Twin City Celebrations: Where to Find Minneapolis/St. Paul Festivals in Every Season
As the most populated area in Minnesota, Minneapolis is a vibrant, modern city that's filled with fun things to do. The Minneapolis real estate market features many pockets of individual neighborhoods and subdivisions that make it unique. Additionally, festivals take place at all times of the year in Minneapolis, making it easy to celebrate every season. Keep reading to learn all about festivals in the Minneapolis area.
Spring Festivals in Minneapolis
With the winter weather breaking, many people want to get outdoors in Minneapolis and enjoy the warmer spring weather. The good news is there are many festivals taking place in the springtime in Minneapolis. These may change year-to-year, but here is a look at some of the most current experiences here.
Attend Minnesota Twins Opening Day
Perhaps one of Minneapolis's most important early spring experiences is opening day for the Minnesota Twins Major League Baseball team. Those who live in the city are true fans, and they show up each year to cheer on their team to the World Series. Typically, the Twins play their first home game in early April, though the date and the competition change each year.
The Twins are a part of the American League Central Division. The franchise was founded in 1901, but it began in Washington, DC, as the Washington Senators. In 1961, the Twins moved to Minnesota, which has long been a fixture in local culture. Now, the Twins play at Target Field, which opened in April of 2010. The stadium is filled with hopeful fans (and often sells out for the opening game). For baseball fans, spending opening day at the stadium is the way to start the season.
Spring Babies Festival
The Spring Babies Festival is the ideal celebration of new life in springtime.It happens on weekends in April, most years. During this event, people are welcome to visit Brooklyn Park to have fun with animals of all types. There is often apple cider and fun treats like cheese curds available for purchase. At the heart of the event are the animals. There are tons of new animals welcomed into the world, from baby goats, bunnies, ducklings, sheep, and chicks. Those who visit are encouraged to pet and feed the animals, with trained handlers available to help hold some of those animals as well.
While this is a big event for photo ops, it is also an excellent way to learn about the animals up close, especially for children. All of the animals are in a tent, which means the event happens rain or shine.
Minneapolis St. Patrick's Day Parade
The Minneapolis St. Patrick's Day Association sponsors this annual event on St. Patrick's Day each year, March 17th. The event began in 1969. At that point, two local establishments, Bradford's Pub and Duff's Bar, organized the parade. It was nothing more than a short caravan of vehicles along with the distance between the two pubs. That first parade had a single float, provided by the Sons and Daughters of Ireland. The first parade was a hit. Droves of locals, including members of the Minnesota Vikings, came out to celebrate.
Today, the parade is much larger and is a city-wide event. The organization also hosts other events to celebrate Irish pride throughout the year, but nothing is as impressive as the parade. It is such a strong tradition that commemorative buttons, sponsored events, and numerous contests throughout parade day.
Summer Festivals in Minneapolis
The summer months bring warmer temperatures with them, which encourages people to step outside and explore all of the things the region has to do. There are a few specific events that take place during the summer months.
Minnesota State Fair
Nothing says "summer" like a trip to the Minnesota State Fair. It takes place each year towards the end of August and the start of September. It began in 1854, intending to highlight its agricultural successes and encourage farming in the area. Often called the Great Minnesota Get-Together, the fair has grown in size and purpose throughout its lifetime. Typically spanning 12 days leading up to Labor Day, this event is home to numerous activities, including:
- Showcasing the area's art and industry
- Focusing on the state's agriculture
- Hosting various competitions, including horse and livestock events
- Selling merchandise
- Hosting expositions
- Car shows
The Minnesota State Fair Foundation runs the event. The event takes place in St. Paul, on Snelling Avenue. There are carnival-style rides, lots of food, and various live performances scheduled throughout the year.
Rock the Garden Festival
The Rock the Garden Festival was first launched in 1998. It was sponsored and held by the Walker Art Center. In 2008, that changed. The Current began cosponsoring the event, which continues to take place each year. The first event featured the Jayhawks. After that point, numerous other performers have taken the stage.
The Rock the Garden Festival welcomes national and international artists. This event is unique because it pairs these national artists with local music, enabling a brand new take on these experiences. There have been numerous well-recognized names playing from most genres. That includes Bon Iver, Chance the Rapper, Sonic Youth, MGMT, Flaming Lips, and many more. The event happens on the Walker campus, which offers 19 acres of space for food, music, and enjoyment for those who attend. The event did not occur in 2021 but is planned to resume at some time in the future.
Stone Arch Bridge Festival
Another must-attend event in the area is the Stone Arch Bridge Festival. It happens, generally, in June. This event welcomes people from throughout the state to come together to celebrate art. It does this by creating various areas to display art. There is also an Art Market, which allows over 200 artists to display their work for potential purchase by visitors. There is also a section for culinary arts, allowing people to share their food with event-goers. There is also the Art of the Car Show that welcomes those with older vehicles into the area.
