This weekend is packed with culture, from photography showcases on the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone at Martha Street Studio to John Hodgman talking about the importance of the arts at RMTC.

There’s also a new kid on Winnipeg’s eatery block; Maw’s Garage is opening up this Sunday with food, drinks and fun in the Exchange District.

And finally, if you’re looking for some family fun, head out to Fort Whyte Alive for their Water Week celebrations.

WHAT: ART – Growth exhibit at Martha Street Studio

When:  Friday, March 14 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Where: Martha Street Studio at 11 Martha St.

Cost: FREE

If you’re low on cash and big on art you’ll want to head down to Martha Street Studio this weekend for the opening of Growth, a photo exhibit on the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone.

Growth

David McMillan's new exhibit on the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone opens this weekend at Marth Street Studio. This shot of a dental hospital in Pripyat is part of the exhibit. (David McMillan)

For those not familiar with the area, a major disaster happened at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in the Ukraine in 1986. About 135,000 people were evacuated, and a large area was closed off to people.

The swath of land now sits empty with formerly inhabited areas resembling eerie ghost-towns.

Photographer David McMillan went to the area in 1994 and returned several more times to document the regrowth of trees and other vegetation both indoors and outdoors.

McMillan will be at the opening Saturday night, and the event is totally free.

This is a must-see.

WHAT: COMEDY – John Hodgman at MTC

When: Saturday, March 15 at 8 p.m.

Where: MTC’s Warehouse Theatre at 140 Rupert Ave.

Cost: $25

That guy from The Daily Show will be saying some funny things at the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre this weekend.

Humorist John Hodgman, who I’ve heard is a delight, is best known for his Daily Show appearances but has also done lots of other cool stuff like write books, appear on NPR’s This American Life and write advice columns for McSweeney’s – basically hipster catnip.

Anyway, he’ll be in town this weekend to discuss why art matters as part of an MTC series.

 I’m positive this will be funny and smart, which is a great mix! Go. See. Enjoy.

WHAT: FAMILY – Water Week at Fort Whyte

When:  Sunday, March 16 from 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: Fort Whyte Alive at 1961 McCreary Rd.

Cost: $7

If you have little humans in your life, consider taking them down to Fort Whyte Alive this weekend for the Water Week celebrations.

On Sunday, they’re having trivia, art, fishing and a photo booth for families who want to come out. Basically it’s an educational/fun event, and it’ll remind you not to do stuff like leave the taps running because water is really important!

Also, if you get bored, pack some rubber boots in the trunk and go for a quick hike around the area. There are cute prairie dogs and slightly-less-cute but still very furry bison to check out nearby.

Definitely beats the TV or the mall, especially when you have a brood of kidlets to entertain.

WHAT: CUPCAKES – Art auction and cupcake party  

When: Sunday, March 16 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Where:  The Edge Gallery at 611 Main St.

Cost: $12 at the door

Want some local art? Mentoring Artists for Women’s Art has some for you. They’re holding an art auction to raise money for women in art this weekend.

Plus they did something really smart and coupled the auction with a cupcake party. There’ll be all sorts of fun cupcakes and pretty things to buy. Plus all the money goes to a good cause!

This would be a nice one to stop in to for an hour or two before dinner on Sunday.

WHAT: FOOD – Maw’s Garage opens

When: Sunday, March 16

Where: Maw’s Garage at 111 Princess St.

Cost: Depends what you order!

That really cool place in the Exchange District we’ve all been waiting for is finally opening this weekend!

Maw's Garage

Go check out the brand-spanking new Maw's Garage in Winnipeg's Exchange District this weekend. (Instagram)

Maw’s Garage is having its soft launch on Sunday night with drinks and food and fun and stuff.

The eatery has some pretty cool plans for theme nights once they’re fully up and running. There’ll be wing nights, comedy nights, cheap drink nights as well as karaoke and sangria nights.

The best part is, if you go this Sunday, you’ll be one of the first people to check it out!

BONUS

WHAT: MUSIC – Propagandhi at Union Sound Hall

When: Saturday, March 15 at 10 p.m.

Where: Union Sound Hall at 110 Market Ave.

Cost: SOLD OUT

Unfortunately, this amazing show is sold out, but I thought I should let you all know about it so you can go about trying to buy tickets from friends who might bail at the last minute or making friends with the bouncers at Union.

Propagandhi is playing alongside Union Stockyards and Warsaw. Enjoy, if you have tickets! The rest of us will be so, so jealous.