Best Things To Do

The Top 32 Events in Seattle This Week: July 24–30, 2023

Alicia Keys, Seattle Art Fair, and More Top Picks
July 24, 2023
Peruse the best of modern and contemporary art at the seventh edition of the Seattle Art Fair. (Seattle Art Fair via Facebook)
Like always, you can count on us to fill you in on the crème de la crème of events. This week, our picks include everything from Alicia Keys' Keys to the Summer Tour to the Seattle Art Fair to the Bellevue Arts Museum Arts Fair.

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Anastacia-Reneé with Zola Mumford: Side Notes from the Archivist: Poems
Inspiring humans alert! Former Seattleite, formidable poet, genre-crossing artist, TEDx speaker, and podcaster Anastacia-Reneé (whew!) will drop by Seward Park in celebration of Side Notes from the Archivist: Poems, a funky, feminist new collection that illuminates Black femme culture through coming-of-age poems set in '80s Philly. Local librarian, researcher, and writer Zola Mumford, who has also curated the Seattle Black Film Festival for over 20 years, will join Anastacia-Reneé in conversation. LC
(Third Place Books, Seward Park)



In Person Author Talk: Bricia Lopez, Asada Past Event List
There's nothing better than an al fresco gathering of friends with music, food, and community. In her newest book, Mexican American restaurateur and author Bricia Lopez imparts the tradition of the "asada" (an outdoor meal revolving around grilled meats), with recipes for grilled meats, fish, salads, side dishes, and agua frescas. She'll chat about the release with local James Beard Award-winning food writer and noted bagel enthusiast J. Kenji Lopez Alt. JB
(Book Larder, Fremont)

Sasha taqʷšəblu LaPointe Past Event List
Coast Salish writer Sasha LaPointewill drop by Third Place Books following the success of her 2022 memoir Red Paint: The Ancestral Autobiography of a Coast Salish Punk, which was the winner of this year's Pacific Northwest Book Award and has since been released in paperback. (LaPointe also recently dropped a mystical debut poetry collection, Rose Quartz, which was deemed "a tapestry of stone and tarot, story and dream" by National Book Award finalist Danez Smith; the focus of this event is Red Paint, but I suggest snagging a copy of Rose Quartz, too.) LC
(Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park)



BECU Outdoor Movies at Marymoor Park Past Event List
This year's outdoor movie offerings at Marymoor Park are old-school, dog-friendly, Americana FUN, complete with live music and familiar flicks beneath the barely visible stars. (We live in a light-polluted city—can't have it all.) The much-loved summer film series will continue with the pro-military bro fest Top Gun: Maverick on July 26.Snuggle up, bring a picnic, or chow down on bites from the food trucks on site. LC
(Marymoor Park, Redmond)



Fun & Flirty: A Comedy & Dating Show Experience Past Event List
Dating is downright spooky business, so any opportunity to laugh at the whole process of "finding the one" is more than welcome. Enter Fun & Flirty Productions, which blends comedy and "interactive dating experiences" in a way that makes the whole shebang a little more survivable (and also very funny). Hosted by PowerPoint master and professional singles consultant Zahnae Aquino, the show will pepper comedy sets with pitches by sexy singles. Hey, there are weirder ways to meet your soulmate. LC
(Comedy/Bar, Capitol Hill)


Jefferson Jumpstart Past Event List
This summer music series will help you "jumpstart" your weekend early with free concerts each Thursday at the neighborhood's most scenic sunset spot. This week, local ensemble REPOSADO, who describe their "tequila funk" signature sound as a blend of Afrobeat, jazz, Latin, and soul, will grace the outdoor amphitheater after an opening lion dance performance. AV
(Jefferson Park, Beacon Hill)


Alex Pappademas and Joan LeMay with Megan Seling: Quantum Criminals: Ramblers, Wild Gamblers, and Other Sole Survivors from the Songs of Steely Dan Past Event List
Smooth, sunny groovers Steely Dan are, as we all know, the true titans of '70s soft rock—and if you're not familiar with them, do your "dirty work" and listen to Aja. (Listen, I tried really hard not to make that pun, but it happened anyway. I'm sorry.) Let's move on! In Quantum Criminals: Ramblers, Wild Gamblers, and Other Sole Survivors from the Songs of Steely Dan, author Alex Pappademas conjures the strange characters that populate Steely Dan songs, interpreted through imagery by artist Joan LeMay and expanded upon in short essays. If you're into dad rock, cultural context, and laughing a lot, grab a copy and catch this convo with Pappademas, LeMay, and Stranger arts and culture editor Megan Seling. LC
(Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park)



