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Keith Haring Art Fest, Grand Old Day, and a Pride Kick-Off: This Week’s Best Events

Plus beer parties spill over into the streets.

Grand Old Day

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

Keith Haring works with children from the Alice Smith Elementary School in Hopkins, 1984. Photographer unknown. Courtesy Walker Art Center


Keith Haring Art Fest 2024

Walker Art Center

In 1984, NYC-based artist Keith Haring came to Minneapolis for a Walker residency where he would create large- and small-scale pieces, host a few art-making sessions with kids, and demonstrate how art is for everybody. This week, the museum will celebrate his work and his time here with a free three-day festival for all. Thursday is for adults, with an evening gallery party featuring a screening of Vogueing in the North Star, a documentary on Minneapolis’s queer/POC ballroom scene revival, followed by a real-life mini-ball upstairs. The categories: face, runway, bazaar, performance, and best dressed. Friday is a Teen Takeover Night, where high schoolers can stop by for DJ tunes on the dance floor, a drag show, screenprinting, and friendship bracelet making (bring a student ID). Finally, things conclude on Saturday with kid-friendly shenanigans like a breaking workshop hosted by BRKFST Dance Company, tons of hands-on Haring-themed crafts, family tours of the galleries, and a reading of Keith Haring: The Boy Who Just Kept Drawing  from his younger sister Kay. “Art Is For Everybody” will also be free to explore during festivities (you can read my take on the exhibition here). Free. 5-9 p.m. Thu.; 6:30-9:30 p.m. Fri.; 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sat. 725 Vineland Place, Minneapolis. Through Saturday—Jessica Armbruster




Turf Club

With Cornfields and Roadkill, Humbird’s Siri Undlin, who has often layered her folk with atmospherically experimental textures, has taken a decidedly more country course. Good call: She’s got not just the pained yet placid voice for it but the plainspoken writing style required as well. She’s not just an even-tempered writer, but downright kind—even “Right On,” which addresses a lover who kicked her to the curb, tells him “You might be dead wrong/At least you’re trying.” As another lyric puts it, she excels at “finding silver linings threaded through the day,” but she’s not blindly optimistic, and there are moments of musical darkness that suggest why scouring for hope is so important to her. With Ismay. $20/$22. 8 p.m. 1601 University Ave. W., St. Paul; find more info here.—Keith Harris

Edina Art Fair

50th & France

The Uptown Art Fair is DEAD! (Dead tired of construction-related snarls, which’ll sideline the event for 2024.) That means added pressure on the mighty Edina Art Fair to pick up the summertime strolling, perusing, and chit chatting slack. We’re in good hands. The long-running fest, considered one of the country’s best, will yet again feature: dozens upon dozens of artists from around the country hustling their wares; food vendors galore, including beer gardens outside of Edina Grill and Red Cow; a culinary arts marketplace; a Kids’ Zone (capitalization theirs); and loads of live music. Pro tip: Don’t even attempt to park; us city slickers will be arriving to the tony ‘burb by bike. Free. Noon to 7 p.m. Fri.; 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sat.; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday; find more info here.—Jay Boller

Art in the Hollow


Art in the Hollow

Swede Hollow Park

Now in its 15th year, Art in the Hollow encourages folks to enjoy nature and neighbors on the east side of St. Paul. This is a community organized event, with local artists, hobbyists, and organizations in attendance. Getting there is (hopefully) half the fun. If you’re going by car, you’re welcome to park at Saint Paul Brewery, which will have a special trail entrance open for the event (be prepared to make your way down a steep stairway!); other options include longer walking paths (slow and scenic!), bike access (take that Bruce Vento trail!), and a mobility-friendly option at Hope Community Academy (head on through that Drewry tunnel to find the fun). Find more details here. Free. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Minnehaha Ave. E., St. Paul.—Jessica Armbruster

Summerslam of Tribute Bands


Here’s a dirty little secret of the live music industry: The most fun songs to hear are the ones you already know. That’s why the savviest concertgoer is always the guy yelling “PLAY THE HITS!” from the front row. You’ll be able to sidestep all of that this weekend at glorious West Bank dive Palmer’s, where not one, not two, but seven local tribute bands will be cover-rocking the patio. (Organizers say this second-annual blowout is in response to the “ever-growing and talented local tribute band scene in the Twin Cities,” which sounds like a potential Racket trend story to us.) Summerslam 2.0 will feature the following acts playing the tunes you love: Kraftjerk (performing the songs of, you guessed it, Kraftwerk), McEnramones (Ramones), RuDeGirl (the Clash), the Reckoning Crew (R.E.M.), In the City (the Jam), Revo (Devo), and Fountains of Dittbenner (Fountains of Wayne). $25.38. 4:30 p.m.-to midnight. 500 Cedar Ave., Minneapolis; find more info here.—Jay Boller

Freebike Block Party

Fulton Beer

This Saturday, Free Bikes 4 Kidz will host THE FREEBIKE Bike Ride, a fundraiser formerly known as the MN Ironman Bike Ride. The route starts at Target Field Station and ends at the Fulton taproom. No, it’s not just a ride across the street; you can register for the 25-, 50-, or 100-mile legs here ($75, under 18 free). Or—hear us out!—you can just show up to the free block party Fulton is hosting to celebrate the riders. During the day, they’ll have live music (Of the Orchard, the Kind City) and food (smashburgers, chicken tenders, and loaded fries). According to the event page, this is the first major block party on Sixth Street since 2019. That alone is worth celebrating. Free. Noon to 8 p.m. Free. 414 N. Sixth St., Minneapolis; more info here.—Em Cassel

