Events Calendar

Pink Neighbor (photo by Meanz Chan)

DEAR READERS: For events taking place in person, please check online first or call the venue for last-minute cancellations. Send your events to*

Tuesday, April 13 • The Violet Realm: Sci-fi/Fantasy Writing Group. Second and fourth Tuesdays on Facebook, 6–8 p.m. Free.

Tuesday, April 13 • ReMix: Fireworks & Fanfare. Join the Des Moines Symphony for a fun evening of cupcakes, cocktails, and trivia held live on Zoom. No musical expertise required. 7–8 p.m. RSVP at Free.

Wednesday, April 14 • FACC Presents: Kinky Boots. The fashion-forward big-hearted musical from London’s West End. With songs by Grammy- and Tony-winning pop icon Cyndi Lauper. Livestream available through April 20.

Wednesday, April 14 • The Cedar Room: All-Genre Writing Group. Second Wednesdays, 6–8 p.m., on Facebook. Visit to learn about various writing-group genres. Free.

Wednesday, April 14 • Englert’s STAGES: Soultru. 7 p.m., online. Soultru is among a group of young artists that are the backbone of the Quad Cities indie music scene. With 72-hour digital access. RSVP.

Wednesday, April 14 • Cafe Paradiso Virtual Open Mic. Tune in weekly for unpredictable entertainment. Sign up in advance to perform. 8 p.m., Facebook.

Thursday, April 15 • Virtual Game Night: Escape the Museum! Pentacrest debuts a virtual option for their popular Escape Room challenge. 7–8:15 p.m., online. RSVP at

Thursday, April 15 • The Golden Attic: Poetry Writing Group. First and third Thursdays on Facebook, 6–8 p.m. Free.

Thursday, April 15 • The Thirsty Word. Midwest writers share original works on third Thursdays. All are welcome. 7:30–9 p.m., Zoom. Sign up to read at

Thursday, April 15 • A Rocky Mountain High Experience—A Tribute to John Denver. Five Flags Center, Dubuque.

Thursday, April 15 • Live from the Temple: Fireworks & Fanfare (Virtual). “The Rejoicing” from Handel’s Royal Fireworks is a fitting opener for an evening of exhilarating brass and percussion. 7 p.m., online. Tickets at

Friday, April 16 • Mirrorbox Theatre: Credible. This raw, darkly funny, and boldly theatrical one-woman show explores gender bias in the medical system and living with chronic pain during the opioid epidemic. This true story follows a decade-long discovery process from the inside out, illuminating the life-saving power of having your pain seen and believed. RSVP. 8 p.m.,

Friday, April 16 • smART Talks: Artists, Activism and Museums (Virtual). Jennifer (Otis) Miller will share her research on artists, activism, and museums using two examples from her art installations and latest visual arts and virtual writing projects, begun during her 2021 Obermann Fellowship with the African American Museum. 11–11:30 a.m., Zoom.

Fri-Sat-Sun, April 16–18 • Monster Jam. World-class drivers push some massive machines to their   limits in this family-friendly extravaganza. Various times, Wells Fargo Arena, Des Moines.

Friday, April 16 • A Rocky Mountain High Experience—A Tribute to John Denver. Adler Theatre, Davenport,

Saturday, April 17 • Verlo Mattress Winter Comedy Series: Mark Poolos with John Russell. See Minnesota’s bumbling jolly giant live. 8 p.m., Five Flags Center, Dubuque. See for safety measures.

Saturday, April 17Connect, Grow, Share a Row. Learn what master gardeners are doing across the state of Iowa to address food insecurity and how you can help. 9–10 a.m., Zoom.

Saturday, April 17 • A Rocky Mountain High Experience—A Tribute to John Denver. Paramount Theater, Cedar Rapids, Also on April 15 at Five Flags Center, Dubuque.

Sat-Sun, April 17–18 • IPR Broadcasts Puccini’s La Boheme. Sat. 8 p.m., Sun. 4 p.m.

