TC Weekend | Red, White & Boom!, Prairie Home Companion 40th Anniversary, Taste of MN, park parties and more!

Updated 7/5/2014 3:45 pm

 If you’re not one of the estimated 41 million Americans planning on hitting the road this Fourth of July weekend, you’ll find an exciting and eclectic mix of events in Twin Cities to help you ring in the holiday and savor the weekend. Pant-less bike rides, war reenactments, patriotic concerts, family-friendly festivals in the parks – this weekend runs the gamut. See the lineup below, and check Where to see Fourth of July fireworks in the Twin Cities: Hot spots, fun facts.


Red, White and Boom!, July 4

This annual two-day festival began July 3 with a Hot Damn 5K run, which served as a benefit for the firework fund and celebrations. On July 4 the real fun begins with the TC Half Marathon in the morning, followed by live music and a free Family Fun Zone. The evening ends with a BOOM -- the dazzling fireworks display, one of the biggest in the state.

6:30 am - TC Half Marathon

6 pm - 10 pm: Live music, movies, food, and family activities

Mill Ruins Park and Father Hennepin Bluffs Park

10pm – Fireworks


Celebrating Our Independence at Powderhorn Park, July 4

There may not be  fireworks this year, but there’s still plenty of fun to be had at Powderhorn Park with local musicians, food vendors, family activities like face painting, bouncy castle and more. The program is from 11am to 3pm but attendees are welcome to stay in the park and make a day of it!

Powderhorn Park

3400 15th Ave S, Minneapolis

11 am – 3 pm




Fourth in the Park at St. Anthony Park, July 4 

The long-running Fourth in the Park event at St. Anthony Park includes a run at 8:30 am, followed by a parade beginning at 11 am along Como Avenue to Langford Park. The fun continues after the parade with live music, food, speeches, pony rides, prizes, and more!

St Anthony Park

Langford Park and Como Avenue, Saint Paul

 8 am - 6 pm



Independence Day Celebration at Fort Snelling, July 4

Reflect on the Fourth of July by taking a trip to the early 1800s at Historic Fort Snelling’s Independence Day celebration. Watch a War of 1812 "mock battle" on the Parade Ground celebrating Colonel Snelling's victory at the Battle of Oak Woods, test your memory with historic games, view a military dress parade, and take in the patriotic sounds of military fife and drum music, plus roaring cannon salutes. You can also explore the history of slavery in Minnesota, and examine Fort Snelling’s role in the great freedom debates during the 1800s.

345 W. Kellogg Blvd., Saint Paul

10 am - 5 pm

$6 - $11 adult; Free for children age 5 and under and MNHS members.

Free parking

A Prairie Home Companion 40th Anniversary Festival, July 4 - 6

Macalester College is the place for the three-day celebration to honor A Prairie Home Companion’s 40th anniversary. The highlights include a “40 Songs, 40 Years” concert on Friday, concluding with a mass sing-along of all-American songs, sure to get the patriotic vibes flowing. Saturday’s festivities will feature a special three-hour broadcast of A Prairie Home Companion, and Sunday offers a sing-along in the fieldhouse. The free family fun will sprawl across campus, interviews, games and activities for kids and more. See the festival schedule for more details. You can also download a free Metro Transit coupon.

Macalester College campus
1600 Grand Avenue, Saint Paul 

Free (mostly)


Fourth of July Freedom From Pants Ride VIII, July 4

No pants? No problem! Enjoy your freedom from fabric with other bikers, pedaling through the city unencumbered by pants. Riders will meet at the vacant parking lot near White Castle in NE Minneapolis.  

6 pm arrival; 7 pm roll out



Hmong Freedom Celebration 34th Annual Sports Festival, July 4 - 5

In addition to great sports viewing, this family-friendly cultural festival features local vendors, performers, and food booths offering sticky rice, papaya salads, pork, chicken and other tasty food.

Como Park, McMurray Fields (McMurray Fields are between Como and Jessamine avenues, west of Lexington Parkway, at 1155 Jessamine Avenue West).

$5.00; Free admission for seniors over 65 years old (ID required) and children under 3 years old



CHAT Freedom Fest / 11th Annual Hmong Arts & Music Festival, July 4 - 5

Center for Hmong Arts and Talent (CHAT) is hosting the two-day 11th Annual Hmong Arts & Music Festival, coinciding with the 34th Annual J4 Sports Festival. The Arts & Music Festival features contemporary and traditional Hmong arts at Como Park in the afternoon. The festival also offers a Session Singer/Songwriter Competition, interactive community arts campaign “Freedom Is,” community cloth art project, youth activities and more.

On Friday evening, CHAT will also host the 2nd Annual Freedom Fest Music Celebration at Mounds Theater to raise funds to acquire the theater. The weekend festivities will conclude on Saturday with a free artist meet and greet, and open mic fundraiser.

Como Park, McMurray Fields (McMurray Fields are between Como and Jessamine avenues, west of Lexington Parkway, at 1155 Jessamine Avenue West).

9 am – 8pm

A Taste of Minnesota, July 4 - 6

A Taste of Minnesota’s location this year had to be changed due to recent flooding at Harriet Island. But if you’re in the mood for short road trip, your taste buds will be rewarded for the longer drive with a delicious lineup of Minnesota food, music on two stages, and a KidZone with pony rides, a petting zoo, parakeet park and more. Each night of the festivities is capped off with fireworks.

Carver County Fair

501 West 3rd Street, Waconia, MN 55387

11 am -  11 pm each day

Free admission until 3 pm;  $10 after 3pm

Free admission for kids 12 and under with an adult

Free admission for military with I.D. on the July 4.

10: 20 pm Fireworks each night, with a simulcast on 92KQRS on July 4.

Go here or zap the Taste of Minnesota app for more details.

Salute to America at Orchestra Hall, July 5

Orchestra Hall invites you enjoy the beautifully remodeled hall, while saluting fabulous American composers. The program includes the Star Spangled Banner, An American in Paris, America the Beautiful and host of other favorites. If you have Spotify account, you can enjoy a preview here. You may also download a copy of the program

Orchestra Hall

111 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis

$20 - $50 Buy tickets

8 pm

Little Mekong Night Market, July 5

The first in the series of Little Mekong Night Markets was cancelled due to rain, so this weekend’s is the official kick off (other dates: July 26, August 16, and September 6). These late-night gatherings mix the allure of fresh food with live performance, culture, and local art, with the goal of creating a carnival-like experience found at night markets in Asia.

402 University Ave W, Saint Paul (400 block of University Ave between Mai Village Restaurant and Little Szechuan Restaurant, near to the intersection of University Ave and Western Ave).

5 pm – 10 pm


Outdoor Movies

Movies in the park 
Invictus, July 5

McRae Park

906 E 47th St, Minneapolis
Movie starts 15 minutes after sunset


Rooftop Movie Night
Space Jam, July 6
Solera Restaurant

900 Hennepin Avenue, Minneapolis

Movies begin at dusk, weather permitting



How will you spend the long Fourth of July weekend? Let us know by sending your photos, tweets, and comments to tcweekend [at] tcdailyplanet [dot] net or #hashtag them with #tcdpic and check back to see your photo attached to the Storify over the weekend (refresh your browser if you don't see the Storify below).

Coverage of issues and events that affect Central Corridor neighborhoods and communities is funded in part by a grant from Central Corridor Funders Collaborative.

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    Paige Elliott's picture
    Paige Elliott

    (paigeelliott [at] tcdailyplanet [dot] net) Paige Elliott was born and raised in south Minneapolis. She currently works as an Editoral Assistant with the Daily Planet, with emphasis on visual storytelling.