Iron Range Fourth of July 2021

The week surrounding the Fourth of July on the Mesabi Iron Range combines patriotism, public drinking, explosives and a lovely shade of twilight. PHOTO: Aaron J. Brown

This summer of 2021 we welcome the return of the traditional Iron Range Fourth of July in Northern Minnesota. In this post, you will find a listing of all local parades, street dances, and fireworks displays.

Regardless of economic or political winds, the region unites for an exuberant observation of Independence Day. In local custom, the festivities often last several days (up to a month during layoffs).

Below is MinnesotaBrown’s annual Iron Range Fourth of July listing for parades, fireworks displays and street dances centered in the days before and after Independence Day. This list mostly covers the Iron Range, Brainerd Lakes, Bemidji and Duluth areas.

This Iron Range Fourth of July schedule is a start, for people planning to catch several celebrations or wondering what fits into family schedules during a trip to the Iron Range.

You’ll see a list of other popular local events happening after the Fourth of July at the end.

You might also enjoy my popular essay “Things You Will See at Your First Iron Range Fourth of July.”

Iron Range Fourth of July

Celebrate the 4th of July in Northern Minnesota

Graphic image by Aaron J. Brown based on the iconic Benjamin Franklin political cartoon.

Thursday, July 1

Friday, July 2

  • Evening – Gilbert Street Dance
  • 7:30 p.m. – Keewatin street dance
  • 8 p.m. – Hill City street dance (Night #1)
  • Dusk – Keewatin fireworks

A Steelworkers Fourth of July float in an Iron Range parade. PHOTO: United Steelworkers, Flickr CC

Saturday, July 3

  • 11 a.m. –  Tower parade
  • 5:30 p.m. – Aurora parade
  • 7 p.m. – Gilbert parade
  • 7 p.m. – Hill City street dance (Night #2)
  • 8:30 p.m. – Eveleth Street Dance
  • 8:30 p.m. – Nashwauk street dance
  • Dusk – Aurora fireworks
  • Dusk – Breezy Point Resort fireworks
  • Dusk – Crosslake fireworks
  • Dusk – Eveleth fireworks
  • Dusk – Gilbert fireworks
  • Dusk – Nashwauk fireworks 
  • Dusk – Orr fireworks
  • Dusk – Pequot Lakes fireworks
  • Dusk – Tower fireworks 
  • Dusk — Deerwood/Ruttger’s by the Lake fireworks

Sunday, July 4

Monday, July 5

Looking ahead:

  • July 9-11: Deer River Wild Rice Festival
  • July 10: Hibbing Jubilee (parade @ 3 p.m. with street dance, fireworks to follow)
  • July 22-24: Hoyt Lakes Water Carnival
  • July 23-25: Effie Northstar Stampede Rodeo
  • July 23-25: Ely Blueberry Arts Festival
  • Aug. 4-8: Doc “Moonlight” Graham Days in Chisholm
  • Aug. 4-8: St. Louis County Fair in Chisholm
  • Aug. 19-22: Itasca County Fair in Grand Rapids
  • Aug. 27-29: Embarrass Region Fair 
  • Sept. 3-6: Bovey Farmers Day

Did I miss something? Contact me directly.


Aaron J. Brown is an instructor at Hibbing Community College. His blog covers Iron Range news, politics and culture. Brown writes regular columns for the Mesabi Daily Tribune and Minnesota Reformer. He created, hosted and produced the Great Northern Radio Show and co-hosts and produces the podcasts Power in the Wilderness and Dig Deep on Northern Community Radio. His book “Overburden: Modern Life on the Iron Range” won a Northeastern Minnesota Book Award. He’s working on a new book called “Power in the Wilderness” for the University of Minnesota Press.