Friday, May 30, 2003
Let it be known that one of the world's largest private collections of Princess Diana items is on display in Carthage, Missouri. The whole scenario is a fluffy, pink, disturbing set for a Danielle Steele TV movie. Understandably enough, the $4 million slew of evening gowns, china, Christmas cards and other pillars of royal domesticity is housed in a restored 1800s Victorian manor. But wait. The manor is in a place called Inspiration Park. And Inspiration Park overlooks something called Precious Moments Lake. The collection was assembled over the course of 22 years by a rich Texas couple named Jess and Suzanne King. Suffice it to say that many readers will want to drive three hours to see this for the same reason they watched Best in Show. Another good reason: A portion of the proceeds from the exhibit -- and from the sale of Precious Moments versions of Princess Di -- supports mammogram testing at three local hospitals. The exhibit is open 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and costs $4 to $9. For directions, call 1-800-543-7975, ext. 2983.
Saturday, May 31, 2003
On the heels of the second American Idol come ... twenty bazillion local spin-offs! Competitors in the Kansas City Arts Idol contest do more than croon syrupy ballads, though. They act, perform on instruments and recite their own poetry. Ten of the Idol semifinalists bring their creativity to the stage at the Westport-Roanoke Arts Festival, from 2 to 5 p.m. at the Westport-Roanoke Community Center (3601 Roanoke). High Vibe performs as well; this jazz and world-music group includes a jazz harpist. The event is free. For information, call 913-649-3766.
How many yogis are doing the proud warrior pose at this very instant? And how many of them are doing it to the sounds of the prolific Lifescapes series' Meditations: Native American Flute, found exclusively at their local SuperTargets? Answers: a lot and a lot. Far as we can tell, though, discount stores have nothing to do with tonight's performance by Native American flutist John Two-Hawks. Two-Hawks, an Elk medicine healer and teacher from the Ogalala Lakota Sioux, shares "Mending Music and Healing Wisdom" at 8 p.m. at the Liberty Performing Arts Theatre (1600 South Withers Road). His performance makes use of cedar flutes, ceremonial drums and soulful vocals, and he claims his concerts have a healing effect on audiences. The show costs $15 to $20. For information, call 816-792-6130.
Sunday, June 1, 2003
The dual-exhaust crew is getting antsy for the June 6 release of the sequel to The Fast and the Furious. Luckily, the Midwest Sport Compact Challenge is in town this weekend. Shiny rims, subwoofers and illegally tinted windows rule the Kansas City International Raceway (8201 South Noland Road) as little cars with big engines compete in street races, a car show, a stereo contest and even a burnout competition. Contestants have the opportunity to destroy their expensive wheels in this ingenious test to see who can achieve the longest, smokiest burnout from a dead stop. Events begin at 9 a.m., and tickets cost $12. For information, call 816-358-6700.
Monay, June 2, 2003
Three Views of Bamboo, a new art exhibit at the Kansas City Jewish Museum, is kind of like the Food Network's Iron Chef. The assigned ingredient: bamboo. Only instead of chefs, you've got artists, and no one winds up eating anything or being subjected to bad dubbing. Author and bamboo proponent Robert Coffland created the show by assembling very different works from three of Japan's leading bamboo masters. Fujinuma Noboru's work reveals his functional focus with woven baskets of floral arrangements; Nagakura Kenichi draws from his artisan grandfather's rough style of weaving; and Shono Tokuzo works exclusively with grass from his family's decades-old bamboo grove, which he cuts and processes himself before creating abstract works. The show runs through July 20. The museum (5500 West 123rd Street in Overland Park) is open from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, and from 1 to 4 p.m. on weekends. For information, call 913-266-8413.
Tuesday, June 3, 2003
Starting today, the Nelson-Atkins American Indian Gallery shows a new collection of Native American work, much of it donated by Kansas City's private collectors. The bottom line is that the public hasn't seen this stuff, and it's really cool stuff to see. A Navajo chief's blanket, prehistoric artifacts and beautiful Pueblo pots are among the highlights. Admission to the Nelson (4525 Oak Street) is free. For more information, call 816-561-4000.
Wednesday, June 4, 2003
People even considering buying their dads ties for Father's Day should go see Father's Day Gift for a reality check. Tie giving is a completely heinous offense, people, and the proof is in this collection of more than 100 tacky ties given to one unassuming bankruptcy attorney. Clearly, they didn't tickle the attorney's fancy, or he'd be wearing the damn things rather than giving them to a museum. It all began when his wife thought his courtroom appearances needed a little flair. So the poor lawyer ended up approaching the benches of federal judges who wanted a closer look at his Band-Aid tie, his Swiss-cheese tie or his zydeco tie (which can be played as a musical instrument). Father's Day Gift is on display at the Bingham-Waggoner Historical Society in Independence through the month of June. Admission costs $1 to $4. For directions, call 816-461-3491.