Why dodgeball? you ask. The Kansas City Dodgeball Association has an answer: "This is a good way to have fun outdoors, meet new people, and then hit them in the face with a big red ball." Members of the KCDBA get their game on at 1 p.m. every Sunday in Valentine Park, on the tennis courts located just north of Roanoke Road and 39th Street. Perhaps because dodgeball appeals to people who think of pain as a form of recreation, unathletic habits like drinking and smoking are not frowned upon during these gatherings. Teams are chosen by paper/scissors/rock-appointed captains, and three sets must be played before anyone calls it quits. Just remember: Playing dodgeball hurts only if you play it right. For information, see www.kcdba.org.-- Gina Kaufmann
Up a Creek
Brush Creek is idyllic , but beware the "shit mister."
The familiar stretch of Brush Creek that runs through the Country Club Plaza, following Ward Parkway and J.C. Nichols Parkway, is decidedly urban. Metro dwellers know it's a great place for jogging or tossing a Frisbee. Mist from a fountain in the middle of the creek even provides relief for joggers -- but the "shit mister," as one Sierra Clubber calls it, also sends a distinct odor wafting on the summer wind, thanks to the fact that the water in the creek is untreated. The good news: Ongoing renovations will reduce runoff into the creek, so frolickers should soon enjoy a lessened stink factor. For now, fecal fountain be damned, Brush Creek can be enjoyed by boat with Fiesta Cruises, which provides narrated rides along the way. Rides depart at the top of the hour from 6 to 10 p.m. Thursday and Friday and from 1 to 10 p.m. Saturday. Tickets cost $6.50. Call 816-756-1331.-- Sarah Smarsh
Hang On Tight
Rock climbing seems extra cool since that dude from Colorado got pinned by a boulder and sawed off his own arm earlier this year. But there's no need to pack a dull pocketknife at IBEX Climbing Gym (801 N.W. South Outer Road in Blue Springs). At this indoor cliff-hanging experience, you'll follow professionally set routes and have the option of crying to the safety staffers milling about. IBEX has 6,800 square feet of climbing surface, including overhanging features, 32-foot walls and a 2,000-square-foot bouldering area. Admission is $9 to $12, plus equipment rental fees. For more information, call 816-228-9988.-- Smarsh