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Holiday Bars, Ice Spice, ‘Open Door XVIII’: This Week’s Best Events

Plus where to see twinkling lights, neo noir cinema, gingerbread villages, and more.

Bill Nagel, 'The Eclipse'|

Rosalux’s “Open Door”

Welcome to Event Horizon, your weekly roundup of the best events in Minneapolis, St. Paul, and beyond.

Clockwise: Red Cow, Travail, the Grunch RoomPromo

MONDAY 12.4

Holiday Bar Pop-Ups

Citywide

An awful lot of Twin Cities restaurants are going all out for the holidays this year, from Nico’s Navidad to Travail’s Holiday Vacation in the basement bar. (And yes, some of them started in mid-November, but I’m sorry—that’s just TOO SOON to start recommending seasonal events!) In Uptown, Red Cow has been transformed into the Red Nose Room; Hotel Emery made a Grinch’s Lair. At O’Donovan’s Irish Pub, it’s Tinseltown, and it’s Hell-i-Dazzle at Hell’s Kitchen. At all of the above, expect some combination of: themed cocktails/NA drinks/snacks with punny names, movies, and over-the-top, Instagrammable (or more likely, TikTokable) holiday decor.—Em Cassel

The Fifteenth Film Noir Series: Neo-Noir

Trylon & The Heights

Noir is a pretty expansive genre to begin with, and neo-noir can be even more capacious. The 18 films that make the Trylon’s 15th annual noir festival seem chosen to highlight this genre’s elasticity. The series began last night with William Friedkin’s To Live and Die in L.A., which continues through Tuesday, and wraps up on February 29 (oh hey, 2024 is a leap year) with the unconventional Steve Martin musical Pennies From Heaven. The other selections stretch back to 1967 for the New Hollywood jumpstarter Bonnie and Clyde and Seijun Suzuki’s avant-yakuza flick Branded to Kill; the most recent film is Bi Gan’s slow cinema landmark Long Day’s Journey Into Night. Chinatown, maybe the most perfect neo-noir of ’em all, and the Coen Brothers’ Irish gangster flick, Miller’s Crossing, will show at the Heights. Don’t miss Bob Hoskins in The Long Good Friday (British gangsters are so grubby). Or Kathryn Bigelow’s sci-fi tale of police brutality, Strange Days. Or—dammit I knew I shouldn’t have started making recommendations, now it’s hard to stop. 2820 E. 33rd St., Minneapolis; find times, dates, prices, and more info here. Through February 29—Keith Harris

TUESDAY 12.5

Haus Plants

Bauhaus Brew Labs

If you know jack shit about plants, nurseries can be super overwhelming. A plant sale at a brewery? That’s a much easier lane to drive in. With that in mind comes Haus Plants, an event where folks can get a buzz via beer or THC bubbly and come home with some greenery. Much like a clothing or jewelry pop-up, Vida Plant Co. has eschewed ye olde brick-and-mortar, instead traveling to locations and setting up shop. Tonight, they’ll play matchmaker, pairing folks up with flora with each person’s lifestyle and skill level in mind. Also “green”? Bauhaus’s Tetra, a canned bevvy with THC and CBD, available at a discount this evening. Free. 6-9 p.m. 1315 Tyler St. NE, Minneapolis.—Jessica Armbruster

Professional troll and tunes maker Doja Cat.Doja Cat in "Say So"

THURSDAY 12.7

Doja Cat and Ice Spice

Target Center

Bad bitches rarely play as nice as Doja Cat did on Planet Her. Mimicking hyperpop, asking “When can we take off all our clothes?,” and making nice with guests as varied as Ariana Grande and Young Thug, the woman born Amala Ratna Zandile Dlamini (really, why even bother with a stage name?) embodies a plastic sexuality with cyborg elements but human responses, far from fragile but never engaged in battle bot mode. Doja’s follow up, Scarlet, released in September, has offered the Dionne Warwick-jacking single "Paint the Town Red," the sultry “Attention,” and “Demons,” a braggadocious wink from “the fastest growing bitch on all your apps now.” I suspect plenty in attendance will be just as excited to see Ice Spice, who, with just one juicy EP to her name, has summoned up her own world of slang, a vocabulary for dissing men, rizzing them, and sealing the deal. 7:30 p.m. 600 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; find more info here.—Keith Harris

