What to do in Minnesota: 10 things happening this weekend (Aug. 19-21)

Stargazing, artwork at the Arboretum, and local music are all options this weekend!

Have an event you want to see featured? Email me at adelaide.vanpelt@fox.com.

Como Park Obon Festival in St. Paul

The Como Park Japanese Obon Festival is a family-friendly event reminiscent of Japan’s annual Obon holiday. Bonsai, martial arts, singing, dancing, drumming, delicious food, and other aspects of Japanese culture will be featured at the festival. The day will culminate at dusk with a lantern lighting.

Advance tickets are available for purchase now. Cash will not be accepted at the admission gate, but QR codes will be available to access credit card ticketing.

Minneapolis Mile

Over 500 cars participate in this diverse show. Originally this show began with an idea to bring together multiple car clubs, dealerships, and small businesses from across Minnesota.

Over a hundred awards are given out at the show to various cars, trucks, and motorcycles. After the event, join other spectators for the rollout parade in the rear of the Minneapolis Convention Center.

Art in the Garden in Chaska

  • Minnesota Landscape Arboretum
  • Aug. 19-21
  • Included with gate admission. Free for members, $15 for non-members

Over 70 artists showcase their work at this event. Offerings range from artisan foods and handmade jewelry to nature-inspired art and spa-worthy bath and body products. 

Live music from Paul Imholte from 4-7 p.m. 

Kramarczuk’s Kielbasa Fest in Minneapolis

  • Utepils Brewing Company
  • Aug. 19-20
  • Free Friday and $5 Saturday

This event will kick off Friday at 4 p.m. with a meat raffle in the beer garden followed by a performance by Ukrainian Village Band. Kramarczuk’s street food will be available all night.

Saturday $5 wristbands will allow guests to come and go from the festival as they please. Kramarczuk’s will serve up sausage while Utepils pours delicious European Style beers. Music begins at 2 p.m. 

51st Annual Nowthen Threshing Show

  • 7415 Old Viking Blvd. NW, Nowthen, Minnesota
  • Aug. 19-21
  • Tickets: $13 for ages 13+

The Nowthen Threshing Show brings the past into the present by gathering hundreds of rare and historic antique tractors, small engines, steam engines, trucks, cars, implements and tools. 

Other activities include a large flea market, chainsaw artist, free train rides, square dancing, music, and more. 

Opening Day and Flower Festival at Afton Apple Orchard

  • Afton Apple Orchard in Afton
  • Aug. 20
  • $5 admission fee

Fall is coming, and it kicks off this weekend at the Afton Apple Orchard. Walk through fields of sunflowers and zinnias. Pick bouquets to bring home and preview the orchard's fall activities. 

Pricing for flower bouquets here.

Free events in Minnesota this weekend

Inside Out Block Party in Minneapolis

  • Chicago Ave. S. between 35th and 36th Streets
  • 1-6 p.m. on Aug. 20
  • Free

Pillsbury House + Theatre is celebrating the arrival of the Lorraine Hansberry Initiative's "To Sit Awhile" statue by Alison Saar. The statue honors the renowned American playwright and civil rights activist Lorraine Hansberry and will be on display from August 16 through September 15. 

It all kicks off with a community celebration on August 20, honoring Pillsbury House + Theatre's 30th Anniversary as a professional theatre company and KRSM Radio's 5th anniversary. The festivities will include free food, face painting, a bike raffle, rollerskating, a bouncy house, and more.

Slavic Experience 2022 in Minneapolis

  • Boom Island Park
  • Aug. 20-21
  • Free admission

The first Slavic Experience Festival celebrates Eastern and Central European culture with family-friendly activities, food, music, games, and more. In addition, two beer gardens will serve up new brews made especially for the festival by Dangerous Man Brewing Company and others.

The festival will also raise money for Ukrainian relief efforts.

Voyageurs Star Party

The Milky Way galaxy in the night sky in Northern Minnesota. (Photo by Alex Kormann/Star Tribune via Getty Images) (Photo by Alex Kormann/Star Tribune via Getty Images)

  • Voyageurs National Park, International Falls
  • Aug. 18-20
  • Free (registration required for some events)

The National Park Service and Voyageurs Conservancy are celebrating the natural wonder of Voyageurs National Park's night skies with the second annual summer Star Party. In 2020 Voyageurs National Park was certified as an International Dark Sky Park. This certification recognizes the park for the quality of its dark night skies and for the park's commitment to preserving darkness and educating the public.

Activities include special speakers, arts and crafts, telescope viewing sessions, guided constellation tours, and more!

Head to the nearby Cantilever Hotel and Distillery for a signature cocktail inspired by the night sky. For each drink sold, Cantilever will donate $1 to the Voyageurs Conservancy, the official charitable partner of Minnesota's national park.

Sounds of Summer

  • Marshall, Minnesota
  • Aug. 18-21
  • Free

This family-friendly event celebrates Marshall's 150th anniversary. Events include a fashion show, horse-drawn carriage rides, tractor pulls, fireworks, and a parade. The full schedule of events is available here.

Bonus Event: The Minnesota Renaissance Fair opens in Shakopee this weekend! Tickets are available here.