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July 4: Free Minnesota Orchestra concert, fireworks, parks fun and a parade

July 4, 2016 @ 10:00 pm - 11:00 pm

By Pamela Espeland : MINNPOST : 06/28/16

The annual Red, White and Boom! Fireworks start at 10 on Monday night along the river.

Planning your Fourth weekend? If you’re sticking around the Cities, put this at the top of your list for Monday night: the Minnesota Orchestra’s free Symphony for the Cities concert at Boom Island Park in Minneapolis. The music starts at 8:30 p.m., the annualRed, White and Boom! Fireworks at 10 along the river (thank you, Minneapolis Park and Rec).

The program includes “The Star-Spangled Banner”; some Verdi, Smetana, Wagner, and Rossini crowd-pleasers; Sousa’s “Foshay Tower Washington Memorial March”; music from John Williams’ scores for “E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial” and “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”; the “Armed Forces Salute” and the rousing finale, Tchaikovsky’s “1812 Overture.” Roderick Cox leads the band in a concert that lasts about an hour. Cox, BTW, who joined the Orchestra in April 2015, is one of only two black conductors on staff at major U.S. symphony orchestras. (The other is Joseph Young at the Atlanta Symphony.)Thanks to Graydon Royce for that interesting fact.

Monday’s concert will cap a week of free Symphony for the Cities concerts, a 40-year tradition. This year’s series started last night in Hudson. Tonight (Tuesday, June 28), you can see the orchestra (and Cox) at the Lake Harriet Bandshell (7:30 p.m.), Wednesday in Plymouth at the Hilde Performance Center (8:30 p.m.) and Thursday in Winona at the Winona Lake Park (8 p.m.).

Icing on the cake: This year’s fireworks will be choreographed to a mix of Prince music curated by the Current. Tune in on air (89.3 FM in the Cities), at the website or the MPR Radio app. CORRECTION: The Current will be choreographing Prince and a special mix of music to a portion of the fireworks at Red, White and Boom.


July 4, 2016
10:00 pm - 11:00 pm


Boom Island Park
724 Sibley Street NE
Minneapolis, MN 55413 United States
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