The Must List: Nordic Fashion, Oktoberfest and Mobile Food Trucks

Friday (9/30) – Nordic Fashion Biennale Opens

Surely there is no better name than Hrafnhildur Arnardottir, the New York–based Icelandic artist famous for her outlandish sculptures, installations and costumes made of braided hair and wildly woolly fabrics. Arnardottir, who also goes by the handle “Shoplifter” and is a frequent collaborator with Björk, is the curator of Looking Back to Find Our Future, the keystone exhibit at the Nordic Fashion Biennale, which for the first time ever will take place in the U.S.—in Ballard, naturally. Shoplifter has pulled together bleeding-edge fashion, jewelry and craft from Denmark, the Faroe Islands, Finland, Greenland, Iceland, Sweden and Norway, including designs by Vera Thordardottir, whose clothes have been made famous by Lady Gaga. Also on the biennale bill is Magma, a darkly captivating short by two emerging Faroese filmmakers (don’t wait for it to come to your local multiplex); the North by Northwest Fashion competition; and a music showcase featuring rock bands from Iceland and the Faroe Islands. 9/30–11/13. Times and prices vary. Nordic Heritage Museum, 3014 NW 67th St.; 206.789.5707;

9/30 - 10/15 (Weekends) ­– Oktoberfest in Leavenworth 

There’s still a chance to get your beer on at the annual Leavenworth Oktoberfest kicking off Friday and continuing through the next two weekends. Each Saturday, festival goers will rally at the ceremonious keg tapping on Saturdays at 1 p.m., but the festivities are happening almost nonstop throughout the weekend with live music from German bands, delicious authentic food, parades and more. By the second or third commemorative stein of beer, just squint your eyes a little in this Bavarian snow globe of a town, and you’ll feel convinced you’re at the original Oktoberfest. (Just make sure to use the free shuttle service.) Fridays 6 p.m. - 1 a.m., Saturdays 12 p.m. - 1 a.m.; Minors permitted until 9 p.m. $10-$20 online or at the gate. Leavenworth Oktoberfest Compound, Front Street, Leavenworth, WA.

9/30-10/16 - Spectrum Dance Theater: The Beast

Seattle’s acclaimed modern dance choreographer Donald Byrd is doing some extroverted introspection, reworking several of his classic pieces. This month, his Spectrum Dance Theater takes on 1996’s The Beast, a vigorous, unflinching look at domestic violence. Expect powerful performances. Times and prices vary. Madrona Dance Studio, 800 Lake Washington Blvd.; 206.325.4161;

Sunday (10/2) – The Mobile Chowdown

This year Seattle magazine and Suzuki + Chou Communimedia are rounding up 24 food trucks at West Seattle Junction. Among them are local favorites Marination Station, Skillet Street Food, Molly Moon's Ice Cream Truck, plus lesser known traveling eateries like Walla Walla's Andrae's Kitchen, I Want Curry Now and many more. There's no entry fee and there's more than food to explore. Our beer garden boasts Pyramid brews, with all proceeds going to benefit the West Seattle Food Bank. A special play area keeps the tykes amused, once they're done with their obligatory two bites of food - and friendly pets are welcome to rove and taste with you, on a leash, of course. 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. Free admission. Food prices vary. West Seattle Junction.

Monday (10/3) – Russell Banks

Russell Banks has a new book!
Russell Banks has a new book! The masterful storyteller (The Sweet Hereafter; Affliction) has graced us with his 17th novel, Lost Memory of New Skin, which he’ll read from during this appearance. The story involves a young adult fresh out of jail for a sexual offense, living under a causeway with other homeless youths and forbidden to go anywhere near children. As always with Banks, the layers are intriguing and plentiful. 7 p.m. Free. Seattle Central Public Library, 1000 Fourth Ave.; 206.386.4636;

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