The Pitch’s 2022 summer guide to the best of KC events

Heat wave.

First Fridays.

Welcome to the wonderful world of pandemic recovery. Since we’ve all been reeling from hand sanitizer stress, face mask maintenance, and vaccine vendors, it’s time to bring some fun back to our, now greatly appreciated, lives.

Despite all, never fear gentle readers, for The Pitch is here. Now, get out of this introduction and check out all of the cool events, exhibits, shows, and media spectaculars in the Summer Guide. Let’s go hard in the paint, together.


June 10-11

Sugar Creek Slavic Fest

Sugar Creek, MO

June 18

Kandy Land Car Show

1800 Genessee Street

June 21

International Make Music Day

Lemonade Park

June 25

Oddities & Curiosities Expo

Kansas City Convention Center

Kansas City Storm Championship Weekend


Strawberry Swing Indie Craft Fair

Kansas City Museum

First Fridays

Crossroads Art District

The art-focused gathering takes place on the first Friday of every month. Highlighting up-and-coming artists, installations, and galleries, First Friday is a great opportunity to dive into local art demographics. Not going for just the art? That’s fine. Enjoy some local eats and drinks during your visit. With all your basic human needs fulfilled, First Friday is never an event to miss.

Aug. 20

Kansas City’s National WWI Museum and Memorial KCMO

Although the skies are typically inhabited by jets coming in and out of KCI Airport, on Aug. 22 hot air balloons will be taking priority. The National WWI Museum and Memorial will be hosting its annual Great Balloon Glow. Even with the main attraction in the air, there will be plenty of activities down on the ground. With local food vendors and live music, the affair will cater to all age groups.

Sept. 15

Chiefs First Regular Season Home Game

Arrowhead Stadium

Npr 469 Juneteenth17 2474 Tiffany Matson Email


June 3
July 1
August 5

Juneteenth KC First Friday Celebration

18th & Vine

June 4

Juneteenth KC
Cultural Parade

Begins at Benton and 18th Street

June 14

Juneteenth KC Heritage Festival

18th & Vine

June 18

Juneteenth Celebration with BlaKCK Market

Lewis and Clark Park at Kaw Point

June 19

Lawrence Juneteenth Celebration

Lawrence, KS

June 11

Juneteenth Celebration

The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art is opening its doors to celebrate Juneteenth, and it isn’t letting a second go to waste. The event is poised to be an all-out examination of art and culture that holds a lens to work like Charles White’s Goodnight Irene.

Artist Anthony High will also be on location to discuss the artistic process as others create Juneteenth crafts and explore additional related resources.

The top-level activities are appetizers for a main course of performances from the likes of Shinique Smith and the Kansas City Friends of Alvin Ailey. The latter will perform I Want to Testify, an act choreographed in part by Tyrone Aiken, while the former has created a performance comprised of local talent.

**Admission to the Nelson-Atkins Museum is free of charge, but non-members must reserve tickets in advance.



A Pride Bar Crawl is set to take place in Kansas City June 18. // Courtesy of Crawl With US


June 4

Queer Bar Takeover

J. Rieger & Co.

June 4 – Aug. 21

Making History: Kansas City and the Rise of Gay Rights – an Exhibit and a Response

Kansas City Public Library

June 5

Pride Youth Mixer

The Black Box

Plymouth Pride Party

Plymouth Congregational Church (UCC), Lawrence, KS

June 9

Out With the Royals

Kauffman Stadium

Pride Night W/ DJ Carma

Replay Lounge

June 11

KC PrideFest Parade


KC PrideFest

Theis Park

June 12

KC PrideFest

Theis Park

June 18

Pride Bar Crawl

Begins at John’s Big Deck

The 5th annual Pride Crawl is sponsored by Crawl With US. Check-in is at 4 p.m. at John’s Big Deck, where participants will receive vouchers for free drinks, shots, food, limited souvenir cups, and more. Venue stops include Double Tap KC, Grinder’s Pizza, KC Wineworks, Lifted Spirits Distillery, Tannin Wine Bar & Kitchen, and Up-Down KC. A portion of the proceeds will go to The Trevor Project, the world’s largest suicide prevention and crisis intervention organization for LGBTQ+ people.

