November festivals


What this month’s list doesn’t reflect is the vast number of tree lighting, welcome to winter, get ready for the holidays festivals and craft fairs. Check your local community chamber for local information. Don’t forget to check the Minnesota Historical Society’s event page; they’ve always got something interesting going on.


Art Attack

Nov. 4-6

A warehouse full of art and artists, all in time for the holidays.


Annual Masters’ Bluegrass Weekend

Nov. 4-6

The 19th annual celebration of bluegrass in a beautiful locale.


Mayowood Mansion Christmas Tours

Tues., Wed., Fri.-Sun., Nov. 4-27

Advance registration required. Visit the home of the Mayo Clinic founder and see it decorated for the holidays, with guided tours to explain the historical significance of the home, which celebrates its centennial in 2011.

St. Paul

Hmong New Year

Nov. 5-6

A change in venue this year, from St. Paul to the Metrodome in Minneapolis. Visit to learn more about the Twin Cities’ Hmong community, and enjoy live music, dancing, a beauty contest, and food.

Two Harbors

Annual Edmund Fitzgerald Memorial Beacon Lighting

Nov. 10

The anniversary of the sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald is commemorated with special tours that allow visitors to see the lighthouse beacon lit from inside the lighthouse, the only time each year that this privilege is available. Bring warm clothes.



Nov. 10-12

Ludefisk eating contests. You don’t want to eat? Go to watch. Also—other kinds of food. And art shows, and a talent show, and Norsky bingo.

Blue Earth

The Scarfing of the Jolly Green Giant

Nov. 12

Be there by 10:30 a.m., or you’ll miss the spectacle of Santa being lifted by machine to wrap a warm scarf around the Giant’s neck.

Grand Marais

Winterer’s Gathering & Arctic Film Festival

Nov. 17-20

The North House Folk School outdoes itself with this festival, including all manner of winter skill courses (building a wood stove, snowshoe construction, build a traditional toboggan), ski and gear swap, winter camping, and movies about all aspects of life in the frozen regions.


MCAD Annual Art Sale

Nov. 17-19

This is your chance to find that “artist on the verge.” MCAD students create and sell artworks. Go early.


Harvest Jamboree

Nov. 18-20

The Minnesota Bluegrass Old-Time Music Association began this festival just a few years ago, combining old-time bluegrass with live concerts, workshops, contests, and a banquet.


Fish House Parade

Nov. 25

Wild and crazy ice fishers decorate their  fish houses and take them on parade prior to settling them on the frozen lake for the season.



Thurs-Sun, Nov. 25-Dec. 18

2011 marks the 20th year Holidazzle has brightened Nicollet Mall. Truly a parade of lights, with life-size fairy tale characters decked out in splendid lit-up costumes. Allow extra time for traffic and parking, and if you’re planning on dining before or after, make reservations ahead or be prepared to wait.