Summer just wouldn’t be the same without its classic Twin Cities art festivals. From giving new artists the chance to claim the spotlight to professionals showcasing their unique talents and experience, these festivals provide something for everyone—including Minnesota residents. Whether you’re in the mood to finally find that perfect piece you’ve been searching for, try the tastiest treats from local food trucks, or enjoy live (and free!) music performances, these art festivals will reassure you that summer has finally arrived.
Get your cold brew ready! The Northern Spark two-night festival runs strictly 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. Every year, there’s a different theme—this year’s being “We Are Here: Resilience, Renewal & Regeneration.” Featuring a variety of art mediums from digital to musical to craft, this late-night festival celebrates different cultures and diversity. There’s a neon garden, a digital graffiti wall, and an artist market full of items ready to purchase. With three different locations, the festival will also be providing guests with free Metro Transit passes to ride to and from the event and between venues.
- When: June 14-15, 9 p.m. to 2 a.m.
- Where: American Indian Cultural Corridor in Minneapolis, The Commons in downtown Minneapolis, and the Rondo neighborhood in St. Paul
Stone Arch Bridge Festival
This 25th annual Stone Arch Bridge Festival has everything you could imagine: First, a free concert to kick off the festival. Then, two full days of art booths selling pastels, glass, ceramics, and more. There will be emerging artists, a car show, an after-hours concert, a beer sampler, and even a vintage and vinyl market. Tip: You can pay online for early access to the vintage market and also receive a free beer ticket for the kickoff concert.
- When: June 15, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., June 16, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For different event times, see their website.
- Where: Minneapolis Riverfront (along Main Street SE beginning at Hennepin Avenue and extending to the Stone Arch Bridge, but some events are held at Father Hennepin Park and Water Power Park).
Wayzata Art Experience
An art festival that offers sailboat rides, a boat race, free yoga, and all of the traditional art fair festivities in one? Sign us up. The Wayzata Art Experience brings more than 100 fine art exhibits, plus food trucks, activities for the family, live-music performances, and more. With so much to do, you’ll want to try everything this experience has to offer.
- When: June 22, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., June 23, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
- Where: Lake Street in Wayzata
Red Hot Art Festival
Capturing the soul of Minneapolis is the goal of the Red Hot Art Festival. Now in its 18th year, this annual festival strives to provide a place for emerging local artists while also tapping into the heart of the city. This festival features artists new and old, plus live performers. Its most unique aspect is the “Touchable Art Fair,” which allows people with vision loss the ability to touch most, if not all, of the art on display.
- When: July 13, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., July 14, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Where: Stevens Square Park
FLOW Northside Arts Crawl
FLOW Northside Arts Crawl has a unique way to appreciate the arts. It offers participants a self-guided tour of art studios, theaters, and galleries spanning more than a mile along the streets of North Minneapolis. There are over 300 artists of all ages and 35 different sites that will offer indoor and outdoor activities ranging from live music, food trucks, and beer gardens all the way to pop-up galleries and fine art from amateur and professional artists alike.
- When: July 27
- Where: North Minneapolis (along the West Broadway corridor from the Mississippi River to Penn Avenue)
Loring Park Art Festival
The Loring Park Art Festival describes itself as “an urban oasis of art and culture.” With beautiful ponds and colorful gardens, the location of this festival adds to that summer atmosphere we love so much. There are strolling musicians, stage performances, activities for children, and 140 visual artists, and this year, a Lakes & Legends Beer Garden featuring local craft beer, craft soda, and kombucha to complement a perfect summer day.
- When: July 27, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., July 28, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Where: Loring Park at Oak Grove and Hennepin Avenue
Uptown Art Fair
The Uptown Art Fair began in 1964 with a vision to spread awareness about the arts while trying to fund projects in Uptown, and the goal is still remembered today with a portion of proceeds going back into the community. There are newer features to this festival like a “pARTy Plaza” that offers music and dance performances, a mixology contest, an interactive community mural, more than 25 food vendors and beer gardens, and games for both children and adults. In addition, Metro Transit will provide free passes to the festival and back.
- When: Aug. 2, 12-8 p.m., Aug. 3, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Aug. 4, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Where: Uptown Minneapolis (down West 29th Street and Hennepin Avenue)
Powderhorn Art Fair
This South Minneapolis art festival is a hit among locals. The Powderhorn Art Fair has hundreds of local and regional artists that attend the fair to showcase clay art, paintings, drawings, photography, prints, and jewelry. Situated next to Powderhorn Lake, this festival is idyllic in capturing the true sense of art and culture. In addition to the art, there will also be local food trucks to satisfy your appetite.
- When: Aug. 3, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Aug. 4, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Where: Powderhorn Park in South Minneapolis