Ongoings, Museum Exhibits & Events
Thanks to the wonder of time-lapse photography, it takes only nine minutes to watch a 56-foot tree emerge in Kansas City. The operative word is emerge. This silver tree didn't grow in the traditional, one-ring-a-year way. The newest addition to the sculpture garden at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (4525 Oak) is an arboreal behemoth called "Ferment," the latest in New York artist Roxy Paine's series of Dendroids — great, branching, stainless-steel formations that have sprouted from various museum lawns the world over. See more of Paine's work inside the Bloch Building, plus a slideshow of "Ferment" being fabricated in the artist's New York workshop and time-lapse footage of the sculpture's installation here. Paine's sculpture-producing "Scumak"
machine also periodically spits out hamburger-like lumps of polyethylene until August 28. And that's not all. "There's so much with Roxy Paine and his process that we thought we might immerse people in that more," says the Nelson's Kathleen Leighton. The more that she refers to is the Creative Café, where museum visitors can make their own art using paintbrushes and water on special drawing surfaces called Buddha Boards. Leighton explains: "You make your creation, and the air gradually dries it, and then it disappears, and you can make something else." (That's a nice way of saying, Let someone else have a turn.) The Creative Café is open Wednesday through Sunday. Admission is free. Call
816-751-1278 or see nelson-atkins.org for hours and additional information.
If you're ambulatory and bored by such early-evening television broadcasts as Wheel of Fortune and Seinfeld reruns, join the Westport Walking Group for its weekly wandering around the neighborhood that was, in a year called "yesteryear," the starting point for Western pioneers. Also, did you know that walking around is, like, good for your kidneys or something? Four out of ten doctors recommend walking at least once per day. If you think walking might be right for you, consult your physician. The Westport Walking Group ambles out from its meeting point at the Westport branch of the Kansas City Public Library at 5 p.m. each Tuesday.
Food & Drink (General), Happy Hours, Nightlife
(900 Westport Road, 816-561-1101). Tuesdays through Fridays, enjoy food and drink specials in the cool lounge from 5 to 7 p.m. A Kobe burger plus a good red make for a fine night.
Cheap Thrills, Games
With casual-dining restaurants offering fast-food prices, it's becoming easier to avoid drive-throughs at lunchtime. Instead of heading for the nearest T.G.I. Friday's, consider Frito pie or chicken fingers ... at a bowling alley. Every Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Mission Bowl (5399 Martway in Mission, 913-432-7000) serves up its Lunch 'N Bowl Special — for $10, get two games, shoe rental, hamburger, fries and a medium soft drink. The offer is also good at Mission Bowl Olathe (1020 South Weaver, 913-782-0279. So polish off the bowling ball — and lunch. Nailing a 7-10 split is pretty sweet, but doing it in a suit might be one of the greatest feelings in the world. Just remember to put your wingtips or heels back on before returning to the office.
$10 (plus tax) per person
If your creative life so far has been limited to crafting excuses for why you're not using the right side of your brain, today's your chance to turn a constructive corner. Every Tuesday from 8:30 a.m. to who knows when, the textile mavens at The Studio (1121 West 47th Street, 816-531-4466) host Sit & Stitch, a gathering for people who love needles. Cindy Craig, a Studio manager who runs the group, says it's a great opportunity to work on a new or existing project and socialize at the same time. When asked whether the group is akin to so-called stitch-and-bitch circles, Craig says, "We try to be more stitch than bitch." Sit & Stitch is not a class, and all skill levels and ages are welcome. Coffee, muffins and scones are provided. You can bring your own knitting, crochet and/or needlepoint supplies or purchase something from The Studio's stash.
Last year, Playboy named the Mutual Musicians Foundation (1823 Highland, 816-471-5212) one of the greatest bars in the country, alongside such hot spots as San Francisco's Top of the Mark and New York City's King Cole Bar. But it's not all about the late-night vodka tonics and beers at this 81-year-old music hall off 18th Street and Vine. "Jazz is our mainstay, but we are also about the perpetuation of music as an art form, expanding out into the music community and bringing in musicians from all genres," says Anita Dixon, vice president of the foundation's executive board of directors. The MMF gets bluesy every Monday when it holds an open jam session at 8 p.m. Money from drink sales goes to educational programs at the foundation. Barbecue from Smokin Aces is for sale at the free event.— Berry Anderson
no cover charge
Jazz, All-Ages, Jam Sessions
It's been said that John Coltrane and Charlie Parker met for the first time at the corner of 18th Street and Vine. If you've neglected your civic duties and have yet to see the American Jazz Museum, it's closed today, but musically inclined types can still bring their instruments for the Blue Monday Jam at the museum's attached nightclub, the Blue Room (1616 East 18th Street, 816-474-8463). This week, sit in with — or sit back with a drink and listen to — tenor saxophonist Matt Otto and vocalist Shay Estes Drink specials include a $4 Blue Room martini and $3 beer, wine and wells. There's no cover on Mondays. The Blue Room opens at 5 p.m., and the jam (open to minors accompanied by adults) starts at 7.
Food & Drink (General)
(1900 Main, 816-842-2205). Start early at Michael Smith's Mediterranean tapas bar — the bennies happen from 11:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, with half-price small plates and a $2 discount on drinks and wines by the glass. (On Mondays the wood-fired pizzas are $8.)
Food & Drink (General), Nightlife
Mondays-Thursdays, 4-6 p.m. and Sundays, 2:20-6 p.m.
209 W. 46th Terr. (map
Kansas City Plaza
All pasta dinners are served with our freshly baked herb and bread sticks, Figlio's special "Bottomless" Caesar Salad, and Gelato. 4pm-6pm. $11.95 per person.
Anyone who is smoking age (that's 18, yo) can take a seat and puff delicious apple-mint smoke at Sinbad's Café and Hookah Lounge (3929 Broadway, 816-255-3988). The new Westport hangout — designed for smoking flavored tobacco from beautiful, freestanding glass pipes fitted with snakelike hoses for each inhaler — is not a club. Sinbad's doesn't serve food or alcohol (though the more than 25 varieties of tobacco taste like candy). Owner Sami Mac describes Sinbad's as "a coffee shop, basically," complete with free Wi-Fi access and imported teas served with fresh mint leaves. Mac, who recently moved to Kansas City from Wichita but claims Palestine as "home," often brings the mint leaves straight from his own garden. He has imported his hookahs from Egypt. A session with one of the green beauties that he rents starts at $10.99. For four bucks more, smokers get the establishment's signature offering: the Sinbad Hookah, in which the tobacco burns in an apple instead of a ceramic bowl. "It gives you more flavor because it absorbs the juice from the apple," Mac explains. Sinbad's is open 4 p.m.-midnight Sunday through Thursday and 4 p.m.-2 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays. Go on the right night and you might even catch Mac perched at the synthesizer, adding to the Middle Eastern mood through his original music.—
Food & Drink (General)
Addicts know that sushi can be an expensive habit, especially in the landlocked Midwest. But $1 sushi specials make it possible to get your raw-fish fix for little more than the cost of fast food. Friends Sushi and Bento Place (1808 West 39th Street, 816-753-6666) shills sashimi and sushi pieces for a buck each between 5 and 9 p.m. Mondays and from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays. Rolls go for $3.99 at the same times. The menu at Friends includes staples such as tuna, plus some more adventurous cuts. The crunchy, spicy salmon roll makes our scalp tingle. Just make sure you get to Friends early and without too many friends in tow. During the sushi sale, this tiny eatery can feel like a sardine can.
select sushi pieces $1