What’s up: Pride Month, live music and food festival
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CMHR sashays into Pride Month with a pair of drag events
Lady Muse and the Inspirations
Canadian Museum for Human Rights
Friday, 7 p.m.
Admission free, registration required
Celebrate Pride Brunch
Seatings at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
A pair of drag celebrations will kick off Pride Month festivities at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights this weekend.
On Friday, Winnipeg-based drag queen, comedian and chanteuse Lady Muse and her backing band the Inspirations will perform creative covers of grand-dame classics, pop anthems and cabaret tunes. The performance will be held at Bonnie & John Buhler Hall, and beverages and snacks will be available for purchase. Free tickets are available at humanrights.ca. (As a bonus: the entire museum is open late with free admission after 5 p.m. as part of the CMHR’s Free Friday Nights promotion.)
On Sunday, Lady Muse along with fellow Winnipeg divas Special K, Elsa Marquesa and Bambi Rey will host a fabulous drag brunch featuring performances and an à la carte menu. There will be two seatings, and tickets are available at humanrights.ca.
— Jen Zoratti
Blue Note Park opens with a ghostly bang
Blue Note Park, 220 Main St.
Friday, doors open at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets $20 plus fees at Eventbrite
Patio season is finally in full swing and with warm-weather imbibing comes plenty of opportunities for outdoor concerts.
Blue Note Park kicks off a jam-packed 2023 season of music this Friday with the otherworldly sounds of the Mariachi Ghost, along with guests El Leon and the Strangers. Mariachi Ghost is an eight-piece ensemble specializing in traditional Mexican music and dance during grand live performances. The party continues Saturday with an evening set by the JD Edwards Band.
The Blue Note — located in a beautified gravel lot down the street from its sister venue, the Times Change(d) High and Lonesome Club — is now in its third season of operations. Visitors can expect some new amenities at the patio this summer, including more seating, expanded shade cover, an upgraded sound system, additional bike parking, a shooter bar and “deluxe” indoor washrooms. Drink specials will also feature fresh herbs grown in the new onsite “garnish garden.”
Music is scheduled Fridays and Saturdays (and some weeknights) at Blue Note Park throughout the summer. Visit highandlonesomeclub.ca for a full schedule of events.
— Eva Wasney
Race to the Downs for tasty street eats
MB Food Truck Battles
Saturday (noon-11 p.m.) and Sunday (noon-9 p.m.)
Tickets $5 at the door or at wfp.to/002 (ages five and under free)
Slide into your best stretchy pants and head to Assiniboia Downs this weekend to sample the best street food the province has to offer.
MB Food Truck Battles will see 30 trucks offering up fare ranging from sweet to salty to savoury — hot and cold. With offerings from Miss Tiny’s Jamaican Food, Walleye Wagon, the Poutine King, Kyu Grill, Blue Haze Barbecue, Beaver Tails and many more, there are sure to be options to satisfy every taste.
The event will also feature kids’ activities from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. daily, as well as two stages featuring music by acts such as Rusty Robot, Ariel Petrie, Lev Snowe, Paige Drobot and more. And those looking to wash down their street food with a drink can enjoy a cold one (alcoholic or otherwise) at the beverage garden sponsored by Little Brown Jug Brewing Co. Bring extra napkins.
— Ben Sigurdson
LCD Soundsystem, Miley Cyrus and Bruce Springsteen tributes at the Good Will
Good Will Social Club
May 27 at 8 p.m.
Tickets: $15 in advance at reallovewpg.com
Real Love Winnipeg’s ever-popular Bands as Bands series is as simple as it sounds: the independent concert promotion company invites up-and-coming and well-established local artists to share their takes on major bands, playing all of the bangers and even a few of the deep cuts.
This time around, Cookie Delicious — a dance-rock act from Joel Klaverkamp, fresh off the excellent 2023 album Fox in Golden Armour — will masquerade as seminal New York neo-disco-rockers LCD Soundsystem. Soul singer Courtney Fox, a member of psych-soul group Odd Outfit and Bluebloods — whose latest single Shame (on Vacation) is unpredictably funky — is a strong choice for Miley Cyrus, who continues to erase her Disney image. Folk artist Sam Singer will slip into his best Springsteen, backed by his own version of the E Street Band. (It won’t cost anywhere near as much as a seat to Springsteen’s November show in Winnipeg; tickets for the Boss start at $388 on Ticketmaster.)
— Ben Waldman
Eat, move and play
Taste of Asia Festival
CN Stage, The Forks
Saturday and Sunday
Noon to 9 p.m. on both days
Live cultural performances, tai chi and yoga classes, and martial arts demonstrations will join the food trucks taking over the field in front of the CN Stage.
The truck from Seafood City will be selling halo-halo, a popular Filipino cold dessert made up of crushed ice, evaporated milk and various ingredients including kidney beans, coconut strips and boiled taro. Korean street food comes courtesy of Tring5, while Fusian Experience Dessert will be peddling bubble teas, fruit teas and bahn mi.
This two-day Taste of Asia Festival, in partnership with Foodtrip Market and Asian Heritage Month, will also feature bouncy castles, games, and a crafts and artisan market. In the evening, there will be a host of dancers, such as Ruby Chopstix, Marq and Galax-E, the longest running K-Pop group in Winnipeg, performing as part of the K-Fest Dance Showcase which runs from p.m. onwards.
— AV Kitching
Roll strikes, meet farm animals at Doors Open Winnipeg
Saturday and Sunday
Sites in and around Winnipeg, visit Doors Open Winnipeg for the complete list of venues and opening times.
Hobnobbing with goats or learning how an old bowling alley has become a popular music venue are among the new activities Doors Open Winnipeg offers this weekend.
Heritage Winnipeg’s annual event has welcomed more than 300,000 visitors in its 20-year history of celebrating history, architecture and cultures in and around Winnipeg.
Among the new Doors Open entries are Aurora Farm, 4265 Waverley St., which will show off its herd of dairy goats, chickens, horses and alpacas, its Indigenous gardening practices and how the farm runs solely on solar power. It opens its farm gate to visitors Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., with its last guided tour beginning at 3 p.m.
Visitors to Park Alleys (Sunday, 1-3 p.m., 730 Osborne St.) will learn how the old bowling lanes were transformed during the COVID-19 pandemic into a live-music venue while keeping strikes and spares as part of the fun.
Other new Doors Open sites include the Silvester-Willson Building at 75 Albert St., which was built in 1904; the Ivan Franko Museum, (200 McGregor St.), which celebrates the 19th-century Ukrainian poet and author; the Transcona Museum Collections Tour (141 Regent Ave. W.); the Manitoba Buddhist Temple (39 Tecumseh St.) and its display about the internment of Japanese Canadians during the Second World War; and the Y Downtown (301 Vaughan St.)
Some Doors Open venues require pre-registration, such as tours of the Manitoba Legislative Building and the Université de Saint-Boniface, 2022’s best tour award winner, as well as many walking tours. Visit doorsopenwinnipeg.ca to pre-register and for the complete list of venues and tours.
— Alan Small
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Alan Small has been a journalist at the Free Press for more than 22 years in a variety of roles, the latest being a reporter in the Arts and Life section.
AV Kitching is an arts and life writer at the Free Press.
Literary editor, drinks writer
Ben Sigurdson edits the Free Press books section, and also writes about wine, beer and spirits.
Ben Waldman covers a little bit of everything for the Free Press.
Eva Wasney is a reporter for the Winnipeg Free Press.
Jen Zoratti is a Winnipeg Free Press columnist and author of the newsletter, NEXT, a weekly look towards a post-pandemic future.