Upcoming events include Lawrence Pride Parade, Black Jack commemoration, sales, art, music and more
photo by: Mike Yoder
The first weekend of June includes Lawrence Pride events, historical tours, music, art and much more in Lawrence and the surrounding areas. This week also marks the anniversary of the Battle of Black Jack; several events will commemorate the occasion at the battlefield in Franklin County.
• Early-rising historians are welcome at the Dawn Tour of Black Jack Battlefield beginning at 4:45 a.m., the exact time of the battle that occurred in 1856. Dress for hiking and bring a flashlight to the site at 163 E. 2000 Road.
• Jill Ensley’s macro photography “Ingredients” exhibit opens. See it from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Lawrence Public Library, 707 Vermont St.
• Children and their families are invited to Landmark Activity Days at the Dole Institute of Politics, 2350 Petefish Drive, for summer activities, including games, crafts, scavenger hunts and more. Kids are invited to contribute their own art to the commemorative Bob Dole tribute earthwork. See hours of admission and more details at https://doleinstitute.org/landmark/.
• Come to the Black Jack Battlefield and Nature Park from 5 to 7 p.m. to commemorate the 167th anniversary of the battle and celebrate the dedication of the Black Jack Gate. The gate’s design includes symbolism reflecting the battlefield’s natural setting as well as the connection to later Civil War events. The event is free, but donations are accepted, at 163 E. 2000 Road.
• Don’t forget to head down to the Lawrence Farmers’ Market, 7:30-11:30 a.m., rain or shine, at 824 New Hampshire St., for fresh produce, home-baked goods, crafts and more.
• The Hidden Valley Camp invites the public to Trails Day, 8:30 a.m.-10 a.m., at 3420 Bob Billings Parkway. Forty acres of trails, woods, prairie, streams and hillsides. Visitors are advised to wear sturdy shoes and bug repellent. No unaccompanied minors, strollers or dogs, please. Sign-up encouraged for guided hikes: friendshv.org/news.
• Bargain-hunters can attend communitywide yard sales in Baldwin City and Lecompton, beginning at 8 a.m. See baldwincity.gov/citywide-yardsale for details and a sale map for the Baldwin sales. For the Lecompton sales, head northwest of Lawrence, about eight miles off County Road 1029.
• Douglas County Master Gardeners invite the public to a Garden Art Sale, 9 a.m.-2:30 p.m., at the Douglas County Fairgrounds Pavilion building, 2110 Harper St. Gardener-artists have been creating pots, wind chimes, bird houses and more for your outdoor spaces.
• The Master Gardener organization is also offering a Garden Tour from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Six inspirational home gardens will be open for visitors this weekend. See https://dgemgks.com/2023/04/16/3064/ for details and tickets.
• Interested in architecture and historic houses? The Franklin County Historical Society is hosting a unique opportunity for the public to view the 1899 Reid-Duderstadt house from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The 6,000-square-foot home at 306 S. Elm in Ottawa is on the National Register of Historic Places and has been undergoing a seven-year restoration process. Tickets are $20 at the door.
• The Black Jack Battlefield and Nature Park, 163 E. 2000 Road, will host 167th anniversary battle reenactments at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Music and “stump speeches” will take place between the events. Admission is free, but a $10 donation is suggested.
• The organization “Moms Demand Action” invites folks to #WearOrange at South Park, 1141 Massachusetts St., from 1 to 2:30 p.m. The group honors the victims and survivors of gun violence in Kansas and across the nation. Supply donations will be collected for use at the Willow Domestic Violence Center. Get more details and RSVP at https://bit.ly/3o6rity.
• Organizers of Pride Month in Lawrence invite the community to celebrate diversity and inclusion with a downtown parade at 3 p.m. Come honor the LGBTQ+ community at this colorful event, which kicks off a month of celebrations. Following the parade, a street party will kick off at 6 p.m. on Eighth street between New Hampshire and Massachusetts streets, featuring drag performances, local vendors, a DJ, dance party and more.
• Come hear traditional Ukrainian music at the Kobzar House Concert, 7 p.m., 1301 Vermont St. Performer Jurji has been playing for the troops and citizens throughout Ukraine since the Russian invasion began. Donations accepted. See social media for more information.
• The Restoring Our Landscapes Community Group meets at the Lawrence Public Library, 707 Vermont St., from 11 a.m. to noon. The group connects participants with resources on native plants and restoration ecology.
• Volunteers are invited to the Prairie Restoration Workday, 1-4 p.m., at Prairie Park, 2811 Kensington Road. Come learn about protection of native plants while working to clear invasive growth. No experience needed; experts will be on hand to provide guidance. Come prepared for outdoor work; tools will be provided, or you may bring your own. Please RSVP at https://forms.gle/T6a9ojRULf8HJCQb8.
• A free Kawai piano concert with performer Kuok-Wai Lio will be given at 2 p.m. at the Lawrence Arts Center, 940 New Hampshire St. See lawrenceartscenter.org for more details.
• As of this writing, seats were still available for Genealogy + Local History Spotlight, hosted by the Lawrence Public Library at the Wakarusa River Valley History Museum, 716 N. 1190 Road, from 4 to 5 p.m. Take a tour of the museum and grounds and hear a presentation on its resources for historical research.
• The Lawrence City Band continues its free summer concert series with “South Park Classics.” The music starts at 8 p.m. at South Park, 1141 Massachusetts St. Bring blankets or lawn chairs. In case of inclement weather, the concert will be at the Lied Center, 1600 Stewart Drive.