26 events to help you get the most out of February

It might be the shortest month of the year, but there is still plenty to do around Madison.
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Photo by Maija Inveiss
The Winter Carnival returns to Madison Feb. 7-12.

We made it through January and the first cold snap of the year, so to kick off the new month, here are 26 events to put on your calendar.

Editor’s Note: Some of these events require proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test. Be sure to check the requirements before attending.

Hippie Sabotage
The electronic dance music duo are on their Rooms Of Hallucination tour with a stop in Madison. Feb. 2, 8-10 p.m., The Sylvee

Dancing with the Stars Live Tour
Dancing with the Stars is coming to Madison with a live tour featuring dancers from the series. Expect to see classic dances like the cha cha, foxtrot, salsa and tango. Feb. 3, 8 p.m., Overture Center for the Arts

Kids in the Rotunda
The free, family-friendly, performance series “Kids in the Rotunda” returns in-person to the Overture Center in February. The Feb. 5 event is virtual with Black Star Drumline. Then the Feb. 12, 19 and 26 shows will be in-person. Feb. 5, 12, 19, 26, Overture Center for the Arts

Frozen Assets Festival
Enjoy events all weekend including a skydiving ice jump with Seven Hills Skydiving, a slap shot inflatable game courtesy of Madison Capitols Hockey Team and Science on Ice with the Saturday Science team. There’s also a 5K run or walk on a frozen lake Mendota. The course starts and ends at The Edgewater. The festival helped raise more than $130,000 for Madison lakes in 2020. Feb. 5, 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Feb. 6, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., The Edgewater

“Stellaluna” by the Children’s Theater of Madison
Children’s Theater of Madison is showcasing a spin on a beloved children’s story adapted for the stage. “Stellaluna” features a deaf narrator along with puppets, music and dance. They’ll also have sensory kits available. Feb. 5-6, 12-13, The Playhouse at Overture Center

UW Arboretum Ecological Restoration Work Parties
Volunteer for restoration activities with University of Wisconsin–Madison, and learn more about prairies and savannas. The events occur the first four Saturday morning of each month. Feb. 5, 12, 19, 26, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.

Winter Carnival
The Wisconsin Union’s Winter Carnival is hosting a lot of different events over the course of a couple days. Check out a few of the events below. Feb. 7-12, Memorial Union

  • Mini Golf on Ice: The Hoofer Sailing Club are creating a mini-golf course and chipping zone on Lake Mendota. Feb. 8, 2-5 p.m.
  • Fishing Derby: For the first time, an educational Ice Fishing Derby will be held at the Winter Carnival. Feb. 10, 12-6 p.m.
  • Lady Liberty: The Pail and Shovel Party first put the The Statue of Liberty on Lake Mendota as a prank in 1979. To remember the occasion, the Wisconsin Union team now puts an inflatable version on the lake. Feb. 11-12
  • Ice Climbing Exhibition: Learn the basics of ice climbing with Hoofer Mountaineering Club. Feb. 11, 5-7 p.m.
  • Family Fun in Alumni Park: People of all ages are invited to join family-friendly winter activities. Dance in an outdoor party with DJ Mike Carlson or stay warm with winter-themed storytelling, hands-on art activities, hot cocoa and apple cider. Feb. 12, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • Let’s go Fly a Kite: Fly a kite over Lake Mendota, or before you fly, make your own at Wheelhouse Studios. Feb. 12, 1-3 p.m.
  • Rail Jam: Come watch or compete against the Midwest’s best freestyle snowboarders and skiers at the last event of the Winter Carnival. Feb. 12, 3-9 p.m.

SmartLess Tour Live with Jason Bateman, Sean Hayes and Will Arnett
This acting and podcasting trio are taking their show to Madison. The show consists of an interview with a mystery guest. Not only will it be a surprise to the audience, but only one of the three hosts knows who it will be. As soon as it’s revealed, the other two hosts will chat with the guest. Feb. 9, 8-10 p.m., Orpheum Theatre

Pop Ups in the Park
Lussier Family Heritage Center Education Staff is hosting snowshoeing and owl walks to encourage people to enjoy Dane County Parks. The events are free, but there are snowshoes that are available for a rental fee of $2. Feb. 9, 11, 23, 25

Brentano String Quartet
As part of the David and Kato Perlman Chamber Music Series, expect a great performance from Brentano String Quartet, who have been together for 30 years as a quartet. Feb. 10, 7:30 p.m., Wisconsin Union Theater

