Todd's Weekend Picks: Sept. 14-16

Todd about Town: Our travel editor ranks his favorite events in Minnesota this weekend, from barbecue and autumn brews to comedy galore and a castle party

1. Grillin’ & Chillin’ BBQ Cook-Off

When: September 15, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Where: Sinclair Lewis Park, Sauk Center
Free entry, with cost for food and beverages

Enjoy ribs, chicken, a beer garden, live music, and a car and motorcycle show. Learn more.

2. Counting Crows 

When: September 16, starting at 7:15 p.m.
Where: Mystic Lake, Prior Lake
Tickets: $45

The band has sold more than 20 million albums worldwide and will bring their 25 Years and Counting Tour to Mystic Lake. Learn more.

3. Quadriga Starlight Tour

When: September 14 and 15
Where: Minnesota State Capitol, St. Paul
Tickets: $12 adults, $11 seniors and college students, $10 ages 5-17

Join a guided tour and climb the 63 steps to the horses at State Capitol. Historical characters will share stories about the Capitol’s construction and its history. This evening tour happens just a few times a year. Learn more.

4. Amy Schumer & Friends

When: September 15, 8 to 11 p.m.
Where: Treasure Island Amphitheatre 
Tickets: $46-$112

The outlandish, hilarious, and wild Amy Schumer is live at Treasure Island Resort and Casino. Learn more.

5. Duluth Rising Hot Air Balloon Festival

When: September 14-16, 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Where: Bayfront Festival Park, Duluth

This is one of Duluth’s premier family-friendly free event, with food for purchase, craft beer, and live music in addition to all the hot air balloons. Learn more.

6. Autumn Brew Review

When: September 15, 1-5 p.m.
Where: Hall’s Island, Minneapolis (down the road from the Grain Belt Brewery complex)
Tickets: $45

More than 140 brewers from across the country will be at the Grain Belt Brewery for one of the state’s largest celebrations of craft beer. Attendance for this outdoor festival is usually close to 3,500 people. Learn more.

7. Whose Live Anyway?

When: September 16, starting at 7:30 p.m.
Where: Ordway Center for the Performing Arts, St. Paul
Tickets $27-$79

Cast members from the Emmy-nominated TV show Whose Line Is It Anyway? present a 90-minute comedy improv show based on suggestions from the audience. Learn more.

8. Cocktails at the Castle: Chroma Craze

When: September 14, 7 to 11 p.m.
Where: American Swedish Institute, Minneapolis
Tickets: $20

ASI is spinning the color wheel for an indoor/outdoor party with live music and performance, including dance groups and local musicians Mina Moore and Tacky Annie. FIKA Cafe will be serving food and cocktails. The theme for the party is inspired by the bold colors of ASI’s current exhibition, “Gudrun Sjoden: A Colourful Universe.” Learn more.