If you are interested in exposing your family to the beauties of other cultures then the Greater Kansas City area has become a great place to do it. There were so many amazing cultural festivals going on this year that it was hard to keep track of them all. Below is a brief highlight of some of the ones we enjoyed and you may want to keep an eye out for next year.
The Ethnic Enrichment Festival takes place every year towards the end of August. There are vendors from over 60 countries represented. Food vendors supply the taste of the world, from vietnamese kabobs to Paella from Spain. The stage is filled noon to night with cultural performances that will delight your family and have them dancing along with the performers. Tickets are $3. Children under 5 are Free. The Ethnic Festival is a 3 day event, Starting on Friday and ending on Sunday. This event takes place at Swope Park (next to the KC Zoo) Call 816-513-7500 for more information.
My family had a great time at the Japanese Festival on Saturday. It was a really neat experience that we hope to repeat next year. If you get the chance I would add this event to your calender for next year. This event was great especially as much of it was indoors, even though it turned out to be a beautiful day, if it happened to rain you could still enjoy the festival. Things to do included Martial Arts workshops, games and face painting, shows such as traditional dancing and sumo wrestling. There were also plenty of vendors in the Bazaar with beautiful Kimonos and some delicious Japanese Cuisine.http://www.kcjapanfestival.com/ Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for children, and free for kids under 5. This is a one day event at Johnson County Community College in Overland Park.
Irish Fest is a weekend event usually the first weekend in September. The event takes place at the Crown Center in Kansas City. There are some really amazing bands that come to perform as well as games and entertainment for the kids. You can sample the best of Irish food and drink as well as soak up the sun while listening to the lilting brogues of the Green Isle. Tickets are $10. http://www.kcirishfest.com/
(Photos courtesy of KCIrish Fest)
You can still get in on these last few events.
The first is the Kansas City Renaissance Festival. It is an amazing event that is open from Sept 3-October 16. You children will love all the costumes and jousting. Dress up the tots in Renaissance garb and they too can get in on the action. And where else can you get a turkey leg as big as your forearm? Adult tickets are $18.95, Children 5-12 are $9.95 and kids under 5 are free. Go to http://www.kcrenfest.com/index.html for more info.
If you are wanting a night out from the Kids then consider going to see the Makaha Sons Hawaiian band at Johnson County Community College on October 15. Tickets are $35. The show starts at 8pm in Yardley Hall. http://www.jccc.edu/performing-arts-series/events/2011-2012/makaha-sons.html
Night of Hula with the Hâlau Makana O Hula School of Polynesian Arts at the Cotillion Room and Garden in Independence. This event is on December 10. Call 1 816.616.4780 for more information.