Arts Calendar, UPDATED MAY 10

Premier Bank and Matter, Dubuque's creativity epicenter, have teamed up to bring all of the tri-states premier arts events to you in 365ink and online at Whether it's fine visual arts, staged theater of symphonic music, you'll find it in this list, so you can plan your season around the arts in Dubuque and the Tr-States. If something is missing from this list, please send it to us right away to Click into this blog post for the full calendar of events!

Tri-State Arts Calendar Events

Dubuque Museum of Art 2013 Biennial Juried Exhibition

April 6 – July 21
Sponsored by Marella
Opening April 6th, the fourth Dubuque Museum of Art Biennial Juried Exhibition features exciting works of art by some of the most talented artists in a 200 mile radius of Dubuque. Generously sponsored by Marella fine gifts, located in the Roshek building downtown Dubuque. This home grown exhibition highlights the quality and variety of artwork that is currently being produced by the artists of this area. Special thanks to this year’s juror Mr. James Welu, Director Emeritus of the Worcester Art Museum in Worcester, Massachusetts. Mr. Welu will present a gallery talk on Sunday, April 21st at 1:30 pm. The 2013 Biennial was the most competitive call for entries yet with 124 artists submitting 348 works of art. Of those, 47 artists and 50 works of art were selected by the juror for the exhibition. A Members-Only Preview Reception will be held Friday, April 5, 2013 from 5:30-7:30pm with an awards presentation at 6:00pm; seven artists will receive awards. The reception will also celebrate the openings of Margaret Whiting’s paper sculptures and DMA New Acquisitions. Anyone that is not a member yet but would like to attend the reception can sign up for a membership at the door.

Dubuque Museum of Art Exhibits

• Margaret Whiting: Art and the Environment
  March 22 - July 7

Taming of the Shrew
May 17-19, 7 p.m.
Flora Park Playground
May 18 and 19, 2:00 p.m.
Dubuque Renaissance Faire

Trainwreck Productions presents an hour long adaptation of Shakespeare’s play, full of physical comedy and stage combat. Previews of the play will take place at 12:00 p.m. at DubuqueFest Fine Arts Festival, Washington Park and Town Clock Plaza, Dubuque. All performances are free; donations are accepted. For more information, visit

DubuqueFest Fine Arts Festival
Friday-Sunday, May 17-19
Washington Park / Town Clock

Three days of music, art, and culture featuring a fine art fair, a vinyl record fair, live music on three stages, and interactive art for all ages. Admission is free. Visit

Rave On! Plus... Classic, Rod &
Custom Car Show & Flea Market
 Car Show from Noon - 4 p.m .
Showtime: Saturday, May 18, 7 p.m.
Ohnward Fine Arts Center
From 12:00-4:00 p.m. in the Ohnward Fine

Arts Center parking lot and lobby, 1215 E. Platt St., Maquoketa, IA, check out this car show and flea market. Car registration is from 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.; cost is $10. All makes and models of classic, rod, and custom cars are welcome. Trophies will be given to the top 20 cars with one Best of Show trophy to be awarded. Tables at the flea market cost $10; call (563) 652-9815 to reserve your spot. Admission to the car show and flea market is free. Sandwiches, soda, beer and wine will be available. For more information, visit At 7:00 p.m. at the Ohnward Fine Arts Center, America’s premiere Buddy Holly interpreter, Billy McGuigan, backed by the rockin’ Rave On Band, ignites the stage and breathes new life into the music of Buddy Holly. In this rock and roll tour-deforce, audiences will experience all the thrills of a Buddy Holly concert re-imagined. For tickets or more information, visit

Summer Songs  of the 50’s & 60’s
Saturday, May 18
The Grand Opera House

At 7:30 p.m. at the Grand Opera House, 135 W. 8th St., Dubuque, the 30-piece Grand Pops Orchestra and Chorus under the direction of Paul Hemmer will present summertime hits of the 50s and 60s with guest soloists. Hear many of your favorite hit songs from that wonderful era of popular music. For tickets or more information, call (563) 588-1305 or visit

It Was a Beautiful Country
Saturday, May 18, 7 p.m.
E.B. Lyons / Mines of Spain
At 7:00 p.m. at E. B. Lyons Interpretive

Center, 8991 Bellevue Hts., Dubuque, The Medicine Band presents a rock opera concert about Black Hawk, leader and warrior of the Sauk Native American tribe, as a fundraiser for land expansion at the Mines of Spain. Bring your lawn chairs for this outdoor concert. In case of inclement weather, the concert will move inside. A free will offerings will be accepted. For more information, call (563) 566-0620 or visit

Dubuque Renaissance Faire
Saturday & Sunday, May 18 & 19, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Camp Albrecht Acres, 14837 Sherrill Rd.

A captivating family event enabling visitors of all ages to beenchanted by this era of jousting, juggling, music, dance, blades, battles, pirates and peers. Visit

Big Band Concerts
May 19, 5-8 p.m.
Hotel Julien Dubuque
Ken Killian’s 15 member Classic Big Band will be performing at the Hotel Julien Dubuque on Sunday May 19th from 5-8 p.m.. You’ll get to hear more “new” arrangements that have been preserved from the Jurgens library along with some other tunes that have a “newer” wrinkle to them! Additional Classic Big Band Sundays for 2013 are June 30th (their 30th Anniversary, by the way.....yes, there will be cake!) August 18th, and October 13th. Performances will all be in the Grande Ballroom of the Hotel Julien, and tickets are available at the door or by calling 608-348-3748. Additianally, Ken’s Jazz Trio will be appearing in the Hotel Julien’s Riverboat Lounge on Wednesdays from 5-7 p.m. through the end of March.

