The Best Little Arts and Crafts Show in Independence is annual show that features a wide variety of merchandise at more than 100 booths. Come shop for Christmas items, candles, wreaths, jewelry and more.
When and where
Friday, Nov. 16 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 17 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The Sermon Center is located on the southeast corner of Truman and Noland roads in Independence.
The Ararat Shrine Circus returns to Silverstein Eye Centers Arena for its 83rd annual performance!
Come take part in all of the family fun of KC’s only three-ring circus. Catch any one of five shows scheduled through the weekend.
When and Where
Friday, Nov. 16 @ 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Nov.17 @ 10:30 a.m., 2:30 p.m., & 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, November 18 @ 2 p.m.
The most wonderful time of the year
Make the Independence Square your first stop for all things holiday.
Our stores are full of unique finds, from holiday décor to the perfect gifts for your loved ones. The open house is a great time to slow down, enjoy a wonderful meal and take in the sights and sounds of the holidays — all in our charming, historic downtown district.
Make the Square your home for the holidays.
The 2018 U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree is making a stop in Independence on its way to Washington D.C. for the holidays. Come to the Uptown Market on the Square to get a look at the tree and sign the banner that will be displayed with the tree in the capitol.
Independence Parks and Recreation will have a variety of events to commemorate the occasion. The tree will be on display 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.
What is the Capitol Christmas Tree?
The tradition of the Capitol Christmas Tree, or “The People’s Tree,” began in 1964 when Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives John W. McCormack placed a live Christmas tree on the Capitol lawn. The tree lived three years before succumbing to wind and root damage.
Then, in 1970, the Capitol Architect asked the U.S. Forest Service to provide a Christmas tree. Since then, a different national forest has provided “The People’s Tree” each year. The 2018 U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree is being provided by the Willamette National Forest in Oregon.
This year marks the 175th anniversary of the “Great Migration” of wagon trains on the Oregon Trail. In 1843, approximately 1,000 pioneers made the 2,170-mile journey from Independence to Oregon. In the 25 years that followed, 400,000 people traveled west from Independence with dreams of a new life, gold and lush farmlands.
Commemorating this anniversary, the 2018 U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree is taking the Oregon Trail in reverse toward Washington D.C.
Come tour the 1859 Jail to learn more about Christmas during the 19th century.
The museum will be open daily for tours from Nov. 23-Dec. 30. Hours are 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Saturday and 1-4 p.m. on Sundays.
“Tis the Reason for the Season” — that’s the theme at the Bingham-Waggoner Estate this holiday season.
The Bingham-Waggoner Estate will be open daily for holiday tours from Nov. 23-Dec. 30, excluding Dec. 23, 24 and 25.
Closed for decorating through Thanksgiving, the Vaile Victorian Mansion will reopen on Nov. 23 to host its “Christmas Victorian Romance” tours. Tours will be offered daily from Nov. 23-Dec. 30, excluding Dec. 23, 24 and 25.
From the Vaile Mansion’s website:
When and where
Tours will be offered daily through the end of the year, excluding Dec. 23, 24 and 25.
Monday-Saturday: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Sunday: 1-4 p.m.
Tickets are $6 for adults and $3 for children under 16.
The Vaile’s senior discount for tickets does not apply during the holiday season.
For large tours, contact Ron Potter at (816) 229-8293.
Follow Jack on his lively adventure up the beanstalk. A fairy tale classic full of humor, suspense and a not-so-scary giant. Performed by puppeteer Kraig Kensinger.
When and where
There are four performances scheduled over two days.
- Friday, Nov. 23 @ 11 a.m. & 2 p.m.
- Saturday, Nov. 24 @ 11 a.m. & 2 p.m.
Tickets are $6 per person. They are available at the door, but reservations are requested, as seating is limited.
For reservations, please call 816-833-9777.
About the Puppetry Arts Institute
The Puppetry Arts Institute is located in the Englewood Arts District of Independence.
The Institute includes a research library, puppet performance and workshop areas, museum space and offices.
It’s good to #ShopSmall
Just in time for the holiday season, Small Business Saturday is a great way to support the small, locally-owned businesses in our community. Whether its art, home goods or food and drink, the shops on the Independence Square help make Independence home.
Make the Square your home for the holidays!
Start early, stay late
Shop or dine at over 40 locally-owned shops and restaurants in our historic downtown.
Rise-and-Shine breakfast specials available before 10 a.m. at select cafes. There, you can also pick up a guide that highlights shopping specials throughout the downtown district.
Receive a reusable “Shop Small” tote with purchase at the following local merchants, while supplies last:
ALL THINGS INDEPENDENCE, ART SQUARED GALLERY, BE HERE NOW, GAME CAFE, GILBERT WHITNEY & CO., PRIMARY COLORS GALLERY, SALON 208, SALON PINK, SCANDINAVIA PLACE, SMILES ON THE SQUARE, STUDIO ON MAIN, THE KEEPING ROOM, TOP HAT WINERY, WILD ABOUT HARRY
Go to the lighting of the Mayor’s Christmas Tree in the Holiday Forest, then join us on the Square for Living Windows.
