No matter when you choose to visit Independence, MO, you can find a host of activities and events to enjoy. We’ve suggested a variety of attractions below that are popular by season.


Spring is in the air

Spring is one of the best times to visit Independence. Beginning on April 1, all of our historic sites—including the Vaile Mansion, Bingham-Waggoner Estate, National Frontier Trails Museum, Chicago & Alton Depot, and 1859 Jail, Marshal’s Home & Museum—reopen to the public. Cool temperatures and a greening landscape make for a beautiful time to explore these sites both inside and out. It’s also a season to honor former President Harry S. Truman. May 8 is Truman’s birthday, and one of the best places to celebrate his legacy is the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and Museum.

A child watches ducks swim in a pond in Waterfall Park in Independence, MO

Summer shenanigans

Like tomatoes on the vine, Independence is ripe with activities in the summer. Enjoy a breath of fresh air with a hike or bike along the Little Blue Trace Walking & Biking Trail or at George Owens Nature Park. Looking to cool off? Spend the day at Adventure Oasis Water Park, or stop in for a milkshake at Clinton’s Soda Fountain on the Historic Independence Square. Peruse locally grown produce and handmade wares on Wednesdays and Saturdays at the Independence Farmers Market. Making a trip over Labor Day? Don’t miss the SantaCaliGon Days Festival on the Square.


Fall for fall

Fall is a beautiful time in the Midwest. Don’t miss the leaves changing color outside the Harry S. Truman Home. Then, take your sightseeing a step farther with our fall architectural tours of the historic buildings and homes around the Square. Looking for a riskier endeavor? Look into our paranormal tours. Discover the Vaile Mansion’s rarely told history as a local sanatorium. Chance a meeting with the “blushing bride” at the Bingham-Waggoner Estate. Dare to cross paths with the spirits of convicts inside the limestone jail cells at the 1859 Jail, Marshal’s Home & Museum.


Winter wonderland

Independence doesn’t hibernate through the winter. Load up and head to Cable Dahmer Arena for an afternoon of ice-skating at Independence Community Ice. Stick around through the evening for a Kansas City Mavericks game. Get a jump on your holiday shopping at the Independence Center, one of the region’s last remaining indoor shopping malls, featuring more than 100 stores and shops. Tour the Vaile Mansion and Bingham-Waggoner Estate, which are immaculately decorated for the holiday season. Don’t miss Living Windows, the one night each year when the storefronts on the Independence Square come to life with scenes from your favorite holiday films.