OUTdoor Cinema Past Event List
Dust off your fishnets and bustiers, 'cuz The Rocky Horror Picture Show is coming to Cal Anderson Park this week. This is no ordinary screening: presented by Three Dollar Bill Cinema as part of their ongoing OUTdoor Cinema programming, the flick comes complete with giveaways and to-be-revealed entertainment. It's also TDBC's first time back at Cal Anderson since before the pandemic, so why not join them in doin' the time warp again? LC
(Cal Anderson Park, Capitol Hill)


Tori Amos Past Event List
Your favorite mezzo-soprano Tori Amos, known for her surrealist feminist lyricism and unique sideways piano-playing style, will stop by to play some songs from throughout her prolific career. Some of my favorite Tori-isms include: "So you found a girl who thinks really deep thoughts, what's so amazing about really deep thoughts?" (from "Silent All These Years") and "Can I have your sweater? 'Cause it's cold, cold, cold in my hole, hole, hole" ("Mr. Zebra"). AV
(Chateau Ste. Michelle, Woodinville)



Solomon Georgio Past Event List
Biting social commentator, openly gay African immigrant, and fierce diva Soloman Georgio began his career in Seattle's stand-up scene. He's since performed at Bumbershoot and on Conan, written for Spongebob Squarepants, and landed a Comedy Central special. Not a bad trajectory, Georgio!! We're glad he's heading back to his old stomping grounds to tell us about how much he hates tickling. LC
(Here-After at the Crocodile, Belltown)


5th Annual Summer School Brewfest Past Event List
School may be out for summer, but you can seek out some extracurricular edification at this beer festival with over 40 handcrafted ales and ciders from Washington and Oregon, as well as food specials. Classic '60s rock group Jet City and local blues legend Sonny Hess will provide music. JB
(McMenamins Anderson School, Bothell)


Blastfest: Seattle's First Afrobeats Music Festival Past Event List
Blastfest is the first-ever Afrobeats music festival in Seattle to celebrate all things African pop music and culture. The lineup features huge names, which is super impressive considering it's the festival's debut; we’re talkin’ Billboard record-breaking artist Asake, international phenom/Queen of Afrobeats Tiwa Savage, rising Beninese-born vocalist Ayra Starr, South African rapper Focalistic, Alté mastermind Mannywellz, and more. But that's not all! There will also be a row of local food trucks and a market showcasing Black-owned businesses. AV
(Seattle Center, Uptown)

boygenius with Carly Rae Jepsen and Illuminati Hotties Past Event List
Like the Highwaymen, Temple of the Dog, and Traveling Wilburys, boygenius is a phenomenon that has transcended their "supergroup" title. Singer-songwriters Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers, and Lucy Dacus braid their talents together into a cohesive unit that thrives on harmonies, storytelling, and genuine friendship. Their debut album, The Record, effortlessly glides between acapella hymns ("Without You Without Them"), fuzzy alt-rock ("$20"), and emotive indie folk ("Cool About It"). But the real magic comes when this trio performs live—it's clear from theirinternet presence that they actually enjoy being on tour (have you seen themsmooch on stage??) Their love and admiration for each other is palpable. Plus, now that queer icon/pop poet laureate Carly Rae Jepsen is fresh off her Pride Month circuit, she's jumping on some boygenius tour dates to support her latest album, The Loneliest Time. LA-based "tenderpunk" band Illuminati Hotties will get the show started. AV
(Gorge Amphitheatre, George)

Chamber Music in the Park Past Event List
Each summer, Seattleites sprawl across local parks to hear masterful chamber musicians play their instruments in the open air. For this week's concert, nearly a dozen musicians from the Chamber Music Society will take to Volunteer Park with classical works from 19th century composers Antonín Dvořák and Johannes Brahms. AV
(Volunteer Park, Capitol Hill)


