If you read our mushroom picker’s guide and thought “That’s way too hard”, I’ve got some good news for you: there’s a way to experience the Russian veneration for all things mushroom without roaming through a forest. This weekend, Babushkina Park will be home to the Mushrooms and Berries Festival. Besides lectures, quests and whatnot, the festival is a good opportunity to taste all the different variations of mushrooms: fresh, roasted, boiled, dried, pickled, and salted. The program promises a 1,000-liter cauldron of hot mushroom soup, so you definitely won’t go hungry.
St. Petersburg is a city that loves its jazz, and this is about to be a very jazzy weekend: if you’re an outdoor kind of person, you’ll love the Pavlovsk Coffee & Jazz ArtFest. On September 29-30, starting at 1 PM and up until 6 PM, nine jazz bands will occupy the many areas of Pavlovsk Park, while baristas will serve steaming-hot coffee. Falling leaves, a cup of java, and soothing tunes sound like the perfect recipe for a very romantic day trip. An entrance ticket to the Park is just 100 rubles, but you’ll probably have to pay for the coffee.
If you’re more partial to the comfort of indoors, opt for Autumn Leaves, a jazz concert by Vova Che Morale and the Sweet Hot Jazz Band. The choice of venue is the suitably gritty and yet homely Annenkirche. An evening of energetic jazz in St. Petersburg’s most unusual church – now that’s something to write home about. Tickets are 900 rubles, with part of the proceeds going towards Annenkirche’s renovation efforts.
Throughout September and October, St. Petersburg is also home to Nordic Weeks, a celebration of all things Scandinavian. Among this week’s events are: a series of meet-the-artist sessions with contemporary female comic creators at the Mayakovsky Library (Sept. 29, 30), an exhibition of works by 20th-century artists Xan and Julie Krohn at Arts Square Gallery (Sept. 27), open lectures on modern Nordic children’s literature (Sept. 29), and screenings of Films From the North, a selection of Scandinavian short films from the Tromsø International Film Festival, at Rodina cinema (Sept. 29, 30 at 7 PM). The total runtime is 89 minutes; find tickets here.
As the weather gets wetter and the roads more slippery, the motorcycle riding season comes to a natural end. Motorcycle enthusiasts of St. Petersburg plan to mark this occasion with one last bike parade through the city on September 29. At 12 PM, members of the city’s moto-community will gather on the Palace Square to socialize, listen to music and show off their steel companions; at 3 PM, they will take an hour-long drive through the city’s streets before once again returning to Palace Square.
Take note: this weekend is also your last opportunity to attend the Sand Sculpture Festival at the Peter and Paul Fortress.
Art lovers will appreciate the two new exhibitions opening this month: the Tibetan Art Exhibition at the State Roerich Museum (Vasilievsky Island’s 18th Line, 1) is a rare opportunity to see traditional Tibetan paintings collected by famed Russian painter Nicholas Roerich, which are today part of the State Hermitage Museum’s collection. The exhibition opens on September 27 and will be open until April of next year. Tickets are 140 rubles for adults and 70 rubles for students. And then there’s In Endless Motion, a new exhibition of works by contemporary Latvian artists at Erarta Art Museum (Vasilievsky Island’s 29th Line, 2), which opens on September 26 and will end on November 19.
And finally, theater fans might have a serious dilemma on their hands this Sunday, when they’ll have to choose between screenings of Matthew Bourne’s adaptation of Sergei Prokofiev’s iconic ballet Cinderella (Galleria Mall, 3 PM) set during the London Blitz, and a more classic take on Oscar Wilde’s play An Ideal Husband (Avrora Cinema, 4:40 PM) by the UK’s Classic Spring Theatre Company.
Whichever way you spend your weekend, we hope that it will be a good one!