Minneapolis 4th of July Guide
Explore all your 4th of July options in one place!
Consider this the be-all end-all of everything that is, was and will be for your 4th of July in Minneapolis. We guarantee that if you read this comprehensive, expert-compiled list that you’ll have a day worthy of your name being etched into the history books next to the country’s most patriotically-awesome people. Click the options below for everything that is 4th of July in Minneapolis.
PLACES TO WATCH FIREWORKS:
PLEASE NOTE: The sound of fireworks may trigger the nervous system of dogs and other pets with hearing sensitivity, causing them to become anxious or afraid. If you intend to bring your dog to an outdoor Minneapolis celebration, make sure they are on a leash and close by during the fireworks display to ensure that they do not run away.
1. Stone Arch Bridge: This is the absolute best place to see the skies. Watching fireworks on the Stone Arch Bridge is like watching history, as the bridge is a link to the rich past of Minneapolis. You’ll be right above the Mississippi River and right below the action. Get here early though, it fills up quick!
Make it a day downtown and plan pre-firework activities!
2. Gold Medal Park: One of the most underrated spots in downtown Minneapolis, Gold Medal Park offers a more traditional viewing experience. Throw a blanket on the grass, toss a ball around and gaze up at the fireworks while you lie down and relax.
INSIDER TIP: “Bring bug spray.” -Scott
3. Mill City Museum: Watching fireworks from the Mill City Museum Observation Deck is as close to a VIP setting as you’ll get. Only 50 people get access, and you have to pay ($35), but the view is absolutely worth the cost. As an added bonus, you get admission into the museum beforehand.
INSIDER TIP: “If you’re reading this, then you need to stop what you’re doing and order tickets NOW! These tickets go very quickly and the view is sublime.” -Kristen
4. Guthrie Endless Bridge: A more unconventional place to watch fireworks, true, but it has that same VIP feel that the Mill City Museum Observation Deck has. You’ll be off the ground and closer to the action, and you’ll have a completely unobstructed view of the fireworks.
5. Restaurant Rooftops: A lot of people don’t generally think of restaurants as prime places to watch fireworks, but we say, “Why not?!” You’re up in the air, you’ll have a great view AND there are people that will serve you food and drinks. Check out more about Minneapolis' best outdoor dining locations and different brews and bites to try before and after the fireworks show!
6. Lake Calhoun: Parks are great, and buildings are very cool places to get closer to the fireworks. But, if you want the most authentic 4th of July “I LOVE AMERICA” experience, Lake Calhoun is where you want to be. Grill out, play some volleyball, kayak/paddle on the lake and chill on the beach while you get a great view of the downtown fireworks. Make a night of it! Hang out in Uptown before and after the fireworks show for more entertainment and cuisine.
*Dogs allowed everywhere but the beaches
7. Nicollet Island : Located between Downtown and Northeast Minneapolis, Nicollet Island is the perfect green space to unfold a blanket and lie back on the grass to watch fireworks. A beautiful garden, picnic area, and walking path make this a great place to spend the day relaxing before the night's celebrations. Situated right under the Hennepin Avenue Bridge, restaurants are abundant on both sides of the river. Grab a bite to eat in Northeast for dinner and head over to Downtown for drinks after! Nicollet Island is the perfect spot to experience the right dose of relaxation and celebration this holiday!
8. Hennepin Avenue Bridge : With the Mississippi rolling through Minneapolis, bridges are a necessity here, and sometimes they are useful for more than just crossing! The Hennepin Avenue Bridge is a perfect location to snag a phenomenal view of the fireworks display. Just like Nicollet Island, situated just under the bridge, this is a great spot to conveniently hit up various Minneapolis hot spots both before and after the show. Whether you go to Northeast, the North Loop and Warehouse Disctrict or Downtown, there is a place for you at either end of this bridge. Take the Light Rail downtown or park nearby and walk to the bridge for an easy and favorable Fourth of July
Things to Do:
Red, White & Boom!
6:30am: TC Half Marathon, Historic Main Street TC Half Marathon REGISTER HERE>>>
6:50am: 5K Marathon
6-10pm: Family Activities, Live Music, Movies and Food Vendors at Father Hennepin Bandshell and Mill Ruins Park
10pm: Fireworks, Minneapolis Riverfront District
NEW IN 2017: Participate in the Red, White and Boom! virtual race!
8th Annual Diamond Dog Eating Contest
11am-4pm: How many Diamond Dogs™ do you think you could eat in 10 mins? Join Secrets Publisher Taylor at The Depot‘s party, you could win a First Ave membership and a ton of tickets!
MN Twins vs. LA Angels
1:10pm: The Minnesota Twins take on the Los Angeles Angels at home. Millitary Discount Day.
MNUFC vs. Columbus Crew SC
6-10pm: MNUFC is set to square off with Columbus Crew SC on Salute To Freedom Night at TCF Bank Stadium.
YogaQuest Captain America: A Narrated Yoga Adventure
7-8:30pm: Do yoga while hearing Captain America Fan Fiction (a real event).
July 4th Lobster Boil and Fireworks
7-10:30pm: Sea Change by the Guthrie is having a patriotic (and kind of pricey) seafood boil while you watch the fireworks.
Top Gun on the Rooftop
7-11:30pm: Watch Top Gun at CRAVE as part of their Movies on the Rooftop experience.
