Kansas City Area Christmas Tree Farms – 2015

Posted November 29, 2015 3:26pm by Jane

christmas tree picThe rainy weather definitely postponed the Christmas tree purchase for many of us this Thanksgiving weekend. Hats off to those of you who were brave enough to face the weather and dry out your tree!

For those of us who haven’t hit the tree farms yet, here’s a list of local farms to check out. Please be sure to visit the website and/or contact the tree farm before you go to make sure they’ll be open this year.

Bierman’s Christmas Tree Farm
Address: 2825 South 63rd Street Kansas City KS 66106
Contact: Brian Bierman, (913) 375-1317

Midland Holiday Pines LLC
Address: 18541 Midland Drive Shawnee KS 66218
Contact: Phil & Judy Wegman, (913) 631-5095

Grandpa’s Tree Farm
Address: 11322 Hubbard Road Kansas City KS 66109
Contact: Warren Liston, (913) 721-2905

Longbranch Christmas Tree Ranch
Address: 25990 West 77th Street Shawnee KS 66227
Contact: Karen Andrews, (913) 441-5990

Wilderson Tree Farm
Address: 14820 Parallel Road Basehor KS 66007
Contact: Charles Wilderson, (913) 724-1057

Cedar Valley Forest
Address: 29145 W 83rd Street De Soto KS 66018
Contact: Jack Russell, (913) 583-3999

Fulk Farms
Address: 23400 Highway 92 Platte City MO 64079
Contact: Dennis Fulk, (816) 225-8809

Christmas Ranch Tree Farm
Address: 24818 NE 148th Street Excelsior Springs MO 64024
Contact: Roy Freeman, (816) 630-5086

Reindeer Lane
Address: 19401 Fightmaster Trimble MO 64492
Contact: Russell Bumgarner, (816) 803-5853

Evening Star Pines
Address: 9820 Evening Star Road Eudora KS 66025
Contact: Cris & Sherry Crawford, (785) 542-1634

Cedar Valley Tree Forest
Address: 3533 West 247th Street Louisburg KS 66053
Contact: Bill & Patty Lehman, (913) 837-5751

Pumpkins and Pines Inc.
Address: 20606 South SR 7 Pleasant Hill MO 64080
Contact: Michael Haffner, (816) 540-3887

Quail Creek Tree Farm
Address: 6061 SE 240th St. Lathrop MO 64465
Contact: James & Margaret Stevens, (816) 740-4282

Jingle Bell Trees
Address: 7821 SE 240th Street Lathrop MO 64465
Contact: Paul E. & Wynne Peterson, (816) 740-3732

D & G Tree Farm
Address: Highway 69 & 247th Street Louisburg KS 66053
Contact: Douglas Eble, (913) 837-2387

Fort Osage Christmas Trees
Address: 3022 N. Twyman Rd., Independence, MO
Contact: Bob & Kim Luke, (816) 838-3707

Strawberry Hill Christmas Tree Farm
Address: 794 Highway 40, Lawrence, KS
Contact: (785) 331-4422

Fontana Pines
Address: 20337 W. 383 St., Fontana KS (6 miles south of Paola/15 miles SW of Louisburg)
Contact: (913) 432-3725 or email edwbartz@gmail.com

Kennedy’s Country Farm
Address: 27102 Herring Rd., Greenwood MO (located 1 mile south of the intersection of MO Hwy 50 and MO Hwy 7.)
Contact: (816) 744-0386 or bill@kennedyscountryfarm.com

Photo courtesy of Fulk Farms.

Plaza Lighting Ceremony 2015

Posted November 22, 2015 10:39pm by Jane

plaza lighting ceremony2015It might not be quite as big a crowd as the Royals Parade earlier this month, but I’m really looking forward to one of KC’s favorite events: the KCP&L Plaza Lighting Ceremony. Now in its 86th year, this tradition is truly something special…for every member of the family. As always, the lights will go on this Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 26, 2015 in the heart of the Country Club Plaza, at the Main Stage, at Nichols Road & Pennsylvania by Brio Tuscan Grille. (click here for a map of the ceremony)

This year, KC native Gillian Flynn, author of best-selling novel-turned-movie Gone Girl, will flip the switch, which I think is pretty cool. But don’t worry, there will also be a KC Royals tribute as well!

Here’s the schedule of events:

  • 5–6pm: Pre-show performances and giveaways from the stage
  • 6-7pm: KCP&L Plaza Lighting Ceremony, performances by The Hembree, The Snow Globes, Isaac Cates and Ordained, Brad Cunningham and more
  • 6:54pm: Flip of the Switch by Gillian Flynn 
  • 7–8pm: Post-ceremony concert featuring The Hembrees

Can’t make it to the festivities? You and your family can:

  • Watch the 6-7pm festivities live on KSHB-TV,
  • Stream it online at kshb.com, or
  • Follow the festivities live at Facebook.com/KCPLPlazaLights or on Twitter @FlipDSwitch
  • Or you can visit the Plaza anytime between Thanksgiving and January 17 for a view of the lights, which go on at 5pm every night. Our favorite way to enter the Plaza is to drive down Wornall (coming from the South) – the delight on the kids’ faces as we go over the hill and see the lights is worth the drive!

And if you’re feeling really adventurous, you can watch the lights test, which takes place Wednesday, Nov. 25 (the day before Thanksgiving) from 2-6 am. Pretty sure my family won’t be at that one, but if your kids are early risers, it might be a fun outing with no crowds! Click here for more information, and for other fun facts about the Plaza Lights!

Image courtesy of The Country Club Plaza

Ernie Miller Nature Center Celebrates 30 Years

Posted November 16, 2015 11:14pm by Jane
My son has gone through many phases in his young life: first it was making farmyard animal noises as a toddler, then it was learning everything he could about zoo animals, followed by the ever-favorite dinosaurs phase. At some point, his interest returned to the non-extinct animals and their habitats. Now, at the ripe old age of 7, he really wants to become a “nature scientist.”
ernie miller nature centerSo you can imagine our excitement when we discovered the Ernie Miller Nature Center several years ago. Located off of Highway 7 in Olathe, Ernie Miller Nature Center has ongoing (and inexpensive) educational events for kiddos, nature trails to explore, and most important, friendly staff who really wants to teach your kids about nature.
Even more exciting for the kids is that Ernie Miller is about to celebrate its 30th birthday this Saturday! On Nov. 21, guests of all ages are welcome to join the staff at Ernie Miller from 1-4pm for stories, animal presentations, crafts and more. This free birthday party is open to all ages. Earlier in the day, from 10:30-11:30am, guests can enjoy Tellabration 2015, a celebration of International Day of storytelling at the Nature Center. The twist: you’ll get to hear nature stories that feature live animals. I know one 7-year-old who is looking forward to this! Tickets are $3/person (all ages).
They also have fun pre-school nature adventures throughout the year, including their Animal Tales series, for ages 2-6. The next event happens this Wednesday, Nov. 18, with a Turkey Strut theme. The 30-minute session is $2/person, and takes place at 10:30am.
Finally, if you’re looking for some great ideas for larger groups (scout troops, church youth groups, etc.), check out Ernie Miller’s Outdoor Education Programs for Youth Groups.
Ernie Miller Nature Park is located at 909 N Hwy 7, Olathe, KS, 66061. Click here for a map of the park.
Image courtesy of Ernie Miller Nature Center.