June 25

KCCI’s Queer & Bazaar

Kansas City Public Library North East Branch

September 17

Pride in the Park

Sar Ko Par Trails, Lenexa, KS


Fireworks In The Neighborhood

Fireworks in the neighborhood. // Photo by Jim Nimmo


June 24

PARKED! Festival

Stump Park

June 25

Osawatomie’s Lights on the Lake

Osawatomie, KS

Greenwood Freedom Fest

Greenwood, MO

July 1

Legacy Blast 2022

Lee’s Summit, MO

July 2

1860s Independence Day Celebration

Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm Olathe, KS

Independence Day Celebration and Parade

Weston, MO

Flags for Freedom

Merriam, KS

Stars and Stripes Picnic

National WWI Museum and Memorial KCMO

July 3

Liberty 4th Fest

Capitol Federal Sports Complex of Liberty Liberty, MO

Old Fashioned July 3rd Picnic at the Mission

Shawnee Indian Mission Fairway, KS

July 4

Lenexa Freedom Run

Lenexa, KS

Community Days Parade

Lenexa, KS

Louisburg Freedom Fest

Louisburg, KS

4th of July Celebration

Platte City, MO

Parkville 4th of July Parade

Parkville, MO

Beach Fest: Olathe

Olathe, KS

Parkville 4th of July Celebration

Parkville, MO

VillageFest 2022

Prairie Village, KS

4th of July Celebration at Worlds of Fun


Red, White & Blue Springs

Blue Springs High School Blue Springs, MO

Independence Day Festival: Gardner

Gardner, KS

Olathe’s July 4th Fireworks

Olathe, KS

July 7

Family Fun Nights – Fireworks: 1860s Style

Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm, Olathe, KS


Ron Funches

Ron Funches. // Courtesy Ron Funches


June 9

PUP, Granada

June 15

Bon Iver, Starlight

June 10

The Creepy Jingles, recordBar


The Creepy Jingles. // Courtesy of The Creepy Jingles

Three years ago, Kansas City garage rockers The Creepy Jingles released its self-titled debut EP with local label High Dive Records. In the intervening time, the band has become a staple of live shows around the region, playing on bills with artists as disparate as rapper Cuee and country singer-songwriter Jenna Rae.

They even opened the release show for Frogpond’s comeback album, TimeThief. Now, The Creepy Jingles have put out its debut full-length album, entitled Take Me at My Wordplay, also on High Dive, and it’s a massive step forward from the band’s first recordings.

Both the band—Nick Robertson on drums, Travis McKenzie on guitar, and Andrew Woody on bass guitar—and frontwoman singer-songwriter Jocelyn Olivia Nixon’s music and lyrics sound bigger and more confident.

Candlelight: From Bach to The Beatles, The Gem Theater

June 16

CHVRCHES, Uptown Theater

June 18

Welcome to Night Vale, Liberty Hall

The desert horror fiction podcast, boasting millions of listeners and 10 years of successful broadcasting, is coming to KC for a live show at 8 p.m. Saturday, June 18 at Liberty Hall. Fear is a reasonable response to life, but not a reasonable response to waiting until the last minute to buy tickets.

