Best of January in KC

2017 Edition

January in Kansas City is the time for sledding, snow skiing, ice skating, and wonderful indoor family outings. These are our Top Picks for January in Kansas City!

Pompeii:The Exhibition at Union Station

Pompeii at Union Station

  • When, Where, What: Pompeii: The Exhibition at Union Station
  • Why We LOVE It: We can't wait for this educational, interactive, and inspiring exhibit at Union Station. Featuring nearly 200 artifacts — some never before seen in the United States—including vibrant frescoes, detailed mosaics, lifelike statues and precious personal objects,Pompeii: The Exhibition tells the story of a city hidden from view and forgotten for centuries until its rediscovery over 250 years ago.


Over the Rainbow: Toys from the Land of Oz

  • When, Where, What: Jan. 14- Aug. 20 at the National Museum of Toys and Miniatures.
  • Why We LOVE It: Published in 1900, L. Frank Baum’s Wizard of Oz is considered America’s first fairy tale and it holds a special place in the hearts of Kansans and Kansas Citians alike. The story of Dorothy’s fantastical journey through the land of Oz has enticed generations. The National Museum of Toys and Miniatures is one of our favorite whimsical attractions with toys bringing back memories for generations. The newest exhibit explores the original literary story of The Wizard of Oz and its many retellings, including the 1939 Technicolor film, Return to Oz, and The Wiz, through playthings, first edition books, and original costumes at The National Museum of Toys and Miniatures.
  • FREE Members only Breakfast with Glinda on Jan. 14: Join us for a sneak peek of "Over the Rainbow: Toys from the Land of Oz" and a complimentary pancake breakfast with Glinda the Good Witch. Enter the merry ‘ol Land of Oz for pancakes from Chris Cakes, sing-alongs, and photo opportunities. Breakfast is available for the number of people in each membership level: two, six, or twelve people per visit. Become a member today to attend the Breakfast with Glinda! Experience the joy of toys all year-round! Memberships make great holiday gifts and start at $25 for unlimited museum admission for one full year, discounts in the museum store, and invitations to exhibit openings and members-only events.

Visit Polar Pals at the Kansas City Zoo

KC Zoo Penguins

  • When, Where, What: The Kansas City Zoo is open year-round (except Jan. 1). (6800 Zoo Dr., KCMO. 816.513.5800
  • Why We LOVE the Kansas City Zoo in the Winter: Pack a picnic and bring it to the zoo! The Polar Bear Passage and the indoor Helzberg Penguin Plaza are our favorite attractions at the zoo, and both are indoor making a great winter outing. Winter  at the zoo is great... you don't have to worry about bugs, heat, or crowds and it isn't crowded.Weather permitting enjoy a ride on the carousel or train for more fun.
  • January's Special Events: January 7 & 8 - Penguin March. January 14 & 15 - Zootastik Learning Fest — Animal Adaptations /
    Penguin March. January 21 & 22 - Tropical Weekend / Penguin March. January 28 & 29- Species Spotlight — Penguin / Penguin March.
  • Bonus: Visit the Zoo's Calendar to learn about Polar Bear and Penguin Overnights when visitors are invited to spend the night at the zoo and other special events year round!​

Fun at Paradise Park

Paradise Park

  • When, Where, What: Paradise Park in Lee's Summit
  • Why We LOVE Paradise Park: Paradise Park is a favorite family fun center where there truly is something for everyone. From the Children's EduTainment Center with indoor play for little ones, to the arcades, gokarts, and rock wall and more for teens and adults - this is the place for families to play. 
  • Football Fun Days every Sunday in January: It’s a Touchdown! Paradise Park is the best place for football families with fanatics. Football Fundays are a winning combination of fun for families who want to keep score of the games and spend some time with the kids. Over 15 TVs are mounted throughout the park so you won’t miss the big games on any game day, all season long. You’ll even find your favorite family snacks and adult beverages at Paradise Cafe. Enjoy an afternoon of fun at Paradise Park this Sunday and score big with the whole family.
  • Superhero Party Jan. 14 from 11am-2pm: “Boom!” “Pop!” “Bam!” Calling all Superheroes: today Paradise Park is your not-so-secret headquarters. Are you an aspiring Superman, Spiderman, Wonder Woman? Dress up in your favorite Superhero costume and join us for an incredible day of giveaways, photos, and marvelous fun.
  • Princess Party Jan. 21 from 11am-2pm: Let the fairytales begin! With a wave of our magic wand, you can feel like a real Princess. Join the make-believe fun as the enchanted magic unfolds at Paradise Park.  Dreams really do come true! Dress up for a royal day of giveaways, photos, and whimsical fun all day on January 21st.

