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See life through rosé colored glasses

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Just like a good Beaujolais, the Greater Grand Forks Art & Wine Walk keeps getting better with age.  The first glass of wine was poured back in 2006, when the Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) and North Valley Arts Council (NoVAC) joined forces to host one of the most popular annual events our community has ever known.  A few years back, the CVB handed over its duties to the Downtown Development Association (DDA) who now partner with the Public Arts Commission (PAC) to ensure Art & Wine Walk remains as SimplyGrand as ever!   Traditionally, this event has been a monthly summer-only occurrence.  However, organizers have now decided to hold Walks throughout the year, with the next one scheduled for Saturday, May 19, from 1 to 5 PM.  Art & Wine Walk offers regional artists a chance to display their talents and wares at several downtown Grand Forks and East Grand Forks venues.  A sample of wine will be available, at specified sites, for those 21 years of age and older.  Some locations may also choose to serve nonalcoholic beverages and appetizers, along with featuring live music.   On the day of the event, a wristband and map listing participating …

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Where to find hot brews & cool beans

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Seattle and Portland may have started the whole coffeehouse craze but Grand Forks has definitely perfected it!  Throughout our two towns, we have several java joints (some locally owned, some national chains) ready to brew you up a cup of deliciousness.  Each has a little something different to offer…but all offer a great place to have a grand time.   BULLY BREW COFFEE COMPANY – This Grand Forks original is the only place in town that actually roasts their own beans.  The Cowboy Coffee is my favorite blend and since they can bag it to-go, y’all can brew up a cup for yourself at home anytime.  Make sure to also try one of their famous fresh baked caramel rolls or scones.  Locations: 2100 S Columbia Rd; 4571 S Washington St; 2900 14th Ave S   CARIBOU COFFEE – This popular regional chain has a variety of tasty coffee creations to either warm you up or cool you down.  My top choices are the Northern Lite Latte, Peanut Butter Mocha and Iced Caramel High Rise.  They even have drinks for little ones including a yummy Hot Chocolate and Strawberry Banana Smoothie.  The South Columbia Road location also serves up fresh baked …

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SimplyGrand values for our valued visitors

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During times when the economy/exchange rate may not be so great, we realize how you spend your money is more important than ever.  When you visit Greater Grand Forks, you’ll find a variety of top-notch accommodations, dining, shopping and entertainment options at unbelievably low prices.   Should our community have the privilege of hosting you, either for a weeklong vacation or weekend getaway, the Greater Grand Forks Convention & Visitors Bureau will assist in any way possible to help find the best deals out there.  Our website Discounts page will have lots of awesome new offers going live April 1!  You’ll also wanna make sure to stop in the Visitor Center (4251 Gateway Drive, I-29 Exit 141) to pick up a hot-off-the-press 2018-19 SimplyGrand $avings Coupon Book.  It includes great discounts at over 60 local businesses including: Holiday Inn Express; Staybridge Suites; Caribou Coffee; Mexican Village; Paola’s Pastries; Up North Pizza Pub; Cost Cutters; Kittsona; Maurices; King’s Walk Golf Course and Northern Air Family Fun Center.  We also have copies of Best of the Forks that will provide lots more coupons to use.   Even though we offer a grand getaway, it definitely won’t cost you a grand.  Moreover, as our …

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Concerts, productions & shows worthy of standing O’s

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LittleBigTown

Want to experience the Grand Ole Opry without ever leaving good ole Grand Forks?  Or perhaps enjoy a taste of Broadway on DeMers Avenue downtown?  Within the next few months alone, our many amazing venues will be offering up a plethora of entertaining events to satisfy a variety of tastes!   March 15-17 & 22-24 – “Melancholy Play” at Empire Arts Center March 15-18, 22-25 & 29-31 – “Agatha Christie: And Then There Were None” at Fire Hall Theater March 17 – The Breakers Tour: Little Big Town, Kacey Musgraves & Midland at Ralph Engelstad Arena March 17 – North Dakota Ballet Company presents “Snow White” at Empire Arts Center March 21 – The Illusionists: Live from Broadway at Chester Fritz Auditorium March 25 – Telegraph Quartet at North Dakota Museum of Art March 30 – “Run Like Hell: A Pink Floyd Show” at Empire Arts Center April 4 – Foreigner & the Dave Eggar Orchestra at Chester Fritz Auditorium April 24 – UND Wind Ensemble & University Band at Chester Fritz Auditorium May 3 – Thomas Rhett at Alerus Center May 6 – Symphony Sunday: The Music of Brazil at Empire Arts Center May 10-12, 17-19 & 24-26 – …

