Go, See, Do | Raven Book Chat at Watkins, ‘Goodnight Moon,’ ‘The Sleeping Beauty’ ballet, and Kansas Day exhibits

photo by: Contributed, Journal-World and AP File Photos

Left to right: "The Sleeping Beauty" ballet, the Watkins Museum of History, and a bison, the state mammal of Kansas.

What was it like to live through the turmoil of the Bleeding Kansas era and the Civil War? Author Lana Wirt Myers knows better than most, having recently finished editing and compiling the diaries of a 19th-century Kansas settler who saw the events unfold.

This weekend, you can learn more about those accounts — which Myers has published as “The Diaries of Reuben Smith, Kansas Settler and Civil War Soldier” — in the inaugural Raven Book Chats at the Watkins Museum of History, according to a news release from the museum.

In Smith’s diaries are stories from 50 years of Kansas’ early history, from the conflicts on the border with Missouri to Smith’s own service in the military and, after the war, as a state representative, according to the University Press of Kansas website.

Myers will begin discussing the book at 6 p.m. Friday at the museum, 1047 Massachusetts St. She will also sign copies of the book, which will be available for purchase. Admission is free.

photo by: Mike Yoder

The Watkins Museum of History, 1047 Massachusetts St.

The event, which is part of the January Final Friday events, kicks off a planned monthly series between the Raven Book Store and the Watkins Museum, where speakers will be invited to discuss books on history. Future guests for the event include historian Tom Clavin and historical fiction author Kate Quinn.

Along with the book chat, there are many other Final Friday events in Lawrence this weekend. A full list of the events are posted on the Explore Lawrence website.

Here’s what else you can go, see and do in the next week:

‘Goodnight Moon’

The Lawrence Arts Center will present a theatrical production based on the popular children’s book “Goodnight Moon” this weekend as part of a series of performances for young children.

According to the Arts Center’s website, the show is part of the Arts Center’s Theatre and Dance for the Very Young program series, which kicked off in the fall with “Color Play.”

As with “Color Play,” many of the designs on stage were made by young children who participated in the art center’s Play Lab.

The show is intended for an audience between ages 3 and 8. Performances are scheduled for 6 p.m. Friday; 11 a.m., 2 p.m. and 6 p.m. Saturday; and 3 p.m. Sunday at the Arts Center, 940 New Hampshire St. Tickets are $15 for adults, $12 for seniors and $10 for children.

Russian National Ballet’s ‘The Sleeping Beauty’

photo by: Contributed photo

Russian National Ballet Dancers perform in “The Sleeping Beauty,” which they ballet will perform at the Lied Center, 1600 Stewart Drive, on Sunday.

Elegant dancing will fill the main stage at the Lied Center this weekend when the Russian National Ballet performs “The Sleeping Beauty.”

The performance of the classic show includes a demonstration of sharply accented spinning turns, soaring leaps, high extensions, daring lifts and more, according to the Lied Center event listing.

The show begins 2 p.m. Sunday at the Lied Center, 1600 Stewart Drive. Tickets are $25-40 for adults and $14-21 for students.

Discovery Day at KU Natural History Museum: Kansas Day

photo by: Associated Press

In this May 24, 2017, file photo, a bison grazes in Theodore Roosevelt National Park in western North Dakota. The American Bison is the Kansas State Mammal. Exhibits at the KU Natural History Musuem on Sunday will explain information on bison and other animals important to Kansas. (AP Photo/Blake Nicholson, File)

The KU Natural History Museum is inviting Kansans to celebrate the state’s 158th birthday a little early.

The real Kansas Day is Tuesday, but this weekend, the museum will present exhibit stations featuring many aspects of natural history related to the state of Kansas, according to an event listing on the museum’s website. Some topics include the state mammal, bird, reptile and more.

The event begins 1 p.m. Sunday at the museum located in Dyche Hall, 1345 Jayhawk Blvd., on KU’s campus. The event is free and open to the public.

If you have an event you think the Journal-World or the Lawrence community should know about, please email khanks@ljworld.com.


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