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Where Beauty & Nature Intersect

July Brings out Summer’s Best

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4th of July Fireworks – Photo credit Joel Maxwell

As the Chamber celebrates 100 Years of Summer, July shines as why summers in the lakes area are the best. The calendar is overflowing with festivals and events in addition to all the possibilities for adventures like biking, water skiing, kayaking, tubing, grilling fresh caught fish or making s’mores over a campfire. It’s all here.

Starting with a parade of Independence Day activities, July brings community festivals, the county fair, live music, live theater and more.
From the early morning Firecracker Footrace to the fabulous fireworks at dusk, July 4th promises picnics and time at the lake. Visitors are invited to head into Park Rapids for a pie contest and auction, parade at 5 p.m., Park Rapids Area Community Band Pre-Fireworks Concert at Heartland Park at 7:30 and Rotary Fireworks display at dusk. See what makes Park Rapids the best place in the country to celebrate Independence Day!

PRCA Xtreme Bulls returns to the Jokela Rodeo & Auction Grounds July 4 and 5 followed by two nights of PRCA Rodeo action July 6 and 7. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. Xtreme Bulls brings the nation’s top bull riding contestants who travel from all over the world to compete for qualifying points. Rodeo events feature ESPN stars competing in all seven professional rode events. All four nights will feature MotoX and aerial freestyle shows, kids sheep riding, cowboy poker and dances featuring live music.

The Park Rapids Downtown Business Association celebrates summer at 2nd Street Stage concerts Thursday evenings through Aug. 16. The evening opens with a Social Hour at 5 p.m. and bands playing from 6 to 8 p.m. A beer garden, cornhole tournaments and kids’ activities add to the fun. Bring your own chairs.

Experience shopping fun and more in downtown at Crazy Days Thursday, July 26 with a pet parade, kids’ show, live music and food contests and the band, Frogleg, at 2nd Street Stage that evening.

Cheer for a winner at the Nevis Pig Races Sunday, July 8 and return for Nevis Muskie Days Friday and Saturday, July 27-28. Head to Nevis Tuesday evenings for Music Tuesdays featuring live bands. Nevis’ Halvorson Beach also hosts Water Ski Show Sunday, July 15 with free live music at 4 p.m. and the ski show starting at 5 p.m.

Menahga’s Midsummer Festival runs Friday, Saturday and Sunday, July 6-8 with a carnival all three days, St. Urho Walk/Run, Arts & Crafts Show on Main Street, parade Saturday evening, water ski show Sunday afternoon and many more activities.

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4th of July fireworks – photo credit Joel Maxwell

The Hubbard County Fair opens Wednesday, July 11 and runs through Sunday with midway fun (Wednesday through Saturday), monster trucks, Motocity Raceway Motocross, a bull ride, tractor pull events, demolition derby, talent show, live music and more. Fairgoers also can visit 4-H and other agricultural exhibits, enjoy great food and find children’s entertainment.

At Itasca State Park, visitors can not only walk across the headwaters of the Mississippi River, but also learn more about the park at naturalist programs, on hikes and around the campfire.

A few miles from Itasca State Park, visit Lake George’s annual Blueberry Festival Friday, Saturday and Sunday, July 27-29. The festival is focused on blueberries – a blueberry pancake breakfast, blueberry ball, blueberry square dance, educational booth on blueberries and blueberry treats. Highlights are a pie sale, Firemen’s Bean Feed, quilt show, Sunday parade and more.

If it’s culture you crave, check the calendar for dates for performances at Long Lake Theater, Jasper’s Theater, exhibits at the Nemeth Art Center and the Northern Light Opera Company’s production of “My Fair Lady.”

While July offers lots to see and do in the area, you may want to just stay at the lake to relax, unwind and watch the clouds float by. It’s up to you.

The Chamber Website has all the information you need to put together a memorable vacation or weekend visit. If you want help or have questions, call our friendly staff at 800-247-0054 to learn more. – Luann Hurd-lof


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