Art-a-Whirl, MSPIFF, Cocktails at the Castle: 33 (mostly) free things to do this weekend

Trash Catties

Trash Catties

It's the weekend. Change things up and fire up these livestreams.

Art-a-Whirl 2020 goes online

Art-a-Whirl 2020 goes online Event logo


Art-A-Whirl Online Experience

Featuring art demonstrations, virtual studio tours, musical performances, and browsing of over 800 artist shops with shipping and curbside pickup options for purchases. More info and activities at and NEMAA's Instagram and Facebook. 5-10 p.m. May 15; 12-10 p.m. May 16; 12-5 p.m. May 17; Free. 

10 With Jen

Jen Boyles hosts a weekly musical discussion series where she connects with DJs, artists, producers, and musicians to ask them 10 questions about music and life. The debut episode features DieselBoy. Livestreaming via Facebook. 8 p.m. Every Fri. from May 7-21; free. 

Hotpants Funky Soul Livestream

Find the live links to this dance party on Facebook. It's free, though there is a suggested $5 cover charge; send it via Venmo at @BrianEngel77 (write "4 Hotpants" on a note) or PayPal [email protected]

An Evening of Digital Burlesque

Virtual performances from a variety of Twin Cities burlesque artists presented by Flip Phone. Event will be broadcast on Zoom, with digital tipping for the artists accepted via Venmo and Paypal. Additional info at the Facebook event page. 9 p.m. May 15; Free. 

Jon Dahlin

Jon Dahlin

Cocktails at the Castle – At Home!

Virtual edition of ASI's popular Cocktails at the Castle party, feauring interactive activities, recipes for you to make while you're at home, Ah Snaps happy hour sessions, and curated musical playlists from Little Fevers, Andy Cook, Green/Blue, and DJ Jake Rudh. More info at ASI's Facebook event page. 10 a.m.-7 p.m. May 15; Free. 

Macalester College 2020 Senior Thesis Exhibition: Dislocate

Online showcase featuring artwork by Macalester College’s Senior Art Majors. Work can be viewed at Daily from May 13-31; Free. 

Midway Mic

Open mic night featuring a variety of comedians, hosted by Derek Meyers. Streaming at Meyers's Instagram: @derek_is_meeeee and on YouTube. 9 p.m. every Fri. Free. 


A weekly live performance series from the Duluth indie veterans called "It's Friday, I'm in Low." 3 p.m. on Instagram.

Michelle Krusiec

Michelle Krusiec

Mu-Tini Hour

Free virtual hangouts focused on Asian American theater, past and present. This week, Theater Mu's artistic director, Lily Tung Crystal, hosts Michelle Krusiec, who portrays Anna May Wong in the new Netflix original series Hollywood. The chat will be broadcast on Facebook Live, and you can register (and donate directly to Mu's artistic community) at 7 p.m. May 15; free. 

Back Catalog Listening Party

Every Friday afternoon, hosts Mother Banjo and Anthony Ihrig bring in some fellow musicians to chat about their music and the stories behind their favorite recordings. The livestream is broadcast on the Back Catalog Listen Party's Facebook page, beginning at 4 p.m. Friday afternoon. 4 p.m. May 15; free. 



We Are Not Disposable

First online exhibition presented by Interact Center for Visual & Performing Arts, featuring work by 44 Interact artists responding to public perceptions about disabilities. The exhibition benefits the Disability Visibility Project. The exhibition can be viewed online. Daily from May 13-31; Free.

Glensheen Mansion Virtual Tour

Glensheen Mansion hosts a 360-degree virtual tour experience led by director Dan Hartman, one of the few people allowed on the estate at the moment. Hartman explores favorite rooms on the grounds, popular locations with guests, and providing access to previously closed spaces and rare items from the collection. There is also a newly launched tour app that has maps and audio descriptions for nearly every room in the mansion, as well as an eye-spy treasure book to help you explore the mansion. Those features can be found at Virtual tours are weekdays at 8 a.m. CST via Facebook Live. 8 a.m. Every Mon., Tue., Wed., Thu., and Fri. Free. 

L-R: 'Arab Blues,' 'Tuscaloosa,' 'Sune vs. Sune'

L-R: 'Arab Blues,' 'Tuscaloosa,' 'Sune vs. Sune' Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival 2020

Not free, but also cool and happening today:

MSPIFF39 Redefined: A Virtual Film Festival

Virtual iteration of the Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival presented by MSP Film Society, featuring screenings of films that were originally programmed for the 2020 MSPIFF, with virtual Q&As, festival parties each night of the fest, and a virtual kick-off party featuring DJ Jake Rudh playing songs from favorite film soundtracks. For more info and to purchase tickets, visit Daily from May 15-23; $10 per film. 

Alex M. Petersen

Alex M. Petersen


Garden Tour and Studio Visit with Alex M. Petersen

Virtual studio visit and garden tour from the local visual artist and educator, with a discussion of his art and process, as well as a Q&A. Presented by Soo Visual Arts Center, and streaming on SooVAC's Instagram. 10 a.m. May 16; Free.

Jewelry & Accessory Makers Mart Online

The Walker's first-ever virtual makers mart, featuring a collection of stylish jewelry and accessories from 24 local artists. Find it on Facebook here. Daily from May 16-June 14; Free. 

Trash Catties Brunch Show

It’s not at Mortimers this month, but it’s still a brunch show. Sipping while watching is encouraged. Broadcast begins at 1:30 p.m. Sat., May 16 on the band's Facebook and Instagram. Their music is for sale on Bandcamp.  

