June 2015 Around Town 2


Bloch Art Collection on Permanent View

An $11.7 million renovation of The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art will showcase the internationally celebrated Marion and Henry Bloch Collection of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist Art, which will go on permanent view in Spring 2017.

The collection was showcased during the 2007 opening of the Bloch Building and bequeathed to the museum under the leadership of Marc Wilson in 2010.

The art will be integrated with the museum’s European collection, a project that is the result of a thoughtful planning process and strategic initiative. The renovation of galleries begins this summer on the Plaza level of the Nelson-Atkins Building.

As part of that process, the museum consulted with Wilson and Philippe de Montebello, the former Director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Both men were generous with their expertise as to the best way to integrate this monumental gift into the museum’s collection.

The northeast quadrant of the plaza level of the original Nelson-Atkins Building will be closed to visitors during the nearly two-year renovation. The project is funded by the Marion and Henry Bloch Family Foundation, which has designated the Nelson-Atkins as one if its legacy organizations.

Johnson County’s Newest Art Fair

Artists are coming together for Artist Expo KC, Johnson County’s inaugural art festival to be held June 13-14 from 10 a.m.-7 p.m. This outdoor event will feature local artists and is being held in Rosanna Square located at the northwest corner of 119th and Metcalf.  Local talent from around the metro will take part in this event and are reaching out for support to ensure a successful event that will continue for years to come.

Events are free and open to the public. For more information or if you are an artist and wish to participate, please contact, Della Smith at Della@ArkArtistry.com

KampOut! Summer Day Kamp

KampOut! and Leawood Presbyterian Church are bringing the fun of Kanakuk, one of the largest Christian summer camps in the nation, to Leawood.

Professional Kanakuk Kamps staff leads this high-energy, non-stop excitement, traveling day camp. KampOut! offers five days of faith-based, day-camp activities to children in kindergarten through 5th grade. It will be held at Leawood Presbyterian Church June 15-19 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Kampers experience Bible study, K-Life, worship, small-group time with counselors and outdoor activities including a climbing wall, inflatables, slip-n-slide, zip line and Euro Bungee.

Snacks are provided, with Kampers bringing their own lunches.

Find the KampOut! itinerary and register at Kanakuk.com/kamp-finder/kampout-day-camp/about. Additionally, registration remains open for Kanakuk Kamps’ overnight options for children ages 6-18 years old with more than 70 sports and activities on six Kamp sites in Branson and Lampe, Mo.


Town Center Plaza will once again play host to Sunset Music Fest, a weekly, free, all-ages concert series featuring nationally-known musical acts. Sunset Music Fest concerts take place at Town Center Plaza in the drive near Bravo! restaurant on Thursday evenings, June 4, 11, 18 and 25.

The outstanding lineup offers something for everyone. Kansas City’s own American Idol  David Cook will play on June 4; 90s GRAMMY nominated “jangle pop” superstars Gin Blossoms on June 11; 70s “Ballroom Blitz” glam rockers Sweet on June 18; and late 90s party band favorites Lit on Thursday, June 25.

Local bands will be featured as opening acts for each date.

Attendees can enjoy great food, cocktails and soft drinks, with sales benefitting the KC Chapter of JDRF, a global organization funding type 1 diabetes research.

Shawnee Mission Educators Awarded Grants

Thanks to donor support, the Shawnee Mission Education Foundation awarded $26,689 in teacher grants to be implemented in the 2015 – 16 school year.

“We are continually struck by the creativity and passion of our educators. It’s an honor to partner with the district in this way,” says Linda Roser, SMEF executive director.

2015 -2016 Award Recipients:

“Early Literacy Now” – Shawnee Mission Instructional Support Center

Grant Recipients: Caren Howes and Lea Ann Combs

“STEAM’ing Produce” – Mill Creek Elementary

Grant Recipient:  Michelle Lord

“Tabula Rasa” – Shawnee Mission West

Grant Recipient:  Greg Schieszer

“Tabula Rasa” – USD 512 High Schools

Grant Recipient:  Tobee Ford-Nelson

“Signs of Life:  Building bonds across Cultural and Language Barriers” – Westridge Middle

Grant Recipient:  Jason Coats

“Water and Stream Investigations” – Westridge Middle

Grant Recipient:  Kim Lipford

“Early Intervention K-3 Reading Clinic” – Roesland Elementary

Grant Recipient:  Kari Bowles

Library Receive MakerSpace Donation

When Johnson County Library’s MakerSpace reopens in 2016 as part of the larger Central Resource Library’s renovation, it will boast six times the current square footage. With the added space comes an opportunity for new tools and technology to inspire the next generation of builders. Global engineering and construction company Black & Veatch is joining forces with the library as part of the company’s growing science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) outreach.

