MayDay Parade and Festival is wonderfully weird: A-List May 3-9

Max Haynes

Max Haynes


This week in A-List we have a ton of festivals, a geek summit, and a rock 'n' roll reading. Come take a look.

MayDay Parade and Festival
Powderhorn Park
Now in its 43rd year, the MayDay Parade and Festival is one of the most riotous signs of spring. Revelers both young and old will march down Bloomington from 25th to 34th Streets. As they make their way, you’ll be able to spot crust-punk rockers on stilts, children dressed as fairies, giant puppets that take whole crews to maneuver, and friendly hipsters riding steampunk floats made of metal. There will be hippies, families, artists, and neighbors sharing in the joys of the spectacle and (hopefully) great weather. Festivities will then take over Powderhorn Park, where the Tree of Life Ceremony will usher in the new season. The party will also include food vendors, live music, theater, and info from local organizations. For details, visit Noon to dusk Sunday, May 7. Free. 3400 15th Ave. S., Minneapolis. —Jessica Armbruster


Cyn Collins
Electric Fetus
Music journalist Cyn Collins takes an inside look at the golden years of Minneapolis punk and indie rock with a new book filled with interviews with local legends. Complicated Fun: The Birth of Minneapolis Punk and Indie Rock, 1974-1984 offers a wealth of stories from musicians, producers, managers, journalists, and fans. There’s mention of venues of yore like Jay’s Longhorn and record stores like Oar Folkjokeopus. Recollections traverse the scene, taking the reader back to a time when bands like the Suicide Commandos, the Hypstrz, Curtiss A, Flamingo, the Suburbs, Hüsker Dü, and the Replacements were shaping the sound of the Twin Cities. Collins will give a reading, answer questions, and sign copies of her work at Wednesday’s event, which will also will include a performance by Flamingo. 6:30 to 9 p.m. Free. 2000 Fourth Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-870-9300. —Sheila Regan

Mike E. Winfield
Acme Comedy Co.
Comedian Mike E. Winfield is expanding his artistic horizons. “I just shot a movie with rapper DMX and Keke Palmer,” he reports. “My role in the movie is a straight-up gangster. It’s not silly stuff, it’s a real movie that has tears and emotions. It was fun.” After seeing a test screening, Winfield was even more pleased with his performance. “I like how I came across in the film,” he says. “As much as I love comedy, I love that I’m performing in a drama. It legitimizes me in the acting world.” On the comedy front, Winfield is about to shoot his first hour-long special. “People need to know me on the hour scale of comedy,” he insists. “A lot of people know me from five minutes here and five minutes there, but they don’t know the hour that I do, and that’s what tells my story.” Years ago, Winfield told City Pages that he was reluctant to do an hour, fearing he would look back on it in a few years and think it was terrible. “I feel ready,” he states. “I’ll keep growing, of course, but I like where I am right now.” 18+. 8 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday; 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. $15-$18. 708 N. First St., Minneapolis; 612-338-6393. Through Saturday —P.F. Wilson


Steve Byrne
Rick Bronson’s House of Comedy
Comedian Steve Byrne is a little subdued as he talks to City Pages. “I’m recovering from last night,” he says with a slight laugh. “I was here at the Wild West Comedy Festival in Nashville, and I did the Goddamn Comedy Jam where a comedian goes out and does standup and then sings a song.” Byrne sang the Killers’ “Mr. Brightside.” His latest hour, Tell the Damn Joke, premiered on Showtime last month. He’d been building the hour since his TBS sitcom Sullivan & Son was canceled in 2014. “It took me two and a half years from pen to paper to the director saying ‘cut,’” he says. “Now I’m writing another scripted show, working on a feature, and I’m also working on a documentary on the Amazing Johnathan.” The latter is a headlining comic/magician. “He was given a terminal diagnosis with a heart condition, and was given less than a year to live. That was three and a half years ago.” Tired of waiting for the end, Johnathan got back onstage, and Byrne’s documentary captures that journey. 18+; 21+ later shows. 7:30 p.m. Thursday and Friday; 9:45 p.m. Friday; 7 and 9:30 p.m. Saturday. $17.50-$24. 18+; 21+ later shows. 408 E. Broadway, Mall of America, Bloomington; 952-858-8558. Through Saturday —P.F. Wilson

