Want to grab a drink? You’re in luck. We’re in the middle of the Paris of the Plains Festival, which runs through Sunday. Tonight, there’s Latin jazz, George Dickel whiskey and bites from La Fonda El Taquito at the Berg Event Space from 8 to 11 p.m. ($25). There’s 7 seminars over the course of the festival — Aromatized Wines in Cocktails: Americano, QuinQuina and Vermouth ($25) will likely introduce you to some new possibilities for your liquor cabinet. It’s 11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. at The Brass on Baltimore.
The Midwest Melee ($25), on Sunday, is a competition that pits bartenders from Omaha/Lincoln, Denver, Milwaukee and Indianapolis against each other for bragging rights and the Pendergast Cup. It’s being held in lieu of the standard Greater Kansas City Bartending Competition. It’s wildly entertaining and occasionally delicious. The doors open at 6 p.m. at The Guild.
Find locally made, thoughtful gifts for yourself or others at Chick Events’ Handmade & Vintage Event on Saturday and Sunday at Leawood’s Park Place. Tickets are $5 ($8 for a weekend pass). Go. Have a great time. Then come see them again on Oct. 3 and 4, when they partner with Recommended Daily (hey, that’s us….) on CRAFT at Crown Center.
Go back to a simpler time when folks held ice cream socials and then trundled on home in a covered wagon. The Johnson County Old Settlers is back in downtown Olathe, Kansas. It runs through Saturday with live acts, a carnival and craft vendors.
The 36th annual Art Westport kicks off tonight (5 to 9 p.m.) and goes through Sunday (11 a.m. to 5 p.m.). The festival features artists from the Kansas City area in the heart of Westport (Pennsylvania and Westport).
Just like summer, The funnel cake ride is coming to an end. The Kansas State Fair (this year’s theme is Fried N’ Joy) starts today and will go through Sunday, September 20. There are pig races, milking demonstrations, petting zoos, woodcarving with chainsaws, and Pronto pups (arguably the world’s finest corn dogs). Tickets are $10 for adults ($6 for seniors, $3 for children ages 3-12).
Channel your inner Popeye at the Spinach Festival in Lenexa, Kansas, on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Sar-Ko-Par Trails Park (87th Street Parkway and Lackman Road). There are cooking demonstrations, history exhibits and the “world’s largest” spinach salad checking in at 150 pounds. Admission is free.
Library in the Park is happening. The Kansas City Kansas Public Library is hosting an outdoor family festival on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Big Eleven Park. There’s a street taco competition (Bonito Michoacan, Ninfa’s Tortillas, Con Sabor A Mexico, and Carniceria La Siete) and frozen custard from Sheridan’s.
Want to find your new favorite place in Blue Springs? A Taste of Blue Springs is Saturday from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Blue Springs High School Commons. A few dozen Blue Springs area restaurants, including Back Yard Burgers, GiGi’s Cupcakes, Plowboys BBQ, Inkling’s Coffee Shoppe, and Sandy’s Restaurant, will be on hand. Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door.