Family comes first at Thanksgiving, including finding things to do with – or without – family members.
Let’s talk turkey: Entertainments and activities that can distract from mom’s tragically burnt stuffing or a visiting relative’s relentless political opinions can be especially helpful during the gathering season, including this weekend’s handy batch of go-and-dos to thankfully share – or not – with those we hold dear.
Anyway, be sure to count your blessings. However you do the math!
Folks who held onto their tickets from Bob Seger’s postponed 2017 concert at Sprint Center will be thankful to finally see him, along with other fans who may have to scramble for seats on the secondary ticket market. Saturday’s sold-out show is part of the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer’s official farewell tour, the long goodbye of which was recently extended to March. So is this really and truly the last time for local fans to hear the “Travelin’ Man” poetically awaken to the sound of thunder, dig that old time rock ’n’ roll and wistfully remember when “we were young and strong and running against the wind”? Maybe. You may not get the chance to thank twice.
Saturday, 8 p.m.; Sprint Center, 1407 Grand Blvd., Kansas City, Mo.; tickets: start at about $119 on secondary market.
The gift from genius 19th-century English novelist Charles Dickens that keeps on giving each holiday season is back at Kansas City Repertory Theatre. The Rep’s skillful adaptation charts the awesome transformation of spiteful cheapskate Ebenezer Scrooge, who receives the unsolicited attention of several Christmastime ghosts aiming to transform his flinty heart. And there’s the manifestly fragile presence of Tiny Tim, who reminds us of our shared humanity with the simple wish, “God bless us, every one!” Bring a tissue or two. You’ll thank me.
Friday, 2 and 8 p.m.; Saturday, 2 and 8 p.m.; Sunday, 1 and 5 p.m.; Spencer Theatre at Kansas City Repertory Theatre, 4949 Cherry St., Kansas City, Mo.; tickets:
It’s become something of a Thanksgiving weekend tradition for the Rainmakers to play for their hometown faithful, including many who’ve enjoyed the band’s meat-and-potatoes rock sound since before it gained international attention back in the mid-1980s. More than 30 years later, Norway is still giving its thanks! But back to KC: Rainmakers front man Bob Walkenhorst will open the evening performing with his daughter in the folk duo they call Bob and Una. Of course, BobUna might have been a bit more adventurous, although I don’t expect to be thanked for that suggestion.
Friday, 6 p.m.; recordBar, 1520 Grand Blvd., Kansas City, Mo.; tickets: $15.
Thank you, classical music! If you don’t know why (and even if you do) get yourself in front of the Kansas City Symphony this weekend when it lets loose with Mozart’s “Jupiter” and Haydn’s Trumpet Concerto. Appreciative spirits in the audience will be lifted by the symphony’s melodic flourishes, or might it the other way around? Hey, whatever floats your notes.
Friday and Saturday, 8 p.m.; Sunday, 2 p.m.; Helzberg Hall at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, 1601 Broadway; tickets: $25-$82.
Got a kid who loves to play basketball, but could use some proven pointers? Thank goodness for former University of Kansas basketball player Jeff Hawkins, whose one-day skills camp focuses on the basics of ball handling, shooting, passing and defense, because you can’t beat ‘em, if you can’t hold ‘em. Plus there’s a souvenir t-shirt and a light lunch – no, not for you, dad.
Saturday, 8 a.m.-4 p.m.; Hy-Vee Arena, 1800 Genessee St., Kansas City, Mo.; tickets: $75.
Check out local stand-up comics who sign up for the chance to make people laugh at the city's newest comedy club. Some in the crowd may be obviously rooting for family members to be a hit, which is actually worth an upfront thank-you, because a more confident comic might turn out to be a funnier one. Yeah, I said "might." I'll thank you not to titter at my wary recommendation!
Sunday, 8-10:30 p.m.; Clint’s Comedy Stop at Rosana Square Shopping Center, 7328 W. 119th St., Overland Park, Kan.; tickets: $10 (21 and older).
Brian McTavish is a regular arts and culture contributor for KCUR 89.3. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.