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What’s up is Downtown

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Interested in doing some shopping but still want to enjoy the beautiful summer weather?  Then you really need to check out the region’s top Outdoor Farmers Market!  It kicks off June 16 and takes place every Saturday through September, from 9 AM to 1:30 PM, in Town Square (corner of DeMers Avenue and 3rd Street).  Vendors sell everything from fresh produce and flowers to home baked bread and pies to handmade jewelry and pottery.  You’ll also be able to enjoy an array of tasty food truck fare and great live entertainment on the Square’s main stage.  If you’d like to learn more about how our fabulous Forks were founded, guided Historical Walking Tours are held at 1 PM during every Farmers Market.   While in the area, make sure to explore both of our beautiful downtowns (Grand Forks, North Dakota and East Grand Forks, Minnesota) and discover all they have to offer.  Below are some suggestions for a day or two of fun.   Downtown Adventures             Take a stroll through streets that lead to places where past and present meet.  Historic buildings house 21st century businesses.  Attractive public art captures the spirit of our …

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pARTy up down by the Red

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Get ready…this weekend the Greenway, Town Square and Cabela’s parking lot will be lined with great shopping, entertainment, food and plenty of fun during Art on the Red 2018!  Formerly known as Grand Cities Art Fest, the Public Arts Commission (PAC) Art on the Red will feature over 150 quality artists and crafters from around the nation selling their wares.  Examples of the different media include ceramics, drawing, glass, jewelry, metal, naturals and painting.  Dozens of food vendors will be on hand to tantalize your taste buds with everything from caramel apples, funnel cakes and kettle korn to Indian fry bread tacos, Southern barbecue and Somali samosas.  And don’t forget to check out NoVAC’s Arts in Action, Fine Arts Avenue, Kids’ Corner and the Main Stage.   NoVAC’s Arts in Action: Are you curious about how artists turn raw materials into amazing works of art?  At Arts in Action, sculptors will perform live demonstrations of their art-making process in the Town Square.   Fine Arts Avenue: What happens when you take simple, inexpensive materials and add inspiration and talent?  You get Fine Arts Avenue where more than 25 of the region’s finest artists will be offering items worthy of any art …

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Make a SimplyGrand grape escape

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See ya later Sonoma.  Maybe next time Napa Valley.  No need to travel across the country when you can pick great grapes and taste grand wines right here in Greater Grand Forks…at the popular Grape Mill Vineyard and Winery!   Overlooking the banks of our beautiful Red Lake River, Grape Mill’s cold hardy vines produce red, white and blush varieties with a unique, palate-pleasing flavor specific to this region. The Halversons – Russ, Gail and Matt – planted their first 200 grape vines back in 2006.  Today, the vineyard has well over 2,000 vines including the varieties Marquette, La Crescent, Frontenac Gris, Frontenac Blanc and Brianna.  Bottles of Grape Mill wine were even featured in Super Bowl LII celebrity gift baskets.   Situated on the estate, take a stroll through the vineyard and discover just what makes their vines so special.  You’ll also learn how each variety is grown, cultivated and turned into delicious wine.   After taking the tour, be sure to stop in Grape Mill’s tasting room and try some of your favorites or grab a bottle to take home for later.  On most Saturdays, you’ll also be serenaded by talented local musicians while you sip and savor.   …

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Six SimplyGrand Gifts for Mom

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Mom loved and raised you…time to raise the bar and show her just how much you appreciate and love her back!  Sunday, May 13, is Mother’s Day and the perfect chance to express your feelings.  In case you forgot or haven’t figured out yet what to get her, here are just a half dozen suggestions:   One can never go wrong with dinner and a movie. First, take her to a special Mother’s Day Brunch at Crooked Pint, Eagle’s Crest Grill, Ely’s Ivy, Ground Round, Hilton Garden Café or Sky’s.  Follow that with a matinee of the soon to be released mother-daughter flick, “Life of the Party”, starring Melissa McCarthy, at River Cinema 15 or AMC Classic 10 Theater.   Is mom an 80s rocker chick, by chance? A certificate to The Darkside Tattoo plus tickets to Metallica on September 8, at Alerus Center, would equal one forkin’ grand gift!   A bouquet is ok but how about putting a new spin on it? Escort mom to All Season’s Garden Center, tour her through the amazing greenhouse and then let her pick out a planter or two for her garden or patio.   She put Pampers on you as a …

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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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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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Hamming & (s)hopping it up in Forks

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Looking to get your Easter brunch on in Greater Grand Forks?  If you don’t feel like going through all the hassle of cooking it yourself, we have several restaurants serving up a feast.  Luckily, they’ve got a spot reserved just for you…and it’s not even at the kids’ table!   Aaltos: 1000 S 42nd St (Canad Inn), Grand Forks, 701-792-1957; 10 AM to 8 PM   Aroma Café: 1205 N 43rd St (Ramada), Grand Forks, 701-775-3951; 10:30 AM to 2 PM   Blue Moose Bar & Grill: 507 2nd Ave S, East Grand Forks, 218-773-6516; 10 AM to 2:30 PM   Boardwalk Bar & Grill: 415 2nd St NW, East Grand Forks, 218-399-3000; 10 AM to 2 PM   Crooked Pint: 1930 S Columbia Rd, Grand Forks, 701-780-9000; 10 AM to 2 PM   Ground Round: 2800 32nd Ave S, Grand Forks, 701-775-4646; 9 AM to 2 PM   Hilton Garden Inn: 4301 James Ray Dr, Grand Forks, 701-775-6000; 11 AM to 2 PM   Ruby Tuesday: 3915 32nd Ave S, Grand Forks, 701-772-1105; 9 AM to 2 PM   Just in case Mr. Bunny didn’t put everything in your basket that you wanted, the following stores have notified us they …

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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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Entertaining you in simply grand style

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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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LegeNDary haunts equal SimplyGraND times

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This Halloween, spirits from our community’s past will descend upon the normally quiet grounds of the Grand Forks Historical Society (2405 Belmont Road) to fill your evening with fright and fun.  The 9th Annual Legends of Terror Haunted House is guaranteed to be a hair-raising, heart pounding happening!  It runs from 8 PM to Midnight both Friday, October 20 and Saturday, October 21.  If you’re a little ghoul who prefers not-too-scary stories and way-too-sweet treats, there is a special Half Pint Haunt just for you on Sunday, October 29, from 1 to 4 PM.   However, that’s just the tip of the events iceberg!  Listed below are more all hallowed eve type to-dos: Nelson’s Pumpkin Patch & Gruesome Granary Haunted House – through October 29; 3 to 6 PM (Weekdays) & 11 AM to 6 PM (Weekends); 2448 20th Ave NE, Emerado Black Cat Bash – October 24; 5:30 to 7:30 PM; First Season Community Center “The Rocky Horror Picture Show LIVE” – October 27, 28 & 31; 11:59 PM; Empire Arts Center Jingle Bell Run: Halloween Edition – October 28; Kids 1-Mile Monster Dash at 9 AM & 5K Zombie Run/Walk at 9:30 AM; Choice Health & Fitness Haunted …

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