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Every fun event under the sun

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Summer may be winding down but that certainly doesn’t mean our SimplyGrand events are! In addition to all the great shopping, dining and attractions Grand Forks/East Grand Forks has to offer, there are a whole slate of fun outdoor events coming up this weekend:   Fridays, late April through September 16:  Premier Racing Hot Laps at 6 p.m. & Races at 7 p.m. River Cities Speedway WORLD OF OUTLAW SPRINTS (featuring Donny Schatz) + Lightning Sprints, Late Models, Midwest Modifieds and Street Stocks will all vie for the checkered flag on one of America’s top dirt tracks Food and beverage concessions $37/$32 for Adults; $17 for Kids  Saturdays, June 18 through September 24:  Outdoor Farmer’s Market 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Town Square Fresh produce, flowers, baked goods, crafts and more Live entertainment and food concessions Free admission  Saturdays, June 18 through September 24:  History Alive! at Farmer’s Market 1 p.m. Begins and ends in Town Square Guided historical walking tour of the Downtown District Free admission  Saturdays, June 18 through September 24: Yoga on The Greenway Beginning at 10 a.m. The Greenway area behind The Toasted Frog Class led by a certified YMCA instructor Bring your own yoga mat, towel …

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Find SimplyGrand buys under Fair Skies

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Put pen to planner right now and mark off September 9-10, 2016! Why? Because that’s when the Downtown Development Association (DDA) will sponsor a first-of-its-kind Grand Forks Downtown Street Fair. From DeMers to Third Street and many more, our Downtown District streets will be filled with great shopping, entertainment, food and fun galore.   With the Greater Grand Forks Convention & Visitors Bureau as presenting sponsor, the Street Fair is free and open to the public! This awesome event will feature talented artisans and vendors from around the United States and Canada. A few of the ones already booked include: Simply Dakota (bath and skin care items); John’s Very Cool Glass Art; Prairie Fairy Designs (handmade natural stone jewelry); Red Attic (hand-sewn quilts and clothing) and Dakota Sun Gardens Winery. If you’re a fair food fan like me, I’m happy to report there is going to be a “Taste of the Fair” food experience! Just some of the yummy eats you’ll find are fry bread tacos, fresh-cut fries, bison burgers, hand-battered cheese curds, kettle korn, mini donuts and fruit smoothies.   No worries; there will be some great to-dos for the little ones, too. Town Square is serving as the host …

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Get going on The Greenway

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The Greater Grand Forks Greenway is a huge public recreational space bordering the Red River and Red Lake River in the adjacent cities of Grand Forks, ND and East Grand Forks, MN. At 2,200 acres, it is more than twice the size of New York City’s famous Central Park!   One of the most prominent features of The Greenway is its extensive 20-mile system of paths which are used by bikers, walkers, joggers, inline skaters and cross-country skiers. In 2007, the system was designated as a National Recreation Trail by the National Park Service. There are also several city parks and two golf courses along The Greenway. Other amenities include wildlife observation areas, a campground, fishing spots, interpretive displays, wildflower gardens and sites for various athletic activities including volleyball, horseshoes, disc golf and ice skating. Throughout the year, The Greenway and nearby space is also used to host several festivals and events.   The Greenway, developed after the devastating Red River Flood of 1997, encompasses major portions of the two communities that lie within the floodplain. After the flood, several neighborhoods were removed to make way for a massive new dike flood protection system; The Greenway includes the land that …

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Where Broadway and DeMers intersect

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Besides being one of the most uniquely beautiful buildings in Greater Grand Forks, the historic Empire Arts Center has become a downtown hub of great live entertainment. Home to the Empire Theatre Company, this talented troop’s Season Five slate of shows is nothing less than stellar! With everything from hilarious musicals to impactful dramas, their upcoming productions will have you laughing, crying and up on your feet, giving a standing ovation!   As proof of its diversity, just take a look at the Empire Theatre Company’s 2016-17 schedule: August 9-13 & 16-20, 7:30 PM – “Hairspray” (Tony Awarding winning musical comedy centering on the integration of a 60s teen dance TV show.) October 13-15 & 20-22, 7:30 PM – “Constellations” (Drama examining how the tiniest change in the details of our lives can lead us on completely different paths. For mature audiences.) November 25-27 & December 1-4, 7:30 PM /Sundays at 2 PM – “A Christmas Story: The Musical” (Classic comedic tale that follows the escapades of 9-year-old Ralphie and his offbeat family.) March 9-11 & 16-18, 7:30 PM – “Peter & the Starcatcher” (Tony Award winning musical that takes a hilarious romp through Neverland and answers the question: How …

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Summer breezes carry the sound of music

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Nothing beats listening to great live music, on a beautiful summer evening, under our simply grand skies! If you agree, we’ve got some awesome news from you…the popular North Dakota Museum of Art Concerts in the Garden series is back again this summer!   Be sure to bring a lawn chair or blanket, plus several of your friends. All the fun takes place in the Museum’s sculpture garden, on the University of North Dakota campus, located at 261 Centennial Drive. Tickets are $8 in advance, $10 at the door and free for those 12 and younger. There will also be food and beverages available for purchase, including local grass-fed hamburgers, vegetable skewers, nightly specials, root beer floats, beer and wine.   Remaining dates, along with scheduled artists, are as follows:   July 12, 2016 at 6 pm                                                                                                          Headliner: Eagle Rock Gospel Singers; Opening: June Panic Los Angeles                                                                                                                                              Will Wadsworth formed The Eagle Rock Gospel Singers in the winter of 2010. In 2014, they recorded their first album. “Heavenly Fire” is filled with electricity and provides an articulation of their sound, honed over several years, into a band that has become a rousing celebration of traditional Gospel sounds with rock foundations. …