June 21

Fitz & the Tantrums / St. Paul & the Broken Bones, Grinder’s KC

June 30

Third Eye Blind / Taking Back Sunday, Starlight Theater

All of July

Alice in Wonderland, The Coterie

July 1

Bright Eyes, Uptown Theater

July 7

Chris Isaak / Lyle Lovett, Starlight Theater

July 8

Machine Gun Kelly / Avril Lavigne, T-Mobile Center

July 10

Mandy Moore, Uptown Theater

July 16

Drive-By Truckers, Knuckleheads

July 19

Def Leppard / Mötley Crüe / Poison / Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, Kauffman

July 21

Sheryl Crow, Grinder’s

July 22

Josh Groban, Starlight Theater

July 28-30

Andrew Dice Clay, The Comedy Club of Kansas City

August 2

Anthrax / Black Label Society / Hatebreed, Arvest at Midland

August 5

Breakaway Festival, Azura Amphitheater

August 9

Father John Misty / Suki Waterhouse, Arvest at Midland

Murder By Death / Amigo the Devil, Lemonade Park

Murder By Death and Amigo The Devil are coming to Lemonade Park Aug. 9 for an evening of music that will shake your soul and push you through the rest of the week. On one hand there’s the former—a sextet of musicians dedicated to earth-moving rock and Americana that’s carried on the back of low vocals.

Murder By Death postures itself as a band for people who like “eerie, old things,” but that has never stopped it from attempting to push its preferred genres forward.

Then there’s Amigo The Devil, a project that has metal and country holding hands in a way that perfectly complements Murder By Death’s atmosphere. The artist—driven solely by the twisted mind of Danny Kiranos—brings tantalizing tunes that often border on downright spooky, but they remain as foot-tappers all the same.

Tickets start at $32. The “doors” open at 7 p.m., with the show set to follow 30 minutes later at 7:30 p.m.

August 10

Sleigh Bells, The Truman

August 11-13

Ron Funches, The Comedy Club of Kansas City

From live-action appearances in shows like A.P. Bio and Black-ish to lending his voice talents in Bob’s Burgers and Adventure Time, Ron Funches has built a comedic career strong enough to make his upcoming weekend at The Comedy Club of Kansas City a must-see.

His stand-up performance is scheduled to keep things light with shows starting Aug. 11 and ending Aug. 13. Funches offers more than a pretty face (and voice), though. With writing credits on The Eric Andre Show and Nick Kroll’s Kroll Show, Funches’ comedic talents have been more than proven.

Thursday tickets start at $18, with Friday and Saturday tickets starting at $22 and $25, respectively. Each night has shows at 7 p.m., while Friday and Saturday also feature shows at 9:30 p.m.

August 11-28

Cabaret, Music Theater Heritage

August 12

Incubus / Sublime with Rome / The Aquadolls, Azura Amphitheater

August 19

Alice In Chains / Breaking Benjamin / Bush, Azura Amphitheater

August 24

Alicia Keys, Starlight Theater

August 29

Jack White, Starlight Theater

September 2

IDLES, The Truman

“Weird Al” Yankovic, Muriel Kauffman Theatre

September 3

Roger Waters, T-Mobile Center

September 7

Toni Stone, Unicorn Theatre

September 7-11

Kansas City Symphony performs Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Kauffman Center

September 9

Twenty One Pilots, T-Mobile Center

Wet Leg, The Truman

Soft-spoken indie rock duo Wet Leg is hopping across the pond to pay a visit to The Truman September 9. If you’re unfamiliar with Rhian Teasdale and Hester Chambers’ off-kilter act of fun jams, it might be because their first single, the muffin-buttering “Chaise Longue,” is just barely a year old.

A full-on, 12-track, self-titled album eventually launched in April of this year, revealing the group’s audacity to the world. Every song is its own peek into the minds of two England artists bonded together by the very friendship that graces the record’s cover.

Later this year, Kansas City has a chance to join in on Wet Leg’s introduction to the world. Tickets start at $22 if bought beforehand but cost at least $25 the day of the show. The doors open at 7 p.m., with Wet Leg set to take the stage at 8 p.m.

September 13

The National, Grinder’s KC


Nope Movie Image

Nope the movie.


