2013 Minneapolis Aquatennial
Minneapolis, MN 55402
Dates: July 12 to 20
The Minneapolis Aquatennial celebrates its 74th year with a celebration filled with fun events for the entire family. The 2013 Aquatennial kicks-off in the heart of Downtown Minneapolis with a jam-packed weekend of fitness, music, water, and historic activities and is quickly followed by fun-filled summer days and nights of free (or low cost) public events throughout the city.
Festival goers are going to want to make their plans now to fit everything in. Visit Aquatennial.com for a full schedule of events. While you’re online, like us on Facebook, tweet us on Twitter, pin with us on Pinterest, and follow us on Instagram to get up-to-the-minute details and insider tips.
Star Tribune Beach Bash
Thomas Beach, Lake Calhoun
Hours: July 14, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
The Star Tribune Beach Bash is home to some of the Aquatennial’s most iconic events. Sandcastles of all kinds will line the beach as competitors defend their craft at the Xcel Energy Sandcastle Competition. Watch teams defy the odds by racing boats made of milk cartons across Lake Calhoun during the Aquatennial Milk Carton Boat Races. Various categories of competition take place throughout the day and close with an awards ceremony at 3:30 p.m. Other activities back by popular demand are the Minneapolis Fire Department, Memorial Blood Centers Blood Drive and Wilderness Inquiry Voyageur Canoe.
Twin Cities River Rats Aquatennial Water Ski Show
Mississippi River, West Bank along W River Rd. between Broadway and Plymouth Aves.
Hours: July 13 & 14, 3 p.m. & 7 p.m.; July 18, 7 p.m.
The Rats are back! A Twin Cities favorite, this talented water ski team braves the Mississippi River to perform a series of tricks, pyramids, and more. This year, the Rats will feature their largest ever ballet line, the Fly-High jet pack flyer, and a brand new “Super Mario World” themed show.
Aquatennial Pre Parade Party at Loring Park
Hours: July 17, 5 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Before the CenterPoint Energy Torchlight Parade, meet in Loring Park for the kick-off party. Complete with live music, carnival games, pony rides, inflatable bouncers, balloon animals, face painting, and a new water balloon sling-shot, this party will delight kids and adults.
CenterPoint Energy Torchlight Parade
Hennepin Avenue between the Dunwoody College of Technology and 5th Street
Hours: July 17, 8:30 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.
A colorfully lit parade of bands and floats march straight through the heart of Downtown Minneapolis. Fun for all ages, the CenterPoint Energy Torchlight Parade is sure to brighten up your summer and the kids’ faces.
Stand-Up for Avenues, Avenues for Homeless Youth Paddleboard Benefit Fun Race
West River Parkway along the Mississippi River
Hours: July 20, 8:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Try out the latest water craze, stand-up paddeboarding, at this fun race for all skill levels at Lake Calhoun’s North Beach with event proceeds benefiting Avenues for Homeless Youth.
West River Parkway along the Mississippi River
Hours: July 20, 6 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.
One of the largest annual fireworks displays in the nation, the Target Fireworks will light up the Minneapolis sky with a spectacular pyrotechnic display in celebration of the 74th Aquatennial. In addition to the amazing fireworks at 10 pm, enjoy pre-fireworks festivities beginning at 6 pm, along West River Parkway between Portland Avenue and the 3rd Avenue Bridge.
Aquatennial Ambassador Organization Queen of the Lakes Coronation
Ted Mann Concert Hall, West Bank, University of Minnesota
Hours: July 19, 7 p.m.
Price: $30 individuals/$28 per person in groups
The Queen of Lakes Coronation held by the Aquatennial Ambassador Organization features women from various Minnesota communities competing for the chance to represent the festival and the City of Minneapolis. The Minneapolis Aquatennial Queen of the Lakes, as well as two princesses, will be crowned at this event.
Family Fun Restaurants:
You’ll need a full stomach to keep up with the fun-filled days of the Aquatennial. Between events, stop by one of Downtown’s incredible restaurants to refuel.
Ichiban Japanese Steakhouse, 1333 Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis, (612) 339-0540
The News Room, 990 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis, (612) 343-0073
Rock Bottom Brewery, 800 Lasalle Ave, Minneapolis, (612) 332-2739
The Local, 931 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis, (612) 904-1000
Get a Meal and a Deal:
Present your 2013 Aquatennial Skipper Pin at these participating locations and take advantage of the great deals. Skipper Pins are available for purchase for $5 at Aquatennial.com.
Dakota Jazz Club & Restaurant, 1010 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis, (612) 332-1010
Hell’s Kitchen, 80 S 9th St Ste 2, Minneapolis, (612) 332-4700
The Melting Pot, 80 S 9th St Ste 1, Minneapolis, (612) 338-9900
Grand Hotel Minneapolis, 615 2nd Ave S, Minneapolis, (612) 288-8888
Minneapolis Marriott City Center, 30 S 7th St, Minneapolis, (612) 349-4000