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MayDay with Battletrain, Cinco de Mayo, Garage Sales in Ramsey: This Week’s Best Events

Plus Black Fashion Week MN, a new skate park, and Kentucky Derby parties.

Clockwise: Black Fashion Week MN, MayDay Parade, Cinco de Mayo in St. Paul, Cheekface

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

Cheekface, "Life In a Bag"



Fine Line

For the record, we at Racket were on the Cheek Train (choo! choo!) way early—Em turned me on to this sardonic L.A. trio back in our City Pages days. But if you’re just getting caught up, It’s Sorted, released in January, is a fine place to start. Their jitter-funk can suggest a very online Talking Heads or blossom into seriously playful melodies as kiddie-for-adults as They Might Be Giants, and they continue to spread out musically: “I Am Continuing to Do My Thing” sounds like the Gang of Four with a sense of humor. And they continue to wisecrack their way through our anxious age, with Greg Katz sing-talking calls to action like “Success is cringe/I wanna be on the fringe,” “The future is now/Unfortunately,” and “I hate sending mixed messages/I love sending mixed messages.” This show was bumped up from the smaller Entry (where they played the last time in town), so Minnesota’s Cheek Freaks must be growing in number. With Yungatita. $20-$40 8 p.m. 701 N. First Ave.; find more info here.—Keith Harris

Dan Weiss & Even Odds


Like a lot of jazz players, drummer Dan Weiss works in a variety of contexts: various duos, consistent sideman gigs, and Starebaby, his metal/jazz outfit. Now, with Even Odds, he has himself a hell of a trio. Miguel Zenón’s sax tends toward the staccato and pianist Matt Mitchell arpeggiates with jagged lyricism, so that Even Odds can sound like a three-man rhythm section or a witty conversation between friends. Weiss constructed it from the drums up, recording patterns first then sending the tracks to his bandmates to augment. There are a few good inside jokes here—“Max Roach” plays off the drummer’s work on "Klactoveedsedstene," and “Ititrefen” riffs off the Wayne Shorter title spelled backwards— though “Children of Uvalde” is every bit as thoughtful as you’d hope. Also Friday. $20-$35. 8 p.m. 2528 Nicollet Ave., Minneapolis; find more info here.—Keith Harris

Black Fashion Week MN


Black Fashion Week MN

Various Locations

This biannual event is here this spring with four catwalk-ready events highlighting the work of Black fashion designers, tastemakers, and industry leaders in the Twin Cities. This installment features Prelude to Spring, a sneak peek party featuring Julia Starr from drag sewing competition/TV show Sew Fierce. Black Girl Magic is back with a multi-designer runway production, and the Streets Are Watchin at the W looks to be a good time as well. Other events include a workshop for people looking to get into modeling, and a gala at the American Swedish Institute. Follow organizers on Instagram for show teasers, and find tickets online at Eventbrite. Through May 11—Jessica Armbruster 


Fine Line

Don’t you hate when critics are like “Believe the hype!” First off, that wasn’t even a clever thing to say 30 years ago (see also: any riff on “don’t call it a comeback”). More importantly, critics are the ones who hype things! “Believe the hype!” is as untrustworthy as saying “Trust me!” But… well… um, the hype around overnight sensation and Current darling Berit Dybing? It is, erm, quite credible. Ber’s 2023 EP Halfway, among my favorite local releases of the year, was a perfect antidote to wishing you were young again, chronicling the dating frustrations of today’s under-30s with humor and depth. And performing as part of First Ave’s Best New Bands in January, Ber came across as an onstage natural. Judging from her two 2024 singles about fear of commitment, “Room For You” (about overcoming her own) and “It’s Impressive” (about being hurt by some boy’s), she seems to be headed in the direction of balladic sincerity, which may be a wise career decision as long as it doesn’t sacrifice her candor, which it hasn’t so far. ‘Cause she’s the real deal. Trust me. $20 (editor’s note: tickets are sold out—the hype worked!). 7 p.m. 318 1st Ave. N., Minneapolis; find info here.—Keith Harris 

Ramsey Garage Sale Trail

Various Locations

It’s that time of year again, folks: garage sale season. And while nothing beats the rush of seeing a hand-scrawled GARAGE SALE TODAY sign stapled to an electrical pole and slamming on the brakes, you can’t beat events like this one if you want to visit a bunch of secondhand sellers in one day. This is Ramsey’s second-annual Garage Sale Trail, with nearly 90 participating homes and businesses selling everything, including toys, clothing, housewares and kitchen goods, and comic books. You’re bound to find something new (to you) at a steal of a deal. Find more info—including a handy map with info on each seller’s wares!—here. Free. 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.—Em Cassel

