Best of

the Twin Cities

Best Place to See Throwback Acts

Medina Entertainment Center

Eric Burdon & the Animals, America, 38 Special, Foghat, the Bellamy Brothers, Ted Nugent, Vince Neil, and Bret Michaels — these are just some of the names that have appeared at the western suburbs' Medina Entertainment Center in the past year. It's KQ come to life, and the parking lot after the show will make you feel like you're circa-1980s tailgating in the style of Heavy Metal Parking Lot. Not surprisingly, this is the same venue that often hosts class reunions, and every show feels as though you've stepped into one. Seasoned guests relive their glory days while sporting their finest blue jeans, rhinestone jackets, and well-worn tour T-shirts, hair teased, feathered, and sprayed just so. And as the music plays, guests get thoroughly sloshed before being shuttled at night's end to the adjoining Medina Inn, where they sleep it all off before returning to their grownup lives the morning after. It's a sight to behold, no doubt, but the real reason to visit the Medina is that the throwback acts it features on its stage are all actually still quite good, their music made even better by this venue's excellent sound system and pleasing sightlines ... and most importantly, its accommodating beverage lines.

Best TV Newscaster Amelia Santaniello, WCCO

Best TV Weatherperson Belinda Jensen, KARE 11

Best TV Sports Anchor Mark Rosen, WCCO

Best Columnist Dara Moskowitz Grumdahl

Best Radio Station Radio K

Best AM Radio Personality Patrick Reusse, 1500 ESPN

Best Museum Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Best Theater Pillsbury House Theatre

Best Art Gallery Rosalux Gallery

Best Spread at a Gallery Opening Mpls Photo Center

Best Street Artist HOTTEA (a.k.a. Eric Rieger)

Best Fashion Designer Emma Berg

Best Craftspeople Wood from the Hood

Best Dance Company The BodyCartography Project

Best Dancer Stephen Schroeder

Best Choreographer Chris Schlichting

Best Dance Performance of the Past 12 Months Ballet of the Dolls

Best Movie Theater Riverview Theater

Best Literary Events Rain Taxi

Best Concert of the Past 12 Months (Local) Prince at Dakota Jazz Club

Best Concert of the Past 12 Months (Touring) Bruce Springsteen at Xcel Energy Center

Best Concert Venue Cedar Cultural Center

Best Rock Club First Avenue

Best Blues Club Bayport BBQ

Best Jazz Club Artists' Quarter

Best Country Music Venue Turf Club

Best Dance Club Honey

Best Director Marion McClinton

Best Club Night House Proud at Honey

Best Karaoke Hairy Karaoke at Turf Club

Best Strip Club Rick's Cabaret

Best Record Label Forged Artifacts

Best Local Music Compilation Twin Cities Funk & Soul: Lost Grooves from Minneapolis/St. Paul 1964-1979 (Secret Stash Records)

Best Rock Band Prissy Clerks

Best New Band Carroll

Best Country Band The Cactus Blossoms

Best Actor Gavin Lawrence

Best Cover Band B-52s Cover Band

Best Hip-Hop Artist Greg Grease

Best Live Artist Retribution Gospel Choir

Best Folk Artist John Mark Nelson

Best Female Vocalist Lizzo

Best Songwriter Actual Wolf

Best Local Musician Made Good Jeremy Messersmith

Best Club DJ DVS1

Best Classical Musicians Minnesota Opera

Best Actress Christina Baldwin

Best Band to Break Up in the Past 12 Months The Tribe & Big Cats

Best Emerging Actor Namir Smallwood

Best Emerging Actress Cat Brindisi

Best Designer Joel Sass

Best Play Measure for Measure by Ten Thousand Things

Best Ensemble The Birthday Party at Jungle Theater

Best FM Radio Personality "The Common Man" Dan Cole

Best Local Music Broadcast 89.3 the Current's The Local Show

Best Museum Exhibition "Rembrandt in America" at Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Best Musical Spring Awakening by Theatre Latte Da and U of M Department of Theatre Arts and Dance

Best Album of the Past 12 Months P.O.S, We Don't Even Live Here

Best Male Vocalist Nick "The Feelin'" Mrozinski

Best Band Name Tom Selleck's Moustache