Winter Warmup

U.S. Bank Stadium 

Back in 2020, we made a pretty convincing—though logistically slight—case for bringing back the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome. The need has never been greater. Consider this column from reliably great Strib columnist Jennifer Brooks. In it, she waxes nostalgic for the era of the Rollerdome, when Twin Cities families could zip around the Dome’s ol’ concrete concourses on the cheap. A true hoot! Then, Brooks revealed the pricing for U.S. Bank Stadium’s so-called Winter Warm-Up skating/running hours—$15 fuckin’ dollars after fees! Through Ticketmaster! At the risk of editorializing, what absolute money-grubbing, deranged horseshit. Brooks notes that state and Minneapolis taxpayers collectively coughed up about half the cost to build the (already crumbling) $1 billion shrine to concussions and dead birds, which is still, somehow, laughably billed as “The People’s Stadium” by the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority. Minnesota’s all-time greatest photo proves more prophetic by the year. In any case, scooting around the stadium might be fun if you can afford it. $15. 5-9 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. 401 Chicago Ave., Minneapolis; find more info here. Through January 25—Jay Boller

bugsy

FRIDAY 12.8

Bugsy

7th Street Entry

Back in 2020 Bugsy became the last act I ever profiled for Picked to Click, the best-new-band poll that was conducted annually by City Pages for decades. I’m happy to report the grungy, fuzzed-out local rockers have kept leveling up since. (More than I can say for myself as a writer—is “grungy, fuzzed-out” the best I could come up with?) Tonight Bugsy will celebrate the release of their new EP, Now I Spend All of My Time Alone, whose lead single “Recluse” was celebrated last month by Racket music dude Keith Harris. Writes Keith: “This standout track from Bugsy's terrific new EP, Now I Spend All of My Time Alone, starts a little muffled then breaks into a full indie raver as Emily Schoonover vents their story of ‘sweat, spite, & boredom’ over top.” The song has racked up 35,000+ plays on Spotify—nice! Opening this release show are Scarlet Demore, Haze Gazer, and 12th House Sun. $12-$15. 7:30 p.m. N. 7th St., Minneapolis; find more info here.—Jay Boller

Alanna Stapelton, 'Too Big (To Fit In)'

SATURDAY 12.9

Open Door XVIII 

Rosalux Gallery

Open since 2002, Rosalux Gallery is Minnesota’s longest-running artist collective space. Their annual event, “Open Door,” is a group show featuring gallery artists and more. This year’s installment will highlight a variety of works from 49 artists, including collage makers, painters, and quilters. “I was guided by joyful subjectivity, influenced by my personal preferences, the scale of the gallery, current events, the weather, and other completely unpredictable factors,” says artist Ellen Mueller, who was selected to curate this year’s exhibition. “The only guideline I set for myself was that I must make all my selections within 24 hours, which I did.” While the show opened last weekend, there will be an artists’ reception from 7-10 p.m. this Saturday, December 9. Otherwise, you can stop by during weekend hours (noon to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday). 315 W. 48th St., Minneapolis. Through December 31—Jessica Armbruster

Sapphic Joy Dance Party

Fine Line

I was just having a conversation with a friend about how there aren’t very many “dance clubs” in the Twin Cities these days (yes, we were watching Basic Instinct), and he countered that while there aren’t “clubs” per se, there are lots of groups putting on fun dance nights on a more roving, freewheeling basis. Like this one! (Do y’all think there’s a story there?) This ​​Sapphic Joy Dance Party is a place to “be free to the music of Muna, Fletcher, Phoebe Bridgers, boygenius, Kim Petras, Marina, Elio, Ashnikko, Girl in Red, Tegan and Sara, and more,” according to organizers. A dollar from every ticket sold goes to local organizations that support and empower the LGBTQ+ community. 18+. $16-$25. 8:30 p.m. 318 N. First Ave., Minneapolis; find tickets and more info here.—Em Cassel

Los Lobos

First Avenue

These Mexican-American roots-rockers blasted out of East L.A. in the ’80s with a soulful Chicano-rock sound that made lots of the heartland rockers then in vogue sound kinda wimpy and strained. Rather than resign themselves to being “that ‘La Bamba’ band” after a fluke Richie Valens cover landed them on the pop charts, they swerved into more experimental ventures in the ’90s with producer Tchad Blake. (Think of them as progenitors of Wilco in that way.) It wasn’t quite like old times when they returned to straight-up rocking in the ’00s, so it was heartening that their 2021 album, Native Sons, which collected covers of Los Angeles bands from the ’60s and ’70s such as Buffalo Springfield and War, had a bit of the old spark. But albums hardly tell the full story of Los Lobos. This tour marks 50 years that the four original members have been playing together, and they’ve barely lost a step live. $39.50. 8 p.m. 701 N. First Ave., Minneapolis; find more info here.—Keith Harris

