The Best of the Best: Kansas City Arts & Culture

Expand your horizons and let your inner artist soar with cutting edge exhibits and classics that never disappoint.

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Best Musical Festival


Boulevardia What’s not to like about what the festival organizers call an event “with beer, food, music and more beer." On Father’s Day weekend Boulevardia transforms the Stockyard District into its own realm of beer-topia and packs in a variety of musical performances that cater to almost everyone’s tune taste. Add in some seriously good eats, a maker’s market, decent crowd control and almost enough bathrooms and you have a festival of plenty — awesome.



Boulevardia, photo courtesy boulevardia

Best Blockbuster Exhibit


The Big Picture at the

Nelson-Atkins Museum

            This exhibit provides an almost unparalleled look at photography from its infancy in 1826 to present-day works of art. The photos on display encompass a wide variety of subjects from touching, intimate studies of humanity to pieces which are more contemporary art than traditional photography.

Best Hip Gala

Party Arty Party Arty didn’t start out as the event for the young, beautiful and oh, so fashionable. At first, it was more frump than fab, but over the years it’s become the event to attend if you’re the primary Instagram demographic. From spectacular themes to outrageous outfits (four-foot peacock headdress anyone?) this gala that raises money for the Nelson-Atkins is all about a vibe that has no hint of ladies who lunch.


Party Arty

Party Arty, photo 435 archives

Best Local Documentary


LZ Kansas City:

Stories and Impact of the Vietnam War     

This award-winning local documentary by KCPT-TV was produced to run in conjunction with the Ken Burns/PBS series “The Vietnam War.” The LZ in the title stands for landing zones that were used extensively in the Vietnam War to move forces in and out of combat zones. “LZ Kansas City” digs deep and tells the stories of local veterans who “landed” back in KC after the war, as well as our area’s contributions and reactions.