Previous Special Events

All Library locations will be closed on Monday, May 30, for Memorial Day.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Everyone has a reason to kill Lady Katheter DeVane, but only one guest at William Sheepsheare’s Twelfth Night party could have done it. Take on one of the many comic roles (no acting experience necessary) for an afternoon of murder, mayhem, quips, and quotes in high Shakespearean style.


Friday, February 26, 2016
6:30pm @ Plaza Branch

Celebrate the Irish in everyone with a performance by the dancers of Kansas City’s O’Riada Manning Academy of Irish Dance, which has offered a wide range of classes for both children and adults of all levels and backgrounds for more than 20 years. Appropriate for All Ages.


Thursday, February 25, 2016
6:30pm @ Plaza Branch

Nearly three years before the Supreme Court’s ruling against school segregation in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka – the commonly acknowledged start of America’s civil rights movement – the burgeoning struggle for equality was stirred by a 1951 case in Kansas City. The local branch of the NAACP filed suit, successfully, to force the city to end racial segregation at the Swope Park swimming pool.

The plaintiffs’ lead attorney was a future Supreme Court justice, Thurgood Marshall. His son, Thurgood Marshall Jr., joins longtime Kansas City activist and former mayor pro tem Alvin Brooks in a discussion of the case, examining the arguments on both sides, the social context of the times, and the elder Marshall’s role in the outcome. KCUR-FM’s Steve Kraske moderates the conversation.


Wednesday, February 24, 2016
6:30pm @ Plaza Branch

William Blake gets his due today as not only a great poet but also an extraordinary, 18th-century English engraver, artist, and visionary. A boldly imaginative rebel in both his thought and his art, he combined poetic and pictorial genius to explore important issues in politics, religion, and psychology.

His poetry, however, could be undeniably strange. Deeply spiritual, he professed to visions. And in his own lifetime, Blake was generally neglected or dismissed (improperly) as mad.


Tuesday, February 23, 2016

The Islamic State, also known as ISIS, is more than a place or a terrorist group. It is a set of ideas rooted in centuries-old beliefs and wrapped in a philosophy of violence. Adherents believe they are an army of the righteous working to create an ideal state for today’s believers and fighting a war that is destined to end with the coming of Jesus and defeat of the Antichrist.


Sunday, February 21, 2016

As part of a yearlong, statewide Missouri Latinos initiative, the Kansas City Public Library is offering an array of special programming. Theresa Torres explores how the Guadalupanas, a religious organization of Mexican-American women, began a grassroots movement in Kansas City, Missouri, ultimately preventing the closing of their church. Religion and social action, though, both empowered and limited these remarkable Latina women.


Sunday, February 21, 2016

The Library joins the UMKC Black Studies Program and the Black Archives of Mid-America in presenting a series of screenings of four memorable films adapted from books by African American authors. Funding provided by the Bebe and Crosby Kemper Foundation, UMB Bank, n.a., Trustee.


Sunday, February 21, 2016
1:30pm @ Plaza Branch

The annual Searching the Psyche Through Cinema film series returns in January and February with psychological studies of films starring three-time Academy Award winner Meryl Streep. A discussion follows each screening.

Based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning book by Michael Cunningham, this film focuses on three women of different generations whose lives are connected by the Virginia Woolf novel Mrs. Dalloway. Streep plays Clarissa, a New Yorker preparing a party for her AIDS-stricken friend in 2001. Julianne Moore is Laura, a pregnant, California housewife with a young son and an unhappy marriage in the 1950s. And Nicole Kidman is Woolf, in England, struggling with depression and mental illness while trying to write her novel in the 1920s.

Post-screening discussion led by psychoanalyst David Donovan and Julie Farstad, associate professor at the Kansas City Art Institute.


Thursday, February 18, 2016
6:30pm @ Plaza Branch

The Library joins the UMKC Black Studies Program and the Black Archives of Mid-America in presenting a series of screenings of four memorable films adapted from books by African American authors. Funding provided by the Bebe and Crosby Kemper Foundation, UMB Bank, n.a., Trustee.


Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Author Greg Weiner maintains that today’s politically polarized America badly misses Daniel Patrick Moynihan, the former presidential aide, United Nations ambassador, and four-term U.S. senator from New York who died in 2003. He was a liberal who thought outside the liberal box, who respected both the indispensability of government and the complexity of society. In that respect, Weiner says, he echoed British statesman and scholar Edmund Burke, who set the stage for modern conservativism but exercised a similar broad-mindedness in the 1700s.


Kansas City Public Library Beta