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Festivals & Events

Itasca State Park - Celebrating 125 years in 2016: View the Mississippi Headwaters in spring.


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View Our Photo Gallery of Previous Events

View Our Photo Gallery of Previous Events

View Our Photo Gallery of Previous Events

View Our Photo Gallery of Previous Events

View Our Photo Gallery of Previous Events

View Our Photo Gallery of Previous Events

View Our Photo Gallery of Previous Events

 

June 17

Tickets available for "Annie Get Your Gun"

“Buffalo Bill” Cody’s Wild West Show will come alive when Northern Light Opera Company (NLOC) brings Irving Berlin’s “Annie Get Your Gun” to the stage July 28-31 and Aug. 4-6. There’s limited seating, so get your tickets early for this 1999 Broadway revival portraying sharpshooter Annie Oakley (1860-1926) and her adventures with the Wild West Show. Prepare to be swept up in the romance between Annie and Frank Butler as they sing the familiar “There’s No Business Like Show Business” and “Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better.” The show is packed with Wild West entertainment, history and a love story. NLOC celebrates its 15th year of producing professional musical theater in the heart of lake country. Lisa Dove (Juilliard drama graduate) and Greg Paul (University of Ohio) return as stage and technical directors. Live performances will be held at the peak of summer, but air-conditioned theater comfort awaits you at Armory Square on Highway 71, downtown Park Rapids. NLOC’s summer productions have filled to capacity, so it's time to lock in a show date for you, your family and friends. Tickets are on sale at Beagle and Wolf Books & Bindery in Park Rapids or online at Brown Paper Tickets. Find out more at www.NorthernLightOpera.org.

June 24

Itasca’s Presenters Under the Pines: The First 125 Years Talk and Walk with Author Deane Johnson

Deane Johnson, author of The Best of Itasca: A Guide to Minnesota’s Oldest State Park, will talk about some of the little-known stories of early explorers and visitors to the park, and how their travels and, in some cases, wild claims triggered Itasca’s formation. He will talk about park development and how it led to today’s iconic buildings and trails. The talk will begin at 10:30 a.m. Friday, June 24 at Forest Inn followed by a walk to explore lady’s slippers and other summer flowers.

June 24

She Had Nerve and a Big Gun! The Mary Gibbs Stor

In 1903 Mary Gibbs took a stance for the park at a logging dam along the Mississippi River. Courageously, she placed her hands on the lever in defense of the park’s forests, rivers and lakes, while being threatened by a gun-toting site foreman. Walk with park naturalists to the approximate location of the logging dam and learn more about Mary Gibbs, defender of Itasca. The program will start at 11 a.m. Friday, June 24 by the globe at the Mary Gibbs Mississippi Headwaters Center.

June 25

Itasca Wildlife Wonders - Return of the Trumpeter Swan, Evening Talk

Did you know that at one time trumpeter swans were nearly extinct? Learn about the successful return of trumpeter swans to Minnesota and how Itasca served as one of the original release sights in northwestern Minnesota at a talk from 7:30 to 8 p.m. Saturday, June 24 in the classroom at the Jacob V. Brower Visitor Center.

 

June 25

Lake Itasca Region Pioneer Farmers Tour

Get a feel for the early 1900s community of Lake Itasca at the Lake Itasca Region Pioneer Farmers (LIRPF) Showgrounds from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, June 25. See the historic sawmill and explore various buildings from a country school to a dove-tail, one-room log house and a logging museum. The tour begins at the Levorsen Building on the show grounds, located on the north side of Itasca State Park. The entrance is on the east side of the North Entrance Road (off state Hwy. 200) across from the church and gas station.Lake

June 25

Lady’s Slippers of Itasca: Exploring the North Country Trail and Itasca’s Orchids

Bring your camera because June is orchid month along the North Country Trail and the numerous other trails within Itasca State Park. On this special hike from 10:30 a.m. to noon Saturday, June 25 hikers will look for Minnesota’s state flower, the Showy Lady’s Slipper, and other orchids that may be blooming. A variety of other wildflowers also will be in bloom during “strawberry moon” month. Dress for being outdoors, including sturdy boots that can get wet/muddy, and bring water, energy snack, sunscreen, hat, sunglasses, insect repellent, including tick gaiters and hiking/trekking poles. Meet at the front porch of Douglas Lodge. This specialty hike will make a loop (approximately 2.2 miles) following the Brower Trail along the shore of Lake Itasca to Preacher’s Grove and returning along the bike trail, past the Jacob V. Brower Visitor Center and concluding at Douglas Lodge.

June 25

Outdoor Kids: Totally Turtles

Kids of all ages are invited to explore nature at their leisure between 2 and 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 25. Connect with nature through hands-on activities focusing on life around the lake. Have fun discovering Itasca while hanging out at the swimming beach or playground. Meet by the swim beach/playground (at the south end of the picnic grounds on Lake Itasca).

June 26

Itasca’s Music Under the Pines: Hog Rooster

Bring your blanket or lawn chair and come out for an evening of entertainment from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Sunday, June 26 outside Forest Inn with the duo, Hog Rooster. Jacob and Own Mahon started playing together in 2012 and both have a passion for listening, writing, learning and playing music. Their music collection includes harmonic acoustic rock and folk with original songs covering classic, alternative and folk rock. Jacob is one year older than Owen and plays guitar, mandolin, ukulele and piano. He has been writing songs since 2011 and continues to write. Owen plays bass, trumpet and sings harmony on many songs.

June 27

History of the Nyckelharpa

The Hubbard County Historical Society will host Bill Dahl on the History of the Nyckelharpa at 7 p.m. Monday, June 27 in the Northwoods Bank Community Room.