Art for Shelter

Glass House

Simpson Housing Services’ annual art sale for good returns for its 14th year, letting you browse donated works by emerging and established artists alike with proceeds from sales benefiting the nonprofit’s programs. Simpson calls it “a treasure hunt, a night of discovery, and a showcase of our massively talented creative community all in one,” plus you’re helping to support their work in housing, supporting, and advocating for those experiencing homelessness. There will be hundreds of pieces for sale, presented anonymously (artists only sign the back of their canvas here), and all are priced either $35 or $75, depending on the size. Free. 6 to 9 p.m. Free. 145 Holden St., Minneapolis; find more info here.—Em Cassel

KFAI's 46th Anniversary Community Celebration

Hook & Ladder

Man, KFAI rocks. We’ve already declared Radio K the best radio station in the city, but let this blurb institutionally cement KFAI as our No. 2 overall pick in the power rankings. Tonight is a great opportunity—some say the best opportunity—to celebrate the community station’s 46th anniversary, though it’s also a fine excuse to check out Hook & Ladder for free. Genre-blending musician/artist/educator L.A. Buckner will be performing (click here for a recent Carbon Sound interview), as will the wonderfully named jazzy psychedelic outfit Shrimp Olympics and pop/rock/cumbia collective America y Los Sentimientos. Audio and visuals of the b-day bash will be recorded; you can expect them to eventually appear on KFAI. Free. 7 p.m. (registration required). 3010 Minnehaha Ave., Minneapolis; find more info here.—Jay Boller

Cinco de Mayo festivitiesVisit St. Paul


Cinco de Mayo 

Cesar Chavez Street

What’s one of the best signs of spring? Cinco de Mayo parties, which not only usher in the changing of the seasons but also mark the start of street-festival weekends. The big one is in St. Paul, over on Cesar Chavez Street on the West Side. As always, things kick off with a big parade in the morning, followed by a million things to see and do throughout the day. That includes three stages of local music (Sunny Sauceda headlines), all kinds of cultural performances, and roads lined with food trucks. There will be a dog show, a car show (yes, still featuring lowriders), and a beer garden. There will be a market featuring Minnesota artisans and makers, and a kids’ park with fun for all ages. The day’s possibilities are endless. Find more info online. Free. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 478 S. Robert St., St. Paul.—Jessica Armbruster

Kentucky Derby Parties

Various Locations 

There's nothing quite like getting blitzed on mint juleps, wearing an ostentatious hat, and watching beautiful, steroid-jacked horses fly. The biggest local celebration of the 149th annual Kentucky Derby goes down at Canterbury Park, where the race will be broadcast on loads of big-screen TVs, the '70s Magic Sunshine Band will rock, and attendees can win prizes for Best Dressed and Best Hat. Elsewhere: Real-live mini ponies will make an appearance at Minneapolis Cider Co.’s fifth-annual derby bash, where you can also enjoy open pickleball play; there’ll be cigar rolling and live bluegrass from the Johnson Brothers on the garden rooftop at Brit’s Pub; and charitable mint juleps and bootleggers will be served at O'Shaughnessy Distilling Co.’s Star Wars-themed derby rager (it’s also May the 4th, after all), in addition to live music, yard games, and a best-dressed contest. There's also a blue-blood party at Westin Edina Galleria with music, fashion, and more. Post time is set for 5:57 p.m., and our favorite horse—based entirely on its name—has gotta be longshot three-year-old colt Mystik Dan (get a derby primer here).—Jay Boller

Wheels and Bike Rodeo

Painter Park

OK, I am a little biased because this is my neighborhood. But when Minneapolis Parks moved to add a skatepark to Painter Park’s amenities some neighbors bristled, arguing that skateboarding was a dated activity only Gen Xers enjoyed or that it would attract hooligans to the area (uh, which is it guys?). Turns out neither of those things are true, as people started zooming around on it pretty much as soon as the concrete dried. In fact, I’ve yet to see the skatepark empty, with kids, teens, and grownups enjoying it at any given moment (shout-out to the middle-aged dads using it on their lunch hour). You can check it out for yourself at this little “open house” of sorts, which will feature demonstrations from 3rd Lair, a skill course for kids to ride their bikes through, food trucks, a bounce house, and more. And don’t worry if you’re missing the park’s super-popular basketball courts; they’re getting a glow-up along with the tennis/pickleball courts this month. Free. 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. 620 34th St. W., Minneapolis.—Jessica Armbruster

Fulton’s Grand Fundo Block Party

Fulton Brewing Co. 

