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9 COOLest Minneapolis Summer Events to Liven Up the Rest of 2019

Posted on July 8, 2017Rick Welter

Summer won’t last forever. But the good news is that there is still time to get out and enjoy the wonderful outdoors before the Twin Cities starts to cool down—both in temperature and in things to do.

Everyone knows about the great times that can be had at the Minnesota State Fair and the Minnesota Renaissance Festival, but there are dozens of other free summer events in Minneapolis and  throughout the Twin Cities waiting for you. With more than 100 hot, Minnesota summers under our belt, we know there is still plenty of fun to be had from July to September. Check out our nine can’t-miss Minneapolis summer events to enjoy before the season ends.

1. Groovin’ in the Garden — Como Park Zoo & Conservatory

(Photo Credit: ThriftyMinnesota.com)

Dates: 6-8 p.m. every Wednesday through July 24, 2019

Location: Como Park Zoo & Conservatory, 1225 Estabrook Drive, Saint Paul, MN 55103

Why Go: All summer long, Como Park Zoo & Conservatory offers musical entertainment for the whole family at Groovin’ in the Garden. Parents can “get their groove on” to the local bands while children stay entertained with lawn games, a climbing wall, and a bounce house. Groovin’ in the Garden is FREE for all attendees, big and small. So, grab your family and get groovin’!

Website: http://www.comozooconservatory.org/news/groovin-in-the-garden/

2. Prince The Tour

(Photo Credit: Prince The Tour Website)

Dates: Every Thursday – Sunday, May 1 – Dec. 31, 2019

Location: Minneapolis Visitor Information, 505 Nicollet Mall #100, Minneapolis, MN

Why Go: Trace the footsteps of The Purple One on Minneapolis’ Prince The Tour. During this sightseeing stroll, you’ll visit 10 iconic locations, including First Avenue Nightclub, Capri Theatre, and Paisley Park Studio. For the ultimate glimpse into Prince’s life, you can also book an inside tour of Paisley Park. The tour company even offers special wine tours so you can have a bit of fun while seeing Prince’s favorite record store and famous Purple Rain filming locations.

Website: http://www.princethetour.com/

3. Paradise Charter Cruise on the Mississippi River

(Photo Credit: Paradise Charter Twitter)

Dates: June, July and August. Monday – Wednesday, 12-1:30 p.m. and Thursday – Sunday, 12-1:30 p.m. and 2-3:30 p.m.

Location: Bohemian Flats Park, 2150 West River Parkway, Minneapolis, MN

Why Go: If you’ve never explored the breathtaking views of the Mississippi River, do it in style on a Paradise Charter Cruise. Paradise Charter Cruises are some of our favorite Minneapolis summer events each year. The cruise line offers packages for every type of sightseer. Afternoon cruises with special pricing for children make for a great family day outdoors, and happy hour and pizza cruises are available for those who want a slice and a beer as they float down the river. You can even book a Friday night dinner cruise if you’re looking for a fun, unique date idea. The possibilities are endless.

Website: http://www.twincitiescruises.com/mississippi-river

4. Preserve Minneapolis Summer Walking Tour

(Photo Credit: Northloop.org)

Dates: July 13, 14, 18, 25 & 28, August 3, 8, 13, 16, 17, 21, 24 & 26, 2019

Location: Minneapolis, MN

Why Go: Boating not your speed? Explore Minneapolis’ on foot by taking a Summer Walking Tour with Preserve Minneapolis. Each week, the tour company explores a new neighborhood in Minneapolis—from Saint Anthony-Main to Fort Snelling, Nicollet Mall to Lowry Hill, the views are worth the sandal tan lines you’re sure to get.

Website: https://www.preserveminneapolis.org/summer-walking-tours

5. Skyline Mini Golf at the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden

(Photo Credit: Walker Art Center Website)

Dates: Opens at 11 a.m. Tuesday – Sunday. Closed Mondays.

Location: Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, 725 Vineland Place, Minneapolis, MN

Why Go: There is no better time to visit the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden than right now. Of course, you can visit the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden in the dead of winter, but it probably won’t be as fun. Instead, try your golf skills atop the Walker Art Museum while gazing out over the Minneapolis skyline all summer long. The rooftop mini golf course has 18 holes, so you and your friends can make a day of the activity.. Tickets range from $15-$19 and include free gallery admission for every golfer.