KC Symphony Family Series

  • When, Where, What: Presto! Mambo! presented by the KC Symphony Jan. 8 at the Kauffman Center
  • Why We LOVE KC Symphony Family Series:  The Kansas City Symphony opens children to a world of music through shows designed especially for them. This January, attend a concert about the music of the Americas takes an unexpected turn when Max, an energetic and impulsive young boy, makes his way onto the stage to “help” the orchestra. Soon Max is on a whirlwind adventure with the Kansas City Symphony that takes him from the concert hall to the vibrant lands of Latin America. Max learns the magic of Latin rhythms and how to “dance” with the music with help from his new friend, Mambo the Dog, the orchestra and the audience. Tickets start at $20 for adults and $10 for children.





KC Restaurant Week

  • When, Where, What: Enjoy KC Restaurant Week from Jan. 13 thru Jan. 22 at various restaurants. $15 Lunch and $33 Dinner menus.
  • Why We LOVE Restaurant Week:  Every January we look forward to Restaurant Week. The event is the perfect opportunity to check out new and familiar restaurants while sampling food you may not have enjoyed before. During Restaurant Week over 180 local restaurants offer special price fixed menus at participating restaurants. Multi-course lunch and dinner menus are $15 or $33. You may still order from the traditional menu, but the Restaurant Week menu is the best bargain and opportunity to try new things. Chefs will prepare their favorites and may experiment with new dishes as well.


JCCC Performing Arts Center Shows

  • When, Where, What: Enjoy live shows all season at JCCC Performing Arts Center
  • KORESH DANCE: 8 p.m., January 21, 2017 | Polsky Theatre. Experience the raw passion that is infused in the movements of members of Koresh Dance Company, founded in 1991 by Israeli-born choreographer and artistic director Ronen (Roni) Koresh. Known for its engaging performance and technically superb dancers, the company performs critically acclaimed works at its biannual Philadelphia seasons, as well as in touring performances around the country. Koresh has been hailed internationally, and has developed a vast repertoire of work that ranges from explosive and passionate to intimate and restrained.

  • SONS OF BRASIL: 7 p.m., January 22, 2017 | Polsky Theatre. Part of Winterlude, a series of concerts featuring local and international jazz and world music performers in the Polsky Theatre at JCCC. In Kansas City a popular jazz group has performed every week since their inception in 1991. This would not be so remarkable, as Kansas City is renowned for its tradition of great jazz since the days of Count Basie and Charlie Parker. What is remarkable is that this group of native Kansas Citians plays nothing but Brazilian jazz, with a flavor and passion one might think could only be found at a night club in Ipanema or Leblon. The Sons of Brasil invite you to sample these sounds, which stem from their love and admiration of "musica bem brasileira."

  • 'EVERYBODY'S HERO: THE JACKIE ROBINSON STORY': 10 a.m. and 7:30 p.m., January 27, 2017 | Yardley Hall. At the start of summer 1947, television was brand-new, the sound barrier had not been broken, and baseball was a white man's game. By the time fall arrived, Jackie Robinson had become the first African-American to play major league baseball.

Grand Opening: KCYA

  • When, Where, What: Jan. 21 KC Young Audiences (3732 Main St., KC, MO)
  • Why We LOVE It:  Serving more than 5 million in its history, KCYA is the largest provider of arts programs in the Kansas City area and one of the largest members of the national Young Audiences Arts for Learning network. Teaching theater, dance, music, and visual arts KCYA is an incredible program for Kansas City's youth and this winter KCYA will officially open the doors on their new home!  You've seen the renderings. You've likely driven past the building and may have noticed the new signs or construction going on.  Now it's time to take a peek inside!  Open House Events will feature tours of the facilities as well as performances by students and teaching artists and opportunities to participate in interactive arts experiences.  