Sunday, April 18 • Ani DiFranco: Revolutionary Love Life. Celebrate the release of Ani’s 22nd studio album ‘Revolutionary Love’ with a full concert from Ani, Terence Higgins, and special guest Ivan Neville. 7 p.m., livestream.

Sunday, April 18 • Julien Dubuque International Film Festival. Films from both 2020 and 2021 will be screened over eight days in Dubuque, with additional events in Galena, Illinois, on April 16 & 17.

Monday, April 19The Parchment Lounge (Virtual). All-genre writing group open to all writers. Mondays on Facebook, 6:30-8:30 p.m.

Tuesday, April 20 • The Rainbow Room: LGBTQ-Themed Writing Group. First and third Tuesdays. 6:30–8:30 p.m., Facebook. Free.

Tuesday, April 20 • Dive in with the Stanley: Odilon Redon (Virtual). Slow down to look closely at Odilon Redon’s Esquisse de vitrail with a discussion led by Stanley Museum of Art Director Lauren Lessing and film critic Uri Lessing. Live on Instagram, 7–8 p.m., #MuseumFromHome.

Wednesday, April 21 • Englert’s STAGES: Pink Neighbor. Intimate, loungey, neighborly. 7 p.m., online. With 72-hour access. RSVP.

Wednesday, April 21 • Valašsky Frgal: Large Kolach. A plum and pear filling, with streusel, on dough the shape of a pizza. Yum! Cook and eat this authentic Czech and Slovak dish from the comfort of your home. 6–8:30 p.m., Zoom.

Thursday, April 22 • Earth Day: Habitat Helpers Program. Help remove invasive plant species from Jefferson County Park. 6 p.m. Meet at north side parking lot, Jefferson County Park.  (641) 472-4421.

Thursday, April 22 • Fly Dance Company: The Gentlemen of Hip Hop. 7:30 p.m., Burlington Memorial. (319) 752-0336.

Thursday, April 22 • Writers’ Night at Mount Vernon Creates. Local writers share new work. Masks required. 7–8:30 p.m., Mt. Vernon Creates, 121 1st St. NW, Mount Vernon. Sign up at

Fri-Sat-Sun, April 23–25 • Blank Park Zoo: Wild Lights Festival. Wed–Sun, 7–10 p.m. until May 31.

Saturday, April 24 • Villages Folk School Workshops. Choose from Soap Making, Blacksmithing for Beginners, or Intro to Spinning Wool. Various times and locations, Keosauqua.

Sat-Sun, April 24–25 • Portrayal of Mount Vernon Artist Event. Artists gather to capture Mount Vernon and Lisbon in plein air paintings, photography, sculpture, and more, with work to be exhibited in June and July. 10 a.m.–3 p.m., Mount Vernon. (319) 895-2682.

Monday, April 26The Parchment Lounge (Virtual). All-genre writing group open to all writers. Mondays on Facebook, 6:30-8:30 p.m.

Wednesday, April 28 • FACC Presents: Secret Impressionists (Livestream). Great Art on Screen documentary series. Secret Impressionists reveals the story of the art revolution sparked by the Impressionist movement of the late 1800s, unveiling 50 previously unseen works by Manet, Caillebotte, Renoir, Monet, Cézanne, Signac, Sisley, and Morisot. Livestream available through May 4.

Wednesday, April 28 • The Scarlet Boudoir: Romance-Themed Writing Group. Fourth Wednesdays on Facebook, 6–8 p.m.

Wednesday, April 28 Englert’s STAGES: Precious. Neo-classical dungeon synth artist from Iowa City. 7 p.m., online, with 72-hour digital access.

Wednesday, April 28 • Beatles vs. Stones—A Musical Showdown. 7:30 p.m., Coralville Center for the Performing Arts, Coralville.

