Aquatennial features block party, milk carton boat races, fireworks and more

Minneapolis official civic celebration the Aquatennial Festival is now in its 72 nd year. Here are a few of the events slated for the July 15 – 23 celebration of summer.

Aquatennial Block Party
Friday, July 15
5 – 11 p.m.
Nicollet Mall, between 3rd and 4th Streets

Tonic and The Irresistibles featuring Mick Sterling and Tim Mahoney will perform. The Aquatennial Happy Hour is from 5 – 6 p.m.; music begins after 6.

Twin Cities River Rats Aquatennial Water Ski Show
Saturday, July 16
3 – 5 p.m.
West Bank along West River Road, between Broadway & Plymouth

The Twin Cities River Rats Water Ski Show Team will perform a free, hour-long ski show, "kRAT Waterski Radio Station" on the Mississippi River.

Minneapolis Sister Cities Day Celebration
Sunday, July 17
1 – 5 p.m.
Nicollet Island Pavilion

Minneapolis’s Fourth Annual Sister Cities Day will celebrate the City of Minneapolis’s ten official international sister city relationships. This family event and ice cream social is sponsored by the Meet Minneapolis Global Partnership Program and is free and open to the public. Mayor R. T. Rybak will welcome festival attendees and officially recognize the 50th anniversary of the Minneapolis/Santiago, Chile City relationship and the 20th anniversary of the Minneapolis/Tours, France relationship.

Star Tribune Beach Bash
Sunday, July 17
10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Thomas Beach, Lake Calhoun

Featured events include the Xcel Energy Sandcastle Competition, the Aladdin Milk Carton Boat Races, the Memorial Blood Centers Blood Drive, and the Wilderness Inquiry's Voyageur Canoe Paddling Instruction. Throughout the Beach Bash, firefighters will be staffing a lakeside booth so visitors can see the Fire Department’s air boat, try on a firefighter’s turnout gear and practice aiming a water pump.

CenterPoint Energy Torchlight Parade
Wednesday, July 20
8:30 - 10:30 p.m.
Hennepin Avenue, between the Dunwoody & 5th Street

The CenterPoint Energy Torchlight Parade will illuminate downtown with bands and floats. The Fire Department will be driving a fire rig and airboat in the parade, and the Minneapolis Police Band will be performing.

Pre-fireworks music
Saturday, July 23
6 p.m.
West River Parkway, between Portland Avenue and the 3rd Avenue Bridge

Pre-fireworks activities and live music are planned.

Target Fireworks display
Saturday, July 23
10 - 10:30 p.m.
West River Parkway, along the Mississippi River

This is one of the largest annual fireworks shows in the country.

For details and information about other Aquatennial events, visit www.aquatennial.com.

July 6, 2011

Published Jul. 6, 2011