7 Things to Do This Weekend (Sept. 17-19)

Festivals galore — visit the Riff music fest, the Foodie Fair, or Motor City Pride
Jo Koy PC Mandee Johnson Photography
Comedian Jo Koy takes the stage at the Masonic Temple this Friday. // Photograph courtesy of Mandee Johnson Photography

Jo Koy

Don’t let Jo Koy’s penchant for traditional comedic storytelling fool you. This stand-up comic is anything but run-of-the-mill. Koy has spent his 30-plus-year career fine-tuning that style, to make it just as personal and relatable as it is hilarious. In addition to filming a number of specials for both Netflix and Comedy Central, Koy’s extensive resume of late-night show bits includes frequent appearances as a panelist on E!’s Chelsea Lately. $45+. Sept. 17. Masonic Temple Detroit, 500 Temple St., Detroit; themasonic.com

Riff Fest

This weekend, local radio station 101.1 WRIF will host its annual Riff Fest — a music festival featuring acts from across the rock ‘n’ roll spectrum. Performers will range from Grammy-nominated heavy metal superstar Rob Zombie and platinum-selling alternative metal band Chevelle, to rising stars of the rock scene, like Twiztid, South of Eden, and Mac Saturn. $30+. Sept. 18 and 19. DTE Energy Music Theatre, 33 Bob Seger Drive; 313presents.com

Romulus Pumpkin Festival

Downtown Romulus’s 23rd annual Pumpkin Festival will begin Friday evening, with the Parade of Lights, where thousands of spectators will watch as parade vehicles, from bicycles to cement trucks, twinkle their way down Goddard Road. The outdoor festivities, including a classic car show, a craft fair, a cornhole tournament, live music, and games for all ages, will continue throughout the weekend. No cost. Sept. 17-19. Romulus Historical Park, 11147 Hunt St., Romulus; romulusgov.com


For two full days, Campus Martius Park will become an open-air Biergarten, offering a wide selection of craft and seasonal beverages and fall food favorites. Parktoberfest guests will enjoy all manner of entertainment, including live music, photo displays, and dance performances. No cost. Sept. 18 and 19. Campus Martius, 800 Woodward Ave., Detroit; downtowndetroitparks.com

Motor City Pride Festival PC Motor City Pride Archives.jpg
Motor City Pride Festival returns to downtown Detroit this weekend. // Photograph courtesy of Motor City Pride Archives

Motor City Pride Festival

Each year, Downtown Detroit’s Motor City Pride Festival attracts more than 40,000 attendees, making it Michigan’s largest pride celebration. This weekend, the local LGBTQ community will come together once again to celebrate their unique identities at Hart Plaza, which will house a dozen food trucks, local craft beer stands, vendors, children’s activities, and four stages with more than 50 performance artists. These acts will range from bands and comedians to drag queens. It will all culminate in Sunday’s quintessential pride parade. $5. Sept. 18 and 19. Hart Plaza, 1 Hart Plaza, Detroit; motorcitypride.org

Strange Beautiful Music

Strange Beautiful Music is an annual contemporary music marathon from the experimental music collective New Music Detroit. The event will emerge from its 2020 hiatus with two avant-garde productions to be held at Orchestra Hall and Spot Lite Detroit. The concerts will showcase the far-reaching sounds of contemporary chamber music, European folk, experimental electronics, and noise improvisation, among musical varieties. Featured artists will include Kaleigh Wilder, Sophiyah E., Six Mile Strings, and New Music Detroit composer Angélica Negrón. $15. Sept. 18 and 19. Various locations; dso.org

Detroit Foodie Fair

All of metro Detroit’s best cooks, bakers, culinary artisans, and food organizations will gather under one roof this Sunday for the Detroit Foodie Fair. When you join them at Eastern Market, you’ll have the opportunity to cast your vote for Detroit’s Best Foodie Find and leave with bags full of scrumptious bites, hand-crafted kitchenware, and other unique food-related goods. No cost. Sept. 19. Shed 5, Eastern Market, 2934 Russell St., Detroit; detroitfoodiefair.com