Previous Special Events

All Library locations will be closed on Monday, July 4, for Independence Day.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

No other resident of Kansas City, past or present, has achieved the worldwide fame of Walt Disney. He created the animated Mickey Mouse and established a motion picture, TV, and theme park empire that has grown bigger and more lucrative in the 50 years since his death.

Robert W. Butler, longtime film critic for The Kansas City Star, former writer in the Library’s public affairs department, and co-author of Walt Disney’s Missouri, traces Disney’s improbable path to success.


Sunday, December 6, 2015
2:00pm @ Plaza Branch

Coterie Theatre artists read from David Ezra Stein’s best-selling Caldecott Honor Book about a little red chicken who can’t stop herself from interrupting her bedtime stories, altering the tales to save the characters from their missteps. But when it’s her turn to tell a tale, will her yawning Papa make it to the end without his own interruption?

Young audience members can “jump into the story,” adding their own improvisation. Appropriate for all ages.


Saturday, December 5, 2015
8:00pm @ Plaza Branch

Have you always wanted to portray a figure from a movie, book, or video game? The Library has a special event for you. Come in a costume and dance at the Cosplay Ball. There’ll also be workshops on costume design and makeup. Appropriate for ages 12-18.


Friday, December 4, 2015
6:30pm @ Plaza Branch

Kansas City-area entertainers Jay and Leslie Cady apply their antics – juggling, mime, magic, and other nonsense – to the tradition of holiday gift giving. It’s family fun with a bow on top. Appropriate for all ages.


Thursday, December 3, 2015

What is it like to be the son or daughter of an absolute and ruthless dictator? To bear a name – Stalin or Mussolini, Mao or Ceausescu, Qaddafi or Hussein – that’s synonymous with oppression, terror, and evil?

In a discussion of his new book, Children of Monsters: An Inquiry into the Sons and Daughters of Dictators, author Jay Nordlinger speaks with Library Director Crosby Kemper III about the offspring of 20 of the world’s most notorious despots.


Wednesday, December 2, 2015

The Library, in partnership with American Public Square, launches a series of discussions of polarizing local issues – minus the incivility and invective that all too often feed polarity.

Experts on both sides of the debate join University of Missouri-Kansas City professor and moderator Scott Helm in examining the future of Kansas City International Airport. Remodel or rebuild? Stay with multiple terminals or move to just one? The panel includes Skopos President Kevin Koster, a member of the KCI Airport Terminal Advisory Group; Rockhill Strategic President Jon Stephens, interim executive director of the Kansas City, Kansas, Chamber of Commerce; and Pitch writer Steve Vockrodt. There are fact checkers and a “civility bell.”


Wednesday, December 2, 2015
6:30pm @ Plaza Branch

The stories seem more prevalent and disturbing today than ever: kids being pushed in one or more sports to the point of burnout before high school, parents fighting with referees and umpires, coaches berating their pint-sized players.

Former Kansas City Royals pitcher Jeff Montgomery, psychologist Andrew Jacobs, and Hall of Fame swimming coach Peter Malone have seen firsthand the issues that are making youth sports increasingly difficult for all – especially the young participants.


Tuesday, December 1, 2015
6:30pm @ Plaza Branch

We hear and read of it abroad, but the trafficking of underage girls for sex is all too common in America. Emmy-nominated multimedia journalist and producer Tim Matsui shines a light on the issue in his riveting documentary, The Long Night, weaving together the stories of seven people — young girls who were forced or coerced into the sex trade, their parents, and police — whose lives have been forever changed.

Set in Seattle, the 72-minute film was named Pictures of the Year International’s top documentary project of 2014. It is screened at the Plaza Branch’s Truman Forum Auditorium. Matsui leads a subsequent discussion with Kristy Childs, a trafficking survivor who founded the service organization Veronica’s Voice; Craig Hill, a retired Leawood, Kansas, police detective now working as a training consultant with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children; and FBI sex crimes investigator Megan Kline.


Friday, November 27, 2015
10:30am @ Plaza Branch

Skip the craziness of Black Friday shopping. Make it a playful “Bright Light Friday” instead. Sing, dance, and celebrate the start of the Christmas season with KC-based kid rocker and Library favorite Jim “Mr. Stinky Feet” Cosgrove.

On the day of the show, Jim will collect winter clothing items on behalf of the nonprofit Artists Helping the Homeless (artistshelpingthehomeless​.org). Items of need range from socks and long underwear to gloves, scarves, and hats. All sizes accepted (adult large and XL items needed most). Appropriate for all ages.


Saturday, November 21, 2015

Antonio Vivaldi wrote more than 500 concertos, none more famous than “The Four Seasons.” The renowned composer’s depictions of rustling leaves, shimmering snow, and the rejuvenation of spring are as vivid today as they were when the set was first published nearly three centuries ago.

Kansas City’s Bach Aria Soloists and Heart of America Shakespeare Festival meld the memorable music with the glorious language of Shakespeare’s poetry. The concert features BAS violinist Elizabeth Suh Lane, harpsichordist-organist Elisa Williams Bickers, and guest guitarist Douglas Niedt along with Heart of America Shakespeare Festival actors.


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