Where: Various downtown venues
When: July 22-25
Cost: Free and ticketed events
Aquatennial organizers are planning a four-day, downtown-focused iteration of the annual summer festival this year. For its 76th year, the Aquatennial will bring thousands downtown to venues like Loring Park, Target Station and the downtown riverfront July 22-25. Here are a few of our top events to check out this year:
Loring Park Canoe Rides
Wilderness Inquiry will be giving canoe rides at Loring Park during the Aquatennial’s Loring Park Family Fun Night as a new addition to the festival. It should be a great way of experiencing the downtown park in a new way while getting your family outdoors. The event takes place Wednesday, July 22 from 5-7:30 p.m.
Tour De Fat
New Belgium Brewing’s annual bicycle celebration is parting with the Aquatennial this year, bringing bikes, food and music to Loring Park. It kicks off with a parade at 11 a.m. on Saturday, July 25 from the park to the Mississippi River via Marquette Avenue. There will also be bike races, a 1,000-person dance contest and two venues for music and circus performances. Tour De Fat takes place 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
This annual fireworks display is one of the top five in the country and is a can’t-miss event. If you didn’t get your fill of booming fireworks on the Fourth of July, Target’s ambitious light show will certainly tide you over to next year. It will take place on West River Parkway near the Mill District at 10 p.m.
Northeast Brewer’s Block Party
Sociable Cider Werks will be bringing back its NE Brewer’s Block Party once again with plenty of brew options courtesy of the taproom’s Northeast neighbors. This year will feature beer from 612Brew, Bauhaus Brew Labs and more; spirits from Wander North Distillery and Bent Brewstillery; and cider from taproom. While imbibing, guests can enjoy food trucks and music 2-9p.m. with performances from Southside Desire, the Minnesota Orchestra’s The Brass Boys and a secret headliner. Recovery Bike Shop will also be on had to provide bike valet.
Where: Sociable Cider Werks, 1500 Fillmore St. NE
When: Sunday, July 26 from 2-9 p.m.
Cost: Free, suggested $1 or non-perishable food donation
Northeast Dog Parade
Summer has gone to the dogs in Northeast Minneapolis. Main Street will see plenty of canine companions, a flea market with dog-friendly vendors and other activities as part of the annual Northeast Dog Parade. Dress your dog up with costumes for this summertime parade, starting at 6:30 p.m. and stretching from East Hennepin and the 3rd Avenue Bridge along Main Street. Bone Adventure will have special treats for pooches during the parade.
Where: St. Anthony Main, 115 Main St. SE
When: Friday, July 31 at 5 p.m.
Northeast Night Market
Bauhaus Brew Lab’s Northeast Night Markets series has quickly gained colossal following of fans and beer drinkers this year with two events on the horizon. The Northeast Minneapolis brewery will host up to 3,000 patrons at its July 21 event, which will feature local musicians, street performers and 30 artisan booths. If you miss this month’s market, check out Bauhaus’ Aug. 18 event before the summer is gone.
Where: Bauhaus Brew Labs, 1315 Tyler St. NE
When: Tuesday, July 21 from 6-10 p.m.
Cost: $2, kids are free
Book Art Biennial
Minnesota Center for Book Arts will be hosting its fourth Book Art Biennial in tandem with a 30th anniversary celebration. The weekend of literary events includes pre-biennial workshops (July 23-26), an art crawl (July 24), a symposium (July 25-26) and a 30th anniversary gala (July 25). The Book Arts Art Crawl from 6-9 p.m. features coordinated gallery receptions across downtown Minneapolis with literary art on display at the Walker Art Center Library, Minneapolis College of Art and Design, Form + Content Gallery and Minnesota Center for Book Arts. The symposium kicks off with speakers, readings and presentations all weekend.
Where: Open Book, 1011 Washington Ave. S.
When: July 23-26
Cost: Free and ticketed events
ArtCars + ArtBikes Parade
The 21st Annual ArtCar + ArtBike Parade will bring creative cars and beautiful bikes to Lake Harriet. Following the parade, House of Balls is hosting a parade in tandem with the Aquatennial fireworks show. To get into the parade, line up at Lake Harriet’s Rose Garden at 4124 Roseway Road at 5 p.m.
Where: Lake Harriet
When: Saturday, July 25 at 6 p.m.
Exploring the Wild Edibles of Minnehaha Creek
Have some fun with your food by foraging at Minnehaha Creek. Professional forager Gil Schwartz is hosting an afternoon food adventure along the creek as part of a North Country Food Alliance event. Foragers can find all sorts of wild edibles, from berries and nuts to more far-out fare like wild vegetables. Maple-sweetened sumac “lemonade,” flower-infused water and black walnuts will be available to sample too.
Where: Lake Nokomis Park, 2401 E. Minnehaha Parkway
When: Sunday, July 19 from 2-4 p.m.
Cost: Suggested $5 donation
New Works by So and So
Rather than put one artist on a podium, Instinct Art Gallery includes many artists across many genres in each of its exhibitions. To have fun with this standard show type, the downtown gallery presents “New Works by So and So” with work from seven of its regularly featured artists. The exhibition includes art from Jantje Visscher, Lynn Speaker, Judy Onofrio, David Aschenbrener, Nancy Robinson, Elizabeth Garvey and Ben Moren. An opening reception is planned for Saturday, July 18 from 6-8 p.m.
Where: Instinct Art Gallery, 940 Nicollet Mall
When: July 18-Sept. 12