festivals, art fairs, business expos and sporting events showcase the multifaceted talent of the KCK community. Whether you’re a local or a visitor, KCK events can be a great way to get to know the city. And while you’re there, you might as well try some of the top-notch food KCK has to offer, too.
This guide to Kansas City, KS, upcoming events and KCK restaurants will give you everything you need to know to plan a great day out.
Kansas City, KS, Upcoming Events
KCK is a weird shape. If you’ve looked at it on a map, you know exactly what we’re talking about. There’s a part of the city that seems like it is where it should be — a semi-circle just on the other side of the state line from Kansas City, Mo. Then, there’s an arm that shoots 20 miles down I-70, circles a small area around the intersection of I-70 and I-435, and comes back into the downtown area.
We’re going to split these KCK events up into two categories based on the city’s geography. First, these are Kansas City, KS, upcoming events near the downtown area. Then, we’ll cover events at the Legends Kansas City.
- Mockingbird Comedy Hour: KC isn’t known for its comedy scene, but you can find some good jokes at this weekly KCK event. The Mockingbird Lounge is on Orchard Street, just off I-70 and overlooking the downtown Kansas City, Mo., skyline. The jokes are free, but you still have to pay for your food and drinks.
- Polski Day Celebration: A wave of Eastern Europeans settled on the slopes of KCK that fall gently into the Kansas River. Today, those hills are carved through by I-70 snaking into downtown KCMO. Due to that construction and some devastating floods, the community of Eastern Europeans moved to the top of the hills and established Strawberry Hill, a small community with amazing views and deep history. Each year, this community celebrates Polski Day in honor of their ancestors. Attendees of this KCK event can try ethnic food and drinks while listening to live music and enjoying the parade.
- Kansas City Kansas Latino Arts Festival: The other wave of immigration that significantly shaped KCK is from Mexico. There was a railway that connected from Mexico all the way to Armourdale, the KCK neighborhood nestled into the bend of the Kansas River just west of the state line (Side note: if you’re looking for the best tacos in Kansas City, you have to visit KCK). The Latino Arts Festival is a celebration of the Hispanic heritage that has shaped and enriched Kansas City, Kansas. Events like this shine a light on important history and culture.
- Central Avenue Día de los Muertos: Come celebrate one of the most important holidays in Hispanic culture at the Central Avenue Día de los Muertos festival and parade. Día de los Muertos is not only a time to enjoy community, art and food, but also a time to remember loved ones who have passed on. Hispanic culture places a high value on heritage and connection to family, and Día de los Muertos is a beautiful embodiment of the importance of honoring your family.
Events at the Legends Kansas City
Now, let’s look west. The Legends is a commercial development area at the intersection of I-70 and I-435. There are shopping centers, stadiums, restaurants and more. Events at the Legends Kansas City can be a lot of fun for the whole family. Here are a few you may want to add to your Kansas City, KS, events calendar.
- Sporting KC: Have you been to a game at Children’s Mercy Park yet? All it takes is one game and you’ll be hooked. Sporting KC is Kansas City’s professional soccer team. In the last six seasons, they have taken home three trophies and are always at the top of the league. The play is good, the stadium is beautiful and the fans are crazy. Also, tickets are pretty cheap!
- Kansas Speedway: This racetrack is an iconic stop for the NASCAR racing season. NASCAR fans in Kansas City should add it to their list of Kansas City, KS, upcoming events, if you haven’t already. The race is a day-long event with so much to do.
- Taco Topia: Tacos are arguably the most versatile food ever created. There are so many ways to make a taco. Taco Topia is a one-day festival at Children’s Mercy Park that gives all kinds of taco-makers a chance to show off their best creations. For any taco lovers (which should be everyone), this is one of the KCK events you can’t miss.
- Cider Hill Apple Blossom Festival: The sun is setting later, the temperatures are rising and the flowers are blooming. It’s springtime in Kansas City, and there’s no better way to celebrate with the whole family than the Cider Hill Apple Blossom Festival. It’s a bit of a drive out to the location, but the hayrides, apple blossoms, food vendors and other entertainment are worth it. If you’re looking for family events at the Legends Kansas City, then this is a great option for you.
- American Royal World Series of Barbecue: This is the largest barbecue festival in the country. Kansas City is the world capital of barbecue, and the American Royal World Series of Barbecue has been bringing delicious, smoked meats to the area for more than 40 years. Join thousands of meat-lovers at Kansas Speedway for this weekend-long event.
Restaurants to Try During KCK Events
Check out our complete guide to good eats in KCK if you have time. If not, here’s a quick primer on spots near downtown and out by The Legends to grab a good meal alongside your KCK events.
Restaurants Near Downtown KCK Events
Restaurants Near Events at The Legends
There’s plenty to do and to eat in KCK. Events are happening all the time. We’re sure you can find something fun to do around town.