Pete DavidsonPromo

SUNDAY 12.10

Pete Davidson

Mystic Lake

Is Pete Davidson annoying? Yes. Is Pete Davidson funny? Also yes. Accepting those terms makes the 30-year-old comic/tabloid fixture more digestible and, based on ticket sales for this suburban casino gig, demand appears quite high. Since leaving SNL last year, Davidson has starred in, written for, and produced Bupkis, a biographical Peacock dramedy that has been warmly received by critics. The show, which features killer co-stars Edie Falco and Joe Pesci, was renewed for a second season last summer. But Davidson is a purebred standup, having worked stages casino-sized and much, much smaller since he was a teenager growing up in Staten Island. Interestingly, he’ll be back in Minnesota next month at the Black Bear Casino in tiny Carlton—gotta think he’ll make a day of it* and hike around Jay Cooke State Park after lunch at the Anchor Bar. (*Fly in and out via private jet from Duluth with zero detours.) $82+. 8 p.m. 2400 Mystic Lake Blvd. NW, Prior Lake; find more info here.—Jay Boller

This ominous penguin invites you in.Glow Holiday Festival

ONGOING

European Christmas Market 

Union Depot

Okay, so most of us aren’t going to make it to Germany, Sweden, or Austria this season. We’re most likely heading to pop-up markets at breweries, Target, the Mall, and, if we’re feeling ambitious, maybe Dayton’s downtown. But, should you want to experience a little old school charm, the European Christmas Market has got it in spades. This huge holiday market event features local makers and crafters selling traditional gifts, including knit items to keep us warm, wooden toys for kids, and foodstuffs galore. There will be tons of entertainment, with live music, dance, and local choirs taking the stage each day. Santa will be stopping by, as will Krampus, sled dogs, and reindeer. There will also be plenty of food to snack on, plus traditional hot beverages, beer, and gluhwein. Santa’s post office will be stationed for children who have hand-written requests, and there will also be a new extended holiday market called Santa’s Village. Bonus: Score a free Metro Transit ride to the event at uniondepot.org/holiday. Free. 4-9 p.m. Fri.; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sat.; 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sun (11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Dec. 8). 214 Fourth St. E., St. Paul. Through December 17–Jessica Armbruster

Yuletide Cinema Pass

Parkway Theater

Two good things that often get described as “magic”—movies and holiday cheer—will meet, Reese’s-like, at The Parkway through December. at the Parkway through December. The neighborhood movie house’s Yuletide Cinema Pass affords purchasers tickets to five matinee films for one blanket price: 2004's The Polar Express (December 2), 1946's It's a Wonderful Life (December 9), 1990's Home Alone (December 17), 1992's The Muppet Christmas Carol (December 23), and 1996's Jingle All the Way (December 30). (Be sure to revisit our massive 25th anniversary oral history of that latter film.) Bonus: You score a free bag of (conscientiously objecting?) popcorn for each screening. $25 for kids under 12; $35 for everyone else. 4814 Chicago Ave., Minneapolis; find more info here.Through December 30—Jay Boller

Winter Lights 

Minnesota Landscape Arboretum

With a forecasted high of 61 degrees (!) it’s not going to feel particularly wintry for the opening of this year’s Winter Lights display. Maybe a rebrand is in order? Autumnal Illuminations at the Arb? Or maybe it’s just a nice excuse to get outside and slow down—you’re free to wander the walking tour route at your own pace, and there’s live music from the Minnesota Chorale. $10-$15 members; $25-$30 non-members; $10 for ages 15 and younger. 6-9 p.m. opening night; 5-10 p.m. Fridays through Sundays, plus additional holiday dates. 3685 Arboretum Dr., Chaska; find more info here. Through December 30—Em Cassel