Layale Chaker

Thursday, April 29 • Lyale Chaker, Violin/Composer. Featuring her quintet and special guest Kinan Azmeh. Layale Chaker was a winner of the Silkroad Seeds inaugural 2020 award—the latest in an impressive series of honors. 7:30 online,

Thurs-Fri., April 29–30 Mission Creek Festival: DUOS—A Celebration of Music & Literature. The virtual festival features musicians and writers performing their work and discussing the creative process through one-on-one conversations. This year’s festival, produced by The Englert Theatre, will be streamed exclusively through outer/most.

Thursday, April 29Reflecting on Glass: Slow Looking & Deep Feeling. Connect with the work of artist Judith Schaechter with paper and pen handy. See, feel, and share together. 6:30 p.m. via Zoom. (Pictured: The Birth of Eve, stained glass)

Thursday, April 29Virtual Game Night. The Old Capitol hosts a reinvented Clue Murder Mystery game. 7–8:15 p.m., online.

Thursday, April 29 • Beatles vs. Stones—A Musical Showdown. 7 p.m., Bridge View Center, Ottumwa. (641) 684-7000.

Thursday, April 29 Spring Cocktails & Appetizers Online Cooking Class. Make a cucumber basil gimlet, rhubarb spritzer, asparagus radish tapenade, and tomato peach relish. 5:30–7:30 p.m., online. The Wallace Centers of Iowa, Des Moines.

Fri-Sat-Sun, April 30–May 2Dance Into Spring. Five works performed outdoors, highlighting a diverse range of performers, all with ties to Iowa. Ballet Des Moines are joined by performers from the University of Iowa’s Dance Company, and special guests from the acclaimed Miami City Ballet, Carlos Quenedit, a former Ballet Des Moines dancer, and Katia Carranza. Musicians from the Roseman String Quartet, featuring members of the Des Moines Symphony, will provide live music for one ballet. BYO chairs and blankets. Friday 7:30 p.m., Lauridsen Amphitheater, Water Works Park, Des Moines; Saturday 7:30 p.m., Hancher Green outside Hancher Auditorium, UI Campus, Iowa City; Sunday 5:30 p.m., Riverside Park, Muscatine.

Opening night of Dance Into Spring will be held at Lauridsen Amphitheater, Water Works Park in Des Moines on Friday, April 30, 7:30 p.m.

Fri-Sat-Sun, April 30-May 2 • Middle of the Map Tattoo Convention. Guests include tattoo model Bernadette Macias and Jesse Smith from Ink Masters. Various times, Hy-Vee Hall, Des Moines.

Saturday, May 1 • Iowa City Poetry al Fresco is an evening of open-air progressive readings: This socially distanced event will take place outdoors every half hour from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. (rain date, May 8), at various businesses and private residences in the Northside Neighborhood (the area bounded by Market, Dubuque, Dodge, and Brown streets).

Sat-Sun, May 1–2 • Mount Vernon Chalk the Walk. Downtown Mount Vernon is transformed into many works of public art, including the 2021 collaborative chalk-art piece, The Scream by Edvard Munch. 10 a.m.–6 p.m., Mount Vernon.

Saturday, May 1 • Pletýnka Bun (Houska). Bake this buttery braided bread with Chef Tom Slepicka. 2:30–6 p.m., Zoom.

Saturday, May 1 • Villages Folk School Workshops. Choose from Rejuvenating Spring Edibles, Raku Pottery, or Glass Blowing Basics. Various times and locations, Keosauqua.

Sunday, May 2 • Irish Music Session. Weather allowing. 3–5 p.m., Fairfield’s town square. Free.

Monday, May 3 • Chicago Harp Quartet. 7:30 p.m., The Capitol Theater, Burlington. (319) 752-0336.

Monday, May 3The Parchment Lounge (Virtual). All-genre writing group open to all writers. Mondays on Facebook, 6:30-8:30 p.m.

Thursday, May 6 • Ron White. The funnyman from the Blue Collar Comedy Tour is now a chart-topping, Grammy-nominated comedian and film actor. 8 p.m., Bridge View, Ottumwa. (641) 684-7000.