Kansas City's Labor Day Weekend Fun Guide

2018 Edition

The three day weekend is a great excuse for more fun! These special events and attractions make our top picks for the holiday weekend:

Labor Day Weekend Festivals and Special Events:


Science City KidFest Sept. 1, Science City at Union Station. Experience an awesome day of interactive, early-childhood science education with a special theme this year of "Messy Learning." Dedicated to hands-on learning for your youngest STEM explorers, the day is packed with activities, demonstrations, and more - all designed to engage and inspire your little ones. It'll be a slimy, splattery, silly (science) fun day. All you need to bring is a BIG imagination and a smile! Kids aged 3-12 receive discounted admission for the day of just $7, with kidFEST activities and all regular Science City attractions included. $1 preservation fee applies on all tickets.

Open Spaces KC Weekends Aug. 25 - Oct. 28. Open Spaces visitors can explore a variety of art offerings at the Village in Swope Park. Take in a dance or music performance, grab a snack, enjoy family activities or browse through the pavilions designed by some of Kansas City’s finest architects.

DeSoto Days Festival Aug. 30 - Sept. 1, DeSoto, KS. Enjoy class-act entertainment, a carnival, great food and many vendors. Saturday, starts at 10a.m. with the De Soto Days Parade, which will include a Car Cruise & the dog walk! 

Chisholm Trail Days Aug. 31 - Sept. 1, Abilene, KS. Come on down to Old Abilene Town and celebrate the 3rd annual Chisholm Trail Days. Live music, longhorns, food trucks, drinks and kids activities. Fun for all ages!

ConnectFest Aug. 31 at Calvary University, Kansas City, MO. ConnectFEST is a new and exciting event. A day of connecting local communities together from KC, Grandview, Raymore and Belton. We expect over 500+ attendees on our campus for this FREE community event! ConnectFEST will include local music talent, several inflatables for all ages, food trucks, carnival games, face painting and a whole lot more. The day will end in a FIREWORKS display! ConnectFEST will be exciting, safe and encouraging for your whole family and a great opportunity for us to get to know each other.

Kansas City T-Bones vs.Wichita Wingnuts Aug. 31.  Enjoy affordable family entertainment and unique, fun between-inning events. 

Kansas City Irish Fest Aug. 31 - Sept. 2 at Crown Center. With over 30 bands on seven stages, heritage workshops and displays, comedy, genealogy, a massive children's area and so much more, there is no better way to celebrate Celtic Pride in Cowtown than Kansas City Irish Fest! 

Santa-Cali-Gon Aug. 31 - Sept. 3, Independence, MO.The 44th Annual Santa-Cali-Gon Days Festival in Independence Missouri commemorates the origin of the Santa Fe, California, and Oregon trails during the country’s great westward expansion by early pioneers. More than 300,000 attendees spend Labor Day weekend at the region’s oldest and largest festival.

Chiefs Day at the Zoo Sept. 1, Kansas City Zoo. Chiefs Kingdom is taking over KC's wild kingdom. Before the Kansas City Chiefs take the field, our animals will enjoy a sea of red enrichment items donated by the KC Chiefs. Chiefs Cheerleaders, Warpaint & Susie, and KC Wolf will all be stopping by. Wear your Chiefs apparel and get $3 off the price of general admission. Try out the tailgate special in Tuxedo Grill. Football season started at the Zoo on 8/29, and the fun will continue through the weekend! KC Wolf made a special visit to the Zoo to help unveil a new addition to the Endangered Species Carousel, a horse that looks like the Kansas City Chiefs’ own Warpaint! Sponsored by the Chiefs organization, this carousel horse is sure to please Zoo guests and Chiefs fans of all ages for many years to come.

Tonganoxie Sunflower Stroll Sept. 1-3, Tonganoxie, KS.  Over the weekend, participate in a Sunflower Run, Sunflower Yoga, and Sunflower Stroll. Enjoy craft vendors, live music, food vendors, olt time games, a street dance, and activities all weekend long.

1st Saturday at Shoal Creek Sept. 1, Shoal Creek Living History Museum. The year will be 1882 at this Family Fun event and admission is FREE! The Shoal Creek re-enactors bring the village to life with Gunfighters, Outlaws, Civil War Soldiers, and Mountain Men roaming the streets. Enjoy family fun activities and historical demonstrations of life in Missouri during the 19th century. Skits and gunfights throughout the day. Shop the Mercantile and visit the news paper office located in the Crossroads Inn.

Hatch Chile Festival Sept. 1, Port Fonda, KC, MO. BLOCK PARTY including outdoor full bar, roasted fresh hatch chiles, hatch chile food and drink specials, live music.