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Great things are springing up at Alerus Center

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ThomasRhett

No need for April showers…the Alerus Center is already blooming with simply grand events before, during and after that time!  With new General Manager Anna Rosburg at the helm, Grand Forks’ premiere entertainment and convention facility will be hopping, more than ever before, with a variety of different events.   March 2-3: 2018 First Robotics Competition March 20-22: 25th Annual ArtWise Elementary Art Show March 23-25: Home Design & Garden Show 2018 March 31: 16th Annual Kids Easter Egg Scramble April 13-15: Jurassic Quest April 14: GF Horticultural Society presents Gardening Saturday 2018 April 21: Toughest Monster Truck Tour Championship Weekend April 21-22: Red River Valley Motorcyclists 2018 Motorcycle Show May 3: Thomas Rhett w/special guests Brett Young & Russell Dickerson May 20: Five Finger Death Punch & Shinedown w/special guests Starset & Bad Wolves   For more information, including ticket/admission prices, go to www.aleruscenter.com.   If you’d like to grab a bite or enjoy some cocktails before or after your event, there are several awesome spots nearby to indulge and imbibe.  Just some of them include: Aalto’s, Tavern United and l’Bistro in Canad Inns Destination Center; Crooked Pint Ale House; Grand Junction Subs; Ramada Aroma Café & Dreamers Lounge; …

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Rockin’ the Ralph & Betty too

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Everyone knows about all the exciting happenings that take place at the awesome Ralph Engelstad Arena (REA).  However, the Betty Engelstad Sioux Center (BESC) right next door has got it goin’ on, as well!   Since its completion, the Betty has welcomed many great events and is best known as the host facility for the NCAA Division I Big Sky Conference University of North Dakota Women’s Basketball, Volleyball and Men’s Basketball teams.  Prior to their Division I transition, it was even voted the best Division II women’s basketball facility in the nation.   Of course, the Ralph is home to eight-time Division I National Champion University of North Dakota Men’s Hockey.  Some of the other things held there include concerts by a variety of award-winning musicians and nationally popular stand-up comedians, Disney productions and an array of professional sporting events.   Both facilities feature beautiful granite floor lobbies, large concessions and lounge areas and hall of fame sections for their respective sports.  For a nominal fee, you may join one of the guided tours taking place every Monday through Friday, at 1:30 PM, beginning and ending in the Ralph’s Sioux Shop.  This 90-minute trek tours guests through the entire $100+ …

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Building blocks of fun in Greater Grand Forks

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If you build it, they will come.  That’s what the staff of HB Sound & Light believed back in 2015…and they were correct.  The 3rd Annual Holiday LEGO Display, December 8-26, 2017, is backand better than ever!   This free, family-friendly event features thousands of toy blocks being used to re-create Grand Forks blocks.  Numerous iconic buildings and landmarks, such as Widman’s Candy Shop and the Smiley water tower, come alive in a magical miniature LEGO-inspired wonderland.  It all takes place Downtown, in the HB Warehouse, at 101 North 8th Street.  Business hours are 10 AM to 6 PM on weekdays and Saturdays from 10 AM to 3 PM.   Even though that would be totally awesome on its own, they didn’t stop there!  In addition to the simply grand displays, there will also be several special Open House happenings:    December 8, 5 to 8 PM (21+ ONLY): Tickets may be purchased online or at the door for $20 and include three drink tickets, hors d’oeuvres by North Dakota Museum of Art Cafe, live music, plus the chance to win a limited-edition Whisky by Far North Spirits and LEGO Architecture set. Alcohol may be purchased at the event from …

