Wander Minnesota: Summer Starts Now

As we move toward the prime festival months of summer, spring ushers in many festivals, including lots of outdoor activities. As usual, don’t forget to look through the myriad opportunities offered at the Minnesota Historical Society, which has plenty of its own events to offer.

St. Paul
Cinco de Mayo
May 6
St. Paul’s District del Sol has plenty to entertain you with the day after the actual fifth of May. A fiesta parade, live music, jalapeno eating contest, kids’ activities, and plenty of fabulous, authentic Mexican food.

Duluth
Duluth Homegrown Music Festival
Now through May 7
This is one serious music festival: over 200 musical acts, all over the city. Surely there’s something to satisfy every musical taste here.

St. Paul
Festival of Nations
Now through May 7
Back for its 84th year, the Festival of Nations celebrates the diversity in Minnesota’s heritage, with nearly 100 different ethnic groups providing music, dance, crafts, and food. This year’s theme is A Celebration of Ethnic Ceremonies & Rituals, which should have a wide range of exhibits.

Red Wing to Winona (and into Wisconsin)
100 Miles of Garage Sales
Now through May 7
Bargain hunters and Antique Roadshow dreamers, take note—this annual event is a treasure-hunter’s joy.

Lake Elmo
Shepherd’s Harvest Sheep and Wool Festival
May 12-14
Sheep. Llamas. Angora bunnies. Woolen goodies, pre-made or ready to knit/crochet. Food, music, sheepherder dog demonstrations, knitting classes, and plenty of food.

Detroit Lakes
Festival of Birds
May 18-21
Serious birders, take note—this festival, now in its 20th year, offers the possibility of seeing any of more than 275 species of birds that live in the Detroit Lakes area. There will be guided tours, educational events, and field trips.

Minneapolis
Art-a-Whirl
May 19-21
Prowl around NE Minneapolis and explore its growing arts community in this varied collection of local and national artists’ exhibitions.

Houston
May Bluegrass Festival
May 19-21
The beautiful Root River area in southern Minnesota is home to this bluegrass festival, this year featuring Roe Family Singers, Double Down Daredevils, and Cedar Valley. Feel free to bring your own musical instrument and join in.

Hinckley
International Polka Festival
May 19-21
Grand Casino Hinckley hosts the 39th annual International Polka Festival, and this year is special: It’s Florian Chmielewski’s 90th birthday.

Whalan
The Stand-Still Parade
May 20
Food, music, games, petting zoo, arts and crafts, lefse—and a parade that doesn’t move.

Onamia
American Indian Music Fest
May 27
Enjoy a day of Native American music from Annie Humphrey, Thomas X, and local musicians from the Mille Lacs band.

What else is happening in our state? Be sure to check out the 10 p.m. Sunday night WCCO newscasts, where you can learn more in the weekly segment, Finding Minnesota.

More from Amy Rea
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