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June festivals around Minnesota
Music (polka, bluegrass, jazz); art after dark; fiestas; Pride; Scandivians--these are just a few of the things being feted this month.
Minnesota Homegrown Kickoff
One of four annual festivals run by the Minnesota Bluegrass and Old-Time Music Association, the Homegrown Kickoff offers live music, jam sessions, music classes, camping, and crafts and food.
Chmielewski International Polka Festival
More than 100 musicians will contribute their talents to this three-day extravaganza. Think you know everything about polka? Think again—this festival will introduce you to all kinds of ethnic variations, including Polish and Slovenian.
Grand Old Day
St. Paul’s Grand Avenue welcomes the entire family for entertainment, kids’ activities, food, drink, art fair, parade—pretty much everything you need.
Worthington Windsurfing Regatta and Unvarnished Music Festival
A windsurfing championship combined with an indie music festival. Makes sense. See the website for this year’s musicians.
Famous Dave’s BBQ and Blues Festival
BBQ, all day, and blues. How can you go wrong with Charlie Parr???
Why swim when you can portage and canoe?
The Caramel Roll
Go on a beautiful bike ride—and eat caramel rolls along the way. Could it get any better?
Art in the night. See the Cities after hours, and see what kinds of creativity take place.
A weeklong fiesta complete with parades, coronations of royalty of all ages, bike rodeo, dance, taco fee, and the Amazing Fiesta Race.
Judy Garland Festival
The birthplace of Judy Garland will host its 37th annual festival in 2012. Events include a poppy seed planting at the Museum, musical entertainment, The Wizard of Oz on the big screen, and kids’ activities.
Visit the maypole, listen to music, enjoy a Scandinavian smorgasbord (including fresh lefse!). Take a slight detour out of town to visit the Pioneer Village, a beautiful recreated village of original pioneer buildings.
A celebration of all things Rochester, this is a busy week: lumberjack championships; volleyball and fishing tournaments; cemetery walks; music and dancing; treasure hunt; historic walking tours; parade; and even a hot air balloon race.
Stone Arch Bridge Festival
It’s hard to imagine a more scenic location for this jack-of-all-trades festival: juried art show, Art of the Car display, and live music.
Land of the Loon Festival
A celebration of the various ethnic groups that settled into northeastern Minnesota. Food, music, arts and crafts from around the world.
Great River Shakespeare Festival
June 20 - Aug. 5
The annual Shakespeare Festival offers three of the Bard’s plays: King Lear, The Two Gentlemen of Verona, and All’s Well That Ends Well, as well as the “Abridged” version of all of Shakespeare’s plays. See website for schedule and ticket information.
Granite City Days
Celebrate the Granite City’s heritage at this annual festival, complete with fly-in pancake breakfast, tours of historic homes, and bike races.
Scandinavian Hjemkomst Festival
A joint Scandinavian festival presented by local Danish, Finnish, Norwegian, Icelandic, and Swedish groups, this annual celebration includes a LEGO art show, Scandinavian music groups, puppet shows, and of course—lots of Scandinavian food.
Parades, tournaments, food and music—and a sauerkraut eating contest. Are you up to the challenge?
Held at the lovely Gammelgarden Museum, this festival offers Swedish music, a pig roast smorgasbord, Swedish Hambo dancers, and all manner of crafts and activities (butter making, hoop rolling). Or just enjoy a beautiful summer day at this living history site which features several original immigrant homes and buildings.
Twin Cities Pride
Parade, boat cruise, concerts, picnic, art show—this is one packed weekend.
Twin Cities Jazz Festival
Enjoy a (hopefully) beautiful visit to Mears Park while soaking in the musical stylings of Delfeayo Marsali, the Luca Ciarla Quintet, and Araya Orta Latin Jazz Quartet, among others.
Note: A huge variety of events and festivals are listed on the website of the Minnesota Historical Society.