Too Beautiful To Live Past Event List
Too Beautiful to Live follows two longtime pals "goofing their way through the world the best they can," a premise that'll appeal if you're already a fan of co-host Luke Burbank, who also hosts the Portland-based live radio show Live Wire. Anticipate analyses of 25-year-old film reviews and deep discussion on whether or not Andrew Walsh’s neighbors are secretly using his garbage bins. (For new listeners to TBTL, I recommend getting a sense of their snarky style with this Barbenheimer episode.) LC
(Neptune Theatre, University District)



Alicia Keys: Keys to the Summer Tour Past Event List
Whenever Alicia Keys' inspirational neo-soul used to play on the radio, I dismissed it as "mom music"—aka music gentle enough to play on Warm 106.9 (my mom's go-to radio station). These days, I turn the volume up on songs like "Fallin'," "If I Ain't Got You," and "My Boo ft. Usher." Is it because I am now at peak childbearing age? Perhaps. "Girl On Fire" is still a skip for me—but I bet I'll get there someday. Life's too short to be snobbish about easy-listening radio pop! Keys will help get you in that "empire state of mind" on her Keys to the Summer tour with support from Nigerian singer-songwriter Simi. AV
(Climate Pledge Arena, Uptown)

Le Ren with Maita Past Event List
On her latest album Leftovers, Montreal-based folk artist Le Ren forms a patchwork quilt with the scraps of the relationships in her life (family, friends, and lovers). “When I think of leftovers, I think of things that have been cast aside,” she noted in the album’s press materials. “When they’re picked back up or remembered, they can be repurposed… Leftovers came to mean a collection of feelings and moments of the past that still remain relevant to my present.” The album even has the classic, comforting quality of a quilt with intricately plucked guitars and soft whispery vocals. As if you needed more of a reason to attend this show, PNW treasure MAITA will open the show with tracks from her most recent album, I Just Want To Be Wild For You. AV
(Sunset Tavern, Ballard)

Parliament Funkadelic ft. George Clinton Past Event List
Musical innovator and rainbow-haired legend George Clinton will ignite the Paramount with his pioneering psychedelic-funk collective Parliament-Funkadelic. Prepare for the show by revisiting their seminal albums like Maggot Brain, One Nation Under Funk, and Mothership Connection. This is reportedly Clinton's last tour, so it's not to be missed! Plus, trailblazing ska band Fishbone will open. Free your mind...and your ass will follow! AV
(Paramount Theatre, Downtown)



Barbie Past Event List
Brought forth from the primordial depths of the mid-'90s, where Barbie remains in perpetuity because that is the last time I played with her, a shiny pink convertible rolls noiselessly into our modern times. It is Barbie's car, and somehow, Barbie is in it. She has roller skates in her purse and she's on a mission. She is played by Margot Robbie, and she's journeying to the human world, or something. Listen, the specifics don't matter. It's the Barbie movie. I will be seated, surrounded by popcorn and Nerds rope, and you will be, too. LC
(SIFF Cinema Egyptian, Capitol Hill, Monday-Sunday)

HUMP! Hardcore Past Event List
If you've seen past HUMP! lineups, you know entries to our amateur porn festival can span from silly and playful to hardcore kink. Well, this one's for you, kinksters! For HUMP! Hardcore we've selected the dirtiest, most intense, and most shocking HUMP! entries from the past 18 years and starting today, you can watch them all in the comfort of your very own sex dungeon designed to look like a doctor's office. There will be latex, there will be spit-roasting, there will be... fish? We weren't lyin' when we said shit gets a little kinky. STRANGER CULTURE EDITOR MEGAN SELING (Streaming, Wednesday-Sunday)

Oppenheimer in 35mm Past Event List
Whether or not you give a damn about the theoretical physicist who helped develop the first nuclear weaponry, Oppenheimer is kind of a must-see—people are going to be yapping about this flick all summer long. You don't want to miss out on the Twitter discourse, do you?! Christopher Nolan's latest stars Cillian Murphy as J. Robert Oppenheimer and Emily Blunt as his wife, Communist biologist and botanist Katherine “Kitty” Oppenheimer. (More info on Kitty, please!!) Presented in 35mm for these screenings, the film also features Florence Pugh, A24 darling Benny Safdie, and a bunch of other actors that'll make you whisper "Wait, they're in this?!" to your friend in the theater. LC
(SIFF Cinema Uptown, Uptown, Monday-Sunday)


