10 Popular Festivals In Minneapolis, Minnesota

festivals in minneapolis
Ibrahim
Ibrahim 
Updated

Minneapolis is an area that is culturally diverse. With a lot of natural beauty, lush green spaces, exciting outdoor trails, and a host of other fun outdoor activities, this city is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts and fun lovers. It also boasts several fashionable and state-of-the-art boutiques, so shoppers can find more-than-enough places to shop for all their needs. Some of the other attractions the city boasts of include upscale dining spots, an award-winning theater, and a dozen of beautiful parks. In addition to these, the region is home to a lot of amazing festivals and fairs. From spectacular firework displays to winter carnivals and shows, there is always an exciting event to attend, no matter what time of the year. Here are the most popular festivals in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

1. Minneapolis Aquatennial

Happy-70th-aquatennial-minneapolis
Source: Photo by user JoyceDZ used under CC BY 3.0

The official city celebration, Minneapolis Aquatennial is a 10-day festival held every year in July. Of all the fairs held in the city, this one is, without a doubt, the largest and the most significant. Attended by thousands of people annually, Aquatennial offers the city’s locals, tourists, and visitors a wide variety of fun and enjoyment. With activities like beach parties, sports tournaments, water-ski shows, sandcastle competitions, car shows, milk carton boat races, bubbling neighborhood block parties, and a stunning fireworks show by the river, this award-winning festival is one you must not miss in the city.

Minneapolis Aquatennial

Address: Downtown Minneapolis Minneapolis, MN

Website: Minneapolis Aquatennial

Takes place: July

Price: Free entry

2. Rock the Garden

Rock the Garden stage, June 2014
Source: Photo by user Collin Knopp-Schwyn used under CC BY 4.0

Overlooking the beautiful Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, this festive event is accessible and well-attended in the city. Rock the Garden is an exceptional music festival held usually at the start of the summer season. The music and the vibes set a perfect ambiance to shake off the laziness and get into the summer holiday spirit. The full-day event hosts several famous music bands reeling out live performances on each of its two stages. Aside from all the jumping, singing, screaming, and drinking, that comes with the fun-filled music concerts, Rock the Garden also offers you a fantastic view of the city’s skyline.

Rock the Garden

Address: Walker Art Center 725 Vineland Place Minneapolis, MN 55403

Website: Rock the Garden

Takes place: Usually held in June

Price: 74 USD

3. Uptown Art Fair


Minneapolis is a place known for its incredible art, and one of the best places to witness and admire beautiful displays of creativity in the city is the Uptown Art Fair. This remarkable arts event hosts more than 200 artists every August, with each displaying his/her unique work. The fair features crafts and arts – including sculptures, ceramic works, jewelry, paintings, and so much more. It also features a youth art fair for young artists, and a culinary competition where local chefs make aesthetic and delicious meals. There are several other food and drink vendors, so you don’t go hungry as you walk around admiring all the artistic beauty.

Uptown Art Fair

Address: South of Downtown Minneapolis. Minneapolis

Website: Uptown Art Fair

Takes place: August

Price: 45 USD

4. Northern Spark Festival


If you are a lover of arts but you are a night owl too, the city has something in the form of festivals for you. Held every year in June, Northern Spark Festival lights up the entire region for 2 nights until 2 am! It is a place where you can admire and experience the magic of authentic art, with several amazing works on display every year. This all-night arts festival features grand video projections, temporary street art installations, and live performances in open spaces. There is also a place where you can grab a late-night snack around this festival.

Northern Spark Festival

Address: 2751 Hennepin Avenue South / Ste. 231 Minneapolis, MN 55408

Website: Northern Spark Festival

Takes place: June

Price: Free entry

5. Basilica Block Party


This fantastic celebration started as a way to raise funds for the structural restoration of the iconic Basilica of Saint Mary. Being held in the heart of the city, the festival has been consistent every year in July since 1995. The Basilica Block Party lasts for two full days and features some of the best indie rock and alternative rock performances. A great place of entertainment for everyone, Christians or not, the festival is one of the best this lively city offers.

Basilica Block Party

Address: 8 North 17th Street Minneapolis, MN United States

Website: Basilica Block Party

Takes place: Usually held in July

Price: 60 USD

6. Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival

The Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival is coming up and we're sponsoring an Italian film called...

