As if piloting a speeding hulk of metal wasn't enough, Kansas City drivers often feel compelled to bully cyclists who dare to ride on local roadways. There are precious few bike commuters who haven't been the target of hurled obscenities — hurled objects, even. The last Friday of every month, though, that urban hierarchy turns upside down. The Critical Mass ride draws an army of local cyclists who take to the streets for an unpredictable joy ride around the city. Yes, they'll take up the entire lane and — hell, yeah — hold up traffic at lights. But here's the critical point: These streets were made for two wheels, too. Meet in the Westport Sun Fresh parking lot (4001 Mill) at 6 p.m. to ride.
Music, Drunken Distractions, Karaoke
The Pitch's pick for Best Karaoke in 2010
There isn't a karaoke bar in the city as reliable as the Red Balloon, the Overland Park dive that allows amateurs to stand up and belt out Foreigner songs seven nights a week, from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. The Balloon is a popular spot for birthdays, going-away parties, or any event that's enhanced by watching friends and strangers sing poorly in public. The crowd varies from night to night. Sometimes it's hard-drinking vets, there for the pool and darts. Sometimes the place is taken over by young professionals in khakis and polos flipping through the KJ's impossibly large songbook. Regulars know to come on Sundays, when 32-ounce domestic schooners are $3, and on Thursdays, when 24-ounce Pabst cans are $2 and help the endless pitchiness go down easy.