2019 event preview!

Posted on Jan 1, 2019

CVB Staff
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Happy New Year, everyone! We at the Emporia Convention and Visitors Bureau are excited to kick off another year promoting everything that is wonderful about our community, including Emporia’s unique events. Thousands of visitors from around the world visit Emporia each year to attend various events, and they often comment that Emporia is an amazing, kind, and welcoming community. There’s always something interesting happening in Emporia, so to help plan your 2019 visit, we’ve rounded up a list of Emporia’s events throughout the year. Exact dates are not yet set for some of these activities, or may be subject to change, so be sure to bookmark our calendar at visitemporia.com/events for the latest info.

Coming up next


Cheer on ESU Hornet and Lady Hornet basketball teams at White Auditorium. Visit esuhornets.com for home game schedules.


Jump into Mouse Lake at the Emporia Polar Plunge, February 16. The event raises money for Kansas Special Olympics athletes.

Find out what’s new in lawn care, landscaping, natural resources, conservation, recycling, repurposing and more at the Flint Hills Greener Living Show.

Spring 2019


Disc golf season begins with the Monkey Island Open in late March, a B-Tier PDGA sanctioned singles disc golf tournament at scenic Peter Pan Park.

Don’t miss the St. David’s Day Concert at Emporia Presbyterian Church, one of the oldest continuous celebrations of the Patron Saint of Wales. This orchestral event has been celebrated since 1888.

Celebrate the luck of the Irish with the annual Saint Patrick’s Day parade.


Join disc golf fans April 20-28th at the Glass Blown Open, the largest disc golf tournament in the world. This PDGA National Tour tournament concludes with a downtown block party.


Test your abilities during La Grind, a two-day 130-mile gravel stage race in the Flinthills, May 3-5. Begins at 5th & Commercial Street, downtown.

Celebrate Hispanic culture with folkloric dancers, food and live music May 4th, at the Cinco de Mayo Celebration. Come for the food trucks and famous pin tacos, and stay for a day full of activities.

Over one hundred antique and hot rod cars, trucks and motorcycles take over downtown Emporia at Flatland Cruisers Car Show in May. Enjoy rock & roll music and door prizes.

Summer 2019


Summer is a time of music in Emporia. Enjoy a concert in a Norman Rockwell setting Thursdays in June & July, as the Emporia Municipal Band plays at Fremont Park. Don’t forget your lawn chair or blanket.

For family fun, bring your lunch and enjoy a different performance each Wednesday in June at the Kids’ Koncerts at the Emporia Public Library.

Hear local artists at Live in the Lot, an outdoor music series Friday evenings in June.

Cheer on over 2,000 riders June 1st, as they attempt the Dirty Kanza, a grueling 200-mile bike race through the Flint Hills. There are also options for 100-mile, 50-mile and 25-mile rides, as well as the new ultra-extreme DKXL 350 mile ride. Join the finish line celebration at this epic downtown party.

The oldest consecutive rodeo in Kansas, The Flint Hills Rodeo is held in June each year. The three-day event includes a parade and dance.

Symphony in the Flint Hills offers a symphonic music experience unlike any other on June 15th. Sit in the scenic Flint Hills and listen to the Kansas City Symphony under the setting prairie sun. This year’s event will held in neighboring Chase County.

Welcome this year’s exceptional teachers at the National Teachers Hall of Fame Induction. National Teachers Hall of Fame recognizes and honors exceptional career teachers, encourages excellence in teaching, and preserves the rich heritage of the teaching profession in the United States.

Take a tour of Lyon County on June 23rd in the Tour de Lyon County Gravel Ride for Hope & a Cure. Proceeds from this event support local Special Olympics and to spread awareness of Type One Diabetes and the symptoms.


Hear local artists at Live in the Lot, an outdoor music series Friday evenings in July.

Watch the PDGA Junior Disc Golf World Championships, July 9-13th.

Lunar Kanza is a 50-mile gravel leisure bike ride under the full moon. Experience the open range under the Milky Way on July 13th.


No summer is complete without the fair! The Lyon County Fair features carnival rides, livestock shows, concerts, and grandstand events.

Flint Hills Beef Fest is an annual celebration of the grass cattle industry for which the Flint Hills region is well known. Includes a ranch feed, ranch rodeo, and steak dinner.

Fall 2019


Emporia lives up to its name as a central marketplace during the Great American Market on September 14th. This 9-block long market event has fun for everyone. Buy collectibles, antiques, artwork, crafts, and food.

Enjoy a farm to table dining experience at Field to Feast. A collaboration between the Emporia Area Chamber of Commerce and Flint Hills Technical College Culinary Arts, the event sources local produce prepared by students in the culinary arts program.


Run or ride the Flint Hills Nature Trail at Rush the Rails in early October. Choose the full distance (96 miles), half distance (54 miles), or the short distance (25 miles), all ending in Council Grove with a finish line celebration.

The ESU Homecoming Celebration is an annual tradition that includes football, a parade, and a musical production.  Festivities will be held October 18-19th.

Every October, things get spooky with Eek Town celebrations in Emporia. The Downtown Haunted Tours allow visitors to take a self-guided behind the scenes tour of historic downtown buildings and learn about the city’s colorful history.

Experience Day of the Dead, October 26 with a dazzling parade downtown, food, and fun. Sponsored by Hispanics of Today & Tomorrow, the event is a joyful celebration of family, past and present.


The multi-day All Veterans Tribute Celebration in the founding city of Veterans Day includes over two dozen events. This celebration honoring veterans begins the first of November and culminates on Veterans Day. Events include a parade, memorial service, veteran artist exhibit, and banner walk where visitors can hear stories about those who served from their families, as well as Freedom Fest with options for a 15 or 40-mile gravel bike ride, 5K walk/run, Spur Ride, and disc golf tournament.

Shop for a unique gift from Emporia local merchants on Small Business Saturday, November 30.

Winter 2019


Enjoy the Christmas lights and decorations in downtown Emporia with Holiday Carriage Rides on Thursdays in December.

Brave the cold on Commercial Street for the annual Christmas Parade on December 3. Always held on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, festivities include a lighting ceremony, musical performance and an appearance by Santa.


CVB Staff
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