Posted by The Italian Cultural Center on Thursday, 26 March 2015

The largest film festival in the entire Upper Midwest region of the country, the Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival (MSPIFF), is an event you don’t want to miss. This film festival is unique, exciting, and has been held every April for almost 40 years now. One of the most highly anticipated events of the year here, the celebration is attended by nearly 50,000 people annually, including tourists and filmmakers from all around the world. This celebration of both local and international film production debuts more than 250 films each year!

Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival

Address: 125 SE Main Street 55414, Minnesota 55414

Website: Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival

Takes place: Usually held in April

Price: 15 USD onward

7. MayDay Parade & Festival

MayDay Parade, Minneapolis (15860142701)
Source: Photo by user Tony Webster used under CC BY 2.0

An exciting event celebrated to mark the beginning of spring in the city, the MayDay Parade & Festival has been held in the city for over 38 years now. The annual event is celebrated in May, and it features lots of music, dancing, art performances, and of course, a marching parade. It begins with dancing as the bands play before the actual event itself. Enjoy all the entertaining options as well as delicious food and nice drinks on offer too.

MayDay Parade & Festival

Address: 1500 East Lake St Minneapolis, MN 55407

Website: MayDay Parade & Festival

Takes place: May

Price: Free entry

8. Summer at Orchestra Hall [Previously known as Minnesota Orchestra Sommerfest]

[Just announced] My work "Obertura Tanguera" (1993) will be part of the Sommerfest 2019 of MINNESOTA ORCHESTRA...

Posted by Esteban Benzecry on Friday, 22 March 2019

Held over four weeks between July and August every year, the Minnesota Orchestra Summerfest is a celebration of live music concerts in the city. It’s organized by the Minnesota Orchestra and is meant for music lovers to enjoy a full presentation of all the city’s musical talents. The fair features a wide range of musical performances – including classical music, the midsummer. The event is held in a hall and also offers the best jazz, such as folk and polka band music for you to enjoy.

Minnesota Orchestra Sommerfest

Address: MN Orchestra Hall 1111 Nicollet MallMinneapolis, MN, 55403United States

Website: Minnesota Orchestra Sommerfest

Takes place: July to August

Price: 25 USD onward

9. Festival of Nations [Last event in 2019]

Festival of Nations 09

Posted by Biviana Muñoz on Saturday, 6 June 2009

Having been recognized as one of the top 20 events in the state, and one of the top 100 events in the country, the Festival of Nations is a must-experience. It’s held over four days, usually within April to May yearly, and it is dedicated to celebrating the diversity and several different cultures that abound in the state. Aside from honoring the different fascinating cultures of the region, this fest also offers live music performances, dance shows, food stalls, and art displays.

Festival of Nations

Address: Saint Paul River Centre 175 W Kellogg Blvd. St Paul, MN 55102, United States of America

Website: Festival of Nations

Takes place: April to May

Price: 11 USD

10. Minnesota Fringe Festival

Minnesota Fringe Festival (15188066704)
Source: Photo by user Tony Webster used under CC BY 2.0

If you are an innovative artist, or you like seeing creativity at its best, then this festival is made just for you. Minnesota Fringe connects daring, creative artists with interested audiences by creating an open platform for these artists to express themselves through their craft. Organized in the middle of summer in August, this celebration sees the attendance of almost 50,000 people yearly. There are also Family Fringe shows with multi-generational productions for children and families.

Minnesota Fringe Festival

Address: 79 13th Ave NE #112, Minneapolis, MN 55413, United States

Website: Minnesota Fringe Festival

Takes place: Usually held in August

Price: 15 USD onward

Enjoy the festivals in Minneapolis

Although Minneapolis is not like those other big cities, it has a lot to offer, with a rich culture, history and beautiful landscape. The city is also home to some of the best festivals and fairs in the country. So don’t miss out on all the fun and excitement, attend any (if not all) of these popular festivals in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and have the experience of a lifetime.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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Ibrahim is a passionate writer with a keen interest in traveling. He not only travels to discover the world but also himself. And when it comes to writing, Ibrahim loves to keep it simple with a...Read more

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