EVENTS: What’s happening in Salem this Mother’s Day weekend

This Mother’s Day weekend, enjoy a moms-only comedy show, learn about the first woman to race in the Indianapolis 500 or watch roller derby players go head-to-head.

Here’s the lineup of Salem events for the week starting Thursday, May 9.

Tianguis de Salem

A free community fair and market on Saturday, May 11, will celebrate Mexican and Mesoamerican culture, small businesses and artisans and Mexican and Latin music.

The event will be from 2-6 p.m. at Riverfront Park, 200 Water St. N.E. It will feature about 50 vendors, many of them smaller businesses who aren’t showcased at places like the Salem Saturday Market. 

Cars and Coffee

Salem’s second Cars and Coffee event will bring people together to showcase their cool cars, both old and new, and talk about the hobby. The free event will be on Saturday, May 11, from 8 – 11 a.m. at German Classics Workshop, 2728 19th St. S.E.

The business, which opened in October, plans to host the gatherings monthly throughout the summer. For more information, see the Facebook event page.

2nd Friday Céilí

The 2nd Friday Céilí, a monthly community dance with instruction and live music, will be at the VFW Community Center, 630 Hood St. N.E.

The all-ages dance will feature live music by Two Rivers Céilí Band. Doors open at 7 p.m., the lesson starts at 7:15 p.m. and the dance starts at 8 p.m.

No partner is needed, and comfortable closed-toed shoes are recommended. Tickets are $10, $8 for members of The Céilí of the Valley Society, $5 for students or $30 for families. The first class is free for new dancers. For more information, see the society’s website.

Author talk

Bill Poehler will be at the Salem Public Library on Saturday to discuss his new book “The First Lady of Dirt,” about the life of Cheryl Glass, the first Black woman to compete in the Indianapolis 500.

Poehler, a longtime Statesman Journal reporter, interviewed Glass’ family, friends and competitors to write the book. 

“The First Lady of Dirt takes you behind the scenes and in the driver’s seat of Cheryl’s life. Poehler, an amateur racer himself, places the reader at the track, smelling the dirt and fumes, hearing the roaring engines and crashing metal, and feeling Cheryl’s joy and pain. It’s the inspiring story of a racing pioneer and a tragic tale of the pressures that are often hidden from public view until it’s too late,” an event description reads. 

The free talk starts at 1 p.m. at the Salem Public Library, 585 Liberty St. S.E.

Pioneer Cemetery Cleanup

On Saturday, volunteers are welcome to join a cleanup of Pioneer Cemetery to pick up trash, remove weeds and clean headstones.

The cleanup goes from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Registering in advance is suggested, but not required. Volunteers will meet at the cemetery, at the corners of Southeast Commercial Street and South Hoyt Street.

Live theater and performance

Pentacle Theatre, 352 52nd Ave. N.W.

It’s the last weekend to catch Pentacle Theatre’s nursing home comedy “Ripcord” with shows at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

“A sunny room on an upper floor is prime real estate in the Bristol Place Senior Living Facility, so when the cantankerous Abby is forced to share her quarters with new arrival Marilyn, she has no choice but to get rid of the infuriatingly chipper woman by any means necessary,” the show description says. “A seemingly harmless bet between the old women quickly escalates into a dangerous game of one-upmanship that reveals not just the tenacity of these worthy opponents, but also deeper truths that each would rather remain hidden.” 

Visit the theater website for showtimes and tickets, which start at $19.

Salem’s Historic Grand, 187 High St. N.E.

On Friday, comedians Sam Miller and Monica Nevi will perform standup.

Miller is from Olympia, Washington. “Sam likes to make jokes about what it’s like to be a sober parent. He also likes to make jokes about what jail’s like in Yakima,” an event description said.

Nevi is from the Seattle area. “A collegiate basketball player, after injuries ended her career she decided to move forward with the next most accepted career for a young woman and pursue her strong interest in stand-up comedy,” an event description said.

Doors open at 7 p.m. for an 8 p.m. show. Tickets are $20 online, or $25 the day of the show.

On Saturday, Glass of Hearts, a Blondie tribute band, will play with Band After Midnight, an ABBA tribute. Doors open at 7 p.m. for an 8 p.m. show. Tickets are $30 in advance or $35 the day of the show. 

The Elsinore Theatre, 170 High St. S.E.

On Saturday, Oregon Ballet Theatre’s second company will perform at the Elsinore. The tour features choreography by Ben Stevenson, Dani Rowe, Shannon Alvis and Dominic Walsh.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. for a 7:30 p.m. show. Tickets start at $25.