For one night only, our windows will again come to life with holiday scenes, musicians and more. Explore historic downtown, where many merchants will be open late and others may invite you in for a warm drink. Grab a late dinner, or treat yourself to dessert. Come home to a new tradition, Living Windows.
Mayor Eileen Weir invites citizens to join her at the Mayor’s Holiday Lighting at 6p.m. on Friday, Nov. 30 at Hiram Young Park.
The Mayor will be joined by a special guest to light the Mayor’s Christmas tree and other features in the park.
Santa will join the festivities and lead everyone up to the Square for Living Windows at 7 p.m.
Celebrate the holidays with balloon creations, face painting, carnival games, prizes, snacks and a visit with Santa.
This Dickens of a Christmas Tour will feature some of your favorite characters from the classic, “A Christmas Carol.”
“Come join us for an exclusive, evening tour of the beautifully decorated Vaile Mansion.”
Come anytime between 5:30 and 8:30 p.m. for this exclusive tour. After the tour, enjoy a glass of champagne and light hors d’oeuvres in the dining room. Make plans to visit the Vaile Mansion for this truly special event that is certain to put holly in your heart.
The 33rd Annual Mayor’s Christmas Concert, benefitting the Community Services League, will feature fourth-grade students from the Independence School District and Nativity of Mary, the Truman High School Concert Choir, the Young MAIsterSingers of the Music Arts Institute, and the Spirit of Independence Band.
Dick Wilson will serve as master of ceremonies. The Kansas City Mavericks’ mascot, Mac, and another special guest are coming, too.
Admission is free. A donation offering will be taken during the concert.
The Independence Young Matrons are excited to present their annual Holly & Mistletoe Homes Tour.
“Homes festooned with holiday cheer will welcome you on this year’s tour.”
Tickets are available at several area outlets, which you can see via the “Event Website” link above.
Make sure to the visit the Sweet Shop from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the day of the tour. Located in the Delaware Event Space on the Square, the Sweet Shop features homemade treats and goodies. You can also check out the raffle basket table.
Your participation in the Holly & Mistletoe Homes Tour makes it possible for Independence Young Matrons to donate to local agencies supporting people throughout eastern Jackson County.
Come early for pre-party entertainment from 9-10:30 a.m. Get your picture taken with Santa, enjoy a holiday meal, enter the door prize drawing, and enjoy the pre-party entertainment. The luncheon begins at 11 a.m. Come enjoy a holiday meal catered by Hy-Vee.
New this year : reserved seating. Choose the table you would like to sit at when you purchase your ticket.
Tickets on sale at the Palmer Center.
Join Santa and Mrs. Claus as they host a festive showcase of music, stories, and holiday merriment.
Performed by puppeteer Kraig Kensinger.
There are four shows scheduled over two dates.
- Saturday, Dec. 8 @ 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.
- Saturday, Dec. 15 @ 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.
Tickets are $6 per person and are available at the door. Reservations are requested, as seating is limited.
Come to the National Frontier Trails Museum for an afternoon of holiday fun!
Children can listen to the classic “The Night Before Christmas” story, complete with a visit from St. Nicholas, and participate in themed Christmas crafts.
Admission is just $2/person and includes museum admission.
Sponsored by the Friends of the National Frontier Trails Museum.
Three tours, one night
Apex Paranormal will host three tours on the evening of the event.
- 6-7:30 p.m.
- 7:30-9 p.m.
- 9-10:30 p.m.
About Apex Paranormal
Apex Paranormal is a multi-state, non-profit organization with teams in Kansas City and Iowa.
From their website:
We specialize in paranormal investigations throughout the Midwest and beyond … Our investigations seek to find answers to paranormal experiences and assist others in gaining a better understanding of the world of the paranormal.
Come out for the 15th annual Winter Solstice Torch-Lit Hike at George Owens Nature Park.
Walk a torch-lit trail through the park and learn about the change of seasons. Stay warm with a roaring fire and hot chocolate.
The event features ice sculptures, live raptors, telescopes to view the night sky (weather permitting), a variety of snowmen decorated by Independence families, organizations and businesses, and much more. Free travel mugs for the first 200 participants.
The Snowman Trail will be on display from Dec. 12 – Jan. 31.
If you, your family or your organization are interested in decorating a snowman, you can purchase on at the Truman Heritage Habitat for Humanity ReStore in Independence (505. N Dodgion Ave.) through Dec 4, 2018.
Snowmen are $10 for families, $25 for groups and $100 for businesses. Decorated snowmen can be dropped off at George Owens Nature Park, 1601 S. Speck Rd., on Dec. 1, 2, 5 or 6 from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Funds generated will be used to support Truman Heritage Habitat for Humanity’s work in Independence.