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Powell Gardens

Posted June 23, 2014 10:30pm by Jane

Powell Gardens 2My son wants to be a “nature scientist” when he grows up, so we spend each summer heading to the Kansas City Zoo, Deanna Rose Farmstead, area ponds, local parks, and even the backyard so he can do his “research.”

As he gets a little older, Powell Gardens is quickly becoming a serious contender for his attention with all it has to offer. And frankly, every family member has come to love exploring this special place.

Each summer, Powell Gardens has a different theme. This year, kids can enjoy Gardens Gone Wild–The Amazing Animal Quest, complete with 26 bronze animal sculptures around the gardens by nationally acclaimed artist Dan Ostermiller. Meet  a 12-foot elephant in the Fountain Garden, a pair of wrestling bears, or Priscilla, the 5-foot-tall hen in the Heartland Harvest Garden. Snap a pic of your kids with one of these animals, and you can even enter their contest to win great prizes!

My family’s recurring favorites include the Heartland Harvest Garden: Fun Foods Farm, which was designed specifically to teach kids – in a fun, interactive way – about where food begins. We also bring towels and a change of clothes in preparation for a visit to the The Fountain Garden. Complete with an ever-changing fountain display, everyone is welcome to jump in, get wet and cool off.

Finally, Powell Gardens offers some pretty fantastic festivals, including the Booms & Blooms Festival, and the 2014 Festival of Butterflies. Booms & Blooms takes place July 3, and features tasting stations at the Heartland Harvest Garden, special activities for kids, live music, and a fireworks display at approximately 9:30 pm. The Festival of Butterflies celebrates, well, just what you’d expect: butterflies. hundreds and hundreds of them in the indoor conservatory. Taking place August 1-3 & 8-10, it’s a special visit complete with storytelling, a parade, caterpillar hunt, and other fun butterfly-related activities for the kids.

Check out Powell Garden’s calendar for a running listing of all the events offered. This Saturday alone, there’s a Puppet Making Workshop, Plant Prints and Flower Pounding, and an evening Astronomy session available, to name a few. I hope you have as much fun out in nature as we do!

Powell Gardens is located at 1609 NW US Highway 50, Kingsville, MO 64061. Parking is free, and standard admission is $10/adults, $9/seniors, $4/children ages 5-12; Festival admission is $12/adults, $10/seniors, $5/children ages 5-12.

Photo courtesy of Powell Gardens.

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Kansas City Irish Fest and Independence’s Santa-Cali-Gon Days!

Posted August 28, 2013 8:05am by kckids@revisin.com

Labor Day Weekend is upon us.  In case you missed this post,  there are two wonderful annual festivals that are sure bets for a weekend full of family fun!

The 11th annual Kansas City Irish Fest is Friday, Aug. 30 through Sunday, Sept 1, 2013 at Crown Center Square.  This year’s festival features over 30 musical acts on 7 stages and over 20 heritage workshops (any genealogy fans out there?!).  There’s a massive children’s area, with lots for kids of all ages to do!  Hours are:

FRIDAY, AUGUST 30           –      5pm -11pm

SATURDAY, AUGUST 31             –    11am – 11pm

SUNDAY,  SEPTEMBER 1            -   11am – 11pm

On Friday, Aug 30 through Monday, Sept 2, 2013, the Independence Chamber of Commerce will present the 41st annual Santa-Cali-Gon Days®Festival on the historic Independence Square in Independence, MO.

Santa-Cali-Gon Days® celebrates Independence as the starting point of the three trails, the Santa Fe, California and Oregon Trail that took pioneers to the West during the 1800s. The festival is a free, fun, four day family event.  The festival features one of the Midwest’s top arts and crafts shows, over 300 commercial vendors, and a carnival (carnival tickets cost extra) for kids of all ages.

In addition, the majority of food booths and parking lots are operated by not-for-profit organizations, who in turn use the money for their local projects and causes.  The festival draws about 225,000 visitors each year. The festival offers three stages for entertainment, including the Main Stage, Gospel Stage and the Community Stage.

As the Kansas City metropolitan area’s most established Labor Day weekend event, Santa-Cali-Gon Days® hosts approximately 225,000 visitors each year.  For a complete entertainment schedule visit the festival web site at www.santacaligon.com or contact the Independence Chamber of Commerce at 816-252-4745.  Have fun!!

FRIDAY, AUGUST 30      –    12:00 PM – 11:00 PM

SATURDAY, AUGUST 31 –    10:00 AM – 11:00 PM

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 1         –    10:00 AM – 11:00 PM

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 2    –    10:00 AM – 5:00 PM

Sledding places in KC- 2012

Posted January 01, 2013 9:59am by kckids@revisin.com
This is basically last year’s list, with the addition of a few comments and tweets we received.  If you’ve got any to add–leave a comment and tell us about it!   Happy sledding, folks!
  • “Suicide Hill” (KCMO) –56th and Brookside, Brookside Park
  • Gillham Park (Kansas City, MO)
  • Avila University (KCMO) – 119th and Wornall
  • Water Works Park (Northland) – North Oak, just north of Burlington in North Kansas City – multiple hills here!
  • William Jewell College (Liberty, MO)
  • William Landahl Park Reserve (north side of park) (Blue Springs, MO)
  • Ward Park (Blue Springs, MO) – SW 22nd St. off of 40 Highway
  • High Grove Elementary School (Grandview, MO)
  • Belvidere Park (Grandview, MO) – 6509 E. 147th
  • Meadowmere Park (Grandview, MO) – 13610 Byars
  • “Mad Dog Hill” (Belton, MO) – 155th & Westover
  • Glendale Elementary School, Lee’s Summit Road (Independence) – a good slope for smaller kids
  • McCoy Park (Independence) – 24 Highway
  • Hill across from Lea McKeighan Park (Lee’s Summit, MO) – 120 NE Chipman
  • 119th & Kansas City Road (Olathe, KS)
  • 137th and BlackBob (Olathe, KS) – just south of Lowe’s
  • I-435 between Antioch and Metcalf (Overland Park, KS) by Cleveland Chiropractic College (formerly the Farmer’s Insurance building) – get there via College Blvd.
  • Grace Church (Overland Park, KS) – 159th & Antioch
  • Wyandotte County Lake Park (Kansas City, KS)
  • Stump Park (Shawnee, KS) – 47th & Woodland
  • “the hill behind the Leawood Pioneer Library at 119th and Roe.  Frowned upon… but hilarious fun!”
  • Pleasant Valley Church in Liberty has a couple of great hills. They are located at 35 & 291 hwy off the outer road.

NOTE: Not all of these locations – though popular – are public property. It is always a good idea to seek permission before sledding on private property. Be careful and watch out for your kids! Sledding is super fun but can certainly be a bit dangerous.

Where are YOUR favorite sledding hills?

*image courtesy of familyeducation.com