Rich Ryan Photography

Rich Ryan Photography

Family Explorations: Meo(w)! Learn Vietnamese with Puppet Denise

Learn how to count in Vietnamese with Puppet Denise as she sings to her sleepy kittens. Led by Denise Hanh Huynh with MK Nguyen and Oanh Vu. RSVP and more info online. 10 a.m. May 16; Free. 

The Brave New Workshop Goes Viral

Weekly digital series featuring original episodes filled with humor, storytelling, and interviews, presented by the Brave New Workshop Comedy Theatre. The series will feature all-new episodes every Saturday night at 8 p.m. streaming on Facebook Live and at All contributions made during the broadcasts help support the organization while their regular operations must remain closed. 8 p.m. Every Sat. from April 4-May 30; free. 

Amanda B. Perry

The Cottage Grove singer-songwriter performs "Live From My Living Room" every Saturday night. She'll sing a couple covers along with her originals. Streaming live on Perry's Facebook page. 7 p.m. May 16; free.

L-R: Aaron Spangler, Theaster Gates

L-R: Aaron Spangler, Theaster Gates Walker Art Center

Instagram Live Artist Talks: Aaron Spangler and Theaster Gates

The Walker presents a weekly conversation live on their Instagram featuring a variety of curators and artists discussing their creative responses to the COVID-19 crisis and the way art continues to inform and inspire us. This week's conversation features artists Aaron Spangler and Theaster Gates. 2 p.m. May 16; Free. 

Bad Bad Hats

"Islands in the Livestream" is a weekly stream from Bad Bad Hats featuring a set of originals, covers, Q&A, and more. 4 p.m. YouTube.

Saturday Circuit hosted by YWCA Minneapolis

Work out with EG. Find it on Facebook. Saturdays, from 9 to 10 a.m. 

Sassy Lassy Trivia

PG-13 online trivia contest. Participants can play alone or pull together a virtual team. More details at the event's Facebook page. 7 p.m. May 16; Free. 

Michael Shines

The central Minnesota singer-songwriter will perform from his living room every week. "Chances are his wife, kiddos, and three furry friends (hairless cat not as furry) may make an appearance." Streaming via Shines's Facebook. 7:30 p.m. May 16; free. 

Adrienne O’Shea

Live streaming virtual concert from her living room to yours, featuring special guest Cormac Ó Sé. Presented by Celtic Junction Arts Center, broadcast via CJAC Facebook page. The artist will be accepting freewill donations during the concert. 3 p.m. May 16; Free. 

Concerts on the Couch: Benefit for St. Stephen's Human Services

Featuring seventeen artists performing throughout the month of May, supporting St. Stephen's work of ending homelessness. All performances will be streamed live on St. Stephen's Facebook page, with donations being accepted online here. 8 p.m. May 16; 8 p.m. May 19; 8 p.m. May 20; 8 p.m. May 27; Free. 

L-R: Jackie Kashian, Erica Rhodes, John Deboer

L-R: Jackie Kashian, Erica Rhodes, John Deboer Promo image

Not free, but also cool and happening today:

Acme Insider Zoom Comedy Show

Online comedy show featuring sets from comedians Erica Rhodes, John DeBoer, and Jackie Kashian. Tickets and additional info online. 8 p.m. May 16; $11. 

Promo image

Promo image


Communion Opening Party 2020

Live virtual concert featuring DJ sets from DJ Minx, Christian James, Nola, Aaron Brooks, Icarus Redux, Neil Fox, and Daniel Paul Cortez, presented by Intellephunk. Donations for the artists will be accepted via PayPal and Venmo during the performances. Streaming live on 10 p.m. May 17; Free.

Miss Richfield 1981's Bingo Bonanza

Online bingo games streaming live on Facebook and Zoom, hosted by drag cabaret legend Miss Richfield 1981 (Russ King), with trivia and a musical number from the hostess. Registration and more info at 7 p.m. Every Thu. from April 30-May 31; 2 p.m. Every Sun. from May 3-31; free. 

Magic Mirror Virtual Experiences 

Pop-up dance classes, craft, story times, slumber parties, game nights, and more hosted by fairy tale princesses via Facebook live. Click "interested" to get updates, and check out a sampling in the "discussion" section of their Facebook page. Free. 6:30 p.m. Sunday. 

Mother Banjo Sunday Singalong

Every Sunday, Mother Banjo will be streaming a performance on her Facebook page that is heavy on audience participation. Ellen Stanley will lead listeners in folk and gospel tunes that the whole family can sing together. A guaranteed great start to your Sunday morning. 11 a.m. May 17; free.

Shotgun Ragtime Band

The weekly Grateful Sunday gig gone digital. This week, Shotgun Ragtime Band will showcase an acoustic set and an electric set. Tune in for what you’re feeling or stay for both. Livestream via Facebook, with donations accepted via the band's GoFundMe. 5 p.m. May 17; free.

Sunday Supper with Vicky Emerson

"We'll do a recipe, play three songs, and also help someone," the Americana singer says of her new Sunday series. "Think of this show as Mr. Rogers with Chardonnay." Streaming via Emerson's Facebook and Instagram. Donations can be made via PayPal at [email protected], Venmo @Vicky-Wallace, and Patreon. 5 p.m. Every Sun. from April 5-May 31; free.