Future: Made Here
AC Hotel by Marriott Minneapolis Downtown
With the changing of the seasons comes a new Made Here collection. The eighth iteration of the series will again turn unoccupied storefronts, asphalt lots, and building walls into makeshift galleries. Downtown visitors will have a lot to check out as they stroll the area, with 42 window displays by 40-plus Minnesota artists and 120 students. They’ll be exploring the theme of “future.” Pieces include an installation by Asia Ward that plays with holographic material and sunlight, a gorgeous mandala by Neal Peterson inspired by the streets of Minneapolis, and some truly trippy mirror works by Erik Farseth. The opening reception at the AC Hotel will offer walking tours led by Made Here mastermind Joan Vorderbruggen at 6 and 7 p.m., street performers, sidewalk activities, and tunes from DJ Mad Mardigan. 5 to 8 p.m. Free. 401 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis; 612-338-0700. Through August 30 —Jessica Armbruster


Wizard World Comic Con 2017
Minneapolis Convention Center
This weekend, folks from Minnesota and beyond will convene at the Wizard World Comic Con for three days of cosplay, celebrity meet-and-greets, artist sales, yoga sessions, and mini parties. This year’s star lineup includes a Dr. Who reunion of sorts with Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman, Star Trek’s Nichelle Nichols, former Incredible Hulk Lou Ferrigno, Monkees Peter Tork and Micky Dolenz, and Buffy alumnae Charisma Carpenter, Nicholas Brendon, and James Marsters. Oh yeah, and be on the lookout for Charlie Sheen. He’ll be around, too. Saturday night’s costume contest is a great event for people-watching, and the many workshops — such as cosplay on a budget, drawing lessons, and wigs 101 — make for fun times between standing in line. Plan your days carefully; there’s a lot to see and do. For tickets and more info, visit 5 to 10 p.m. Friday; 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. $39.95-$49.95; $79.95 three-day pass. 1301 Second Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-335-6000. Through Sunday —Jessica Armbruster

Little Wars
Mixed Blood Theatre
Though recent years have seen a promising increase in diversity onstage, the sad fact remains that female performers face a precipitous drop in opportunities as they grow older, even those with exceptional skills honed over long and illustrious careers. Rather than accepting this status quo, PRIME Productions has launched with the express goal of fostering stage involvement for women over 50, and developing roles that reflect issues relatable to older audiences. As evidenced by the company’s inaugural show, the regional premiere of playwright Steven Carl McCasland’s Little Wars, PRIME doesn’t intend to let the seriousness of its mission stand in the way of some boisterous irreverence. Set in the French mountains during WWII, the work features inimitable female authors Lillian Hellman, Dorothy Parker, Gertrude Stein, Alice B. Toklas, Agatha Christie, and Muriel Gardiner as they gather for a dinner party. Quick-witted banter grows increasingly confessional as the festivities continue. For tickets and more info, visit 7:30 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays; 2 p.m. Sundays; 7 p.m. Sunday, May 7. $25. 1501 Fourth St. S., Minneapolis; 612-338-6131. Through May 21 —Brad Richason

Beth Gill: Brand New Sidewalk
Walker Art Center
Beth Gill uses a limited movement palette to conjure up dances that are spare, complex, and formal in the best sense. It’s a real palate-cleanser in this era of physically aggressive, gymnastic choreography. Like a many-faceted crystal, Gill’s dances are full of angles and light that keep shifting, creating a kind of restless clarity. For Brand New Sidewalk, Gill teams up with composer Jon Moniaci and lighting designer Thomas Dunn to create an evocative new piece for four dancers exploring themes of alienation, erasure, and power — concepts currently all too familiar to us and the rest of the world. 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday. $22. 725 Vineland Place, Minneapolis; 612-375-7600. Through Saturday —Linda Shapiro

