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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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LittleBigTown

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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Cool kid stuff

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NorthernAir

“I’m bored.” Have you recently heard those two words every parent and babysitter dreads? No worries; Greater Grand Forks has lots of options to entertain kids.   For outdoor cold weather fun, try cross country skiing and sledding either on the Greenway or just 22 short miles west at Turtle River State Park. Sometimes simply strapping on some ice skates or building the biggest and best snowman ever in one of our beautiful local parks, followed by a cup of hot chocolate, is better than any event that requires admission.   When the temps dip below the freezing mark, just head inside! The Canad Inns Destination Center features a tropical themed water park and mega arcade for both guests and non-guests. Likewise, Choice Health & Fitness facility offers an amazing water park and pool area, in addition to basketball and tennis courts. Pay a visit to Scheels Sports in Columbia Mall for some rollerball or bubble hockey; plus, fudge or ice cream afterward in their café. First Season Community Center has indoor playground equipment and other fun things to occupy the day, while kids can jump for joy at Northern Air Family Fun Center, complete with a trampoline park, inflatables …

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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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Harvest the fun in Greater Grand Forks

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CornMaze

Autumn is here but no need to fear…you’re sure to fall in love with all the spooktacular happenings in Greater Grand Forks. Since Halloween is only a few weeks away, time to get pumpkin’d up and experience one a-maze-ing time with the whole family!   Located just west of Grand Forks, Nelson’s Pumpkin Patch is a mere 20-mile drive to one great time.  Some of the cool to-dos are a preschool straw maze, 11-acre corn maze, hayrides, farm animal petting zoo, Jack O’Lantern bounce house, games, concessions and much more.  And if you’re feeling brave, the Gruesome Canary Haunted House is wicked good! Nelson’s is open through October 29, from 3 to 6 PM during the week and 11 AM to 6 PM on weekends.  Their address is: 2448 20th Avenue NE, Emerado, ND.  Simply take the Grand Forks Air Force Base exit off Highway 2, then go 1½ miles north + a ¼ mile east and look for the BIG PUMPKIN.  More information may be found at www.nelsonspumpkinpatch.com.   Bring the whole family out for a day of fun ‘n’ games at Valley Corn Maize!  In addition to the 10-Acre Corn Maze and Kids Straw Maze, other attractions include a …

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When the lights go down in our cities

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Brick&Barley

If you’re looking for some cool nighttime to-dos, our SimplyGrand Forks are one hot ticket! With everything from live music and karaoke to bar bingo and trivia takeovers, we’ve got plenty of ways to entertain you.   Listed below is just a sampling of all the different places to play around after the sun goes down: Bar Bingo/Bargo – Up North Pizza Pub (Tuesdays at 7 PM) Karaoke – Brick & Barley (Tuesdays at 10:30 PM); Rhombus Guys Pizza (Wednesdays at 10 PM); O’Really’s Irish Pub (Wednesdays & Fridays at 10 PM); Diamond Lounge (every other Thursday, starting September 21, at 7:30 PM); El Roco Bar & Grill (Thursdays at 9 PM) Live Music – The Ember (Thursday Bluegrass Jam); Diamond Lounge (Weekends at 9 PM); Long Haul Saloon (Weekends at 9 PM); Shotgun Sally’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Saloon (Weekends at 9 PM); Southgate Bar & Grill (Weekends at 9 PM) Open Mic Night – The Ember (Fridays, October 6-December 1) Pool – El Roco Bar & Grill; The Loft; TJ’s Sports Bar Trivia – Bonzer’s (Mondays at 8 PM); The Diamond (Tuesdays at 7 PM); Ramada Dreamers Lounge (Tuesdays at 8 PM); Rhombus Guys Pizza (Tuesdays at 10 PM); …

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Play up Downtown

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FireHall

Besides being one of the most charming buildings in Greater Grand Forks, the historic Fire Hall Theatre has become a downtown hot spot for great live performing art. Home to the Greater Grand Forks Community Theatre Company (GGFCT), this talented troop’s 70th Season of shows is nothing less than stellar! With everything from youthful musicals to ageless dramas, their upcoming productions will have you laughing, crying and up on your feet, giving a standing ovation.   As proof of its diversity, peruse the GGFCT 2017-18 schedule: September 28-30, 2017 – “The Charitable Sisterhood of the Second Trinity Victory Church” –> Thelma & Louise meets the Church Basement Ladies in Bo Wilson’s popular comedic play. November 3-5 & 10-12, 2017 – “Disney’s High School Musical” –> This story of teen angst has been artfully adapted from the popular television movie. December 7-10, 2017 – “A Christmas Carol: The Radio Play” –> One of the most iconic holiday films ever gets performed in its original format. February 1-4, 8-11 & 15-17, 2018 – “Over the River and Through the Woods” –> When a single, Italian-American son/grandson from New Jersey decides to pursue his dream job out of state, the news doesn’t sit so well with his family. …

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Stop, rock and get rolling on The Greenway

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BREAKING NEWS: The Greenway of Greater Grand Forks is going to be overtaken!   No worries, though; it’ll be one SimplyGraND kind of invasion.  The Convention & Visitors Bureau is excited to announce that the 1st Annual Greenway Takeover Festival (GTF) will rock our two towns September 21-24, 2017! This multi-day music festival is set to take place Downtown, on The Greenway, just north of Sorlie Memorial Bridge. Each day you can expect top-notch local, regional and headlining music, plus a food truck alley, beer sales, picnic area and games for both kids and adults.  One of the best parts about this family-friendly celebration is that it was organized, in large part, to showcase the awesome community spirit that makes Grand Forks/East Grand Forks a great place to live and visit!   Here’s how the Takeover works. HB Sound & Light will be setting up a massive stage, sound system and light show on the green space next to our Red River of the North.  Headlining bands have been booked for each day.  Four local arts groups are charged with taking over a day in the festival and creating a unique sound and atmosphere for their respective day.  That means …

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