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Celebrate the 4th with a bang

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Word has it, this Independence Day in the Forks will be sizzling. No, I’m not talking about the temps…it’s the 2016 Sertoma 4th of July Festival & Fireworks show that will be lighting up Town Square and The Greenway! Of course, we’re also expecting beautiful, sunny weather, as well.   In addition to all the awesome attractions, pocket parks, shopping and dining our Simply Grand Downtown District has to offer every single day, this iconic celebration (in its 54th year) adds even more to love about our two towns! If you want to make it one fun 4th to remember, just meet me in the Square this coming Monday and enjoy all these great events:   8 AM – Altru Family YMCA Firecracker 10K & 5K Fun Run/Walk 11:30 AM – Patriotic Kids Parade (down N 3rd St from University Ave into Town Square) 12 PM – City Band + Food Vendors (Town Square) 12 to 6 PM – Silent Auction + 12 to 9 PM – Raffle Ticket Sales (Town Square) 1 PM – Opening Ceremony (Town Square) 1 to 5 PM – Face Painting, Caricatures, Kids Games (Town Square) 1 to 5 PM – Various activities including Games Galore, Dakota Science Center, ArtWise, Inflatable Games (The Greenway) …

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Savor reds, get greens, hear blues

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Don’t have any major plans for your summer weekends? No worries; we’ve got some simply grand news for you! In addition to all the great shopping, attractions and dining the Downtown District offers, our two towns have a whole slate of colorful outdoor events coming up.   June 11 & 12:  2016 Grand Cities Art Fest 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Downtown Town Square, The Greenway and Cabela’s Parking Lot Over 150 quality art and craft vendors, food concessionaires, live entertainment stages, kids’ activities and more Free admission Every Saturday, June 18 through September 24:  Outdoor Farmer’s Market 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Town Square Fresh produce, flowers, baked goods, crafts and more Live entertainment and food concessions Free admission June 18, July 16, August 20, September 17, October 15: Art & Wine Walk 1 to 5 p.m. Downtown Grand Forks – beginning and ending at Empire Arts Center, with a champagne tasting and hors d’oeuvres at 5 p.m. Sample an array of delicious wines while viewing unique works of art at Downtown businesses Admission is $20 and includes a souvenir wine glass June 25, July 23, August 27:  Happy Harry’s Blues on the Red Summer Music Series 6 to 10 …

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Love is in the air and alley

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What better way to experience the vibrancy of Downtown Grand Forks than at an event created especially for that purpose? Alley Alive is a celebration of Downtown culture focused on homegrown music, art and culinary creations.  Like the name states, it all takes place in one of our most unique locations: the Kim Holmes Alley of Love!   Grand Forks is hosting its first 2016 Alley Alive, May 6, from 5 to 11 p.m.  Attendees will find vendor displays focused on artwork in a variety of mediums, family friendly stations, multiple stages of live music, food trucks, plus much more.  And as an added bonus, this hip happening is FREE and open to the public!   Message, tweet, text and/or call all your family and friends now…then journey to the alleys and parks along Third and Fourth Streets this Friday!  Since it’s an all-ages event, there will be some type of fun for everyone.  More details and updates may be found on the Alley Alive Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/alleyalive/.  

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Holiday Spirit Abounds in Grand Forks

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Today’s post comes from our friend Shel Zolkewich, Manitoba travel writer and blogger…   It’s nearly impossible not to feel the holiday spirit in Grand Forks. Take a peek inside any restaurant and you’ll see friends and family gathered inside sharing good cheer. Downtown, shop windows are dressed for the season with sparking white lights and likenesses of jolly Old St. Nick. And a long list of holiday events offer a welcome break from the hustle and bustle.   The Empire Theatre Company just wrapped up performances of the holiday classic A Christmas Carol. The production stayed true to its literary roots and steered clear of elaborate sets and special effects. The journey of Ebenezer Scrooge—expertly captured by Darin Kerr—reminds us all of some important lessons, at any time of the year. The Empire Arts Center hosts the Grand Forks Ballet Company for a Nutcracker Extravaganza as well as Joy to the World by the Greater Grand Forks Symphony Orchestra this weekend.   Shopping downtown in Grand Forks is a little like stepping back into a kinder, gentler time. Cozy boutiques entice visitors with cheery window displays and gifts you won’t find anywhere else. Pop into Whole Life for fashions, …

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We have spirit…yes we do

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Feeling a little blue?  I know what will put the jingle in your bells and jolly in your holly!  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 everything in between.  In addition to offering great holiday bargains, our malls and specialty shops will be sparkling with beautiful decorations.    Following is a list of holiday happenings that are sure to get you feeling very merry.  More information on these and other events may be found on our website.   Dec. 1-31 à Go GRAND for the Holidays Tree Display & Open House @ GGF Visitor Center (4251 Gateway Dr)   Dec. 1-31 à Christmas in the Park Holiday Lights Tour @ Lincoln Drive Park   Dec. 3-5 à “A Christmas Carol” @ Empire Arts Center   Dec. 5 à 2015 Christmas Festival @ Heritage Village   Dec. 5 à 91st Annual Christmas Musicale @ United Lutheran Church   Dec. 5 à Taste of Cabela’s & Pictures with Santa @ Cabela’s   Dec. 5 à Winter wUNDerland Concert @ Chester Fritz Auditorium   Dec. 6 à The Reason: A Family Christmas Experience @ Chester …

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