Website: https://walkerart.org/calendar/2017/artist-designed-mini-golf-2017

6. Surly Brewing Festival Field

(Photo Credit: Home Business Magazine)

Dates: July 27, 30, 31 & Aug. 9, 14, 17, 2019

Location: Surly Brewing Festival Field, 520 Malcolm Avenue SE, Minneapolis, MN

Why Go: Minneapolis is known for its craft breweries. In fact, some might argue they’re what put us “on the map.” But one brewery offers something the others don’t: at Surly Brewing Festival Field, you can enjoy your favorite artists live while sipping a locally crafted, ice cold beer. This summer, you can see Lord Huron (July 27), Tame Impala (July 30 & 31), Gary Clark Jr. (Aug. 9), Ben Folds & Violent Femmes (Aug. 14), and Shakey Graves and Dr. Dog while tastings sours, IPAs, porters… you get the idea. Surly is a city-wide favorite, so snag your tickets before they sell out!

Website: https://surlybrewing.com/the-surly-summer-concerts/

7. Japanese Obon Festival at Como Park Zoo & Conservatory

(Photo Credit: Bloomington Visitors & Convention Bureau)

Dates: Aug. 18, 2019

Location: Como Park Zoo & Conservatory, 1225 Estabrook Dr., St. Paul, MN

Why Go: Few people know that Saint Paul’s sister city is Nagasaki, Japan. In fact, the Japanese garden in Como Park is actually a gift from the people of Nagasaki. Every year, the city of Saint Paul celebrates our sister city in Japan by hosting the Obon Festival, which showcases Japanese culture and tradition at the Como Zoo. The day is filled with Bonsai, martial arts, drumming, and delicious food. At dusk, a powerful lantern light ceremony culminates the day.

Website: http://www.comozooconservatory.org/attractions/gardens/japanesegarden/japanese-obon-festival/#/japanese-obon-festival

8. Saint Paul Saints Fan Appreciation Night

(Photo Credit: St. Paul Saints Baseball Facebook Page)

Date: Aug. 30, 2019

Location: CHS Field, 360 N Broadway St, St Paul, MN

Why Go: To us, baseball is a centerpiece of our summers. And one of our favorite places to take in a game is CHS Field in the heart of Saint Paul. Experiencing a Saint Paul Saints game is unforgettable! We highly recommend attending a themed game night, like Fan Appreciation Night. In celebration of Saint Paul Saints fans everywhere, you can expect fun games, giveaways, and contests throughout the game. For the finale, a fireworks show will light up the city and cap off the evening with a bang. And who knows? Maybe part-owner Bill Murray will be in attendance, too.

Website: http://saintsbaseball.com/

9. Fireworks Spectacular! At Canterbury Park

(Photo Credit: Canterbury Park Facebook Page)

Date: July 3, 2019, 4-11 p.m.

Location: Canterbury Park, 1100 Canterbury Rd, Shakopee, MN

Why Go: You may have seen the exciting action of watching a horse race at Canterbury Park in the past, but have you ever seen Fireworks Spectacular!? This explosive show is unlike any fireworks display you’ve seen before. Festivities begin at 4 p.m. and last until 11 p.m. Guests of all ages can enjoy live races, fireworks, music, face painting, and pony rides while the sky lights up above them. If the July 3rd show isn’t enough, check out the Fireworks Encore on July 4th.

Website: https://www.facebook.com/events/450248705767008/

Are you feeling the summer heat?

July, August, and September are the hottest months of the year in Minnesota. Stay busy and stay cool by checking out some of the free Minneapolis summer events listed above. Don’t forget to check out the best ice cream shops in the Twin Cities for some delicious relief from the heat. Or, plan a fun getaway to one of Minnesota’s COOLest summer day trip locations.

Whether you attend one of the summer events above, head to a froyo shop in the cities, or travel up north for a long weekend, we’d love to see pictures of your adventures. Send us your best snaps on Facebook or Twitter.

