Loose Park (52nd Street and Wornall) provides outdoor sanctuary from the summer sun, with its spray park (which dissuades visitors from dipping into the rose gardens centerpiece fountain) and shaded pondside paths. On July 10, the park unveiled a Japanese Tearoom, an entirely enclosed attraction, albeit one with a view of its own secluded, exotic garden. A five-years-in-the-making joint venture with Kansas Citys sister city Kurashiki, Japan, this soothing, earth-toned space contains tiny entranceways, bamboo-lined ceilings, opaque rice-paper window panels, wickerlike floors, and sliding doors that mark the transition from gently labyrinthine structure to closed meditation cell. Visitors can call the Loose Park Garden Center (816-784-5300) to view and tour the facility. However, the tearoom (capacity: four) is not yet open to rental reservations, and, name notwithstanding, its probably best not to bring pots or cups.
Starts: July 31. Daily, 2006