June 3

Next of Kin, Screenland Armour Theatre

Starship Troopers, Screenland Armour Theatre

Memoria, Screenland Armour Theatre

Crimes of the Future, Screenland Armour Theatre

June 4

Pink Flamingos 4K 50th Anniversary, Screenland Armour Theatre

You I Knew Yesterday, Stray Cat Film Center

June 5

David Cronenberg’s Videodrome, Screenland Armour Theatre

June 8

Hustle, Netflix

Ms. Marvel, Disney+

June 10

Jurassic World Dominion, Theatrical

Poltergeist 40th Anniversary, Screenland Armour Theatre

June 11

Neon Demon, Screenland Armour Theatre

After Blue: Dirty Paradise, Stray Cat Film Center

June 14

Halftime, Netflix

June 15

Daisies, Stray Cat Film Center

Bargain Bin Film School’s relative claim to fame is that it’s the only non-accredited film school in the Greater Kansas City area and it is led by someone who has taken a singular film class. What better way to explore the absurdist Daisies than alongside a class of amateur film students? The showing is at 7 p.m. June 15 and proof of vaccination or a negative Covid-19 test within the past 48 hours is required.

June 16

Father of the Bride, HBO Max

June 17

Lightyear, Theatrical

The Lost Girls, Theatrical

Official Competition, Theatrical

Brian and Charles, Theatrical

Polyester, Stray Cat Film Center

June 19

Civil, Netflix

June 20

Tampopo, Stray Cat Film Center

June 23

G.I. Joe: The Movie 35th Anniversary, Regal Southwind

Menudo: Forever Young, HBO Max

June 24

The Black Phone, Theatrical

Marcel the Shell with the Shoes On, Theatrical

Elvis, Theatrical


Baz Luhrman’s Elvis.

All right hound dogs, throw on your blue suede shoes, and mentally prepare for burning love. In this upcoming biopic, the King will finally make his return to Hollywood and our ear canals.

Also making his return is Baz Luhrmann, director of The Great Gatsby and Moulin Rouge! Actors Austin Butler and Tom Hanks, are sure to garner even more attention for the film as if the title Elvis wasn’t enough. Covering Elvis’ rise to fame, the film will hit theatres on June 24.

July 1

Minions: The Rise of Gru, Theatrical

July 6

Hello, Goodbye, and Everything In Between, Netflix

July 8

Thor: Love and Thunder, Theatrical

The Sea Beast, Netflix

July 15

Persuasion, Netflix

July 22

Nope, Theatrical

Jordan Peele is up to his directing mastery once again with the upcoming release of Nope. Better known for cinematic greats like Get Out and Us, Peele has yet to disappoint theatres. On July 22, viewers will be thrown into a mix of sinister cinematography, as the movie follows the caretakers of a house and their devious discoveries. For some, the movie might really make you say nope however the director’s fans are already screaming hell yeah.

The Gray Man, Netflix

July 28

House Party, HBO Max

July 29

DC League of Super-Pets, Theatrical

August 5

Bullet Train, Theatrical

Secret Headquarters, Theatrical

August 12

Day Shift, Netflix

August 26

Samaritan, Theatrical

Me Time, Netflix


Redlined exhibit at Johnson County Museum.


Buttonwood Art Space

“Rhythm and Reveal,July 1-Sept. 22

Union Station

MAYA: The Exhibition, Opening July 13

Union Station hosts MAYA: The Exhibition. Opening July 13, the collection highlights the innovations and legacy of the ancient civilization. Starting daily at 10 a.m., visitors are free to immerse themselves in the artifacts and their history, well at least until 5 p.m. While boasting over 300 items, almost any object is more than likely to pique interest. Adult tickets start at $19.50, while children’s are $14.50, and group admission ticket prices can be found on Union Station’s website.

