MoDot / Flickr-CC

It might not be much of an exaggeration to predict that no matter where you look in the night sky this Fourth of July, you’ll catch at least a glimpse of glittering fireworks.

That’s because we love our fireworks in Kansas City as much as we do our barbecue and baseball. To meet the demand, myriad community gatherings will take place Saturday night throughout the metro, where folks will get to “ooh,” “aah” and applaud in response to red-white-and-blue spectacles flooding across the heavens in the name of Uncle Sam.

MattysFlicks / Flickr--CC

It’s the season for romance.  If you are lucky, finding your soul mate can be simple, but more often than not it can be awkward, and downright tedious. 

Stop and think for a minute … how many hoops have you jumped through in an attempt to land your special Valentine?  In the digital age online dating and matchmaking sites have encouraged us to scrutinize profiles and backgrounds to find our ideal match. They are designed to make finding romance easier, but can algorithms really lead to finding meaningful relationships or nightmarish breakups? 

Courtesy / Sonya Aplough

About a decade ago, Kansas City musician Billy Smith was combing thrift stores for records when he stumbled upon quite a find for an experimental sound guy: an old-school Magnavox, reel-to-reel tape recorder with a pile of tapes for less than $5. 

He brought it home, dusted it off, cleaned the tape heads and popped in some new batteries. He was about to hit record to start messing around with his new toy when curiosity took hold.

Before hitting record, he decided to check out what was on the tape inside the machine.

black sleigh
Ben Nuelle

Long before all-wheel drive and snow tires, sleighs were essential winter transportation.

Those that survive are now antiques.

Fifteen years ago, cattle farmer Bill Engel went to auction in northeast Iowa when he bought his first wooden sleigh. He noticed people purchased these historic vehicles to tear them apart.

“They were taking the runner parts and making them into coffee tables,” says Engel.

Julie Denesha / KCUR

The warm, fuzzy memories of holiday sweaters are a cherished harbinger of holiday spirit for some. For others, they are a gaudy sign of bad taste.

But on Friday night at Operation Breakthrough’s 10th Annual Ugly Christmas Sweater Party, the Christmas sweater was celebrated in all its garish glory.

The annual event raises money and awareness for Operation Breakthrough’s mission to help children living in poverty in Kansas City. This year, organizers said they hoped to raise $20,000 for the charity.

If you thought Black Friday and Cyber Monday were the only big holiday shopping events, think again.

Small Business Saturday started in 2010 as a marketing campaign for American Express. Last year, small businesses across the country raked in $5.7 billion in sales on that one day. And that number is expected to grow this year.

Dan Murray is the National Federation of Independent Business’s Kansas branch director. He admits he was skeptical at first, but quickly realized how the dedicated day can help visibility for such businesses.

Is Memorial Day About Grief, Glory Or Hot Dogs?

May 26, 2014
Ben Franske-Wikimedia / CC

Memorial Day is one of America’s most confusing holidays. Depending on the celebrant, it can be a day of grief, glory — or backyard barbecues. To understand America’s "most confusing holiday," you’ve got to ponder why we get the day off in the first place.

Chris Prewitt / KCUR

St. Patrick's day is officially on Monday, March 17, but some of the parades start this weekend in and around Kansas City.

For optimal Irish fun, here is a list of some of the activities going on in the area:

Miles of Christmas lights could be headed out the door as more consumers look at switching from traditional holiday lights to their LED counterparts. Kansas City-based Southeast Enterprises is looking to keep the discarded strands out of landfills.

Southeast Enterprises Business Director Megan Gurera says they accept any unused or broken strands of lights.

“You know the ones you pullout, get ready to put up, and half of it works,” says Gurera.

Southeast Enterprises is a sheltered workshop, employing 160 people with development or intellectual disabilities.

Food For The Fourth

Jul 2, 2013

There are many traditions associated with the Fourth of July: parades, fireworks and food. Just as America is a melting pot of its people, so are the picnics and barbeques we sit down to as we mark our nation’s birth.

Jean Fortunet

A plump roast turkey, creamy mountains of mashed potatoes and thick wedges of pumpkin pie are what many people look forward to during the holiday season.

The Psychology of Giving

Dec 19, 2011

Today on Central Standard, we ask - what's the greatest gift you've ever received? What do you like about giving gifts in the first place? Dr. Bruce Liese joins us for a look at the psychology behind giving.

Holiday Party Playlist

Dec 15, 2011

Join Central Standard this Thursday as we enjoy a selection of nontraditional tunes, perfect for this time of the year.

Let’s face it, the holidays are stressful, between decorating the house, putting up the tree, throwing a party and out-of-town guests. It’s enough to push even the most well-behaved pet over the edge.  Hey, the holidays are not all about you, you know!

If your animal companion starts exhibiting unusual behavior this time of year, don’t despair. Tuesday on Up to DateDr. Wayne Hunthausen is back to discuss how to limit the negative effects of the holiday season on your pets.

photo: Laura Spencer/KCUR

Grandview, MO – As many children await the arrival of Santa Claus on Christmas Eve, Kansas City's Secret Santa has already been busy. He's made seven "sleigh rides," and some of his elves have brought that total up to more than a dozen from coast to coast. It's a tradition stretching back more than 30 years to Larry Stewart, who gave out hundred dollar bills to strangers, those in need, every December.

Poverty on the Rise in Johnson County

Dec 8, 2010

The Johnson County Christmas Bureau, has opened its doors to their annual Holiday Shop at the Great Mall of the Great Plains in Olathe, KS. This is their 50th year creating a shopping experience for low income families around the holidays.

Director Barb McNeil says that “Poverty” and “Johnson County” aren’t words often heard in the same sentence, they should be. Though the population in Johnson County grew by 2% last year, the number of families below the poverty line grew by 64%.