Not to knock cold and miserable – everything has its fans – but the differential between soul-sucking winter and inspiring spring is ridiculous. From godforsaken “brr” to giddy “ahh,” right?
Fortunately, all it takes is a warm gust of wind and a bit of hope to turn it all around, including this weekend’s cache of fresh springtime events and activities designed to more than mitigate the “meh.”
Inspired? Then spring into action! Yes, even you winter people.
It’s no biggie if you don’t have a particular team to root for at this spring’s NAIA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament. The rousing contest that began with 32 roundball squads can also be enjoyed as an overall competitive display. But if you’re really looking for a team from Missouri or Kansas to cheer on, there’s good news and bad news. The bad: Missouri Baptist University from Creve Coeur was eliminated Wednesday (68-67 – ouch) by Loyola University New Orleans. The good: Benedictine College from Atchison, Kansas, will take on Westmont College from Santa Barbara, California, at 7:30 p.m. Thursday. Go Ravens!
Thursday and Friday, 9 a.m. start; Saturday, noon start; Municipal Auditorium, 301 W. 13th St., Kansas City, Mo.; tickets: start at $20.
Say so long to winter by exploring springtime possibilities “for your space and your life” at this annual home and personal flair expo at Bartle Hall. Whether you hang in a mansion or a studio apartment, you can express yourself in lots of new ways with the help of home-happy vendors and attractions, from touring a “smart home” to getting modern cooking and cocktail tips. Or take in idea-inspiring Q&A sessions with lifestyle entrepreneur Bethenny Frankel, formerly of Bravo’s “The Real Housewives of New York City”; Tamara Day of DIY’s “Bargain Mansions” and Cindy Gregorian of Kansas City Spaces magazine. You can even bid on a crazy cool kids backyard playhouse – but maybe keep that from the kids until you actually win it. Did I mention to bring money?
Friday, noon-9 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Bartle Hall, 301 W. 13th St., Kansas City, Mo.; tickets: $10-$35.
Those still looking for Celtic fun after last weekend can find it at Saturday’s Scottish music concert featuring the stirring strains of veteran Kansas City musicians Gerald Trimble and Dave Agee, who will be joined by members of the bands Into the Sun and Jambaroque. Trimble’s signature instrument is a souped-up version of the viola degamba, a sort of cello-violin that dates back to the 17th-century. Multi-instrumentalist Agee was a member of long-ago local Celtic bands Talisman and Scartaglen. It should be a reel good time!
Saturday, 7 p.m.; Prospero’s Books, 1800 W. 39th St., Kansas City, Mo.; admission: $10.
Come for the Whiskey 5K and stay for the Kids Fun Run – or just come for the inspiringly cute foot races between 50 and 100 yards involving ages 8 and younger. The latter is the capper to this spring event sponsored by the Martin City Business and Community Association. Anyone who signs up to run, jog, walk or otherwise amble gets a racing t-shirt and other take-home goodies, although the freebee shot glass is intended for adults only. Not that it couldn’t be used for juice or milk. Throw in some candy cigarettes and you’re there, kids!
Saturday, 8:30 a.m. 5K start, 9:30 a.m. Kids Fun Run start; KC Running Company, 200 E. 135th St., Martin City, Mo.; registration fee: $42 for 5K, $10 for Kids Fun Run.
Local makers offer their spring-friendly wares for the coffee-fueled crowd at the Roasterie’s onsite café. Hand-crafted stuff for perusal and purchase will include jewelry, clothing, leather items, skincare products, spices and … wait for it … custom-crafted marshmallows, which might be just the thing with a double espresso. How can you not dunk?
Saturday, 8 a.m.-3 p.m.; the Roasterie, 1204 W. 27th St., Kansas City Mo., admission: free.
How to best treat your garden’s roses at the dawn of spring? Find out at the Kansas City Rose Society’s Spring Rose Care Demo, featuring guest speaker Dr. Raymond Cloyd, an entomologist from Kansas State University, who will address the burning question: “Oh no … What Can I Do About Japanese Beetles?’” Prepare to be inspired!
Saturday, 10 a.m.-noon; Loose Park Garden Center, 5200 Pennsylvania Ave., Kansas City, Mo.; admission: free.
Brian McTavish is a regular arts and culture contributor for KCUR 89.3. You can reach him at email@example.com.