8-10:30pm: Paddle through downtown with Above the Fall Sports and take in the sights of Minneapolis. As the sun sets, settle in on thw river and watch this year's fireworks show from your boat!
Apple Valley: Freedom Days
8am: Freedom Days 2 and 5 Mile Run REGISTER HERE >>>
1pm: Freedom Days Parade
10am-10pm: Amusement Carnival
6pm-11pm: Pre-Fireworks Party (Music, Dancing, Games)
Blaine: Fireworks Extravaganza
Dusk: Fireworks, National Sports Center at 10pm
Bloomington: Summer Fete
Bloomington's Summer Fete happens every year on July 3 at Normandale Lake Park. The 84th Street region will kick off with the Kids' Carnival Area at 5 p.m. featuring more inflatable attractions than ever before with a few specialty attractions! The 84th Street Kids' stage, celebrating its seventh big year, will once again feature the best in family entertainment. Music will also gear up on the main stage at 5pm. Top off the evening with the annual Summer Fete fireworks display.
Chanhassen: 4th of July Celebration
7am: Adult Fishing Contest
10am: Classic Car Show, Taste of Chanhassen, Rotary Beer and Wine Garden, Carnival Rides
11am: Sand Sculpture Contest, Medallion Hunt, Kids Fishing Contest
11:45pm: Live Music featuring American Bootleg, Bingo
2:30pm: Parade Downtown
(All events occur at Lake Ann and downtown Chanhassen)
Eagan: July 4th Funfest
10am: Back with a Bang Parade
12pm: Festival Grounds Open
1pm-4pm: Beyond the Yello Ribbon Car Show
1pm: Annual Brain Freeze Contest, Bingo
2pm: Blood Drive
2:30: Army Reserve Band
6pm: Texas Hold'em Tournament (Free Entry)
6pm ~ Midnight: Nightly Entertainment featuring Trainwreck Trio
Midnight: Funfest Closing
Eden Prairie: 4th of July Hometown Celebration
Starting at 7:30am at Round Lake Park, events include a Pickleball Tournament, Optimists 5K Run, Beach, Canoeing and Paddleboarding, Giant Games (Checkers, Twister, Connect Four and Jenga), Face Painting and Henna Artist, BMX Demonstrations, Bingo and a Karaoke Contest. Street Art by Shawn McCann will be featuered.
8pm-10pm: Live Music from Synergy
Edina: Independence Day Parade & Fireworks
From youth groups marching to seniors dancing, the Edina 4th of July Parade offers excitement for all ages. Parade begins at 10:00am behind Edina City Hall, 4801 W 50th St, Edina, MN, and ends at the US Bank parking lot at 50th St and Halifax Ave. Live music at Roseland Park followed by fireworks at 10pm.
Excelsior: Lake Minnetonka 4th of July Celebration
7:30am: Firecracker Runs (1 mile, 5K & 10K)
9am: Sand Sculpture Contest
11am: Water Street Kids' Parade, Popsicle Social, Petting Zoo
4pm: Becky Rae Dalton Performance
6pm: Brothers and Others Band Performance
7:30pm: Leah and the Rattlers Band Performance
9:55pm: The National Anthem performed by Kate Raddatz
Dusk: The best fireworks on Lake Minnetonka!
INSIDER TIP: “Watch the fireworks out on Lake Minnetonka and you can see the fireworks from Excelsior , Wayzata, Mound and Lafayette Club from any direction.” -Ruth
Fort Snelling: Independence Day Celebration
10am-5pm: Celebrate the nation’s independence as people did in the early 1800’s – cannon salutes, patriotic speeches, theatrical presentation put on by the fort’s soldiers, military dress parade, patriotic and military fife and drum music, historic games.
* Adults $12, seniors/ college students/veterans/active military $10, children ages 5-17 $6, children under 5 free
Tuesday July 4th at 6pm: Join us for a spectacular aerial fireworks display and entertainment including live music by the band IV Play LLC, inflatables, temporary tattoos, clowns, concessions and a free photo booth. Lawn chairs or blankets suggested to sit on the football practice field and surrounding areas.
Mystic Lake: Rock and Rockets
Starting at 5pm, Pop Rocks and Step Rockets will perform before the night sky lights up with a musically-choreographed fireworks show.
Fireworks at 10pm
INSIDER TIP: “All guests are welcome to bring lawn chairs or blankets. Coolers, picnic baskets and outside food and beverages are not permitted.” - Amanda
Richfield: 4th of July
July 2nd: Family Night
July 3rd: Carshow at 10am
July 3rd: Street Dance at 4pm
July 4th: Parade at 1pm
July 4th: Fireworks at 10pm
INSIDER TIP: “Head to Veterans Park. The best place to view the parade is by walking up by the park’s hilly areas. It is cool and shady by the trees, yet you get to enjoy the nice up-close view. Lots of people don’t know about that area so there’s a nice and cool breeze that hits you.” -Hassan
St. Louis Park: July 4th Fireworks Celebration
7-9:30pm: Performance by Stevie and the Rockers, Aquila Park
10pm: Fireworks, Aquila Park
White Bear Lake: 4th of July Fireworks, Flyover & Music at Memorial Beach
8pm: Music by Shoreview Northern Lights Variety Band
10pm: Firework display over White Bear Lake
Have any great photos or ideas on how to spend the 4th of July in Minneapolis? Share them with us by using the #askMPLS when tagging photos or ideas!