9 COOLest Minneapolis Summer Events to Liven Up the Rest of 2019

Posted on July 8, 2017Rick Welter

Summer won’t last forever. But the good news is that there is still time to get out and enjoy the wonderful outdoors before the Twin Cities starts to cool down—both in temperature and in things to do.

Everyone knows about the great times that can be had at the Minnesota State Fair and the Minnesota Renaissance Festival, but there are dozens of other free summer events in Minneapolis and  throughout the Twin Cities waiting for you. With more than 100 hot, Minnesota summers under our belt, we know there is still plenty of fun to be had from July to September. Check out our nine can’t-miss Minneapolis summer events to enjoy before the season ends.

1. Groovin’ in the Garden — Como Park Zoo & Conservatory

(Photo Credit: ThriftyMinnesota.com)

Dates: 6-8 p.m. every Wednesday through July 24, 2019

Location: Como Park Zoo & Conservatory, 1225 Estabrook Drive, Saint Paul, MN 55103

Why Go: All summer long, Como Park Zoo & Conservatory offers musical entertainment for the whole family at Groovin’ in the Garden. Parents can “get their groove on” to the local bands while children stay entertained with lawn games, a climbing wall, and a bounce house. Groovin’ in the Garden is FREE for all attendees, big and small. So, grab your family and get groovin’!

Website: http://www.comozooconservatory.org/news/groovin-in-the-garden/

2. Prince The Tour

(Photo Credit: Prince The Tour Website)

Dates: Every Thursday – Sunday, May 1 – Dec. 31, 2019

Location: Minneapolis Visitor Information, 505 Nicollet Mall #100, Minneapolis, MN

Why Go: Trace the footsteps of The Purple One on Minneapolis’ Prince The Tour. During this sightseeing stroll, you’ll visit 10 iconic locations, including First Avenue Nightclub, Capri Theatre, and Paisley Park Studio. For the ultimate glimpse into Prince’s life, you can also book an inside tour of Paisley Park. The tour company even offers special wine tours so you can have a bit of fun while seeing Prince’s favorite record store and famous Purple Rain filming locations.

Website: http://www.princethetour.com/

3. Paradise Charter Cruise on the Mississippi River

(Photo Credit: Paradise Charter Twitter)

Dates: June, July and August. Monday – Wednesday, 12-1:30 p.m. and Thursday – Sunday, 12-1:30 p.m. and 2-3:30 p.m.

Location: Bohemian Flats Park, 2150 West River Parkway, Minneapolis, MN

Why Go: If you’ve never explored the breathtaking views of the Mississippi River, do it in style on a Paradise Charter Cruise. Paradise Charter Cruises are some of our favorite Minneapolis summer events each year. The cruise line offers packages for every type of sightseer. Afternoon cruises with special pricing for children make for a great family day outdoors, and happy hour and pizza cruises are available for those who want a slice and a beer as they float down the river. You can even book a Friday night dinner cruise if you’re looking for a fun, unique date idea. The possibilities are endless.

Website: http://www.twincitiescruises.com/mississippi-river

4. Preserve Minneapolis Summer Walking Tour

(Photo Credit: Northloop.org)

Dates: July 13, 14, 18, 25 & 28, August 3, 8, 13, 16, 17, 21, 24 & 26, 2019

Location: Minneapolis, MN

Why Go: Boating not your speed? Explore Minneapolis’ on foot by taking a Summer Walking Tour with Preserve Minneapolis. Each week, the tour company explores a new neighborhood in Minneapolis—from Saint Anthony-Main to Fort Snelling, Nicollet Mall to Lowry Hill, the views are worth the sandal tan lines you’re sure to get.

Website: https://www.preserveminneapolis.org/summer-walking-tours

5. Skyline Mini Golf at the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden

(Photo Credit: Walker Art Center Website)

Dates: Opens at 11 a.m. Tuesday – Sunday. Closed Mondays.

Location: Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, 725 Vineland Place, Minneapolis, MN

Why Go: There is no better time to visit the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden than right now. Of course, you can visit the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden in the dead of winter, but it probably won’t be as fun. Instead, try your golf skills atop the Walker Art Museum while gazing out over the Minneapolis skyline all summer long. The rooftop mini golf course has 18 holes, so you and your friends can make a day of the activity.. Tickets range from $15-$19 and include free gallery admission for every golfer.