Dixieland Sundays
Sundays, 5 p.m.
River’s Edge Plaza

Dubuque’s Americana Band, aka Guerrilla Band or Band of Infidels, will be playing Dixieland and ragtime music in the American Trust gazebo by the riverfront outside the Ice Harbor this summer. Weather and mayflies permitting, the group will start playing about 5 p.m. on Sundays starting now. They will play traditional Dixieland music as the riverboat Twilight docks, and the Spirit of Dubuque leaves the Ice Harbor for the Sunday evening cruise. Uniquely, anyone can show up and join the group and jam with them. For more details visit

B.B. King 
Presented by the Telegraph Herald 
Tuesday, May 28, 8 p.m. (See page 23) 
Mississippi Moon Bar, Diamond Jo Casino
There is only one King of the blues and that’s Riley B. King, affectionately known as B.B. King.  B.B. King has released over 60 albums, many of them considered blues classics, like live blues album Live at the Regal and Together for the First Time.  Soon after his number one hit, “Three O’clock Blues,” B.B. began touring nationally, and he has never stopped, performing an average of 125 concerts a year. His classic songs such as “Prayin’ the Cost to be the Boss,” “Caldonia,” “How Blue Can You Get,” “Everyday I Have the Blues,” and “Why I Sing the Blues,” are concert and fan staples. B.B. King has received many awards including the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame Lifetime Achievement Award and the Orville H. Gibson Lifetime Achievement Award.  B.B. King’s imprint was added to the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1991 and he was inducted into the Blues Foundation Hall of Fame in 1984 and into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987.  B.B. has also been presented with fifteen Grammy Awards over the years.  Ticket prices range from $45-$85

Matt & Ben
Fri-Sun, May 31-June 2 & June 7-9
Five Flags Theater

At 7:30 p.m. Fridays-Saturdays and 2:00 p.m. Sundays in the Bijou Room of the Five Flags Theater, 405 Main St., Dubuque, Fly-by-Night Productions presents a comedy by Mindy Kaling and Brenda Withers. How did Matt Damon and Ben Affleck come up with the screenplay Good Will Hunting that awarded them Oscar gold and made them elite Hollywood stars? This hilarious play takes us back to the pivotal moment in 1996 when the finished script that would change their lives fell from the ceiling. For more information, visit See page 28 for details on Dubuquefest weekend including Dubuquefest Fine Arts Festival, The Dubuque Renaissance Festival and the Old House Enthusiasts Tour!

Tri-State Wind Symphony Shows
Thurs., May 30, 7:30 p.m., Eagle Point Park Band Shell
Brian Hughes Conducts 
Sunday, June 2, 6:30 p.m., Dubuque Arboretum
June 6, 7:30 p.m., Eagle Point Park Band Shell
Feat. Dbq. Chorale & Loras College Flute Ensemble

Events & Articles


Posted on May 22, 2015

May 23–September 7, 2015
National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium
One-hundred and three years ago, in the early morning of April 15, 1912, the “practically unsinkable” RMS Titanic, then the largest ship in the world sank into the frigid waters of the North Atlantic after a collision with an iceberg. The latest triumph of the White Star Line and a modern engineering marvel, Titanic sank on her maiden voyage to New York taking more than 1,500 lives with her. A tragedy forever etched in our collective consciousness and immortalized in print and film, the story of Titanic is as epic as the ship itself. 

Dubuque Food Co-Op Celebrating First Anniversary

Posted on May 22, 2015

On May 29th, 2014, the Dubuque Food Co-Op celebrated their Grand Opening. Excitement ensued while people came in to visit and gain a better understanding about the store and its goals. Now, almost a year later, the Co-Op continues to provide a great service to the Dubuque community. However, the road to their first Anniversary was not necessarily easy.
The America’s River Festival

Posted on May 22, 2015

The America’s River Festival, presented by American Trust & Savings Bank, is a two day festival filled with national acts from the world of country music including Dan + Shay, Sam Hunt and Old Dominion on Friday, June 12, and classic rock legends Tommy James & The Shondells, America & Grand Funk Railroad and America on Saturday, June 13. 
Sandy Hook Nights: Select Fridays through September

Posted on May 22, 2015

The weather that motorcycle riders have been dreaming of has finally arrived and bikes are being pulled out of storage to hit the road. But where to go? The Sandy Hook Tavern offers a biker-styled alternative on select Friday evenings through the summer with Sandy Hook (Bike) Nights. Beginning Friday, May 29 and running through September, the 13 Friday events will feature a mix of live music, steak feeds, games and raffles, with each night benefitting a different charitable organization. 
Kids' Summer Fun: Activities and Adventures for Tots and Teens

Posted on April 02, 2015

There’s a lot to get through so let’s get to it. If you plan this right, you won’t have to deal with noisy kids for more than a few hours all summer long.