Eastside Beer Week Past Event List
Show some love for the beer-makers up and down Washington's I-405 corridor by visiting 28 breweries (or as many as you like) offering special beer releases in Bothell, Kenmore, Woodinville, Kirkland, Redmond, Duvall, Bellevue, Sammamish, Issaquah, Snoqualmie, and Renton.
(Various locations, Monday-Sunday)


Pier Sounds 2023 Past Event List
Take in the panoramic views of Elliott Bay with a soundtrack of PNW talent while enjoying grub from local food trucks. In my opinion, this lineup is their best to date, with artists like psychedelic soul quintet Nada Rosa, hip-hop gem LivT, melancholic pop artist Tomo Nakayama, rock trio Tres Leches, and renowned DJ Chong the Nomad. Plus, there will be live sets from KEXP DJs and an immersive art installation. AV
(Pier 62, Downtown, Friday-Saturday)

Timber! Outdoor Music Festival 2023 Past Event List
Artist Home's popular outdoor music festival Timber! is back for a very full weekend of crowd-friendly folk, rock, and pop performances, as well as all-ages activities like camping, kayaking, and stargazing. This year's lineup includes Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy, dance-punk band Guerilla Toss, Portland-based singer-songwriter Black Belt Eagle Scout, country folk troubadour Nick Shoulders, and plenty more. Performances will be split between the main stage, the more intimate Campfire stage, and Camp Timber for kids’ and group activities. AV
(Tolt-MacDonald Park, Carnation, Thursday-Saturday)


GreenStage's 35th Anniversary of Free Shakespeare in the Park Past Event List
Throw on your old-timey feathered caps and get thee to a nunnery—or maybe just head outdoors for Greenstage's always-free Shakespeare in the Park, which returns for its 35th season this year. They'll offer up productions of the Bard's familiar tragedy Romeo and Juliet and historical drama Henry VI Part One, plus a rotating "Backyard Bard" series of one-hour shows, including forbidden love folktale Cymbeline, at parks across Seattle. The season ends on August 12, so peep their calendar for exact times and locations of their performances. LC
(Various locations, Thursday–Sunday)


Urban Craft Uprising Summer Show Past Event List
Urban Craft Uprising has blossomed from its humble, 50-booth beginnings in 2005, now billing itself as the largest indie craft event in Seattle and the Pacific Northwest. (Judging by the show's consistently strong turnouts, it ain't lying.) This year, they'll bring a two-day summer show back to Magnuson Park Hangar 30, where you can hide from the sun for a couple of hours while snatching up crafty wares by indie artists and bites from on-site food trucks. Serving up a thoughtful alternative to mass-marketed trinkets and big box stores, the show promises all the resin earrings and chunky ceramics my heart desires—and I have a gut feeling you'll find something nifty, too. LC
(Magnuson Park Hangar 30, Sand Point, Saturday-Sunday)


Amoako Boafo: Soul of Black Folks Past Event List
Seattle is the second stop for this exhibition, which began in San Francisco and introduces to the United States a rising star in the world of Black art, Amoako Boafo. Larry Ossei-Mensah curated the exhibit, called Soul of Black Folks—a play on a 1903 book, The Souls of Black Folk, that famously described a feature of Black American consciousness that was not shared with their white counterparts: double consciousness, an "inward twoness," being Black for yourself and being Black for white people. Because the two are incompatible (or incompossible), they could not be resolved in the dialectical manner of a Hegelian synthesis. W. E. B. Du Bois, a thinker familiar with the works of Hegel, authored the book. Another writer familiar with Hegel, Frantz Fanon, is also in the exhibit. The mid-century Martiniquan philosopher is found in one of the self-portraits, "Black Skin, White Mask," near the show's entrance. This work continued Du Bois's twoness, in the context of colonialism, with this line: "The black man has two dimensions. One with his fellows, the other with the white man." And yet this split or twoness is entirely absent from Boafo's show. All of his subjects are Black, many from his country, Ghana, and some from the US, such as Jay-Z and Beyonce ("Sunflower Bee Shirt"). But there is a striking singularity in these portraits, most of which feature Black skin painted with Boafo's fingers. His subjects are very much at home in the world. Some are laughing, some are in love, others in deep thought, others gaze at their painter. None seems split or minding white people. And I think this is the meaning of moving the "s" from Du Bois's "Soul" to "Folk"—those in Boafo's portraits actually have just one soul. STRANGER SENIOR WRITER CHARLES MUDEDE
(Seattle Art Museum, Downtown, Wednesday-Sunday)

