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Summer staples: 15 places to visit when the weather turns warm

Cover model Ann Riensin was styled by Heidi Seager of Seven Model Management.


1. The Jones Pool

What: Jealous of vacation-going friends lounging in poolside cabanas, cocktails in hand? The Jones Pool, above Cosentino’s Downtown Market, brings that experience home to KC. A 20,000-square-foot rooftop space is devoted to an ultra-pool atmosphere with drinks at a swim-up bar and music from a host of national DJs. You can rent a table or one of 12 private cabanas. Must be 21 to enter. thejoneskc.com

When: Opens at noon on Saturday and Sunday. Opens for the season to the public May 25.

Where: 1271 Main St.

Cost: $10, subject to change for special events. ($2 towel rental charge)

2. Worlds of Fun and Oceans of Fun

What: Worlds of Fun celebrates its 40th anniversary this summer by requiring only one ticket for access to both WOF and Oceans of Fun. Ride favorites like Cyclone Sam and the Prowler at WOF and then head next door for attractions ranging from water slides to a wave pool at Oceans of Fun.

When: Hours vary by date and month. Go to www.worldsoffun.com for details.

Where: 4545 Worlds of Fun Ave.

Cost: Online tickets for adults: $29.99-$48.99

3. City Market

What: Weekend mornings are well-spent at City Market, where local vendors hawk fresh produce, honey, meat, cheese and more. Vendors selling antique and vintage goods are there every Sunday. Get there early because parking is at a premium, and the best deals go quickly. Details about special vendors can be found at thecitymarket.org.

When: 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday

Where: Fifth and Walnut streets in the River Market neighborhood

Cost: Free

4. Kansas City Zoo

What: The zoo, open year-round, features attractions ranging from African Sky Safari to the recently remodeled tiger exhibit. Polar bears Nikita and Berlin turn underwater backflips in Polar Bear Passage. kansascityzoo.org.

When: 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays, 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekends. The zoo will open at 8 a.m. from Memorial Day (May 27) through Labor Day (Sept. 2).

Where: 6800 Zoo Drive inside Swope Park

Cost: $11.50 ($5 for residents of Jackson and Clay counties)

5. Powell Gardens

What: Among the lavish attractions of the 915-acre gardens are the 12-acre Heartland Harvest Garden and the Island Garden. Group tours are available, and the popular Festival of Butterflies is slated for Aug. 2-4 and 9-11. powellgardens.org.

When: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily

Where: 1609 N.W. U.S. 50, Kingsville, Mo. (about 45 minutes from midtown)

Cost: $10

6. Schlitterbahn Vacation Village

What: Kansas’ answer to Oceans of Fun, the water park features countless water slides, pools and water coasters. The new megablaster speed slide, opening sometime this summer, combines Schlitterbahn’s Master Blaster technology with the crazy drops of a speed slide, promising to be the fastest and most intense ride at the water park. For less adventurous parkgoers, there’s always the lazy river-style attractions and beach areas. schlitterbahn.com

When: Hours vary by day and month. Opens for season May 24.

Where: 9400 State Ave., Kansas City, Kan.

Cost: Single-day passes $36.99-$39.99

7. First Fridays

What: The Crossroads Arts District transforms into a haven for art enthusiasts on the first Friday of every month, and summer is an especially good time to stroll through the area. Some galleries provide free or cheap wine and beer. Keep an eye out for food trucks, including some with specialty snow cones or cupcakes. A month-by-month breakdown of shows and exhibits is available in Ink magazine.

When: The first Friday of every month

Where: Crossroads Arts District

Cost: Free

8. Murray’s Ice Cream & Cookies

What: The Westport ice cream shop does a little bit of everything, offering banana splits and hot fudge sundaes as well as cookies and coffees. Its flavors range from the ordinary Oreo ‘n Cream to the ever-popular Chocolate Flake Fromage. There’s free Wi-Fi if you feel like lingering.

When: Open Wednesday through Sunday; call 816-931-5646 for summer hours.

Where: 4120 Pennsylvania Ave.

9. Glace Artisan Ice Cream

What: Local chocolatier Christopher Elbow offers his take on ice cream in this upscale parlor. You’ll find eccentric flavors, including Goat Cheese and Wildflower Honey, and Venezuelan Spiced Chocolate. Several dairy-free sorbets, in flavors like pineapple-cilantro, are offered as well.

When: (Main Street location) 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday. (119th Street location) 11:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, 11:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

Where: 4960 Main St. and 4535 W. 119th St., Overland Park, glaceicecream.com

10. WeekEnder at Crown Center

What: Kick off the weekend with top local bands, favorite food trucks, artisan shopping and a movie under the stars at Crown Center’s WeekEnder. Movies include “Weekend at Bernie’s,” “Iron Man” and “The Princess Bride.” crowncenter.com

When: Fridays, July 12-Aug. 9. Beginning at 5 p.m. Movies begin around 9 p.m.

Where: Crown Center Square

Cost: Free

11. Kansas City T-Bones

What: Kansas City’s other professional baseball squad opens its season this week at its stadium near The Legends. The small stadium means that seats are always close to the action and beer is cheaper (than at Kauffman). tbonesbaseball.com

When: The season’s first home game is Saturday; games run through September.

Where: Community America Ballpark in Kansas City, Kan.

Cost: $6.50-$16

12. Boulevard Drive-In Theatre

What: The local drive-in theater has been around since 1950 and offers new movies projected on a 100-by-50-foot screen. boulevarddrivein.com.

When: Films and hours vary

Where: 1051 Merriam Lane, Kansas City, Kan.

Cost: $10 per adult for double feature

13. B-cycle

What: Enjoy the spring weather before searing summer heat descends, and bike to work, play and to run errands. B-cycle members can rent a bike from one of 12 Kansas City B-stations, all downtown.

When: Bikes can be checked out between 5 a.m. and midnight each day.

Where: A list of downtown KC B-stations can be found at kansascity.bcycle.com

Cost: A varying fee is required for 24-hour, one-day, one-month or one-year memberships. After that, the first half hour of bike rental is free. After 30 minutes, cyclists are charged $2 per hour.

14. Ink Student Night at the K

What: Live local music and discounted tickets every Wednesday home game at Kauffman Stadium. A happy hour special includes a hot dog and a beer for $7.

When: Wednesdays. Full schedule can be found at: kansascity.royals.mlb.com/kc/ticketing/student_night.jsp

Where: Kauffman Stadium, 1 Royal Way

Cost: $7 tickets, $7 happy hour specials

15. Kansas City Public Library Summer Film Series

What: All summer long the Central branch of the KC Public Library will be showing comedies on its rooftop terrace starring KC area native Paul Rudd.

When: Starts Friday with 2008 comedy “Role Models.” Find addition dates and RSVP at kclibrary.org/events-and-activities

Where: 14 W. 10th St.

Cost: Free


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