Pride Month Kick-Off Party

56 Brewing

What, like we can wait until the end of June to celebrate Pride? The folks at 56 Brewing are getting the fun started on June 1, with a Pride Month kick-off featuring a free drag show from Mr. Mom’s Campgrounds and RuPaul's Drag Race-themed trivia courtesy of Trivia Mafia. And, of course, there’s also beer—in this case, Loud & Proud 2.0, a pineapple pale ale made in collaboration with the Pancake Batters, a queer and trans softball team sponsored by 56. All that plus the Parlour food truck? Let’s get this Pride Month started! Free. Noon to 3 p.m. 3054 NE Randolph St., Minneapolis; more info here.—Em Cassel

LTD Brewing

10-Year Anniversary Block Party

LTD Brewing

If you missed last month’s mega-block party out in Hopkins, you’ll have another excuse to grab a few beers after exploring the antique shops this Saturday when LTD Brewing turns 10. Local rock, blues, and soul bands will be onstage all day, while food trucks will line the street with eats including lobster rolls, empanadas, eggrolls, and BBQ. A special kids’ zone will feature foam toys, family-friendly stuff on a big screen, and hands-on crafts, while a grown-up play area includes beer pong, ladder golf, and bean bag games. Free. 2-10 p.m. 725 Mainstreet, Hopkins; find more info here.—Jessica Armbruster

Train Days

Union Depot

Chugga, chugga—and we can’t stress this last part enough—choo, choo. From our exposé on rail safety to Keith’s upcoming travelogue feature on the brand-spankin’-new Amtrak Borealis line, Racket is a train-pilled news outlet. (My toddler nephews are also very much train-pilled, thus proving the cross-generational appeal or the target reading-level demographic for this website.) In any event, this wholesome, family-friendly salute to the locomotive should satisfy all the train enthusiasts in your life. We’re talkin’ tours of bona fide train engines and rail cars; model trains for days; tours of the ol' semi-recently remodeled Depot; fleets of food trucks; a historic train photography retrospective; kiddo activities and games, including a bounce house; and a damn DJ. Choo choo, indeed. Free. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sat.-Sun. 214 Fourth St. E. St. Paul; find more info here. Through Sunday—Jay Boller

Grand Old Day returns


Grand Old Day

Grand Avenue

What is the most-attended one-day fest in the Midwest? Grand Old Day, baby! After taking a few Covid years off, the epic street fest returned in 2023. This year it will continue to offer a variety of things to see and do. That includes a parade in the morning, street vendors showcasing local businesses, food trucks galore, hands-on family activities, an artists’ zone, beer gardens, and live music stages. Be prepared to GTFO at the stroke of 5 p.m., though: This is St. Paul. They don’t do late nights over there so this event ends promptly on time. Find more details over at Free. 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Grand Avenue, St. Paul.—Jessica Armbruster

Carina Lofgren for the Walker Art Center


Tetsuya Yamada: Listening

Walker Art Center

As performers from around the world will be heading to the Walker for its annual Out There Series, the galleries will be staying local, showcasing the work of ceramicist Tetsuya Yamada. For this survey, the Japanese-born, Minnesota-residing U of M prof will share over 65 pieces, including drawings, notes, and many, many everyday examples of ceramics–plates, vases, coffee mugs, and more. The title of the exhibition, “Listening,” refers to the instinctual choices an artist makes along the way to creating something. “The process might take me to places I didn’t imagine initially,” he explains. “This is the fundamental of studio practice for me.” ​​725 Vineland Place, Minneapolis. Through July 7—Jessica Armbruster

Keith Haring: Art Is for Everybody

Walker Art Center

Keith Haring was a hugely influential artist in the 1980s and, whether you know it or not, he still is today. The Pennsylvania-raised, NYC-based artist first gained notoriety in the early ‘80s for his subway graffiti art, adorning unused black ad space with crawling babies, barking dogs, and UFOs. A year or two later, he would emerge with projects above ground, including a billboard in Times Square, a mural on the Lower East Side, and the covers of Vanity Fair and Newsweek. His friends and collaborators included Madonna, Grace Jones, and Jean-Michele Basquiat. Regardless of his meteoric rise, Haring wanted his art to be approachable, accessible, and affordable, so he kept most of his pieces in the public sphere. Though his work was crowd pleasing, it was also political, whether it was celebrating queer love, calling for an end to apartheid in South Africa, or promoting safe sex. Though Haring died in 1990 from complications from AIDS, his prolific collection and enduring messages live on. For “Art Is for Everybody,” over 100 works and archival pieces will be on display at the Walker, including ephemera from his 1984 residency at the museum. 725 Vineland Place, Minneapolis. Through September 8—Jessica Armbruster

Skyline Mini Golf

Walker Art Center

Speaking of stuff to do on rooftops, Skyline Mini Golf is also back this week. While some putt-putt courses aim for putting green realism others go full spectacle. At the Walker, it’s all about the latter, with holes featuring giant hot dogs, mirrored surfaces, tiny odes to the cities, and wacky opportunities to become an obstacle for putters yourself. Don’t expect to work on your handicap here; this course takes mini golf almost to the point of parody as you’ll find yourself testing your skills at ping pong, pool, and Plinketto. Just roll with the chaos–that’s part of the fun. $12 ($10 Walker members and ages 7-18); free for ages 6 and under with paid adult. 725 Vineland Place, Minneapolis. Through October 6—Jessica Armbruster

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