Here's a ton of free things to do this weekend.
A few weeks ago, folks gathered at the RiverCentre in St. Paul to celebrate all things geeky. This week’s nerd party is smaller in scale, but is sure to be fun. Like any good con, AfreakCON has a theme, as the two-day happening will be showcasing black excellence in comics, sci-fi culture, anime, and gaming. Come in costume and explore all this event has to offer, including a retro video-game arcade, an artists’ alley, and talks ranging from academic to joyfully silly. Snack on sugary cereal and milk while watching Saturday-morning cartoons, or stay up late for the cosplay dance party. Bring the kids if you got ’em, and make friends with fellow local “blerds” (that’s black nerds for you less cool people). RSVP at eventbrite.com. 2-8 p.m. Aug. 17; 2-10 p.m. Aug. 18; Free. Pillsbury House Theatre, 3501 Chicago Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-825-0459.
FAM Fridays at Radisson RED
Featuring pop-up shops from local fashion designers, craft makers, visual and graphic designers, and more. 8 p.m. to midnight. Radisson RED Minneapolis Downtown, 609 S. Third St., Minneapolis; 612-252-5400.
Bossa Jazz Band
7 p.m. Minnehaha Falls, 4801 Minnehaha Ave., Minneapolis; 612-230-6400.
Autoptic 2018 Creative Fitness Summit
All skill levels and body types are welcome to workout with special instruction by cartoonist and personal trainer M.S. Harkness. 3-4 p.m. Dayton YMCA at Gaviidae, 651 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis; 612-371-9622.
Autoptic Pre-Party + Exhibition
Original and printed artwork from special guests who are part of Sunday's festival, including M.S. Harkness, Zak Sally, Gabrielle Bell, Jesse Mcmanus, and Tom Kaczinski. 6:30-9 p.m. Light Grey Art Lab, 118 E. 26th St., Minneapolis; 612-239-2047.
MCAD Alumni Show
Opening reception features DJ Su Na and a cash bar. 6-11 p.m. Squirrel Haus Arts, 3450 Snelling Ave., Minneapolis; 612-669-8712.
2nd Annual Battle of the Brews
Sample brews from Modist, Fulton, Lagunitas, ENKI, Fair State, Milwaukee, Finnegans, Castle Danger, Paulaner, and 612Brew and vote for your favorite. Minnesota Potluck will also be on hand serving up homemade dishes. 21+. 5-7 p.m. Top Ten Liquors St. Louis Park, 5111 Excelsior Blvd., St. Louis Park; 952-920-0750.
Sample and shop pickles, preserves, potions, herbal cigarettes, housewares, and more from local artisans and organizations. 5-9 p.m. Seen The Future, 2223 E. 35th St., Minneapolis.
2018 Tent Party
Outdoor festival featuring bingo, live music from Merchants of Soul and Livewire, Hammerschlagen, karaoke, wrestling, and beer, wine, and liquor tastings. Daily from Aug. 16-19; Free. 1029 Bar, 1029 Marshall St. NE, Minneapolis; 612-379-4322.
Catch Me If You Can
Friday, August 17, 9 p.m. @ Lake Harriet Bandshell.
Hundreds of butterflies from Africa, Asia, and the Americas flying freely in an indoor garden environment. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Daily from June 15-Sept. 3; Free. Marjorie McNeely Conservatory at Como Park, 1225 Estabrook Drive, St. Paul; 651-487-8200.
Can Can Wonderland Karaoke
Hosted by Silly Miss Tilly. All ages. 5:30-8:30 p.m. Every Fri. Free. Can Can Wonderland, 755 Prior Ave. N., Ste. 4, St. Paul; 651-925-2261.
With Devious Ones, Petty Larcenists, and the Grow Fangs. 9 p.m. Aug. 17; Free. Hexagon Bar, 2600 27th Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-722-3454.
Gypsy Mania Hot Club Quartet
6-9 p.m. Every 3rd Fri. Free. Hell's Kitchen, 80 S. 9th St., Minneapolis; 612-332-4700.
Junior Varsity (EP Release)
With Wild Age and Joe Kopel. 10 p.m. Aug. 17; Free. 331 Club, 331 13th Ave. NE, Minneapolis; 612-331-1746.
Material Evolution - Midsummer Pop-up with Laurie Borggreve
Daily from Aug. 4-19; Free. Veronique Wantz Gallery, 901 N. Fifth St., Minneapolis; 612-254-2838.
Minneapolis Farmers Market
Arguably the city's largest and most famous market, with hundreds of vendors weekly. Visit www.mplsfarmersmarket.com for more info. 6 a.m.-1 p.m. Daily from June 6-Oct. 31; Free. Minneapolis Farmers' Market, 312 E. Lyndale Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-333-1718.