Arvin Gottlieb Planetarium: June

Magic Tree House: Space Mission

Seasonal Star Tours

Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art

The Regional, June 3-Sept. 11

A New World—Women to Watch 2024, June 24-Oct. 16

Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

Signs: Photographs by Jim Downs, May 7-Oct. 9

Kansas City Arts Coalition

Carolina Cuevas, July 8-29

Sumer Brooks, July 8-29

Adam Crowley, Aug. 5-26

Elizabeth Moore, Aug. 5-26


Summer Programs:

Pre-College ArtLab (PCAL), July 17-29 (for high school students)

Educators ArtLab (EAL), July 10-15 (for art educators)

Johnson County Museum

Redlined Exhibit, now until Jan. 7, 2023

The Johnson County Museum’s latest special exhibition, Redlined, offers an in-depth analysis of a 90 year-old racist practice and how it still affects Kansas Citians today. Johnson County Museum Director and Historian Mary McMurray says Redlined’s message is crucial for those who hope to have a better grasp on the history that surrounds us.

“Our dream for the museum is to spark an interest in any part of our history and leave people inspired to want to learn more,” McMurray says.

Redlined is available to experience until Jan. 7, 2023. Adult tickets start at $6. The Johnson County Museum will also soon host several “free days,” where anyone is welcome to visit at no cost. The currently scheduled 2022 free days are June 11, Sept. 17, and Nov. 23.

Kansas City Public Library

Evicted, May 7-July 17

‘Nearest by Air to Everywhere’: A Tour of Kansas City’s Aviation History, June 22-June 1 2023

Immersive Van Gogh Exhibit 

(now until Sept. 5), Lighthouse ArtSpace

Featuring an artist who has become so beloved he’s now considered “mainstream,” the Immersive Van Gogh Exhibit uses colored lights and a swelling soundtrack to walk viewers through some of the artist’s most impressive paintings during its approximately 35-minute runtime.

Kc Wolf


June 4

Hospital Hill Run, Hospital Hill

June 18

Will You Walk With Me, WWI Memorial

This is a 5K marathon from Caregivers on the Homefront, and it has one primary goal: raise awareness of veteran and first responder suicide. The fourth annual walk takes place June 18 both in person at the WWI Memorial and virtually, with those who sign up receiving a race t-shirt, race bib, and medal.

July 20

Free HIV & Hep C Testing,
Kansas City Center for Inclusion

July 30

WIN for KC Try-athalon, Sailboat Cove

August 6

Spencer C. Duncan 5K benefiting The Battle Within, New Century Airport

August 7

Cowboy Up Triathlon,
Smithville Lake, MO

All Summer

Exploring Roots Summer Adventure Challenge, Heartland Conversation


June 5

Kansas City BrunchFest, Berkley Riverfront

June 10-12

Everbody’s Favorite BBQ & Hot Sauce Festival, E. H. Riverfront Park

June 11

The Flavor of Lee’s Summit, Crestview Dairy

KC Charcuterie Fest, KC Wine Co

June 17-18

Boulevardia, Boulevard Brewing Co.

Still grooving seven years later, with craft beers and delectable food sampling, Boulevardia will celebrate its annual event throughout downtown Kansas City from June 17-18. With over 60 performers, headliners will hit the main stage and consist of singer and songwriter Nathaniel Rateliff, Dashboard Confessional, Jenny Lewis, and Dayglow.

Additionally, a number of local beloved acts like Hembree and Blackstarkids also have prime placements in the daily lineups. And even if you’re not much of a music lover, Boulevardia will feature an array of foods and beverages to enjoy.

With a variety of different packages to choose from, two-day passes begin at $60, and individual  day admission starts at $35.

June 24-25

Great Lenexa BBQ Battle, Sar-Ko-Par Trails Park

July 17

Kansas City’s Lawn Party 2022, Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

July 30

Hot Dog Festival, Negro Leagues Baseball Museum

August 13

Smoke n Seoul, KC Wine Co

August 19

BBQ & Fly-in on the River, Excelsior Springs, MO

August 19

Reggae Fest KC: Whine & Vibe After Party, Soiree Steak & Oyster House

Categories: Culture