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Celebrate the City at the Minneapolis Aquatennial

What is the Minneapolis Aquatennial?

The Minneapolis Aquatennial is the official civic celebration of the City of Minneapolis. Four days of midsummer festivities for residents, workers, and visitors celebrate all that Minneapolis has to offer. The 2022 Minneapolis Aquatennial is happening Wednesday, July 20 through Saturday, July 23. Four fun days include two beloved Aquatennial flagship events that bookend the celebration, a parade and fireworks. The CenterPoint Energy Torchlight Parade kicks off the Aquatennial Wednesday night. Saturday night, a spectacular fireworks display downtown by the Mississippi River concludes the festivities. Don’t miss the Aquatennial fireworks—they are considered one of the top five annual fireworks displays in the entire country!

Minneapolis Aquatennial flagship events

CenterPoint Energy Torchlight Parade
Wednesday, July 20
7:30 PM
Nicollet Avenue from 12th Street to 4th Street

By longstanding tradition, the Torchlight Parade kicks off the Aquatennial. The parade runs on Nicollet Avenue beginning at 12th Street and ending at 4th Street. Watch floats, displays and bands march through the heart of downtown Minneapolis. In addition, piano performances, games, street show performances and activities will take place all along Nicollet from 6 to 8 p.m.

Come early and find your spot. The emcee stand will be located at 11th and Nicollet, where K102’s Chris Carr & Company will be announcing all the parade units as they go by. (If you can’t attend the parade in person, you can see live coverage at

You can learn more about this year’s CenterPoint Energy Torchlight Parade here.

Minneapolis Aquatennial

Pre-Fireworks Festivities: Live music!
Saturday, July 23
6:00 to 10:00 PM
West River Parkway near the Stone Arch Bridge

Before the fabulous fireworks, you can get festive down at the river where the City of Minneapolis was born. Enjoy a jam-packed evening on the Mississippi riverfront.

The musical line-up for this year’s festivities:

  • 6 – 6:45 pm: Natania & Ticket to Brasil
  • 7 – 7:45 pm: Lt. Sunnie
  • 8 – 8:45 pm: Annie and the Bang Bang
  • 9 – 10 pm: DJ Keezy

Afterwards, enjoy the fireworks!

Target Fireworks
Saturday, July 23
10:00 PM
West River Parkway

Celebrate another year with the Target Fireworks, considered one of the top five annual fireworks displays in the nation. Get there early! Space fills up pretty quickly at this beloved event along West River Parkway.

Viewing Tips: Come early to get your viewing spot—bring sunscreen for the afternoon and bug spray for the evening. The best spots are between Gold Medal Park and the 3rd Avenue Bridge on West River Parkway.

Other fun events during the Minneapolis Aquatennial


Movies in the Park and Music in the Park at The Commons
Wednesday, July 20: Movie in the Park, Black Panther, 9:30–11:30 PM
Thursday, July 21: Music in the Park, JoJo Green, 5:00–6:00 PM

Some of the best views of Minneapolis downtown are from The Commons, a two-block green space nestled between the downtown skyline and U.S. Bank Stadium. Grab your friends or family, some chairs or blankets to sit on, swing by one of your favorite downtown restaurants for some food, and head over for a fun evening watching a movie or hearing live music in the Park.

Movies and music happen in The Commons from July to August. For the full movies and music schedule, visit

Twin Cities River Rats Aquatennial Water Ski Show
Friday, July 22
7:00 PM
West Bank of the Mississippi River between Broadway and Plymouth Avenues

Join Mario and Luigi, and their friend Princess Peach, on their quest to rid the water ski world of villains and the dreaded Bowser. Super Mario World is filled with adventure, including high-flying jumps, tall pyramids, powerful balancing acts, and barefoot tricks. This free water ski show will be fun for the entire family.

Located right on the banks of the Mississippi River between the Broadway and Plymouth Avenue Bridges. Pre-show begins at 6:30 p.m, main show starts at 7 p.m. Street parking only along West River Road (arrive early for easier parking). Bring a blanket or a lawn chair for seating. Concessions will be available.