Infinity Room, 210 Liberty St. S.E. #150

On Thursday, stand up comedians Jeremy Talamantes and Jordan Cerminara will critique a gallery of thrift store art, or “disasterpieces” that the audience will have a chance to take home.

Doors open at 7 p.m., and the show starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15 in advance or $20 at the door. It’s all-ages, but the material will not be clean.

On Friday, “Stitches,” a Portland-based punk comedy show for people into punk, skate, hip-hop and people from “any other subculture that runs from security guard.”

The hosts are Hard Times News writer and Another Goddamn Horror Podcast co-host Ryan Danley. Doors open at 6 p.m. and the show starts at 7 p.m. Tickets are $12 in advance or $15 at the door. It’s all ages, but the material won’t be clean.

Also on Friday, an improv show with the Infinity Room’s house teams, Electric Baguette and Partially Sympathetic, will improvise movie scenes based on audience input. The 21+ show starts at 9:30 p.m. Tickets are $12 in advance, or $15 at the door.

On Sunday, a Mother’s Day Comedy show will feature a lineup of comedians who are all moms.

“Give mom the gift of dinner and a show for Mother’s Day. Mom Jokes features an all-star lineup of hilarious moms! Treat Mom to a night of laughter and celebrate the joys (and challenges) of motherhood in style,” an event description reads.

The lineup includes Mx. Dahlia Belle, Quinne Salameh, Dianna Potter, Lacie Wood, Jane Malone and Angelique Herrington.

Doors open at 6 p.m. for a 7 p.m. show. Tickets are $15 in advance or $20 at the door. It’s all ages, but the material will not be clean.

Other venues

On Friday, the Oregon Symphony will perform Sergei Rachmaninoff’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, featuring soloist Simon Trpčeski on piano. They’ll also perform Antonín Dvořák’s Seventh Symphony “in which the composer gives voice to personal grief and the struggles of his nation,” according to an event description.

The show is at 7:30 p.m. at Willamette University’s Smith Auditorium, 270 Winter St. S.E. Tickets start at $25.

Salem singer-songwriter and baritone ukulele player Dylan Santiago will perform at Stomp by Croft Vineyards on Saturday, from 6 – 8 p.m. The vineyards are at 5475 River Rd. S. and there will be food and wine available for purchase.


On Saturday, Market for the Strange will bring indie creators to Columbia Hall at the Oregon State Fairgrounds, 2330 17th St. N.E. The punk-themed market will host live music from Six Sundays, The Grenades and Bazooka Sharks alongside 100 vendors to shop from. The market will be from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., and the music starts at 2 p.m. Entry is $5, or free for kids under 12.

Salem Community Markets will bring local produce, food and products to various places throughout the city this week. 

The Thursday West Salem Farmers Market will be from 10:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. at 1260 Edgewater St. N.W.

The Saturday Market will be 9 a.m.-2 p.m. at 865 Marion St. N.E.

The Monday Hospital Market will be 9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. on Salem Hospital’s campus, 875 Oak St., between building A & C.

On Wednesday, the Chemeketa Community College Agricultural Building market will meet. The market is held weekly from 3-7 p.m. Wednesdays, at the corner of Northeast 45th Avenue and Fire Protection Way.


On Saturday, Cherry City Roller Derby will take on Gorge Roller Derby from Hood River in a triple-header.

Doors open at 1 p.m. and the first bout between the junior teams, the Cherry Blossoms vs. Gorge Sass Squashers, starts at 2 p.m.

The next bout, the 8-Wheel Assassins vs. Gorge All-Stars, starts at 4:30 p.m. The final bout between the Renegades and Blood ‘N Gorge starts at 7 p.m.

The bouts will be at 1335 Madison St. N.E. Tickets are $12 in advance, $15 at the door or $30 for families. Children under 5 get in free.

Art shows

See what art exhibits are on display this month here:


See our full list of major Salem events through September here:

UPDATE: This story was updated to include Saturday’s Market for the Strange. Saturday’s scheduled Arena Football League game has been canceled due to league scheduling, according to a statement by the league, and was removed from this event list in a Friday afternoon update.

Contact reporter Abbey McDonald: [email protected] or 503-575-1251

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Abbey McDonald joined the Salem Reporter in 2022. She previously worked as the business reporter at The Astorian, where she covered labor issues, health care and social services. A University of Oregon grad, she has also reported for the Malheur Enterprise, The News-Review and Willamette Week.