Pyramid Country: What Comes After
Six year retrospective of the AZ skateboard collective, with sculpture and paintings by JJ Horner, Shitshow v.4 zine release, and live music by Thraxxx City and Slamdunkapher. 7-10 p.m. Aug. 17; Free. Cal Surf, 1715 W. Lake St., Minneapolis; 612-822-6840.
Retro Game Show Night
Play classic game shows hosted by local comedy celebrities. 9-11 p.m. Every Fri. Free. Can Can Wonderland, 755 Prior Ave. N., Ste. 4, St. Paul; 651-925-2261.
Group tap dance lessons. 4-6 p.m. Every Fri. Free. Can Can Wonderland, 755 Prior Ave. N., Ste. 4, St. Paul; 651-925-2261.
Tending the Soil: Black August
Month-long meditation on the past, present, and future of Black revolutionary struggles, featuring a group art show, with a community dinner from 5:30-8 p.m. on Aug. 17. Free. Juxtaposition Arts, 2007 Emerson Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-588-1148.
The Comedy Corner Open Mic Night
10 p.m. Every Fri. Free. The Corner Bar, 1501 Washington Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-339-4333.
Insight Brewing built its brand on the idea of exploring new customs, cultures, and flavors. This weekend their focus will be everything German. During Achtoberfest, Insight will have a variety of special brews on tap outside: a Märzen-style lager (traditionally served at Oktoberfest), a schwarzbier black lager, a smoked lager, a Berliner Weisse, and their year-round German lager, Royal Nüisance. This Saturday’s parking lot party will also feature live music, games, lederhosen, and frequent stein-hoists. Begin the day with Kramarczuk’s serving up eats from noon to 4 p.m., and stick around for dinner from the Black Forest Inn from 4 to 10 p.m. Patrons can also mix it up inside, where the brewery’s regular menu lineup will be available. All ages. 12-4 p.m. Aug. 18; Free. Insight Brewing, 2821 E. Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis; 612-722-7222. –Loren Green
Aloha From Hell
With Fret Rattles and Trash Street. 10 p.m. Aug. 18; Free. 331 Club, 331 13th Ave. NE, Minneapolis; 612-331-1746.
Mortimer's Lot Party
Featuring Murf, Blaha, the Trappistines, Lunch Duchess, Tramps Like Us, the Stress of Her Regard, and Wolfblood. 3-10 p.m. Aug. 18; Free. Mortimer's, 2001 Lyndale Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-871-5591.
NE Twin Cities Veg Fest Social Media Crawl and Postering
Vegetarian food crawl through NE Minneapolis in promotion of the upcoming Twin Cities Veg Fest, starting at the Herbivorous Butcher and ending with dinner at Hai Hai. 3-7 p.m. Aug. 18; Free. Herbivorous Butcher, 507 1st Ave. NE, Minneapolis; 612-208-0992.
Lowertown Guitar Festival 2018
Featuring Sunny War, Iraida Noriega, Siama Matuzungidi, Thomas Nordlund, Mike Michel & the Orange Goodness, Lonesome Dan Kase, Paul Metzger, Jake Hanson & James Buckley, Greg Herriges, Duo Onyx, MacPhail Student Ensemble, and Greg Koch Duo. More info at www.facebook.com/lowertownguitarfestival. 12-9 p.m. Aug. 18; Free. Como Lakeside Pavilion, 1360 N. Lexington Parkway, St. Paul; 651-488-4920.
Saint George's Greek Summer Festival
Featuring Greek food, pastries, cheeses, dance performances by the Greek Dancers of Minnesota, children's games, church tours, and family fun. More info at www.stgeorgegoc.org/greekfestival. 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Aug. 18; 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Aug. 19. Free. St. George Greek Orthodox Church, 1111 Summit Ave., St. Paul; 651-222-6220.
St. Paul Food Truck Festival 2018
This weekend, over 40 food trucks will be parking in Mears Park in Lowertown St. Paul to feed the masses. Choose from meaty options (Butcher Salt, New Bohemia), sweets (HomeTown Creamery, Original Hockey Mom’s Brownies), fried cheese (O’Cheeze), or spicy eats (Hot Indian Foods). Or try them all; each truck will have at least one $5 item on the menu to promote multi-sampling. The event will also boast live music and drinks, and could be a fun stop if you have plans in downtown St. Paul that evening. 12-10 p.m. Aug. 18; Free. Mears Park, 221 E. 5th St., St. Paul. –Jessica Armbruster
With Infernal Altar, Thrallfrost, and Cobra Czar. 9 p.m. Aug. 18; Free. Hexagon Bar, 2600 27th Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-722-3454.