This annual, super fun block party serves as a post-race gathering for the Fulton Gran Fondo bike race, sure, but don’t think you need to exert any physical energy to attend. On tap for this year: a decades-spanning lineup of bands DJs (attendees are encouraged to dress in era-specific 20th-century attire); oceans of beer and seltzer, including Fulton's award-winning 300 IPA; and food from the taproom kitchen. The first 250 attendees will be automatically entered into a raffle for a $250 Sun Country gift card; we’re no bookies, but that seems like 1/250 odds—not bad! Free (tickets are currently sold out). Noon. 2540 NE Second St., Minneapolis; find more info here.—Jay Boller

Southside Battletrain 2022


MayDay Celebrations

Various Locations

Since 1975, folks have made their way to Powderhorn on May 5 to celebrate artsiness and the changing of the seasons. Once helmed by In the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre, the event is upheld these days by a variety of groups doing their own friendly/collaborative thing. Crust punk extraordinaires (and longtime parade participants) Southside Battletrain are planning to make their way along Bloomington once again, delighting folks with their wild metal contraptions on wheels. Last year’s event also included folks from the ArtCar/ArtBike crew, stilt walkers, and kids wearing decorated cardboard boxes—we expect a return of similar spectacle. Meanwhile, over at Powderhorn Park, Heart of the Beats (great name!) is hosting a daylong drum jam welcome to all from 2:30-7 p.m. Reverie Cafe + Bar and Modus Locus are teaming up too, for a free block party with live music, art, and other fun starting at 3 p.m.—Jessica Armbruster

In the Spirit of Mayday Block Party

Reverie Cafe + Bar

Speaking of that free block party! This one promises all the good stuff (“music, art, bevs, and good vibes”), plus: stilters, puppets, art cars, and chow from Reverie. Billed in no particular order, the live music lineup includes America y Los Sentimientos, Betty Won’t, Magic Castles Dosh, Brass Solidarity, Brass Messengers, and the Royal Hiptites. Folks, this is what springtime in the city is all about—Minneapolis-is-burning shitheads will not be able to comprehend how much fun we’re having. Free. 2 p.m. 1517 E. 35th St., Minneapolis; find more info here; find more info here.—Jay Boller

Keith Haring in '84 during his Walker residency.Courtesy WAC


30 Days of Biking


The premise is simple: For the month of April, hop on your bike once a day and go somewhere. It doesn’t have to be a big deal—once around the block counts—but the idea is to get into the habit of riding and enjoying the world around you via bicycle. The 30-day challenge started as a Minnesota thing, but quickly became a worldwide phenomenon, with folks from around the globe pledging to participate. Here in town, there’s usually a variety of events throughout the month, including weekly rides with the Joyful Riders Club. Watch the org’s Facebook page for updates on group rides, and sign up for the challenge at Through April 29—Jessica Armbruster

The Other Four

Weisman Art Museum

Have you ever come across a tactile-looking piece of art at a gallery and wished you could reach out and touch it? Well, you can at the Weisman’s new group exhibition. “The Other Four” asks guests to rely less on sight and more on smell, taste, touch, and sound. So museum etiquette be damned, you’re welcome to sniff, listen, and grope these pieces to your heart’s content. (We’re not sure how taste plays into this show, but according to the press release that’s on the table as well.) The collection features 16 multimedia works by 21 contemporary artists, and that includes pieces exploring technology, performance, experimentation, and interactive play. “Most of us are so accustomed to the dominance of our sense of sight that we often forget it is operating… sometimes causing one to drift off into thought and miss the moment,” notes local artist John Scheurman, curator of the show. There will be an opening party this Thursday, February 8, from 7 to 10 p.m. with music, apps, and a cash bar (tickets are $20/free if you’re a U student). A free artists’ roundtable is also scheduled for 6 p.m Thursday, April 3. 333 E. River Pkwy., Minneapolis. Through May 19—Jessica Armbruster

Arctic Highways: Unbounded Indigenous People

American Swedish Institute

This winter, ASI is showcasing the work of 12 Indigenous artists from Sápmi, the Sámi people’s name for the arctic land they inhabit and travel, ranging from Alaska to Scandinavia to Sweden, Norway, Finland, and Russia. That may sound like a huge swath of land, but the connections are stronger than the miles here. “We are indigenous peoples who live in different countries and on different continents, and yet regard ourselves as peoples with kindred spirits,” the collective artist statement explains. “With this exhibition we want to tell our own story, through our own experiences, using our own forms of expression.” Pieces include photography, textile work, sculptures, and duodji handcrafts. The museum’s “first look” party this Friday, from 6 to 9 p.m. features live music, live reindeer, and hands-on art making. Tickets are $30 for the opening party, otherwise the show is free with admission ($6-$13). 2600 Park Ave., Minneapolis. Through May 26—Jessica Armbruster

Tetsuya Yamada: Listening

Walker Art Center

This winter, 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.” There will be an opening reception this Thursday, January 18, with free admission from 5 to 9 p.m. and an artist’s talk at 7 p.m. (Stop by the Main Lobby Desk for tickets.) ​​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. Friday’s opening party is sold out, but there's a free talk this Saturday, April 27, at 2 p.m., and there are other free events for kids and teens planned in the coming months. 725 Vineland Place, Minneapolis. Through September 8—Jessica Armbruster

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