Website: https://walkerart.org/calendar/2017/artist-designed-mini-golf-2017

6. Surly Brewing Festival Field

(Photo Credit: Home Business Magazine)

Dates: July 27, 30, 31 & Aug. 9, 14, 17, 2019

Location: Surly Brewing Festival Field, 520 Malcolm Avenue SE, Minneapolis, MN

Why Go: Minneapolis is known for its craft breweries. In fact, some might argue they’re what put us “on the map.” But one brewery offers something the others don’t: at Surly Brewing Festival Field, you can enjoy your favorite artists live while sipping a locally crafted, ice cold beer. This summer, you can see Lord Huron (July 27), Tame Impala (July 30 & 31), Gary Clark Jr. (Aug. 9), Ben Folds & Violent Femmes (Aug. 14), and Shakey Graves and Dr. Dog while tastings sours, IPAs, porters… you get the idea. Surly is a city-wide favorite, so snag your tickets before they sell out!

Website: https://surlybrewing.com/the-surly-summer-concerts/

7. Japanese Obon Festival at Como Park Zoo & Conservatory

(Photo Credit: Bloomington Visitors & Convention Bureau)

Dates: Aug. 18, 2019

Location: Como Park Zoo & Conservatory, 1225 Estabrook Dr., St. Paul, MN

Why Go: Few people know that Saint Paul’s sister city is Nagasaki, Japan. In fact, the Japanese garden in Como Park is actually a gift from the people of Nagasaki. Every year, the city of Saint Paul celebrates our sister city in Japan by hosting the Obon Festival, which showcases Japanese culture and tradition at the Como Zoo. The day is filled with Bonsai, martial arts, drumming, and delicious food. At dusk, a powerful lantern light ceremony culminates the day.

Website: http://www.comozooconservatory.org/attractions/gardens/japanesegarden/japanese-obon-festival/#/japanese-obon-festival

8. Saint Paul Saints Fan Appreciation Night

(Photo Credit: St. Paul Saints Baseball Facebook Page)

Date: Aug. 30, 2019

Location: CHS Field, 360 N Broadway St, St Paul, MN

Why Go: To us, baseball is a centerpiece of our summers. And one of our favorite places to take in a game is CHS Field in the heart of Saint Paul. Experiencing a Saint Paul Saints game is unforgettable! We highly recommend attending a themed game night, like Fan Appreciation Night. In celebration of Saint Paul Saints fans everywhere, you can expect fun games, giveaways, and contests throughout the game. For the finale, a fireworks show will light up the city and cap off the evening with a bang. And who knows? Maybe part-owner Bill Murray will be in attendance, too.

Website: http://saintsbaseball.com/

9. Fireworks Spectacular! At Canterbury Park

(Photo Credit: Canterbury Park Facebook Page)

Date: July 3, 2019, 4-11 p.m.

Location: Canterbury Park, 1100 Canterbury Rd, Shakopee, MN

Why Go: You may have seen the exciting action of watching a horse race at Canterbury Park in the past, but have you ever seen Fireworks Spectacular!? This explosive show is unlike any fireworks display you’ve seen before. Festivities begin at 4 p.m. and last until 11 p.m. Guests of all ages can enjoy live races, fireworks, music, face painting, and pony rides while the sky lights up above them. If the July 3rd show isn’t enough, check out the Fireworks Encore on July 4th.

Website: https://www.facebook.com/events/450248705767008/

Are you feeling the summer heat?

July, August, and September are the hottest months of the year in Minnesota. Stay busy and stay cool by checking out some of the free Minneapolis summer events listed above. Don’t forget to check out the best ice cream shops in the Twin Cities for some delicious relief from the heat. Or, plan a fun getaway to one of Minnesota’s COOLest summer day trip locations.

Whether you attend one of the summer events above, head to a froyo shop in the cities, or travel up north for a long weekend, we’d love to see pictures of your adventures. Send us your best snaps on Facebook or Twitter.

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