Lawn Games at Go Outside with Hennepin County
Wednesday, July 20 | 11:30 AM – 1:30 PM
Thursday, July 21| 11:30 AM – 1:30 PM

Don’t miss out on lawn games at Hennepin County Government Center during Aquatennial. Each Tuesday through Thursday throughout the summer, South Plaza features an outdoor activities and picnic space. Downtown workers can enjoy it during lunch break, courtesy of Go Outside with Hennepin County. The space features lawn games, art activities and more. To learn more, visit

Minneapolis Sculpture Garden

Free Cardio class in the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden!
Alchemy 365 at Aquatennial
Friday, July 22
5:30 PM – 6:30 PM
Minneapolis Sculpture Garden
Pre-register at:

Alchemy 365 is taking over the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden for a free Cardio class to celebrate the Minneapolis Aquatennial. Check-in will begin at 5PM and class will begin at 5:30PM. Class is free and all fitness levels are welcome – bring your own yoga mat and get ready for a good time.

The 50-minute class starts with a gradual, yet progressive warm up integrating fundamental yoga postures to get the body moving and the heart pumping. The Cardio class peaks during a 20-minute stretch of maximum cardio. Class winds down with a dose of incredibly soothing stretching so you can walk away ready to conquer your day.

Upper St. Anthony Falls Lock and Dam Open House
Saturday, July 23
10:00 AM – 6:00 PM
Saint Anthony Falls Lock and Dam

The National Park Service and Mississippi Park Connection invite you to experience Upper St. Anthony Falls Lock and Dam like never before! Enjoy a leisurely stroll or picnic on lock wall surrounded by panoramic views of the falls. Explore the visitor center, interact with National Park Service rangers and the Army Corps of Engineers, and discover the history and impact of the falls on Minneapolis and the nation.

While you’re there: Learn about Minneapolis history at the Mill City Museum and enjoy a leisurely afternoon at Gold Medal Park.

Mill City Museum

Twin Cities Carifest
Saturday, July 23
11:00 AM – 10:00 PM
West River Road between Plymouth Ave. & Broadway Ave.

For more than two decades, Twin Cities Carifest has been the premier Caribbean Festival. Carifest features Caribbean food, music, arts, crafts, and a traditional carnival parade with colorful costumes and dance. Held along the banks of the Mississippi River, you can see the Minneapolis Aquatennial Fireworks! Follow Twin Cities Carifest on Facebook or on Twitter for more information.

Saturday, July 23
4:00 PM – 7:00 PM
West River Parkway near Stone Arch Bridge

An Aquatennial classic event is back! AquaJam is a legacy event that was a popular Aquatennial destination during the 1980s. This year’s event is taking place right along West River Parkway. Stop by and either take part or watch incredible skateboarding just steps away from foods, beverages, shopping, live music and more, all leading up to the Target Fireworks at 10 pm.


Nicollet Market
Thursday, July 21
10:00 AM – 2:30 PM
Nicollet (between 6th and 9th Streets)

Stop by the Nicollet Market during Aquatennial and enjoy great local produce, vegetables, flowers and much more. The Nicollet Market is open 10 am-2:30 pm each Thursday from June through September. For more information, visit

Minneapolis Craft Market
Saturday, July 23
5:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Chicago Mall

Minneapolis Craft Market is popping up at Aquatennial with a huge marketplace of local makers. Shop jewelry, clothing, woodwork, home goods, print-making and more, all handmade by designers and makers of the North.

City of Lakes Market
Saturday, July 23
6:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Chicago Mall

Browse and shop products from fantastic local vendors and makers. The City of Lakes Market is a mix of retail goods provided by small business owners in and around the Twin Cities. The City of Lakes Market will run 6-10 pm. Afterwards, enjoy the fireworks!

While you’re there: Enjoy a morning at the Mill City Farmers Market. Find fresh breads and pastries, vegetables, and scads of fresh flowers!

Thinking of moving to Minneapolis?

If you’re thinking of moving to Minneapolis, call Scott Haubrich at (612) 298-5400 or send an email to for more information.Click here to go to the homepage.