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Go Grand for the holidays

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Not really in the spirit of the season yet?  I know what will put the jingle in everyone’s bells and the jolly in their holly, as well!  If you’re looking for activities to create a festive frame of mind, Greater Grand Forks is definitely the place.  We have seasonal celebrations, concerts and sparkling events galore.   Following is a list of holiday happenings that are sure to get you feeling very merry. Through Dec. 24: Visit & Pictures with Santa at Columbia Mall Through Dec. 31: Christmas in the Park Holiday Lights Tour at Lincoln Drive Park Nov. 28-30 & Dec. 1-3: Irving Berlin’s “White Christmas” at Empire Arts Center Nov. 30-Dec. 3: Muddy Waters Winter Showcase at Muddy Waters Clay Center Dec. 2: Heritage Christmas Festival 2017 at Heritage Village Dec. 2: Winter wUNDerland Concert at Chester Fritz Auditorium Dec. 2-3: Holiday Home Tour 2017 at All Season’s Garden Center Dec. 3: Thursday Music Club Annual Christmas Musicale at Calvary Lutheran Church Dec. 6: GF Historical Society presents A Rock & Roll Christmas Party at Ramada Grand Forks Dec. 7-10: “A Christmas Carol” Radio Play at Fire Hall Theatre Dec. 7-10 & 14-17: Santa’s Village 2017 at Lincoln Park …

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Let us entertain you

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When it comes to having a simply grand time, these Forks are fine-tuned with top notch entertainment.  Whether you prefer a country concert or a holiday production, our variety of amazing venues are perfect hosts for any event.   Check out just some of the noteworthy shows coming up on the calendar: Nov. 17 – Deuces Wild Dueling Pianos at Empire Arts Center Nov. 19 – Grand Cities Children’s Choir at Chester Fritz Auditorium Nov. 24 – Moscow Ballet’s “Great Russian Nutcracker” at Chester Fritz Auditorium Nov. 24-26 & 29-Dec. 3 – Irving Berlin’s “White Christmas” at Empire Arts Center Nov. 26 – Cirque Musica Holiday: “Believe” at Alerus Center Nov. 28 – UND Wind Ensemble & University Band at Chester Fritz Auditorium Dec. 2 – Winter wUNDerland Concert at Chester Fritz Auditorium Dec. 3 – Thursday Music Club Annual Christmas Musicale at Calvary Lutheran Church Dec. 7-10 – “A Christmas Carol: Radio Play” at Fire Hall Theatre Dec. 9 – Dance etc! Holiday Showcase at Chester Fritz Auditorium Dec. 10 – GGF Symphony Orchestra: “A Russian Winter” at Empire Arts Center Dec. 11 – A Magical Musical Medora Christmas at Empire Arts Center Dec. 15 & 16 – ND …

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Entertaining you in simply grand style

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ThomasRhett

The Alerus Center, Grand Forks’ premiere performance and convention complex, is the perfect place to entertain and be entertained.  Completed in 2001, with a recent remodel and new additions, it is considered one of the top facilities in the country.   The main arena, with a full set seating capacity of 21,000, has been used for a wide variety of events.   As home to Division I-AA University of North Dakota football, they’ve hosted many exciting college games, in addition to other sports ranging from professional basketball and wrestling to bull riding and motocross.  Some of the most popular performers in the nation – including Cher, Britney Spears, George Strait, Luke Bryan, Tim McGraw, Aerosmith and The Eagles – have all taken center stage at the Alerus.  Because of a new state-of-the-art sound system, featuring Fulcrum loudspeakers, you’ll find the acoustics to be astounding, especially for such a large arena.   When you’re searching for a venue to hold a smaller show, convention, conference, family gathering or wedding, the Alerus Center’s 12 meeting rooms and 25,000 square foot ballroom provide a perfect fit.  The friendly, knowledgeable staff will be there every step of the way to ensure your special event exceeds …

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