It’s the most wonderful time of the year and we love exploring Kansas City to find the most festive neighborhoods & events. There are so many great holiday activities & displays, many of which start in late November. Today I’m sharing our favorite places to go during the holidays & events that are still going in Kansas City & surrounding areas.
The Country Club Plaza is iconic for its Christmas lights and a must see during the holidays. It’s beautiful to walk around while Christmas shopping or grabbing a drink with friends. On our way down to the Plaza we also like to drive through a few neighborhoods off of Ward Parkway. Gorgeous homes & gorgeous lights!
Union Station‘s is also always decked out during the holidays. Just being in the Grand Hall feels magical & the kids love running around & exploring the different areas. The Southern’s Holiday Express Train is at the station December 14-18 in the Grand Plaza. Retired rail cars are decorated in different themes including Santa’s sleigh, a gingerbread boxcar, elves’ workshop, reindeer stable & of course Santa & his elves. There’s also beautiful Christmas trees & train displays throughout.
November 16-December 18 they run a series of classic Christmas Movies in the Regnier Extreme Screen Theater. They play movies like Elf, Home Alone & the Polar Express. All information on dates & times can be found at unionstation.org. We haven’t done this yet, but will be fun when our kids are a bit older!
Crown Center has another beautiful display of lights and is where the Mayor’s Christmas tree is!
Inside of Crown Center Santa’s Gingerbread Station is a cute little area to stop in. It’s free admission and great for younger kids to run around & explore. There’s a gingerbread house to walk through, a really cute holiday train display and Santa is there too! Pictures with Santa are free for you to take with your own camera, or you can pay for professional ones.
Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer is at the Coterie Theater (in Crown Center) November 6th-December 30th. It’s a live performance with Rudolph & friends that lasts 1 hour, which is perfect for younger kids. You do need to buy tickets ahead of time because they sell out!
The Ice at Park Place in Leawood is so much fun and a beautiful outdoor rink! I took Sutton on a little mommy & me date this week, and we had the best time. We can’t wait to go back and this will be something we look forward to doing every year. The Ice is open until February 18th and is typically open afternoon through 10pm. Hours do vary, so check the website for specific times. Also, Santa skates every Saturday in December (12/15, 12/22) from 1-3pm and in January (1/12, 1/26) from 10-10:45 you can sign up for Free Skate Lessons. On 1/19 from 1-3pm there is a Princess Skate day where each child receives a free crown – super cute!
This jolly Santa is known to be walking around Park Place too! We ran into him at the Park Place Holiday Open House. Sutton was in awe!
For a little day trip outside of Kansas City, the Midland Railway in Baldwin City has a Polar Express train ride. It’s a 1 hour trip to the North Pole including a golden ticket, hot chocolate & cookies served to you by dancing chefs. They read through The Polar Express and each child is given a silver bell. There is caroling & Santa too. It’s truly a magical & fun experience.
As far as places to see lights with the kids, we love Deanna Rose & the Vince & Associates display. After dinner we’ll put on jammies and pack up some milk & cookies and go to these light displays.
Vince & Associates is at 103rd & Metcalf and the lights are synced with 96.9FM. It’s a 200,000 animated light display. The best place to park is up on the hill in the Emmanuel Baptist Church parking lot. The light show is every night from 6-11pm until January 1st.
Deanna Rose Farmstead makes you feel like you’re at the drive-in movies when you park to look at the light display! It’s synced to 90.5FM and we let the kids get out of their seats and they dance around in the car. It starts at 5pm.
A new one we’re excited to go to this year is the Bradshaw Street Christmas Light show at 13812 Bradshaw in Overland Park. It syncs to 99.9FM and has a talking Christmas tree. Almost every house in the cul-de-sac is lit up!
Where are your favorite holiday traditions & activities around Kansas City?