Happy 2018 – now what?
The new calendar year’s initial weekend delivers a grab bag of endeavors: Downtown art-scene appreciation, drolly ancient funk-rock, Jewish comedians riffing on their cultural history, dinosaur love, football dreams and more.
What might all the miscellany amount to? Find out by reaching into the bag!
Get 2018 off to a stirring start at Kansas City’s uniquely see-and-be-seen monthly art-scene street mixer and live entertainment destination. Sure, it’ll be nippy outside, which is all the more reason to duck into that art gallery, studio space, bar or restaurant that you weren’t necessarily planning on ducking into.
Eat, drink, catch some live music and most of all be with it – whether potentially admiring magical African objects at MLB Designs + Boutique (2020 Baltimore St., Suite 105), minimalist Midwestern landscape photos by Scott Reynolds at Apex Art Space (1819 Wyandotte St.), otherworldly canvases by Evan “Hevan” Jackson at Artists + Craftsman Supply (229 Southwest Blvd) or a fascinating retrospective of sculptures by legendary Kansas City Art Institute professor George Timock at Belger Arts Center (2100 Walnut St).
Friday, 5 p.m.; Crossroads Arts District, E. 18th St., Kansas City, Mo.; admission: free.
According to their cryptic bio, Here Come the Mummies lurch onstage with “terrifying funk from beyond the grave.” Well, not that terrifying. The eight-piece party band from ancient Egypt may resemble the living dead because of their bandage-happy costumes, but they also sport such tongue-through-cheek names as Mummy Cass, Eddie Mummy and B.B. Queen. And it’s hard to believe that music luminaries, such as Al Green, P-Funk and Cheap Trick, would ever share a bill with anything capable of actually destroying them – although upstaging them might have happened. Scary!
Friday, 8:30 p.m.; Knuckleheads Saloon, 2415 Rochester St., Kansas City, Mo.; tickets: $28.50.
Lifelong pals Eli Batalion and Jamie Elman get yuks from exploring the amusing tensions that can develop between modern American life and Jewish identity. Although the duo’s low-key, sitcom-style web series, “Yidlife Crisis,” is performed totally in Yiddish (with subtitles), the show’s live tour is executed entirely in English – thanks for being inclusive, guys. Skits, discussions and mini-screenings of “Yidlife Crisis” will comprise the intercultural swirl, including such topics as romance and circumcision. Ow! Well, when it comes to romance, anyway.
Saturday, 6 p.m.; White Theatre at the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City, 5801 W. 115th St., Overland Park, Kan.; tickets: $14-$25
The Kansas City Chiefs have worked all season for this moment – the chance to win in the playoffs. Cheer the Chiefs and jeer the Titans from your seat at Arrowhead Stadium. No ticket? No problem. Plenty of inexpensive tickets remain available, mostly because the NFL has created the perfect game to watch at home on a big-screen TV. Saturday’s game will not sell out, giving you the perfect opportunity to sell out for the home team. See you there!
Saturday, 3:35 p.m.; Arrowhead Stadium, 1 Arrowhead Dr., Kansas City, Mo.; tickets: starting at $38.
Featuring more than 80 life-size dinosaurs to learn about – and a 24-foot-tall T-Rex to climb on – this family-friendly touring attraction is calling dino-loving kids of all ages. Promoters stress that consulting paleontologists have simulated every detail of the extinct creatures on display – except the part where they accidently crush you or purposely eat you. But, hey, you can’t have everything. Interactive baby dinosaurs, roaming adolescent dinosaurs and dinosaur-themed rides, mazes and slides are also part of the prehistoric plan.
Friday, 3-8 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, 9 a.m.-8 p.m.; Hale Arena at the American Royal Center, 1701 American Royal Ct., Kansas City, Mo.; tickets: $20-$34.
What else is there to do this weekend? Let’s just make something up – with the help of Clusterfunk, a madcap collective of three local indie improvisational comedy troupes hosted by KC Improv Co. Audiences will also get to experience the company’s long-format online dating site parody known as Swipe Right! Experience the funniest of characters in the cruelest of worlds. Will you go, “ha” or “huh”? Guess that depends which side of the swipe you’re on.
Friday, 10 p.m.; Kick Comedy Theatre, 4010 Pennsylvania Ave., Kansas City, Mo.; tickets: $7-$12.
Brian McTavish is a regular arts and culture contributor for KCUR 89.3. You can reach him at email@example.com.