Black Panther, Spanish subtitles, English audio
Saturday, August 18, 8:25 p.m. @ Bryant Square Park.
Chariots of the Gods Custom van and vintage camper show.
Noon. 211 St.Anthony Pkwy NE, Minneapolis.
Craving Summer Rooftop Party
DJ tunes. 10 p.m. CRAVE American Kitchen & Sushi Bar (Downtown Minneapolis), 825 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis; 612-332-1133.
Trips couple a restoration service project in a hard to reach area of the river with an adventure tour by National Park Service rangers.Participants will also help remove invasive plant species that threaten the native plant ecosystems. Find more info through emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or call 651-291-9119. Saturday, 1-5 p.m. Lions Levee Park, W. Seventh Ave., St. Paul.
Rock & Roll Flea Market
10 a.m. to 3 p.m. James Ballentine "Uptown" VFW - Post 246, 2916 Lyndale Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-823-6233.
Fiesta Latina 2018
Family friendly community event featuring Latino food, music, dancing, arts and crafts, fitness activities, free health exams, raffles, and prizes. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Aug. 18; Free. CLUES: Comunidades Latinas Unidas En Servicio, 797 E. 7th St., St. Paul; 651-379-4200.
Little Africa Fest
For the past five years, St. Paul’s Midway neighborhood — also known as Little Africa due to its plethora of African shops, restaurants, and residents — has hosted this festival with the help of the African Economic Development Solutions of Minnesota. Little Africa Fest is a wonderful, day-long event that celebrates African culture with music, food, dance, and poetry at Hamline Park. This weekend you can sample delicious food from different vendors, peruse jewelry and art by local creatives, and participate in lots of different family-friendly activities. A stage will showcase performers from all over the continent, from traditional acts to modern music. Be sure to check out the work of Ethiopian-born Binyam Raba, whose painting series, “Givings of a Global Immigrant,” debuted earlier this year at the Northern Spark Festival. 1 p.m.-8 a.m. Aug. 18; Free. Hamline Park Plaza, 570 Asbury St., St. Paul; 651-337-1449. --Sheila Regan
Genealogy & History Fair
Featuring vendor booths, history organizations, presentations, and resources. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Aug. 18; Free. Lawshe Memorial Museum, 130 Third Ave N, South St. Paul; 651-552-7548.
India Fest 2018
Family friendly festival featuring henna, cricket, yoga, reptile show, inflatables, authentic Indian delicacies, performances from Ananya and Katha Dance Theatre, costume contests, parade, exhibits, Indian bazaar, and Bollywood music. 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Aug. 18; Free. Minnesota State Capitol, 75 Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., St. Paul; 651-296-2881.
Mill City Farmers Market
Long running market in the shadow of Mill Ruins Park, featuring local, sustainable, and organic groceries and produce, with weekly cooking clinics and live entertainment. More info at www.millcityfarmersmarket.org. 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Every Sat. from May 12-Oct. 27; Free. Mill City Museum, 704 S. 2nd St., Minneapolis; 612-341-7555.
New Hope Community Farmers Market
8 a.m.-1 p.m. Every Sat. from June 21; Free. New Hope Farmers' Market, 4300 Xylon Avenue N., Minneapolis; 763-531-5196.
Northeast Minneapolis Farmers Market
Featuring locally grown produce, live music, children's activities, and food trucks. More info at www.northeastmarket.org. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Every Sat. from May 19-Oct. 20; Free. St. Boniface Catholic Church, 629 2nd St. NE, Minneapolis; 612-379-2761.
2018 NE Brewers Block Party
When Minnesotans think of beer, northeast Minneapolis probably springs to mind. This Sunday, beer lovers can try a variety of brews from the brewery-heavy neighborhood in one location. Sociable Cider Werks is hosting the special celebration, which will boast offerings from 11 different breweries, including Insight, Indeed, HeadFlyer, Fair State, Dangerous Man, Bauhaus, and Able. Music will be provided by Viva Knieval (rock covers), New Primitives (reggae), and Radiochurch (R&B), with food trucks like Anchor Fish & Chips, Bark and the Bite, Cafe Racer, Red River Kitchen, and MN Nice Cream. There will also be an artists’ market with Solid State Vinyl Records and folks from Minneapolis Craft Market. A $5 wristband is required to drink, with part of those proceeds going to SACA Food Shelf & Thrift Store. All ages. Find tickets and more info here. 2-8 p.m. Aug. 19; Free; $5 for a drinking wristband; $60 VIP. Sociable Cider Werks, 1500 Fillmore St. NE, Minneapolis; 612-758-0105. –Loren Green
3rd Annual Flea Market
Sunday afternoons are made for the following: brunch, bottomless mimosas, the New York Times, and farmers and flea markets. This week, you can try to score something cool, retro, or odd at Five Watt’s all-day flea market party. Check out up-cycled threads, locally made art, old vinyl, quirky furniture, and ceramics while downing some iced coffee. Vendors will include Twin Town Guitars, Wanderlust Vintage Market, and the Center for Lost Objects. You might discover some awesome crap, or a valuable gem, but you won’t know what you’ll find until you dig in and explore. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Aug. 19; Free. Five Watt Coffee, 3745 Nicollet Ave S., Minneapolis; 612-259-7519. –Jessica Armbruster
Sunday, August 19, 8:25 p.m. @ Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Park.
