Weekend Best Bets: June 18-21

This weekend: Juneteenth celebrations, online Midsommar festival, Electric Fetus sale, Father’s Day Motor Show, and more
Melanie DeMore, a song leader for Sunday’s Father’s Day Singalong

Kyndell Harkness

Minnesota Arboretum Hosts Weekly Storytime & Crafts

What: Minnesota Landscape Arboretum Storytime & Crafts at Home
When: Every Thursday, 10:30 a.m.
Where: Arboretum Storytime Website

While the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum buildings are closed, librarian Lee Anne Laskey streams a family-friendly storytime focused on the natural world straight from the Andersen Horticultural Library. (When buildings open up, the storytime will be held in person.) If you’re looking for some more fun, the Arboretum blog also posts weekly crafts that get kids outside and curious.

Ranee Ramaswamy Premieres Short Film Lineage

What: Premiere of Ranee Ramaswamy’s Lineage
When: Thursday, June 18, 6:30 p.m.
Where: YouTube Live

This short film explores Ragamala Dance Company founder Ranee Ramaswamy’s ever evolving relationship with the art of Bharatanatyam. Created in collaboration with Caitlin Hammel, Lineage follows Ramaswamy’s journey to Minnesota, her national and international work, and her collaboration with daughters Ashwini and Aparna to create their dance company. Check out the trailer before Thursday’s premiere.

Unite & Rebuild MSP Hosts Juneteenth Celebration

What: Juneteenth Celebration-Unite & Rebuild MSP
When: Friday, June 19, 3-8 p.m.
Where: 2500 E. Lake St., Minneapolis

This family friendly Juneteenth celebration will honor the historical day with food trucks, live music, speakers, and faith leaders at the Target parking lot at Lake & Minnehaha. Musical performances will include three-time Grammy winner Jamecia Bennett & The J Movement, Ginger Commodore, DJ Mickey Breeze, Jamela Pettiford, and Kory Pullman. Gary Hines, music director of Grammy-winning Sounds of Blackness, will serve as keynote speaker. Local artist Peyton Scott Russell and his Sprayfinger youth camp will be displaying artwork and painting a mural onsite. The event is free, and attendees are encouraged to bring donations for a food and supply drive. 

See Also: Where to Celebrate Juneteenth in the Twin Cities

Juneteenth Community Gathering at Cup Foods

What: Juneteenth Cookout, Donation Drive, and Community Gathering
When: Friday, June 19, 3 p.m.
Where: Cup Foods, 3759 Chicago Ave., Minneapolis

Celebrate this day of freedom with an afternoon of free food, an open mic, and a live performance. Presented by Diversified Melanated Community, this event will be a hub for donation, education, liberation, and celebration. Donate to the event’s GoFundMe to help bring Juneteenth to the broader community.

American Swedish Institute Presents Virtual Midsommar

What: American Swedish Institute’s Midsommar Celebration At Home
When: Saturday, June 20, Noon-5 p.m.
Where: Online

Join ASI for a traditional Swedish Midsommar celebration complete with Nordic know-how sessions over Zoom, a Facebook Live concert with Sofia Talvik, printable flower crowns, Midsommar bingo, and Swedish recipes. Supply your own maypole.

A Juneteenth Bike Ride for Revolution

What: Juneteenth Revolutionary Blackout Bike Ride
When: Saturday, June 20, 4 p.m.
Where: 2001 Plymouth Ave. N., Minneapolis

This socially distant bike ride is for Black people, by Black people, to create a space of healing. Beginning with a tune-up and chill-out from 4-5:15 p.m., the ride starts at 5:15 p.m. and travels from the University of Minnesota Urban Research and Outreach-Engagement Center (UROC) to the Walker Art Center, the George Floyd Memorial, and back. The event is hosted by Slow Roll, Free Black Dirt, and Paige Ingram, and participants are encouraged to bring water, snacks, masks, helmets, and their visions for liberation.

Hook & Ladder Theater Brings Minnesota Artists to the Live Stream

What: HookStream Virtual Concert Series
When: Saturday, June 20-Sunday, June 21 (plus throughout the summer)
Where: Online

The Hook & Ladder Theater is showcasing the best of Minnesota with live performances (sans audience) on the Firehouse Stage streamed straight to your screen via professional sound and multi-camera videos. This weekend, get tickets for Davina & The Vagabonds at 8 p.m. on June 20 and watch Grayson DeWolfe’s show for free at 8 p.m. on June 21 (donations accepted).

Electric Fetus Anniversary Sale Gives Back

What: Electric Fetus 52nd Anniversary Sale
When: Sunday, June 21, 10 a.m.-1:45 p.m., 2-5 p.m.
Where: 2000 S. Fourth St., Minneapolis

This Father’s Day, Electric Fetus record store will be offering its anniversary sale in a slightly different, equally groovy format: Sunday’s Private Shopping Day will allow you to give back to the community while browsing for eclectic tunes and funky gifts. For a minimum of $25 (donated to organizations that support local Black-owned businesses, local musicians, and LGBTQ rights), customers will be able to shop privately in the store for an allotted time, receive a punch card good for 20% off three or more trips to the Fetus before July 31, and take home special offers from Town Hall Brewery, Palmer’s Bar, Kramarczuk’s, and No. 12 Cider. Sign up here for the first window of shopping from 10 a.m.-1:45 p.m., or here for the second window from 2-5 p.m. Electric Fetus will then contact customers to set up a specific time. 

Father’s Day Motor Show Rolls Through Central Minnesota

What: Father’s Day Motor Show 2020
When: Sunday, June 21, 11:30 a.m.
Where: 411 SW Brown St., Verndale

Verndale’s Father’s Day Motor Show will be rolling on this year. Bring your car, truck, or motorcycle and drive on through to support Central Minnesota Adult & Teen Challenge. The motor caravan will depart from the parking lot of the Verndale School at 11:30 a.m. and follow this proposed route through the parking lots of three senior living facilities in Staples, a scenic cruise to Brainerd, and ending in the lots of Central Minnesota Adult & Teen Challenge, where a donation drop will be available.

VocalEssence Presents Father’s Day Livestream Singalong Concert

What: VocalEssence Livestream Singalong to Honor Black Fathers and Families
When: Sunday, June 21, 4-5 p.m.
Where: VocalEssence Livestream

Created by VocalEssence associate conductor G. Phillip Shoultz III, this Father’s Day singalong will uplift and honor black lives and the role of black fathers. Performers will include Melanie DeMore, Jason Max Ferdinand, Alysia Lee, EXIGENCE, the Aeolians of Oakwood University, and Jovonta Patton. Attendees are encouraged to donate to the African American Leadership Forum.

“As a Black musician in a classical music scene mostly occupied by white people, I was searching for a vocational response to the recent resurgence of a systemic problem—violence against my (Black) people,” says G. Phillip Shoultz III in a press release, who is a father of two young children as well. “I created this event in partnership with Black leaders in our community and leaders of our nation’s most prominent singing organizations as a way to honor Black fathers and father figures, celebrate Black families, and stand in solidarity as we demand justice and an end to systemic racism.”

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