As the summer heats up, so do the celebrations, competitions and other happenings. Here are some food-related events that you might want to get on your calendar before it fills up.
May 17: Cookie Cart St. Paul marks the one-year anniversary of its East Side home with an open house that includes informal tours from the youth employees and cookie discounts (nine cookies for $6, a nod to the bakery’s address at 946 Payne Ave.). The nonprofit employs and empowers urban teens by providing them with work, life and leadership skills. Last year the bakery hired 58 teens, who completed nearly 9,000 hours of hands-on training and employment. Free; 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; 946 Payne Ave., St. Paul; cookiecart.org
May 18: Though flooding made planning dicey, the sixth annual Twin Cities Burger Battle will go on as planned. It will be Harriet Island’s first outdoor event of the season. More than 20 local restaurants cook up their best burger and compete for votes from event-goers and judges. Proceeds benefit the Sanneh Foundation, which empowers underprivileged youths. The event has raised more than $60,000 for the foundation. Tickets include unlimited sampling, and beer from Summit and Fulton breweries. The event is for those 21 and older. $60; 5 to 8:30 p.m., Harriet Island, St. Paul; more information, including a link to buy tickets, go to tcburgerbattle.com
May 30: Attention wine and rose connoisseurs, Lowertown Wine and Spirits and Black Dog Cafe have joined forces to host a “casual tasting.” Lowertown Rose and Summer Wine Tasting will feature over 30 wines ideal for summer, including boutique, sustainable and organic varieties from around the world. And if you come across something that suits your fancy, there’s a 20 percent discount for purchases during the event. In addition to the tasting, music by Missy Anderson will be featured. Tickets are $25 and available through Eventbrite or at Black Dog Cafe; 5-7:30 p.m. Black Dog Cafe, 308 Prince St., St Paul; blackdogstpaul.com
June 5: Urban Growler celebrates Poland in a big way at the brewery’s fifth annual Polish Heritage Celebration. They describe it as “Oktoberfest, except it’s Polish and in June.” They’ll tap Grodziskie, a Polish brew, and there will be Polish dance demos, live accordion music from Dan Daddy Squeeze, and Polish food, including sausages. There are also random drawings for free red T-shirts. Free; 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m.; 2325 Endicott St., St. Paul; facebook.com/events/1016331935225617
June 8: The sixth annual Minnesota Cider Festival returns to St. Paul, where cider fans can enjoy ciders that include new seasonal releases and specialty varieties amid lake views at Como Lakeside Pavilion. Unlimited samples from 100 local, national and international cider brands will be featured. Food will also be on hand for purchase. Starting at $50 general admission; 1 to 5 p.m.; Como Lakeside Pavilion, 1360 Lexington Parkway N., St. Paul; tickets available at: bit.ly/2UUTrA2
June 9: Wild Food Fandango, which touts itself as the largest annual chef-driven food event in the state, returns for a third installment. This one, hosted on the grounds of St. Paul’s Keg & Case West 7th Market, will feature 15 competing chefs creating dishes from wild products supplied by Forest to Fork and RJ’s Meats. Fandango guests can sample the creations and cast their vote for best dish. The event will also feature beer from Clutch Brewing Company, cocktails and live music. Following the competition, additional musical acts will be featured during Fandango Fest 19’, a free concert benefiting the Huntington’s Disease Society of America, Minnesota Chapter, with Black River Revue, Kind Country and The Big Wu taking center stage. $45 general admission, $95 VIP; starting at 1 p.m., Keg & Case West 7th Market, 928 W. Seventh St., St. Paul; wildfoodfandango.com
June 15: Mississippi Market is celebrating its 40th anniversary with a family-friendly block party at its West Seventh location that will include live music from local musicians; food truck fare for sale; food samples from farmers and vendors like Ferndale Market, Break Bread, Peace Coffee and Izzy’s Ice Cream; kids’ activities and more. Free; 3-7 p.m.; 1500 W.
Seventh St., St. Paul; msmarket.coop/blog/40th-anniversary-block-party
July 14: Organized by Reverie Mobile Kitchen and The Herbivorous Butcher, the inaugural Vegan Invasion: Food Festival & Drink Sampler, touted as the first of its kind in Minnesota, sets out to eat, drink and shop all things vegan from plant-based companies and Minnesota drink makers. Vegan food businesses include Crepe & Spoon, Evan’s Organic Eatery, The J. Mobile and Vegan East. Drinks vendors Surly Brewing, Alexis Bailly Vineyard, Deane’s Kombucha and Misfit Coffee are also part of the lineup. The event will spotlight cruelty-free products in fashion, bath, beauty and beyond. Music from DJ Jake Rudh will also be featured. Ticket prices include a souvenir glass and unlimited drink samples. Metro Transit is offering free public transportation rides. The event is all ages. Noon-5 p.m.; Lake Monster Brewing, 550 Vandalia St., St. Paul; tickets are $20 for designated drivers or ages 11-20, $25 general, $45 VIP; veganinvastionmn.com
It’s food truck festival season, and three from the Minnesota Food Truck Festival group are coming up: