Best of

the Twin Cities

Best Place to Buy Art Supplies

Ax-Man Surplus

Most artists know where to go for paints, paper, and drawing tools. But where do you shop when you need a bag of doll heads, a four-foot-long metal chain, or a giant inflatable guitar? You need to make a trip to Ax-Man, my friend. With locations in St. Paul, Fridley, and St. Louis Park, Ax-Man is the stuff of legend. It’s a place where you can purchase a gently used Teddy Ruxpin, a self-extinguishing ashtray (referred to as a “Jumbo Butt Bucket”), and a 1000mL graduated cylinder all in one stop. Not only do you have a pretty good chance of finding that obscure item you need to complete your project, but you may also find inspiration for your next artistic whim. You can’t just let that old bowling pin and Jesus plushie go to waste, right?

Readers’ Choice: Blick Art Materials

Best Surplus Store (2012) Ax-Man Surplus

Best Movie Theater The Heights Theater

Best Pro Wrestler Devon Monroe

Best Fashion Designer Ramadhan Mohamed

Best Fashion Event A Conspiracy of Strange Girls

Best Museum Minneapolis Institute of Art

Best Museum Exhibition Hearts of Our People: Native Women Artists

Best Art Gallery Law Warschaw Gallery

Best Gallery Exhibition Sanlé Sory: Volta Photo

Best Public Art Zaníyan Yuthókca: Brave Change

Best Comedy Club Sisyphus Brewing

Best Standup Comedian Miss Shannan Paul

Best Local Comedy Podcast Middle of Somewhere

Best Open Mic (Comedy) Uproar at Du Nord Craft Spirits

Best Kid-Friendly Activity Science Museum of Minnesota

Best Dance Company Ragamala Dance Company

Best Choreographer Rosy Simas

Best Dance Performance Water Will (in Melody)

Best Arts Event Out There Festival

Best Theater Park Square Theatre

Best Theater Troupe Haunted Basement

Best Play 'Macbeth,' Wayward Theatre Company

Best Actor China Brickey

Best Director Lauren Keating

Best Design in a Theatrical Production 'Chicago,' Theater Latté Da

Best Bookstore (New) Subtext Books

Best Bookstore (Used) Eat My Words

Best Poetry Collection 'Homie,' by Danez Smith

Best Book (Nonfiction) 'Magical Realism for Non-Believers' by Anika Fajardo

Best Book (Fiction) 'The Shallows' by Matt Goldman

Best Author Peggy Orenstein