Glow Holiday Festival 

CHS Field 

At the risk of questioning how The People’s Stadium is used, why doesn’t U.S. Bank Stadium stage seasonal fests like this when the Vikings aren’t bumbling around inside? Still, the $12.75-$20.75 entry fee for Glow Holiday Festival isn’t exactly an egalitarian use of the commons, though the event does seem fun. We’re talkin’ a loop around CHS Field featuring over a million holiday lights that illuminate something of a wintertime Candyland—enchanted forest, illuminated bikes, glowing critters, a 60-foot Christmas tree, maze, zipline, gift shop, and the so-called penguin playground. (Here’s a drone swoop of last year’s festivities.) Will there be up-charge opportunities? ‘Tis the season! The 150-foot Giant Snowy Slide is extra, as are s'more fixins and other concessions. The highly Instagrammable proof that you loaded up the kids and tapped into a shared sense of holiday magic? That’s priceless*. (*Holiday magic may be extra, we’re not sure.) $20.75 for adults; $12.75 for kids; free for kids under 24 months. 5-9 p.m. Thu.-Sun. 360 N. Broadway St., St. Paul; find more info here. Through December 31—Jay Boller

KFC

2023 British Arrows Awards

Walker Art Center

Look, I’m gonna level with you here. I don’t really get why people would pay to watch commercials; I’m that person who gets “shushed” for talking through the Super Bowl ad breaks. But hey, if you work in advertising or if you’re a hardcore Britophile, this could be your jam! And the Walker has been spreading this jam since 1986, making it one of the longest running events at the museum (RIP Rock the Garden). This year’s installment boasts a series of spots for U.K. malls, some feel-bad PSAs, and wacky deodorant, with celebs popping up to shill things like vodka (Daniel Craig), designer duds (Miley Cyrus), and a streaming service (Succession winner Matthew Macfadyen and John Boyega). Tickets to the opening-night party are already sold out, and other showings tend to fill up fast. You can also opt to watch these things as nature intended: streaming on your computer. $18; $25 streaming per household. Find more info at walkerart.org. 725 Vineland Place, Minneapolis. Through December 31—Jessica Armbruster

Gingerbread Wonderland

Norway House 

The biggest cookie village in town returns this winter to Norway House. Each year, 250 or so pieces come together, creating a sweet-smelling wonderland for all to explore. Creations range from cozy cabins in the snow to multi-story abodes topped with icing. There will also be familiar Twin Cities structures and incredibly complex recreations of historical landmarks. The neighborhood includes submissions from creative kids, artsy hobbyists, and full time professional bakers, making this wonderland a really cool variety of skill, technique, and imagination. Find tickets and more information online. $15; free for kids under 12. Noon to 4 p.m. Sun. and Tue.; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wed.-Fri.; 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sat. 913 E. Franklin Ave., Minneapolis. Through January 7–Jessica Armbruster

In Our Hands: Native Photography, 1890 to Now

Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Native photography past and present are showcased in Mia’s latest exhibit, “In Our Hands.” The collection, curated by Indigenous artists and scholars, covers over 130 years with imagery from First Nations, Métis, Inuit, and Native American photographers, from early historical documentation to thoroughly modern photoshoots. “I truly believe that it is important for the legacy of all photographers to know this history, and it is the history of the land you are more than likely standing upon,” says consulting curator Jaida Grey Eagle. With over 150 images on display, the exhibition isn’t tied to time and place, rather in themes. The first section explores Indigenous connections to the natural world, with highlights from foundational, mid-century, and female photographers. The second collection explores Native leadership, past present, and future, while the final section celebrates perseverance. Related events include an opening party, group discussions, an educators’ evening, and meetups. $20; 17 and under are free. 2400 Third Ave. S., Minneapolis. Through January 14, 2024—Jessica Armbruster

Multiple Realities: Experimental Art in the Eastern Bloc, 1960s–1980s 

Walker Art Center

What does subversive art look like when the artist knows the government is watching? For a sampling of the creativity that arises under oppressive circumstances, take a cruise through “Multiple Realities,” an exhibition spanning two decades of work by artists from East Germany, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania, and Yugoslavia. The collection, not commonly seen in the U.S., includes underground club photography, found objects turned into statements, witty scribbles, and images from performances with heavy nods to queer life, ironic humor, political dissonance, and, perhaps most important here, interpretative deniability. The exhibition opens on Friday with a Walker After Hours Party, followed by a free opening-day talk with pop-up performances in the galleries on Saturday. For a complete schedule of related events, check online. 725 Vineland Place, Minneapolis. Through March 10, 2024—Jessica Armbruster

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