Each event is a bit different. However, the Stone Arch Bridge Festival typically features food, lots of booths, activities for most, and live music. It takes place on the Minneapolis Riverfront and spans a weekend. The goal is as simple as helping local artists showcase their work in a new way to the public.
Fall Festivals in Minneapolis
The fall months bring cooler weather and the harvest season. There are plenty of reasons to get outside and celebrate this time of the year, especially in a region that is known for its agriculture. There are a few experiences to be had during this time, including the following.
Minnesota Renaissance Festival
The Minnesota Renaissance Festival happens from the middle of August through the start of October each year. Each weekend, there are different themes, including Vikings, Highland, Irish, and even Woofstock, to celebrate the pups. The event is over 50 years old. It takes place on the festival grounds in the town of Shakopee and runs just the weekends in August and October.
For those visiting for the first time, the Renaissance festival focuses on Medieval times. Many of the people who attend, along with those working the festival, are dressed in period garb to celebrate. Each year, over 300,000 people visit. It is a celebration of nature, art, and life. There is a wide range of special events, shows, live music, and outdoor experiences to be had. The event also includes a large artisan marketplace, various contests and tests of strength, games, food, and much more. There is even a turkey trot sponsored by the festival each year. Visitors pay an admission fee to explore all that the event has to offer.
For those that want to experience a different world, the MetaCon Minneapolis event is a fun experience.It is a traditional comic con event, welcoming people dressed as their favorite fictional characters to the doors. This is a large expo with much more to offer. There are numerous exhibitors as well as various interactive events. There are often sponsored guest stars, who may include a wide range of TV and movie professionals.
MetaCon Minneapolis also brings with it interactive events, entertainers throughout, and lots of costumes. The three-day event takes place in October each year. This is an event in everything here, including TV stars, cosplay, anime, games, and live music. Though the location may change, it is typically held at the Hyatt Regency Minneapolis in Minneapolis each year. There is an admission fee for those who wish to attend.
St. Paul Oktoberfest
For those who wish to celebrate German heritage, the St. Paul Oktoberfest is an excellent choice. It typically takes place on a Friday and Saturday in September. The event is designed to be just like the original that used to take place in Munich. It is a celebration of the weather and, of course, German foods and beer. The Germanic-American Institute sponsors the event (and this is also the location for the event) each year.
That group does a lot to make this an authentic experience. They import beer directly from Paulaner in Munich as a starting point. They also bring in a lot of traditional food (but there is also a wide range of other food options for those that may not have a taste for bratwurst). The event typically includes entertainment, live music, and fun contests. It is a celebration of German culture. Those in attendance that are older than 21 can purchase a wristband that allows them to sample several beers throughout their day. This annual event is one of the main attractions that people who buy homes in Saint Paul can enjoy.
Winter Festivals in Minneapolis
While Minneapolis weather becomes quite cold in the winter, there are still various events taking place here. Many of them celebrate the holidays, but there are often experiences ideally suited for those who wish to get out and enjoy the outdoors. Here are a few examples.
St. Paul Winter Carnival
One of the classic experiences here is the St. Paul Winter Carnival.Most of the event is open to the public without any cost. It takes place in the Downtown St. Paul neighborhood, near the Landmark Center and Rice Park. There is also a drive-thru event at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds (a new addition due to the pandemic). There are plenty of things to do, including parades, carnivals, and games. There are also ice cravings, snow sculptures, and other events that take place.
This event has taken place since 1886 to bring people together in both of the Twin Cities. It is considered the oldest festival in the country, even dating back before the Tournament of Roses. It began after newspapers visiting the city reported that the state was unfit for human habitation. The business owners in the area decided to showcase all that the state had to open, in the winter months, during this event.
GLOW Holiday Festival
The GLOW Holiday Festival is an exciting way to celebrate the holidays.It spans from mid-November through January 2nd each year. It is a traditional experience of spending time with family and friends. It takes place at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds. Visitors can walk around and explore all of the displays of lights and interactive experiences. This holiday light experience is newer, having been around just a few years. The event takes place during the weekend and some weeknights.
The GLOW Holiday Festival also collects donations for a specific charity event each year. This comes from the price of admission charged to each vehicle passing through the light display. There is a radio channel each vehicle can tune to listen to holiday music through the experience.
Winter Lights at University of Minnesota
The University of Minnesota has created another wonderful experience for those living in the area. The Winter Lights event takes place each year on the campus grounds. The event allows people to walk through and see numerous lighted displays. The event is newer, but guests are sure to find it to be a welcoming experience.
What makes this experience unique is that the students create light displays. It happens each year starting at the beginning of December. Over 250,000 LED lights are used in the display. It takes about an hour to walk through the experience.
There's a Festival for Every Season in Minneapolis
Community festivals like these help to make any location feel like a home. Take a closer look at each of these festivals and the communities and neighborhoods that make them special. For those considering making a move to one of the luxury homes or the Minneapolis condos and townhomes for sale, the city offers something for most, including those who want to have exciting festivals to attend in every season.