June 28

Minnesota’s Treasures: Iron Springs Bog Scientific and Natural Area Specialty Tour

Explore Minnesota’s natural treasures from 10 a.m. to noon Tuesday, June 28 when you join the Itasca State Park Naturalist to explore the beautiful bog and its wildflowers at Iron Springs Bog Scientific and Natural Area (SNA). Group size is limited to 15 people. Pre-registration is required. Stop at the Jacob V. Brower Visitor Center or call 218-699-7259 to register. Bring insect repellant, sunscreen and drinking water and wear shoes that can get wet. Bring your vehicle for travel to SNA locations. Meet at the Mary Gibbs Mississippi Headwaters Center parking lot (bring your vehicle to drive to the tour location).

June 29

Animal Senses, Campfire

How many things can you identify by smell? How good is your hearing compared to a bat’s? Enjoy a warm fire from 7:30 to 8:15 p.m. Wednesday, June 29 and learn more about animal senses. Remember to bring s’more fixings for after the campfire talk. Meet in Bear Paw Campground grassy area near the tiny log pump house and campsite #70 near the bike trail. If it rains, this program will be held inside the Jacob V. Brower Visitor Center.

June 29

Itasca’s Mysteries in History: Douglas Lodge - Minnesota’s Own Resort

Constructed in 1904 and opened to the public in 1905, Douglas Lodge has been serving park visitors for over a century. During that time, many peculiar changes have occurred. Join the park naturalist at 11 a.m. Wednesday, June 29 to learn more through a site tour of Douglas Lodge as it prepares to celebrate 111 years of serving the public. Meet under the porch at Douglas Lodge.

June 30

2nd Street Stage: The WoodPicks

Celebrate summer at 2nd Street Stage from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, June 30, featuring the WoodPicks, playing traditional Bluegrass / Americana music. The weekly free event offers live music, a beer garden, kids’ activities and more, sponsored by the Park Rapids Downtown Business Association. Bring your own chair and enjoy the evening on 2nd Street between Main Avenue South and Park Avenue South (US Hwy. 71). 

July 7

2nd Street Stage: Patty and the Buttons

Celebrate summer at 2nd Street Stage from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, July 7, featuring Patty and the Buttons, playing traditional jazz / early blues music. The weekly free event offers live music, a beer garden, kids’ activities and more, sponsored by the Park Rapids Downtown Business Association. Bring your own chair and enjoy the evening on 2nd Street between Main Avenue South and Park Avenue South (US Hwy. 71). 

July 10

Bite of Park Rapids Street Fair

Visitors to the Bite of Park Rapids Street Fair will find food and much more on the menu Sunday, July 10 in Downtown Park Rapids. In addition to local restaurants serving “bites” of interesting fare, the event will feature live music, face painting, a bouncy park, food contests and beer garden. This year, community organizations also have been invited to participate. The fun runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., plenty of time to enjoy tasting, sampling, enjoying music and shopping on Main Street. The Emmy Award winning folk duo, Jack and Kitty, will provide kid-friendly music for this year’s event. The Bite of Park Rapids is sponsored by the Park Rapids Downtown Business Association.

July 14

2nd Street Stage: The Brothers Burn Mountain

Celebrate summer at 2nd Street Stage from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, July 14, featuring The Brothers Burn Mountain, playing eclectic blues and rock ’n roll. The weekly free event offers live music, a beer garden, kids’ activities and more, sponsored by the Park Rapids Downtown Business Association. Bring your own chair and enjoy the evening on 2nd Street between Main Avenue South and Park Avenue South (US Hwy. 71).

July 29&30

Chase the Outdoors Expo

A new event - Chase the Outdoors Expo - is planned Friday and Saturday, July 29 and 30 at the Hubbard County Fairgrounds in Park Rapids. Hours will be noon to 8 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday. The expo already has 14 vendors signed up; more are welcome. For more information, contact Tony Meech at 218-255-5422 or by e-mail at chasetheoutdoorsexpo@gmail.com.

Upcoming events

Check back for more details on these and other events

June 30 2nd Street Stage: The WoodPicks
July 1 Where's Waldo: The Search Begins
July 1 PRCA Rodeo
July 2 & 3 PBR Bull Ride

July 4 Firecracker Foot Race
July 4 Beagle and Wolf Books & Bindery's Annual Pie Contest and Auction
July 4 Independence Day Parade
July 4 Park Rapids Area Community Band Pre-fireworks Concert at Red Bridge Park
July 4 Rotary Fireworks
July 7 2nd Street Stage: Patty and the Buttons
July 10 Bite of Park Rapids Street Fair
July 13-17 Hubbard County Fair at the Fairgrounds in Park Rapids
July 14 Noon Hour Concert: Deb Heigalman on the pipe organ at St. Johns Lutheran Church
July 14 2nd Street Stage: Brothers Burn Mountain
July 21Noon Hour Concert: Local pianists on the new concert piano at the Area High School Auditorium
July 21 2nd Street Stage: Useful Jenkins
July 28 & 29 Crazy Days
July 28 2nd Street Stage: The 4ontheFloor
July 29-31 Northern Light Opera Company presents "Annie Get Your Gun" at Armory Square
July 29-31 Happy Birthday Itasca Weekend
July 30 Where's Waldo Party at Beagle and Wolf Books & Bindery
Aug. 4 2nd Street Stage: Kind Country
Aug. 4-6 Northern Light Opera Company presents "Annie Get Your Gun" at Armory Square
Aug. 6-7 Antique Tractor Club Field Days
Aug. 11 Legends & Logging Days Water Wars on Main Street
Aug. 11 2nd Street Stage: Dead Soldiers
Aug. 12 & 13 Legends & Logging Days at the Antique Tractor Club Grounds
Aug. 12 & 13 Northern Knights Run to the Rapids


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