The library will rename the facility the “Black & Veatch MakerSpace.” The partnership is the first of its kind in the library’s history. Demand for the MakerSpace’s array of tools – from 3D printers to audio visual recording equipment – has outpaced supply since the space opened in 2013.

Blue Valley Seniors Named Semifinalists

Two Blue Valley seniors have been named semifinalists in the 2015 U.S. Presidential Scholars Program. Blue Valley High senior Luke G. Conners and Blue Valley North senior Mitchell J. Reinig are among the more than 500 students named semifinalists.

Inclusion in the Presidential Scholars Program is one of the highest honors bestowed upon graduating high school seniors. Scholars are selected on the basis of superior academic and artistic achievements, leadership qualities, strong character and involvement in community and school activities. The final selection will be made in May. One young man and one young woman will be chosen from each state.

Area Students Earn Journalism Awards

Some of the most prestigious honors available to student journalists were presented to Shawnee Mission students at the spring National Scholastic Press Association/Journalism Education Association convention. Julia Poe, a senior at SM East, was named the National High School Journalist of the Year. The Pacemaker Award, considered to be the Pulitzer Prize of student journalism, was awarded to Shawnee Mission North’s Indian yearbook and SM East’s Hauberk yearbook. Multiple individual and publication honors were given to Shawnee Mission students.

Art of the Car Concours Benefits KCAI

A presentation of 200 historically significant vehicles, including vintage and antique cars from throughout the country will be displayed at the Kansas City Art Institute for the Ninth Annual Art of the Car Concours.

This year’s event features concept cars that manufacturers built to gauge public acceptance of new technology and styling ideas, many of which found their way into production. The 1950 and 60s became the Golden Age of the dream car.

Prior to the Sunday showcase — Saturday afternoon June 27 — a panel at the Meet the Legends event will discuss the history of dream cars. The panel will include personalities such as Packard collector Ralph Marano and Wayne Carini of Velocity Channel’s Chasing Classic Cars show.

Proceeds benefit the KCAI scholarship fund. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit ArtOfTheCarconcours.com.

SME Debaters Head to Dallas

Several SM East students have recently qualified to participate in the National Speech and Debate tournament to be held in Dallas this June. Parker Mitchell qualified in Lincoln-Douglas Debate. Josh Fowler and Bhavish Dinakar qualified in duo interpretation. Jacob Roberts qualified in humorous interpretation. They will join SM East students Ali Dastjerdi, Henry Walter, Spencer Mitchell, and Will Bledsoe who qualified for the national tournament during debate season.

Football History Comes to Union Station

Union Station – in partnership with the Kansas City Chiefs — brings Gridiron Glory: The Best of the Pro Football Hall of Fame exhibition to Kansas City. The exhibit runs through September 6.

Gridiron Glory is the largest and most comprehensive traveling exhibition ever created on America’s favorite sport and will include the most iconic pro football artifacts of all time. In total, more than 200 football artifacts, photos and rare documents from the Pro Football Hall of Fame collection will be on display… some for the very first time.

Gridiron Glory tackles everything from football’s cultural impact to the science behind the game. Guests will able to view NFL Films video footage and learn about the sports’pioneers. This interactive multimedia experience includes rare documents and spectacular NFL Film footage. Additionally, a special gallery of 4,000 square feet – including unique artifacts — will be created to pay tribute to the KC Chiefs.

For details, visit UnionStation.org/Football.

Alex’s Lemonade Days Returns

Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF), a nonprofit dedicated to finding cures for all kids with cancer, invites volunteers to take a stand against childhood cancer when Alex’s Lemonade Days returns, June 12-14.

ALSF’s National Lemonade Days began in 2004 when Alex Scott set her sights on raising $1 million to fight childhood cancer, including hers. Alex invited volunteers to join her in hosting lemonade stands to help achieve her goal: one dollar and one lemonade stand at a time. Through the help of these volunteers, Alex would reach her goal before losing her life to cancer in August of that year. Each June, the weekend before Father’s Day, supporters everywhere contribute to a cure.

For more information and to sign up to host a lemonade stand, visit: AlexsLemonade.org/LemonadeDays.