Coffee & Donuts Festival Sept. 1 at Overland Park Convention Center. Enjoy all things coffee and donuts! The sweetest festival where all the fried, sugary dough perfections meet the smoothly roasted brews. Tons of fun, coffee/donut vendors, and lots of entertainment guaranteed for a day to remember. Activities like; Jelly Donut Wrestling, Donuts of Glory, Donut Queen Talent Contest, Donut Eating Contest, Donut Games & more! 

History of Powell Gardens Sept. 2, Powell Gardens. Join Powell Gardens docent Betty Boyd for a tour of Powell Gardens that features information about the history of the land, the Powell family, development of the gardens onsite and more. Dress for the weather. Free with garden admission. Meet at the Visitor Center Grand Hall. 25 persons (first-come, first-served)

Fiesta Kansas City Sept. 2, KC Power & Light District. Fiesta Kansas City features 2 Stages of local, regional & national musical acts,  over 100 vendors, Margarita Cove, Kids Corner and  Bellas Artes.

Kansas City Renaissance Festival Labor Day Weekend - Oct. 15, Weekends. Pay heed to the exploits of Jousting Knights on thundering steeds, roam the village shops for unique crafts, delight in comedy, music, magic and more on our 20 stages of non-stop entertainment, and feast on delicious food and drinks from the far reaches of the globe! 

Military Days at Worlds of Fun Sept. 3 at Worlds of Fun. Worlds of Fun wants to thank the men and women who have served and who are currently serving in our country’s military. Veterans of the American Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard receive complimentary admission to Worlds of Fun on Labor Day. Complimentary tickets are available for active duty, reserve, or retired military (with honorable or medical discharge) and government issued ID. Veterans or active military members only will receive complimentary admission to Worlds of Fun, with the option to purchase up to six (6) discounted tickets for immediate family members. Please present valid government issued ID at any ticket sales window located at the Worlds of Fun or Oceans of Fun main entrance in order to receive your free tickets for military service, and to purchase military discount tickets for immediate family.

Main Event Sept. 3, 3 Locations: Olathe, Independence, Kansas City. Play your favorite activities ALL day, just $18.95 per person. You’ll have a blast enjoying their state-of-the-art bowling, multi-level laser tag, thrilling high ropes adventure courses, video games, billiards and fast-casual restaurants. The 45,000- to 75,000-square-foot family entertainment centers offer specials throughout the week and great packages for groups.

Be Sure to Catch these Special Attractions and Exhibits:

Some of these attractions close after Labor Day, others will be ending this fall. Some start for the season. The three-day weekend is the perfect chance to enjoy them once more!

Apple picking begins at our favorite local orchards Labor Day Weekend! Read our Apple Picking Guide to find the best orchard around!

TRIVIAL PURSUIT®: A 50-State Adventure is the current FREE exhibit at Crown Center on display thru Sept. 3. This pretend trek across the U.S.A. features an activity for every state and the District of Columbia.  Ride a mule in the Grand Canyon, celebrate New Year’s Eve in Times Square, hit a home run at Fenway Park, and guide your sled dog team on the Iditarod Trail, to name just a few!  More than 70 hands-on learning opportunities address key academic standards for school-age visitors and highlight our nation’s geography, history, music, pastimes and iconic tourist destinations; hundreds of U.S. trivia questions at interactive game stations encourage a little friendly competition; and photomurals feature of some America’s most beautiful and iconic destinations and lots of fun facts. 

Playing for Keeps: The VFW Marble Tournaments, 1947-1962 is on display at The National Museum of Toys and Miniatures. Marble playing ruled playgrounds for much of the twentieth century. Requiring only a handful of marbles and a patch of dirt, the game crossed all economic and social barriers. In 1947, the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) created a national marble tournament to positively influence young boys and re-engage WWII and Korean War veterans in civilian life. The tournament, an annual event for 14 years, was a life-changing experience for the thousands of kids who participated. Playing for Keeps tells the firsthand stories of the players alongside their souvenirs, trophies, and marble memorabilia. Learn their stories and then knuckle down to experience the thrill of the game in a regulation-size marble ring. 

Check out Big Backyard at Powell Gardens thru Oct. 21. Explore an oversized world of everyday objects in this larger-than-life exhibition featuring backyard items such as Gigantic Adirondack chairs and an enormous birdhouse.

​Explore the newest exhibit at Dinosaurs Revealed: Journey Across America at Union Station.  Embark on this fascinating journey back to prehistoric time. A time when dinosaurs ruled and roamed the earth. A time when the world as we know it was being violently and radically transformed . . . forever! You will dig deep into life during the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods. Your hands-on trek will bring you face-to-face with 26 life-size dinosaurs. 

Local outdoor pools close for the season on Labor Day Weekend. Our faves are featured in our KC Water Fun Guide or visit KCParent.com and click “Going Places” for a complete guide.

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