Valentine’s at Fitchburg Farms
There will be more than 40 local makers selling their wares at Fitchburg Farms — perfect if you need a last-minute gift. In addition to shopping, there will be live music, brunch and a couple other special events throughout the weekend. Feb. 11-13, 1839 County Road MM, Fitchburg

Madison Makers Valentine’s Market & Pub-Crawl
Madison Makers Market is back again in February with a Valentine’s Day themed market and pub crawl. More 80 local vendors have signed up to be a part of the event the event. Feb. 12, 12-5 p.m., Giant Jones Brewing, Old Sugar Distillery, Vintage Brewing Capitol East, The Sylvee

Arboretum Full Moon Night Walk
Naturalists are leading a nighttime walk in the Arboretum. Bundle up and explore the area by the light of the moon. Feb. 12, 6:30-8 p.m., UW Arboretum

Cautious Clay
R&B and Soul artist, Cautious Clay, from Cleveland is visiting Madison as part of his world tour. The new Deadpan Love deluxe album releases the day before his show. Feb. 12, 8-10 p.m., The Majestic Theatre

Winter Adventures at Pope Farm
Grab your snowshoes, cross-country skis or hiking boots to explore Pope Farm Conservancy with the whole family. Feb. 13, 1-2 p.m., 7440 Old Sauk Road, Verona

Bierock Puppy Bowl Watch Party
Bierock is hosting a Puppy Bowl Watch Party with food and drink specials running all day for the fourth year in a row. Start your day by watching the cute puppies and then catch the Super Bowl afterwards. Ten percent of sales will be donated to the Dane County Humane Society. Feb. 13, 1 p.m., Bierock

Beyond The Score
With only a single performance, Beyond the Score is a must-see. This performance is a two-part production with appearances from American Players Theatre actors. Feb. 13, 2:30-4:30 p.m., Overture Center for the Arts

Happy Hour with Judy Frater
Join the University of Wisconsin–Madison Division of Art’s spring 2022 artist-in-residence Judy Frater for a virtual happy hour. Frater will discuss the topic of “Embroidery: A Women’s History of Kutch,” which will explore the rich history of Kutch, a desert region of northwestern India. This event is free and hosted by the Chazen Museum of Art’s Facebook page. Feb 17, 5:30 p.m.

Black History Month at Madison College
Madison College is hosting Jessica Harris, a culinary critic and author of “High on The Hog: A Culinary Journey from Africa to America,” to explore the influence of Black culinary in America. The event is a part of the Yams and Sweet Potatoes: Black Culinary series, which includes cooking demonstrations, tastings and book signings. The event is free but tickets are required and can be found here. Feb. 17, 6 p.m.

Lunar New Year Downtown
Celebrate the Lunar New Year with Downtown Madison Inc. and support local businesses while doing it. You’re invited to shop and eat locally while paying homage to AAPI culture. There will be traditional Chinese lion dancing, chances to feed the lions for good luck and New Year’s specials at local businesses. This is a non-ticketed event and free to the public. Feb 17, 6 p.m., Lisa Link Peace Park

Hippo Campus
The indie rock band from Minnesota is making their first stop in Madison on their tour that will cover six countries. Feb. 17, 8-10 p.m., The Sylvee

Kanopy Dance Co.’s Reflections + Dreams
Get into the Valentine’s Day spirit with Kanopy Dance Co.’s Reflections + Dreams, a multicultural dance experience. The show celebrates the dance genius of Anna Sokolow and Talley Beaty and includes performances by Sokolow’s theater and dance ensemble from New York City and a special guest soloist. Feb. 18-20, Overture Center for the Arts.

Cupid’s Undie Run
Thousands of runners in cities all across the U.S. will come together, to jog it out for a mile. The Brink Lounge is hosting the event, in support of those affected by NF, a genetic disorder that causes tumors to grow on nerves throughout the body. Feb. 19, 12-4 p.m., The Brink Lounge

Still Woozy
Pop artist Still Woozy is on his “If This Isn’t Nice Tour” with Wallice that will span four months and seven countries. Feb. 20, 8-10 p.m., The Sylvee

Overture Center is presenting its latest Broadway Across America show, “Hairspray” in February. The show tells the story of 16-year-old Tracy Turnblad in 1960s Baltimore. Feb. 22-27, Overture Center for the Arts

Dropkick Murphys
If you need a little Celtic Punk in your life this February, look no further. Dropkick Murphys are on tour, with a stop at The Sylvee. Feb. 27, 7-9 p.m., The Sylvee

Nathan Denzin is an editorial intern for Madison Magazine. Editorial intern Emily Knepple contributed to this listing. 

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