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  • Suzanne Gunning, Visit OP

Plan for Vacation Day!

National Plan for Vacation Day is Tuesday, January 28, 2020 and we’re here to help you prepare. National Plan for Vacation Day is all about planning to use your paid vacation days. Did you know that 768 million vacation days went unused last year?

And, it matters how you use the days. Those who travel with all or most of their time off are 56% happier with their health and well-being than those who travel with little to none of their vacation days.

National Plan for Vacation Day encourages you to take time to calculate your time off and plan for the year. These don’t have to be once-in-a-lifetime trips around the globe. Traveling in your region, or your own backyard provides new experiences too. We’ve rounded up the perfect getaway for every month of 2020 across the metro region!

January – Smithville Lake, MO

Eagle Days 2020 is January 4-5, 2020 Paradise Pointe Golf Course in Smithville, Missouri. The event provides visitors young and old the perfect opportunity to learn more about local wildlife and some of Clay’s seasonal migratory visitors. Designated viewing stations are set up around the lake to help visitors spot an eagle in the wild!

February – Kansas City, MO

2020 marks the 100th anniversary since Prohibition passed in the United States. Kansas City, Missouri, largely ignored the law—and flourished as a result—leading to a thriving jazz scene and free-flowing drinks. Raise a glass to the centennial at J. Rieger & Co., a pre-Prohibition relic revived in 2014 and recently opened a new distillery experience in the East Bottoms. Sample pint pours at Boulevard Brewing Co. and other popular breweries in the Crossroads Arts District, River Market, Waldo and Brookside.

March – Leavenworth, KS

The City of Leavenworth invites you to explore our historic attractions, shop in our 28 block historic downtown shopping district, and dine in our distinctive restaurants. Leavenworth is home to many international flavored restaurants, and we are sure you will enjoy your experience while visiting us. For more information go to

April – Olathe, KS

Start your weekend in Olathe by grabbing dinner from a food truck at Fourth Fridays then grab dessert at Park Street Pastry before heading to the J Bar rooftop bar to end the night. On Saturday, enjoy 1860’s living history at Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm, shop local boutiques, and taste KS wine at KC Wine Co and Stone Pillar. Finish you trip with some of Kansas City’s best barbecue from Joe’s Kansas City, The Rub, or Johnny’s BBQ.

May – Shawnee Town

Check out Shawnee Town 1929’s summer events calendar. Everything from Touch-A-Trucks to 1920’s themed concerts happen in the summer at Shawnee’s Living History Museum at Shawnee Town 1929. Most events are free or only a few dollars! And, there a ton of things to do across Shawnee.

June - Lansing, KS

Set aside Friday, June 26th & Saturday, June 27th for Lansing’s Independence Days Celebration. There will be kids’ rides, music, beer and BBQ- capped off both nights with one of the best combined light and fireworks shows in the KC area. Follow Lansing, Kansas Happenings on Facebook!

July – Bonner Springs

Bonner Springs has all family-friendly fun activities to pack in before the kids head back to school! Zip through Kansas City with Zip KC, watch marble demonstrations at Moon Marble Company, step back in time with the Renaissance Festival or come out to National Agricultural Center for Barnyard Babies. Visit our website and begin planning your vacation today! For more information visit

August - Lenexa

A can’t-miss in Lenexa is the Union Horse Distillery. Take a tour of this family-owned distillery and learn the process from grain to bottle. Guests can enjoy samples at the end of each tour.

September - Gardner, KS

The 2020 Kansas City Air Show is Saturday & Sunday, September 5-6, at the New Century AirCenter in Gardner, Kansas. The Air Show will include two days of spectacular civilian aerobatic performances, military jet demonstrations including United States Air Force Thunderbirds Flight Demonstration Squadron, aviation STEM exhibits and thrilling entertainment for the whole family. Visit for info & tickets.

October – Merriam, Kansas

Plan for vacation in Merriam…next door neighbor to Kansas City! Before you go to the popular Merriam Drive Live music fest in October, see all that Merriam has to offer. Shop at IKEA atop I-35 or grab a loaf of the delicious homemade dessert bread from Strawberry Hill Povitica. Play along on Merriam’s Sunshine Scavenger Hunt or learn a little history through the Otocast app on Merriam’s Interactive History Tour.

November – Liberty, MO

Liberty is the second oldest incorporated town west of the Mississippi River and packed with history. Spend a day exploring Downtown Liberty where you'll find three intriguing history museums plus shopping, restaurants and more. Don’t miss the Jesse James Bank Museum. It’s the site of the nation's first successful daylight peacetime bank robbery. While the robbers were never caught, the crime attributed to the infamous James Gang. Visitors see the bank as it was in 1866 and hear the story of the robbery as told by the bank teller.

December – Overland Park, KS

Plan now for a holiday weekend in Overland Park to shop & enjoy winter festivities for the whole family. Spend the afternoon at Oak Park Mall shopping at American Girl Doll Store and the LEGO store. Then, make your way to The Overland Park Arboretum & Botanical Gardens where the Holiday Luminary Walk tradition continues. Thousands of candles illuminate over a mile of pathways through woods and gardens. Music fills the air while holiday lights brighten the trees, buildings and bridges. Don't miss the fairy villages, Santa, musical performances, hot Louisburg Cider and a horse-drawn wagon ride.

Are you ready to plan for vacation now? Check out Samantha Brown, U.S. Travel ambassador and host of "Places to Love.”

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