Jason Alvey remembers exactly where he was when he fell in love with craft beer. It was 2001, he had moved here from Australia and he was at the Uptown Pizza Luce when someone bought a pitcher of Summit Extra Pale Ale. "It's been a slippery spiral ever since," he said. "And here I am now with a specialty beer store."
Alvey sells only craft beer at the Four Firkins, 8009 Minnetonka Blvd., St. Louis Park. Five local breweries will offer free samples at Saturday's grand opening -- Brau Brothers from 2-5 p.m., Surly, Flat Earth, Summit and Schell's starting at 6 p.m. -- and everybody's favorite bar-on-wheels, the PedalPub, will be on hand at 7 p.m. for rides.
Alvey said he couldn't believe someone else hadn't already opened a store like this. "There's a massive beer scene here," he said. Customers can expect a free tasting every Friday and Saturday night. He's also starting a monthly "Beer Evangelist Class" focusing on beer styles. The first (June 20) is already filled. Check it out online at TheFourFirkins.com.Air guitar heroes
I think it was the great air guitarist Björn Türoque (pronounced "byorn to rock") who once said, "To err is human. To air guitar ... divine." Tonight, a new group of wannabe air guitar competitors will find out exactly what that means at the regional U.S. Air Guitar Championships. The annual competition is fun to watch, and if you think you have what it takes, you can still enter. All you need is a stage name, a 60-second routine and $20 for the entry fee. Two dozen cities are holding regionals with the winners going to the national showdown Aug. 8 in San Francisco. The U.S. champ will then represent us at the world championship, in a country that really knows how to rock -- Finland. For info, go to usairguitar.com. (10 p.m. today. 1308 SE. 4th St., Mpls. $14. 612-604-0222. varsitytheater.org)A funny Father's Day
This sounds like a rousing Father's Day event: a comedy show at the lesbian bar Pi. The show features Tig Notaro, who has appeared on "The Sarah Silverman Program" (tignation.com), Michelle Biloon (michellebiloon.com) and local star Mary Mack (marymackcomedy.com). (8 p.m. Sun., 2532 25th Av. S., Mpls. $8. 612-877-4368. pibarandrestaurant.com)Party to end poverty
You might not expect this from a nightclub named Envy, but owner Deepak Nath will host his second event since April for charity. Tonight's is a happy hour. A $5 entry fee and money from a silent auction will go to Operation Dignity, a Bloomington-based nonprofit that helps communities in Ghana. Auction items include: handmade crafts from Ghana, restaurant gift certificates, a room at the Chambers, an autographed photo of Viking Adrian Peterson and more. (5-7 p.m. today, 400 1st Av. N., Mpls. $5. 612-673-9694. envympls.com)Juneteenth party
The folks at Trocaderos are getting a head start on this year's Juneteenth celebration, commemorating the end of slavery. The annual all-day festival is next Saturday in Theodore Wirth Park, but this Saturday you can celebrate with DJ Mix.well and a lineup of local rappers and R&B singers. (8 p.m. Sat., 107 3rd Av. N., Mpls. $5 before 11 p.m. 21 & older. 612-465-0440. trocaderos.com)