Rhythmic Circus: Feet Don’t Fail Me Now
O’Shaughnessy Auditorium
The artful and wholly entertaining hoofers of Rhythmic Circus — Nick Bowman, Galen Higgins, Ricci Milan, and Kaleena Miller — are back. After touring the world with their funkadelic show, with live musicians in tow (including guitarist Alex Rossi, beatboxer Aaron Heaton, and drummer Patrick Nelson), they’re bringing their percussive exuberance to the O’Shaughnessy. Winner of multiple awards, the all-ages, wildly effusive show celebrates the power of tap dance with crazy outfits and charismatic performances. 7:30 p.m. $18-$38. 2004 Randolph Ave., St. Paul; 651-690-6700. —Camille LeFevre


Fulton Gran Fondo 2017
Fulton Brewery
Over the past few years, the Twin Cities beer scene has grown astronomically. Yet, somehow, local waistlines seem to be holding steady. How so? One potential reason could be our thriving bike scene, which offers a variety of happenings throughout the year. The Fulton Gran Fondo, a 50- or 100-mile ride that takes cyclists through the city, is one such ride with the promise of beer at the finish line. While the epic Fondo is considered a local rite of spring, so is the block party that follows. In the afternoon, the sweaty bike shorts are replaced by sweaty revelry. Fulton goes all out, with live tunes from a lineup featuring rap artist Dem Atlas, garage-rocker Monica LaPlante, and the kid-friendly Koo Koo Kanga Roo. There will be plenty of Fulton beers on tap, including a brand-new summer beer release and the High Plains Grifter Beer Cocktail by Bittercube. Red Table Meats, Get Sauced Food Truck, Natedogs, Nice Cream, Lowry Hill Meats, and others will be serving up treats as well. The bike ride requires a signup and paid ticket, but the afterparty after is free to the public and open to all ages. For more info, visit 1 to 9 p.m. Free; $1 for wristband to drink (bring cash). 2540 Second St. NE, Minneapolis. —Loren Green

3rd Annual Kentucky Derbatante
Betty Danger’s Country Club
Betty Danger’s is proof that kitsch knows no bounds. This Saturday, the pastel and hot pink country club is throwing its own Kentucky Derby party, inviting revelers to celebrate in its playfully twisted fashion. There will be a hat contest, bouncy horse races, a petting zoo, a photo booth, and all kinds of themed cocktails. Tickets include a mint julep, which should lead to round after round of croquet, polo, and mini-golf. The northeast Minneapolis hot spot will also offer a full menu and — who can forget — a Ferris wheel. Post time is approximately 5:34 p.m., and the shindig goes into the evening with a dance party led by DJ Strangelove. For tickets and more info, visit 2:30 to 10 p.m. $18.95. 2501 Marshall St. NE, Minneapolis; 612-315-4997. —Loren Green

Northern Grade Spring Marketplace
Red River Kitchen at City House
Each year, Northern Grade visits the Twin Cities to offer a variety of items not typically found in stores. The ever-popular event, which takes place over two days this year, will be moving to St. Paul’s Red River Kitchen at City House space. Shop for Mother’s or Father’s Day, buy stuff for spring cleaning, or pick up gifts for friends. There will be plenty to check out, including delicious-smelling candles, handmade soaps, leather items for men and women, and clothing. Brands at the event are all American-made, and include Winsome, Mill City Fineries, Urban Undercover, and Leather Works MN. For a complete list, visit 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday; 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Free. 258 Mill St., St. Paul. Through Sunday —Jessica Armbruster

Ovarian Psycos
Ovarian Psycos, a new documentary featuring a group of women and gender-nonconforming bicyclists from Los Angeles’ east side, hits Minneapolis this weekend. The film follows the members of the Ovarian Psycos — who are mostly of Latin American descent and from other communities of color — as they overcome personal obstacles and fight against injustice, racism, and violence. Directed and produced by Joanna Sokolowski and Kate Trumbull-LaValle, the film premiered last year at SXSW, and recently aired on PBS. This screening, with a discussion afterward, will be hosted by CTUL, an immigrant workers’ rights group, and will serve as a fundraiser for Ovarian Psycos and the local Grease Rag Bike Wrench, an organization that supports women, transgender, and femme cyclists. 6 p.m. $20 suggested donation (cash only; no one turned away for lack of funds). 3715 Chicago Ave., Minneapolis; 612-332-0663. —Sheila Regan