Story Time: The True Story of Winnie the Pooh

  • When, Where, What: Jan. 21 from 11am-noon at the National WWI Museum and Memorial. FREE with RSVP.
  • Why We LOVE It:  Winnie the Pooh holds a special place in the hearts of children and adults alike. To celebrate National Winnie hte Pooh Day (Jan. 18, birthday of A.A. Milne the books' author), museum educators will host a family-friendly craft session and story time telling about  Winnie-the-Pooh the real-life bear that cheered a regiment during the Great War. FREE with RSVP.


Hana's Suitcase: A Holocaust Mystery

  • When, Where, What: Hana's Suitcase Jan. 24 - Feb. 12 at The Coterie
  • Why We LOVE It:  The Coterie brings professional children's theater to stage opening our world to stories that are thought-provoking and engaging. This winter's production tells the tale of the Holocaust... Past and present mysteries come together in this captivating true story spanning 70 years and crisscrossing three continents.  Fumiko Ishioka, a Japanese Holocaust educator, and her students set out to track down information about a suitcase from Auschwitz.  It is a worldwide search for information about its owner, Hana Brady, whose fate is pieced together from her suitcase and artifacts.  Hana’s story reaches through time into the lives of the young Japanese students in a Holocaust story like no other - providing a contemporary global perspective and a fascinating history of love and tragedy from Hana’s courageous life story. A National Endowment for the Arts winning project from The Coterie.

Chinese New Year at The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

  • When, Where, What: Celebrate Chinese New Year FREE Jan. 29 at The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art.
  • Why We LOVE Chinese New Year:  This is one of the best multi-cultural events of the year and admission is FREE. Enjoy live performances with Chinese acrobats, dancers and musicians, art activities, games, demonstrations, learning in the art galleries, and Chinese food as we celebrate the Year of the Rooster! PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS INCLUDE: Fabulous Chinese Acrobats, Shaolin Lohan Pai Dance Troupe Lion Dance, Tai Chi Demonstration, Chinese Drums, Jasmine Chinese Dance Group, Kansas City Chinese Music Ensemble, Chinese Yo-Yo, Guzheng Performance, Reading Event, Photo Spot and Year of the Monkey scavenger hunt, live calligraphy and painting and more in the galleries!


Winter Jam

  • When, Where, What: Jan. 29 at the Sprint Center enjoy Winter Jam, The Christian music spectacular. Artists Include: Crowder, Britt Nicole, Tenth Avenue North, Sadie Robinson, Thousand Foot Krutch, Andy Mineo, Colton Dixon, Newsong, Tony Nolan, Obb, Sarah Reeves, Steve Malcolm, and more!
  • Why We LOVE Winter Jam:  Winter Jam is an incredible evening of live concerts by the top artists in Christian music, plus worship and ministry, to encourage believers and share the good news with those who have yet to trust Christ.




​Winter Sports: Skating, Skiing, and Sledding

Indoor Ice Skating

Outdoor Ice Skating


  • You can ski at the Snow Creek Ski Area in Weston or take the family to Colorado to enjoy Granby Ranch - with your KC Parent Coupon! They offer ski slopes, snowboarding, and lessons for beginners.


  • Kansas City boasts many terrific sled hills all across the metro! Over the years, our loyal readers have shared their favorites providing this fabulous list of the Best Sled Hills in KC!

And so...

  • Why We LOVE Winter Sports: In just one hour, you can burn 250 calories skating, skiing, or sledding and make countless memories, not to mention a few great photo ops, with the whole family!
  • Tip: Check the KC Parent Coupon page before you go for our current deals!

Horse Drawn Sleigh Rides

Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop Sleigh Ride

  • When, Where, What: Snowy Weekends at the Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop (1200 Kansas City Rd, Olathe, KS). Rides are offered on weekends if there is snow. Be certain to call ahead at 913.971.5111 to verify or visit Mahaffie's website for details.
  • Why We LOVE Sleigh Rides at Mahaffie: Mahaffie is one of our favorite historic sites in the metro with wonderful interpretive programs throughout the year (read our review of Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop here), but we hold an extra special fondness for the beloved century's old winter tradition of horse-drawn sleigh rides. 

Brought to you by! Follow KC Parent Magazine on Facebook for more family fun inspiration all month long! 

Still looking for more great family fun ideas in Kansas City? Check out our Kansas City Calendar of Events and Going Places in Kansas City on

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