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July 19, 2004 // UPDATED 2:37 pm - April 25, 2007
By: Hayley Tsukayama
Hayley Tsukayama

Aquatennial swings into final week

There are still several days left in the "10 Best Days of Summer," the Minneapolis Aquatennial. Free entertainment and activities continue this celebration of the City of Lakes through Sunday, June 25.

The American Iron Metal Sculpture Contest and Exhibit (Monday, July 19, 9 a.m.-6 p.m., and Tuesday, July 20, 9 a.m.-6 p.m., respectively) on 7th street & Nicollet Mall should sate art lovers for the week. According to their Web site, the company sponsoring the event is the region's leading metal recyclers in the region, and, in keeping, all materials used to create the sculptures were crafted from American Iron scrap metal.

And the Thursday, July 22, 10 a.m. showing of "Good Boy" (a movie about a boy and his dog . . . a canine that wants to rule the world) at Crown Theatres Block E, 600 Hennepin Ave. S., should keep any little movie buff happy. The free movie is part of their Children's Film Festival, which features free Thursday morning films for families throughout the summer.

For sports fans, there's still plenty of Aquatennial competitions to see or participate in. The showdown at 5th Street & 2nd Avenue South continues with the United States Tennis Association Minneapolis Aquatennial Tournament. The main draw of the event will be Monday-Thursday, July 19-23, 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m., featuring the men's singles finals and men's and mixed doubles matches. (For more information, check out www.northern.usta.com.)

Runners can still register for the Lifetime Fitness Torchlight Run, Wednesday, July 21, 7:30-10 p.m. Same day registration, $20, will be available 5-7:15 p.m. at the parking lot of the Hennepin Center for the Arts, 528 Hennepin Ave. S.

The YWCA, 1130 Nicollet Mall, will be free to all comers on Friday, June 23.

The highlights of the festival are sure to be the Torchlight Parade and the Target Fireworks. Sponsored by CenterPoint Energy Minnegasco, this year's parade, "A Night of a Million Stars," is Wednesday, July 21, 8:30-10:30 p.m. The parade features lights, bands, floats and torches, and weaves from 16th to 6th streets along Hennepin Avenue South. And on Saturday, July 24 over 10,000 pounds of explosives will set the sky Downtown sky ablaze with the largest fireworks show west of the Mississippi 10-10:30 p.m. fireworks will be set off along West River Road. Gather on the Hennepin or Stone Arch Bridges for a good view. Metro transit is offering free bus rides home from both the parade and the fireworks events.

Of course, no Aquatennial Festival is complete without the annual Queen of Lakes competition. Meet the candidates at City Center, 30 S. 7th St., Wednesday, July 21, noon-2:30 p.m. Then, see who wins at the coronation Friday, July 23 at the Ted Mann Concert Hall at the University of Minnesota, 2128 S. 4th St., 8-10 p.m.

For a complete schedule or more information about the Aquatennial, log on to www.aquatennial.org or call 376-7669.