Surly Brewing Record Swap Meet
Featuring vinyl collections from local record shops, with DJ sets throughout the day. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Aug. 19; Free. Surly Brewing Company, 520 Malcolm Ave. SE, Minneapolis; 763-999-4040.
Twin Cities Record Show
Featuring dealers from the Midwest selling vintage and new albums, 45's, CDs, and music memorabilia. For more info, visit www.twincitiesrecordshow.com. 10:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Aug. 19; Free. Able Seedhouse & Brewery, 1121 Quincy St. NE, Minneapolis; 612-405-4642.
Print is still alive in 2018. If you need proof, this weekend more than 100 artists from the world of comics, poster art, and other print-based work will come together for the annual Autoptic arts festival. This Sunday, you’ll have the chance to check out the goods from special guests like British cartoonist Gabrielle Bell; artist and humorist Jessica Campbell, who recently released the hilarious book XTC69, featuring a crew of women searching for men to breed with; and Chuck Forsman, whose comic The End of the Fucking World was recently adapted into a Netflix original series of the same name. In addition to the main happening at Aria, the festival will also feature satellite events on Friday and Saturday. These include a kick-off gallery show and reception at Light Grey Art Lab, plus a panel discussion on “What’s next for YA comics” and a Craig Thompson spotlight (Blankets, Space Dumplings) at Moon Palace Books. It’s all free to attend, and the main gig will be packed with comic and print fans. Find more info at autoptic.org. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Aug. 19; Free. Aria, 105 1st St. N., Minneapolis; 612-342-2742. –Patrick Strait
7-11 p.m. Every Sun. Free. Schooner Tavern, 2901 27th Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-729-4365.
Can Can Wonderland Bingo
12-2 p.m. every Sun. Free. Can Can Wonderland, 755 Prior Ave. N., Ste. 4, St. Paul; 651-925-2261.
Central Honors Philando
Saint Paul Central honors Philando Castile, with live music from Aaron Rice, A-Quil & Alibi of Purest Form, Twin Cities Community Gospel Choir, Voice of Culture Drum+Dance, and Heiruspecs, food, raffle prizes, art, and kids activities, with proceeds going towards a scholarship in his memory. 3 p.m. Aug. 19; Free. Dunning Recreation Center, 1221 Marshall Ave., St. Paul; 651-632-5124.
5:30-7:30 p.m. Aug. 19. Free. Lake Harriet Bandshell, 4135 W. Lake Harriet Parkway, Minneapolis; 612-661-4785.
4-7 p.m. Aug. 19; Free. Lola on the Lake, 3000 E. Calhoun Pkwy., Minneapolis; 952-451-8481.
Linden Hills Farmers Market
Featuring goods from local growers, flowers, work by local artisans, craft market, and live music. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Every Sun. from May 27-Oct. 29; Free. Linden Hills Farmers' Market, 2813 W. 43rd St., Minneapolis; 612-345-0946.
Weekly residency with a variety of special guests and opening acts. 7-9 p.m. Every Sun. from July 15; Free. Palmer's Bar, 500 S. Cedar Ave., Minneapolis; 612-333-7625.
Saturday Brunch Show at Morts
Featuring Trash Catties, and Rank Strangers. All ages. 12-3 p.m. Aug. 19; Free. Mortimer's, 2001 Lyndale Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-871-5591.
Urban Growler's Farmers Market
Featuring live music and special beers, plus locally made foods, artisan items, and more. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Every Sun. from June 3-Oct. 14; Free. Urban Growler Brewing Company, 2325 Endicott St., Saint Paul; 612-501-1128.
Work by Jennifer Nevitt and En-Man Chang. Opening reception 1-5 p.m. Sun., Aug. 19. Free. Fogstand Gallery & Studio, 1456 Edmund Ave., St. Paul.
Zacc Harris Trio
7-9 p.m. Every Sun. Free. Riverview Cafe & Wine Bar, 3745 42nd Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-729-4200.