Snow was never needed to have a white Christmas in 1950s suburban Johnson County, a time and place of quintessential Caucasian conformity that continues to fascinate visitors at the annual Very Fifties Christmas exhibit at the Johnson County Museum of History, 6305 Lackman Road in Shawnee.
Located in the museum’s All-Electric House, the exhibit puts a warm-and-fuzzy Santa hat on the era of liking Ike and keeping your free-thinking thoughts to yourself while un-ironically chuckling at TV’s “The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet.” Ah, the good times.
The “latest 1950s holiday home decorating creations” again include a vintage aluminum Christmas tree and color wheel, symbolizing the pinnacle or nadir of post-war America’s ostentatious yuletide yearnings. Decide for yourself (if you dare) during guided tours available every half hour from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday.
Tours start at 1 p.m. Sunday and Tuesday through Friday. Admission is $2 for adults and $1 for ages 12 and younger…not quite 1950s prices, but not bad.
There will also be a free visit from Santa in the museum’s Kidscape area and storytelling and craft making with Mrs. Claus in the education center starting at 10 a.m. Saturday.
The early music ensemble Parthenia will be joined by soprano Julianne Baird in a Harriman-Jewell Series holilday concert featuring early English Christmas music at 8 p.m. Saturday at the Folly Theater, 300 W. 12th.
Parthenia is an instrumental quartet from New York that performs on viols (stringed instruments developed in the 1400s and used in Renaissance and Baroque music). Baird is a teacher and scholar with a PhD in music history from Stanford University, who’s made more than 100 recordings and has appeared in concert with major symphony orchestras.
Tickets cost $20 to $60 to the concert, which will be preceded at 7 p.m. by a talk about early music by Jay Carter, countertenor and William Jewell College artist in residence.
Tassels! Artistry! Laughter!
Burlesque Downtown Underground will tease ages 18 and older in “A Black Tie Cabaret with a Splash of Holiday,” an evening of old-fashioned striptease at 8 and 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday at City Stage at Union Station, Pershing and Main.
It’s old fashioned, because these gals do not take it all off. Suffer! Tickets cost $18 to $25.
Time to get (nut) cracking
More than 200 area young people ages 7 to 18 are part of the Kansas City Ballet’s million-buck production of “The Nutcracker” this weekend at the Music Hall, 301 W. 13th.
The Sugar Plum Fairy and her magical pals will dance to the momentous music of Tchaikovsky as performed by the Kansas City Symphony in one of the biggest “Nutcrackers” in an eight-state region. Show times are 7:30 p.m. today; 10 a.m., 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday; and 1 and 5 p.m. Sunday.
Tickets cost $25 to $80. For another $10 you can have your picture taken with one of the “Nutcracker” characters one hour before and right after each performance in the lobby of the Music Hall.