Weekender Eastern Iowa! Punk at PS1, Houby Days, Private at Mirrorbox Theatre


Your weekly editor-curated arts compendium

It’s all about balance. Punk and opera, gallery shows and fresh air hikes, mushroom mayhem and one of the season’s first music festivals—this weekend offers a feast for all your spring senses. Top pick? The latest Iowa premiere from Mirrorbox Theatre, featuring some of the region’s greatest stage performers. Get out there and fill your heart!
The Weekender is sponsored by:

Wilson's Apple Orchard

Kevin Burt at Wilson's Orchard & Farm

May 12 – 6:00pm

Kevin Burt has won many awards and played many festivals both solo and with his band. Enjoy free music at Wilson’s Orchard and Farm outside!

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May in May: A New Leaf

May 12 – 7:00pm

FilmScene presents May in May: A New Leaf. For four weeks, FilmScene 101 will watch the films of Elaine May to celebrate her work and legacy.

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Theatre Cedar Rapids

Mirrorbox Theatre: Private

May 12 – 7:30pm

PRIVATE is a funny and gripping near-future morality tale about a couple grappling with what they’re willing to share – especially with each other.

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Cherry Building

Friends of the Cedar Rapids Public Library Big Book Sale

May 13 – May 15 – Friday: Noon to 6 pm Saturday: 10 am to 5 pm Sunday: 10 am to 2 pm

After two years of pandemic related cancellations, the Friends of the Cedar Rapids Public Library big book sale is back!

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Public Space One

Drivers | Laura Napier

May 13 – Jun 4 – Thurs 4-6p, Fri 3-6p, Sat 12-3p

an exhibition that maps systems of dirty power through installation, video, and a collaboratively created diagram of ethanol-related objects

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Czech Village/New Bohemia Main Street District

Houby Days 2022

May 13 – May 15 – 3:30pm

Celebrate Czech and Slovak traditions as well seeing what new Czech Village has to offer. We will have live music and entertainment, food and craft vendors, classes, costume walk, and Kolaches.

More info >>

The Weekender is sponsored by:


Writers of Color Reading Series

May 13 – 6:00pm

Writers of Color Reading Series at MERGE. The series offers a dedicated presentation space in Iowa City for local Black, Indigenous, and other writers of color.

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Downtown Pedestrian Mall

Summer of the Arts Friday Night Concert Series: Iowa Steel Band

May 13 – 6:30pm

Summer of the Arts Friday Night Concert Series: Iowa Steel Band. The Iowa Steel Band, under the direction of Dr. Dan Moore, is perhaps the most active ensemble from The UI School of Music.

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For Peter Pan on Her 70th Birthday

May 13 – 7:30pm

TCR and Brucemore Present For Peter Pan on Her 70th Birthday. Live and Outdoors at Brucemore’s Peggy Boyle Whitworth Amphitheater.

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4th Floor Balcony, CRST Building

La voix humaine

May 13 – 7:30pm

CROpera favorite, Janara Kellerman, stars in this devastating, one-woman monodrama that explores grief, denial, anger, and unrequited love – all through a one-sided phone call.

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Iowa City Community Theatre

Romeo and Juliet

May 13 – 7:30pm

It’s the classic story of boy meets girl, girl’s family hates boy’s family, boy’s family hates girl’s family, boy kills girl’s cousin, and it all ends in a horrible tragedy, all within a week.

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The Olympic South Side Theater

Brinton Surprise: Red Cedar Chamber Music

May 13 – 8:00pm

Red Cedar Chamber Music presents silent films with chamber music accompaniment.

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Public Space One

Punk Show w/SHROUD, Public Opinion, Bovinophobic Bile Puddle & Pest House

May 13 – 8:00pm

Public Space One is lending us freaks their lovely new abode, which happens to be the historical Iowa City Close House. Yes that’s right, a punk show in a literal mansion built in 1874.

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Wickiup Hill Outdoor Learning Center

Spring Hike w/Queer Hikers Group

May 14 – 9:30am

Join Queer Hikers and Linn County Conservation on May 14th at Wickiup Hill Learning Center for a fun morning of learning, hiking, and a picnic.

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Raven Wolf Productions

Fest at the Farm

May 14 – 2:00pm

Fest at the Farm: Six Local Iowa Bands! Riverbottom Ramblers, Kellen O’Collum, O’Keith & McFiddle, Cedar County Cobras, Blame Not The Bard and A Rogue Wave!

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The Englert Theatre

Family Folk Machine Spring 2022 Concert

May 14 – 3:00pm

Iowa City’s Family Folk Machine presents their spring concert “Sing a Song: To Noisemaking!”

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Chauncey Swan Park

Distillations Premiere

May 14 – 8:00pm

Distillations is a thirty-minute foray into the ground state of the juggling universe.

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Dizzy Wright

May 15 – 8:00pm

Dizzy Wright performs at Gabe’s.

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Why we love the Middle Ages — and still have things to learn from them

by Michael E. Moore, May 9
An enormous forest extends for thousands of miles in every direction, with rivers that the traveler — whether pilgrim or trader — must cross on foot, leading a tired horse. The tracks of bears and wolves are often seen. Elk swim in the cold lakes. There is an eerie absence of people.

Faire play: On the road with a traveling troupe of pirates, bards and jesters

by Elisabeth Chretien, May 10
Spring has come around again! That can mean different things to different people; for me, spring signals the return of Renaissance faire season.

North Liberty Blues & BBQ festival brings the War and Treaty, Lilly Hiatt and more

by Sid Peterson, May 11
After a two-year hiatus, North Liberty’s Blues & BBQ festival is making its return in July for its 14th event. Get ready to indulge in your favorite barbecue and spend an entire day listening to blues and blues-inspired musicians. Yesterday, the festival announced the performers who’ll be taking the stage at Centennial Park.

The once and future king: Riverside Theatre’s Katy Hahn on embodying Henry V and gender-bending Shakespeare

by Katy Hahn, May 11
In Riverside Theatre’s upcoming return to Lower City Park (June 17-July 3, free), I will revisit a role I played first in 2019: Henry Plantagenet, who will have graduated from Prince of Wales (Henry IV Part 1) to King of England (Henry V), a position he held from 1413-1422.