Cinco de Mayo West Side St. Paul Celebration
West Side St. Paul
This Saturday, head over to the West Side for a Cinco de Mayo-themed day of entertainment, delicious eats, and family activities. The parade kicks things off in the morning with a 10 a.m. march along Cesar Chavez from Wabasha to Ada. After that, the beer garden opens, and three stages of fun start up. The lowrider car, truck, and bike show is a must-see happening, as entrants will park their flashy wheels for all to gawk at. Past vehicles have included flourishes like red velvet car seats, Buicks that can bounce high off the ground, and bikes with pimped out handle bars. If you like things spicy, sign up for the jalapeno eating contest and see if you can take the heat. Food trucks, traditional music, and children’s activities round out the day. If you’d like to keep the party going all weekend, on Sunday stop by East Lake Street between 27th and 29th Avenues, where there will be food, dance, kids’ activities, and more for free from noon to 8 p.m. For more info, visit 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Free. 176 Cesar Chavez St., St. Paul; 651-223-7403. —Jessica Armbruster

La Bohème
Ordway Center for the Performing Arts
In Giacomo Puccini’s La Bohème, the central romance between aspiring poet Rodolfo and ailing seamstress Mimi offers a sweeping love story with a cathartic dose of mortal fragility. Though the impoverished artists who populate the work would have been called bohemians, contemporary audiences will recognize these personalities in every young person doggedly resisting the comforts of a nine-to-five lifestyle for an artistic calling. The potent pairing of relatable yearnings with Puccini’s lofty score has established La Bohème as one of the most widely accessible operas of modern times. This latest Michael Christie-conducted presentation for the Minnesota Opera features a world-caliber cast of alternating leads. Sopranos Nicole Cabell and Miriam Khalil will take on the tragic part of Mimi, while tenors Scott Quinn and Adam Luther will trade off as her love-struck paramour, Rodolfo. St. Paul native William Lee Bryan will alternate with Edward Parks in the baritone part of devoted friend Marcello, while Minnesota-born singer Alexandra Razskazof switches up with first-year resident artist Mary Evelyn Hangley as the flirtatious Musetta. 7:30 p.m. Thursdays and Saturdays, plus Tuesday, May 16, and Friday, May 19; 2 p.m. Sundays. $25-$200. 345 Washington St., St. Paul; 651-224-4222. Through May 21 —Brad Richason

Copa Art Crawl
Various locations
May Day weekend is going to be a busy one for the Powderhorn neighborhood. It’s teaming up with the Corcoran neighborhood for one mega-weekend of activities. The COPA (Cocorcan and Powderhorn Artists) Art Crawl will take place on Saturday, the same day that the Midtown Farmers Market kicks off its 15th anniversary season. During the event, studios, galleries, and artists’ homes will open up for a self-guided tour of the area. Expect to see a variety of casual receptions, art openings, sales, demonstrations, and more showcasing what the two neighborhoods have to offer. Maps and guides are available at The colorful and ever-popular MayDay Parade and Festival will be celebrated the following day at Powderhorn Park. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Free. Corcoran Park Neighborhood Center, 3332 20th Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-370-4919. —Jessica Armbruster


Iceland’s Bedroom Community & Friends
American Swedish Institute
If you haven’t been to Iceland yet, this sonic sensation will take you there. If you’ve been lucky enough to visit, you’ll be transported back to the rugged landscape, hot pools, and rigorous aesthetic that imbue the country with its perennial appeal. The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra’s Liquid Music series and the American Swedish Institute are collaborating on a musical event more sound than melody, as a number of Nordic aural artists will send listeners into worlds unseen at the Turnblad Mansion. It’s outside, and yes, with cocktails. Swedish vocalist Mariam Wallentin wasn’t granted a visa, so Channy Leaneagh from Poliça is stepping in. Valgeir Sigurðsson, Jodie Landau, Sam Amidon, Daníel Bjarnason, and Finnish violinist Pekka Kuusisto are still on board. The evening will also include guided gallery conversations and the Sisu Traveling Sauna. Tickets and more info can be found at 6 p.m. $25; $20 for Liquid Music subscribers and ASI members. 2600 Park Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-871-4907. —Camille LeFevre