1 Sample pottery class – If you've ever wanted to try throwing pottery, now is your chance. The instructor will do a throwing demonstration, then guide you as you give it a try. This pottery class is from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursdays at 323Clay, located just off the Independence Square at 323 W. Maple Ave. All supplies are included. Projects made in sample sessions are to be recycled at the end of each class. If you would like to keep your project, a material and firing fee will apply (this is for first-time students only.) No previous clay experience is needed and be sure and dress to have fun. The cost is $15. Sign up online at http://323clay.com/classes or email cindy@323CLAY.com or call 254-7552 for more information. 

2 Full moon hikes – Enjoy a hike under the Wolf Moon, which appeared when wolves howled in hunger outside the villages, at the George Owens Nature Park, 1601 S. Speck Road, Independence. Friday's hike is at 7 p.m. and is for those who prefer even terrain. It will be on paved trails and is stroller and wheelchair accessible (registration deadline is Thursday.) Saturday's hike is at 8 p.m. and you must be able to hike off-trail. No strollers or light-up shoes (registration deadline is Friday.) Call 325-7115 to register. 

3 2017 U.S. Figure Skating Championships – The Silverstein Eye Centers Arena in Independence, 19100 E. Valley View Pkwy., will host the juvenile, intermediate and novice levels of competition beginning Friday and runs through Jan. 18. This is the nation's most prestigious figure skating event. Tickets prices start at $13. For more information and tickets, visit www.silversteineyecentersarena.com. (The junior and championship level events will beheld at the Sprint Center.)

4 Take off the chill – Powell Gardens will host several activities this winter. Located in Kingsville, the gardens boast evergreens, ground cover, holly berries, and much more. One of the activities is its Spring Splendor exhibit opening on Saturday in the conservatory in the visitors center. A spring garden will be filled with colorful gerbera daisies, snapdragons and an array of tropical plants. Also that day, the Wassailing Celebration and Feast will be held. Visitors will sing to the health of the trees in the Heartland Harvest Garden and then return to a roaring fire in the Grand Hall to enjoy a country dinner. Garden admission is $7 for adults; $6 for seniors; and $3 for children 5-12. The Wassailing Celebration is $100 per person; $75 for garden members. The garden is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. during the winter. Call 697-2600 for details and other scheduled events or visit powellgardens.org. 

5 Martin Luther King Jr. Day Celebration – This year's theme is “Empower the Individual, Strengthen the Community, Honor the Man” and the keynote speaker will be the Rev. Dr. Tex Sample, author and lecturer. The program also includes musical performances by the Van Horn Choir and the Angels of Fire Choir from the Second Baptist Church. The celebration begins at 7 p.m. Monday at the Truman Memorial Building, 416 W. Maple Ave., Independence. For information, call 325-7843. 

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