Red, white and blue are the colors of the day as we celebrate our independence. From Rochester to Duluth, folks will take part in Main Street parades, fire up their grills and wait for the skies to light up at night. There are plenty of places around the Twin Cities to take part in the fun. Some celebrations offer activities all day long, others keep it to a dazzling nighttime display. Use our guide to find the festivity for you:
IF YOU WANT TO ENTERTAIN THE KIDS
Apple Valley’s Freedom Days is the place for a day of family fun. The carnival — complete with rides and games — starts before noon. The 1 p.m. parade will boast clowns, carriages and high school marching bands. And then there’s the pre-fireworks party with a playground and pony rides plus music and dancing. The fun begins at 11 a.m., fireworks at 10 p.m.
Johnny Cake Ridge Park East, 144th St. and Johnny Cake Ridge Rd., Apple Valley.
IF YOU’RE A CITY DWELLER
Look no farther than the Mississippi River, where the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board will host the “Red, White Boom!” celebration. If you don’t have a friend with a downtown condo, grab a spot on the Stone Arch Bridge, Father Hennepin Park or along the riverfront. At 6 p.m., there will be there will be games and craft activities for kids and live music leading up to the fireworks at 10 p.m.
Father Hennepin Bluffs Park, 100 6th Av. SE., Mpls.
IF YOU WANT TO ROCK OUT
Mystic Lake’s Rock and Rockets features headliners G.B. Leighton and Sunshine Committee. Enjoy food truck fare and quench your thirst at the beverage tent. Ben & Jerry’s provides delights for those with a sweet tooth. If that’s not enough to entertain you, well, there’s always the casino. 5 p.m., fireworks at dusk.
Mystic Lake Casino Hotel, 2400 Mystic Lake Blvd., Prior Lake.
IF YOU WANT A THRILL
On the 4th, you can be propelled up Valleyfair’s 275-foot-tall Power Tower, then drop at speeds exceeding 50 mph. In addition to amusement park rides, water attractions and live performances, Valleyfair's Independence Day celebration comes with an added bonus: an all-you-can-eat buffet (mealtimes 11 a.m.-2 p.m. and 4-7 p.m.) “fit for the king we abandoned in 1776.” Park opens at 10 a.m., fireworks at dusk. $49.99.
Hwy. 101 and Valleyfair Dr., Shakopee.
IF YOU WANT A SMALL-TOWN FEEL
Leave the city behind and head for Waseca. Its Lakefest Music Festival features tunes for all ages. Bring a lawn chair for performances by Jim & Bob, Los Tequileros, No Tent and Jeremy Poland and Lantz Dale. Sports enthusiasts can compete in a volleyball tournament or basketball shooting contest. Kids can ride a kiddie train and clown around with JJ the Clown. There’s also a 4 p.m. boat parade. Activities start at 11 a.m., fireworks at 10 p.m.
Clear Lake Park, 1000 8th Av. NE., Waseca.
APPLE VALLEY: Freedom Days. Parade, carnival, music and more. 11 a.m., fireworks at 10 p.m. Johnny Cake Ridge Park, Park W. 144th St. and Johnny Cake Ridge Road.
CHANHASSEN: Fishing contest, carnival rides, car show, sand sculpture contest and more. 7 a.m., fireworks at 10 p.m. Lake Ann Park, 7500 Lake Ann Dr.
COON RAPIDS: Parade, carnival, bingo and more. Noon, fireworks at 10 p.m. Coon Rapids Ice Center, 11000 Crooked Lake Blvd. NW.
EAGAN: Funfest. Parade, carnival and live entertainment. 10 a.m., fireworks at 10 p.m. Central Park Eagan, 1501 Central Pkwy.
EDEN PRAIRIE: Live music, fun run, pickleball tournament and kids’ activities. 7:30 a.m., fireworks at 10 p.m. Round Lake Park, 7550 Constitution Av.
EDINA: Parade at 10 a.m. A concert with the First John Philip Sousa Memorial Band 8:30 p.m. followed by fireworks at dusk. Rosland Park, 4300 W. 66th St. Parade at 10 a.m.
EXCELSIOR: Firecracker run, family activities, live entertainment and fireworks at dusk. 7:30 a.m., fireworks at 10 p.m. Excelsior Commons, Lake Street along the south shore of Excelsior Bay.
FOREST LAKE: Parade, bingo, carnival and music. 9 a.m., fireworks at 10 p.m. Lakeside Memorial Park, 95 E. Broadway.
LAKEVILLE: Live music, inflatables and concessions. 6 p.m., fireworks at dusk. Lakeville North High School, 19600 Ipava Av.
MANKATO: Concert with the Mankato Symphony Orchestra and City Mouse. 7 p.m., fireworks at 10 p.m. Riverfront Park, 1 Civic Center Plaza.
MINNEAPOLIS: Family activities and music. 6 p.m., fireworks at 10 p.m. Father Hennepin Bluffs Park, 100 6th Av. SE.
MAPLEWOOD: Beanbag tournament, food trucks and family activities. 4 p.m., fireworks at dusk. Hazelwood Park, 1663 County Road C.
NORTHFIELD: Flea and farmers markets, vintage baseball game and music. 8 a.m., fireworks at 10 p.m. Northfield Middle School, 2200 Division St. S.
PRIOR LAKE: Boat parade at 1 p.m., fireworks at 10 p.m. Lakefront Park, 5000 Kop Pkwy.
RICHFIELD: Red, White and Blue Days. Wreath laying, parade, beer garden and music. 10 a.m., fireworks at 10 p.m. Veterans Memorial Park, 6335 Portland Av. S.
ROSEVILLE: Rosefest. Live music and carnival. 1 p.m., fireworks at 10 p.m. Central Park, 2540 N. Lexington Av. Fireworks at 10 p.m. over Bennett Lake.
SHAKOPEE: Live racing and music, kids’ activities. 4 p.m., fireworks at 10:15 p.m. Canterbury Park, 1100 Canterbury Road.
ST. LOUIS PARK: Vendors, concessions and entertainment. 7 p.m., fireworks at 10 p.m. Aquila Park, 3100 Xylon Av. S.
SPICER, MINN.: Pancake breakfast, flea market and family entertainment. 7 a.m., fireworks at dusk. Saulsbury Beach, 151 Lake Av. S.
STILLWATER: Entertainment and family activities. 4 p.m., fireworks at dusk. Lowell Park, 201 Water St.
WACONIA: 10 p.m. Lake Waconia Regional Park, 8170 Paradise Lane.
WHITE BEAR: Ice cream social. 8 p.m., fireworks dusk. West Park, 2350 11th St.
WOODBURY: Live music, concessions and kids’ zone. 6 p.m., fireworks at 10 p.m. HealthEast Sports Center, 4125 Radio Drive.