The official fireworks go off Thursday, but area Independence Day celebrations such as Apple Valley’s Freedom Days are ongoing.
Apple Valley Freedom Days car and motorcycle show was held at Johnny Cake Ridge Park East last Friday. This tiny car is an Italian Autobianchi Bianchina, a supermini that was made in 1960; it was a crowd favorite during the show.
Apple Valley’s Freedom Days celebration, an annual tradition in the week of the Fourth of July, continues on Wednesday with a carnival, kids’ parade and other events, followed on Thursday by the big parade from Pennock Park to Apple Valley High School and the fireworks show to close out the celebration. The parade, which starts at 1 p.m., will feature a flyover of military planes. The carnival starts at 3 p.m. in Johnny Cake Ridge Park, 5800 W. 140th St. And music and food vendors start at 5 p.m. at the park, where the fireworks will begin around dusk. For a full list of events, see www.avfreedomdays.com.
For a guide to other Fourth of July fireworks and events in the south metro area, turn to page AA4
The city’s Pan-O-Prog festival starts on Thursday with Fourth of July events, including live music, concessions and fireworks at Lakeville North High School, 19600 Ipava Av. The activities start at 7 p.m. See www.panoprog.org. for more information.
Fourth of July Funfest, the city’s largest annual celebration, is Wednesday and Thursday at the Eagan Community Center festival grounds, 1501 Central Pkwy. A carnival and kids’ activities start at 4 p.m. on Wednesday and noon on Thursday. Other events include live music at 8 p.m. each day, a car show Thursday, a parade at 10 a.m. Thursday and fireworks to close out the day. See www.eaganfunfest.org for more information.
Independence Day fireworks shows are planned at Canterbury Park on Wednesday and at Valleyfair on Thursday. At Canterbury, 1100 Canterbury Road, the Wednesday events also include racing starting at 4 p.m. and live music before the fireworks. On Thursday, the park will hold its annual hotdog-eating contest and wiener dog warm-up race. At Valleyfair, 1 S. Valleyfair Drive, every day ends with fireworks, but the show on Thursday will be three times the normal length. See www.canterburypark.com or www.valleyfair.com.
The Prior Lake Association will hold its annual boat parade at 1 p.m. Thursday beginning at Captain Jack’s on Upper Prior Lake; a fireworks display after dusk at Watzl’s Beach on Lower Prior Lake wraps up the celebration. See www.cityofpriorlake.com for further information. Also nearby, the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community invites the public to its fireworks display at 10 p.m. Thursday near Mystic Lake Casino, 2400 Mystic Lake Blvd., where the parking lot will be bustling with live music, food trucks and a beer garden.
Fireworks are set for 10 p.m. Thursday at Mendakota Country Club, 2075 Mendakota Drive. The show is for club members but can be viewed from nearby locations.
Fireworks will be shot off from Northfield Middle School, 2200 S. Division St., on the night of the Fourth.
A fireworks show is set for dusk on Thursday at Hastings Country Club, 2015 Westview Drive.
Other nearby shows
Eden Prairie has kids’ activities, live music and other festivities, followed by fireworks, on Thursday at Round Lake Park, 16691 Valley View Road. Cottage Grove will have games, food and fireworks on Thursday in Kingston Park, located at Indian Boulevard and 75th Street. Bloomington gets things going early with a carnival, entertainment and fireworks on Wednesday at the Normandale Lake Bandshell, 84th Street and Chalet Road. And Woodbury will have music, concessions and fireworks on Thursday at Ojibway Park, 2695 Ojibway Drive.