Bellevue Arts Museum Arts Fair Past Event List
Celebrating its 77th anniversary this year, the accessible (and family-friendly) Bellevue Arts Museum Arts Fair also claims to be the "largest award-winning arts and crafts festival in the Northwest." Visitors can scope out creative goodies from more than 300 artists, explore the museum's exhibitions for free, check out food trucks, and more. Kiddos can take part in craft activities or find some zen in a relaxation space playing age-appropriate flicks. LC
(Bellevue Arts Museum, Bellevue, Friday-Sunday)

Jónsi: FLÓÐ (Flood) Past Event List
In the recent Art and Performance guide (which is in print, and available all over the city), Jas Keimig described the concept of the installation FLÓÐ (Flood) at the National Nordic Museum as "meditating on climate change." That's certainly how one can read it, but my experience of the work, which is by Icelandic artist and musician Jónsi and occupies a huge space in the museum, recalled less the inevitable underwater Anthropocene world with its sad sea sounds and scent of seaweed, and more Seattle in the middle of winter. Though we have left those short and beautifully bleak days, they can still be found here, in the heart of the Nordic Museum. The strip of flickering light above, the mist, the coldness of it all. One with proper Pacific Northwest blood feels very much at home here. STRANGER SENIOR WRITER CHARLES MUDEDE
(National Nordic Museum, Ballard, Tuesday-Sunday; closing)

Renegade Edo and Paris: Japanese Prints Past Event List
Edo-period (1603–1868) Edo (present-day Tokyo) and fin-de-siècle Paris faced surprisingly similar challenges. A burgeoning middle class in Edo pursued hedonism in revolt of state-sanctioned marginalization, and their new hobbies created subject matter for ukiyo-e (pictures of the floating world); when these images arrived in France, they amplified an anti-establishment joie de vivre and inspired artists like Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec to grow more expressive. Renegade Edo and Paris: Japanese Prints, an exhibition of 90 ukiyo-e and Toulouse-Lautrec works, illustrates the shared "subversive" hedonism of both styles. Pleasure-seekers should go take a look. LC
(Seattle Art Museum, Downtown, Wednesday-Sunday)

Seattle Art Fair Past Event List
Returning to Lumen Field for the seventh year, Seattle Art Fair will continue to offer Seattleites the opportunity to see cool, cutting-edge contemporary artwork from all over the world without leaving town. Plenty of local institutions and artists get involved as well, making for a jam-packed weekend of incredible art-viewing opportunities; I'm stoked to see artists like Catalina Ouyang, whose experimental furniture navigates themes of language, space, and power dynamics, get attention this year. The fair promises to be a bit like last year's—a hectic weekend of avant-garde, artsy goodness that rivals its pre-pandemic days—with public projects by big names like Marita Dingus, Sharita Towne, Tariqa Waters, and Jeffrey Gibson, plus talks on AI art and gallerists visiting from near and far. LC
(Lumen Field Event Center, SoDo, Thursday-Sunday)

Sophia Al-Maria: Not My Bag Remind List
Qatari American artist, writer, and filmmaker Sophia Al-Maria "addresses the orientalist gaze and residual histories of colonialism" in Not My Bag, a solo exhibition of interwoven, layered narratives that question traditional readings of historical events. Working in moving image, text, and collage, Al-Maria's "counter-histories" also visualize alternate futures and address legacies of imperialist violence. I'm stoked for her trilogy of recent films, Beast Type Song (2019), Tender Point Ruin (2021), and Tiger Strike Red (2022), all of which will be on view as part of the multidimensional show. LC
(Henry Art Gallery, University District, Thursday–Sunday)

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