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Where Beauty & Nature Intersect

4th of July Fun

4th of July 2009


We think when Carly Simon sings, “Nobody does it better. Makes me feel sad for the rest,” she was thinking of Park Rapids on the 4th of July.

From the Firecracker Footrace at dawn to the fabulous fireworks at dusk, thousands come for a slice of American pie. (Appropriately, there is even a pie contest.)

The 31st annual Firecracker Footrace starts with registration from 6:30 to 8:15 a.m. at Heartland Park. There is a 5K Run or Walk and 10K Run plus a free kids fun run for ages 12 and under starting afterward. This fundraiser for the Park Rapids Panthers track and cross country drew 400-plus participants last year.

The tasty summer Pie Baking Contest brings out the best cooks in the countryside. Pies must be entered between 9 a.m. and noon at Beagle Books. Contest results and an auction will follow the parade. Judges will include author Will Weaver and Helen Peterson, our local Pie Queen! This will be the 3rd annual contest, a fundraiser for the Park Rapids Area Library.

If you are staying at a resort or the family cabin, many lakes have boat parades, regattas or flotillas. By any name, these delightful gatherings draw canoes, fishing boats and pontoons decorated for the day. They’re fun for participants and spectators alike.

The parade celebrates an old-fashioned 4th of July starting at 3 p.m. on North Main Avenue. Clowns, ponies, fire trucks, floats, beauty queens, music and more amaze spectators who come back year after year to see this great Park Rapids tradition.

You will be seeing cowboys and cowgirls all over town during the week. They’re here for the 31st annual Park Rapids Bull Ride (July 2, 3 and 4th). Performances start at 6:30 p.m. on Highway 34 east. This PBR event features world class bull riders as well as Freestyle Moto X, Kids Sheep Riding, Cowboy Poker and nightly dances.

At 7:30 p.m. the Park Rapids Area Community Band gives a Pre-Fireworks Concert at Red Bridge Park. Listening to the patriotic marches and other music in the band’s repertoire is sure to send chills down your spine and remind you why we celebrate Independence Day.

Thanks to terrific support from the community and those who never miss being in Park Rapids on the 4th, the Park Rapids Rotary Club fireworks will be bigger and better than ever this year. Bring a lawn chair or blanket to Red Bridge and Heartland Parks or launch your boat on the Fish Hook River before dusk and wait for the show to begin.



The Chamber Website has all the information you need to put together a memorable stay and if you want help or have questions, call our friendly staff at 800-247-0054 to learn more.


Park Rapids Lakes Area Chamber, a Partner of Explore Minnesota Minnesota Chamber of Commerce Northwoods Bank, Partner of Park Rapids Lakes Area Chamber Citizen's Bank in Park Rapids, MN Park Rapids Downtown Business Association Park Rapids Lakes Area Convention & Visitor's Bureau