Minneapolis-St Paul Nightlife

Nightlife in Minneapolis and St Paul is lively. The Twin Cities are on the touring circuit for many big-name bands and solo artists and several local musicians have risen to fame, most notably Prince. Blues and jazz are particularly big here but everything from rock to reggae can be found most nights of the week and cover charges for music venues are often free or inexpensive. Downtown Minneapolis is a centre for nightlife, although popular bars and music clubs are located throughout the metropolitan area.

From world-famous theatre and orchestra performances to intimate poetry readings, the Twin Cities also have a plethora of arts and cultural entertainment. There are more than 30 theatres and nearly 100 theatre companies in the metropolitan area. Nationally, the area is second only to New York City in the number of theatre seats per capita and the amount spent on tickets for these.

Arts, entertainment and nightlife listings appear in the Minneapolis Star Tribune, the St Paul Pioneer Press and the weekly free tabloid, City Pages. Ticket agencies include TicketMaster (tel: (612) 371 2000; www.ticketmaster.com) and Open Seats (tel: 1 866 789 1884; website: www.openseats.com).

Bars in Minneapolis-St Paul


Sports bars with numerous TV monitors for watching sporting events are hot in the Twin Cities and one of the most popular include Champp's, which has locations in both.

100 North Sixth Street, Minneapolis
Tel: (612) 335 5050.
Website: www.champps.com

Great Waters Brewery Co

Beer lovers are spoilt for choice here. Over 85 different hand-crafted beers are served in this watering hole, with bosses claiming their secret ingredient is holy water; the building rests on the site of a former cathedral blessed with a natural spring water well. Located in the heart of Downtown St Paul, it boasts a patio open throughout the year.

426 St Peter Street, St Paul
Tel: 651-224-BREW (2739).
Website: www.greatwatersbc.com

Patrick McGovern's Pub

Located in a turn-of-the-century building, this spot is renowned for its friendly service and attracting sporty-minded drinkers.

225 Seventh St W
Tel: (651) 228 1868.
Website: www.patmcgoverns.com

The Lounge

This is one of Minneapolis's more upmarket watering holes and also features live music. Expect to drink exotic cocktails against a backdrop of animal skins, plush velvet pillows, canvas art and film images.

411 Second Avenue North
Tel: (612) 333 8800.
Website: www.theloungempls.com

Clubs in Minneapolis-St Paul


Located in the warehouse district, Bootleggers boasts a live DJ dance floor and lots of TVs. Declaring itself to be the modern day answer to the speakeasy of old, the bar also features a lounge area decked out with pool tables, a darts board and video games.

323 first Avenue North
Tel: (612) 338 4555.
Website: www.bootleggersmpls.com


Formerly the Fahrenheit, Envy has contemporary atmosphere and state-of-the-art sound and lighting. It attracts a mix of celebrities, local athletes, and a cosmopolitan, fashionable crowds.

400 First Avenue North, Minneapolis
Tel: (612) 673 9694.
Website: www.envympls.com

Gay 90s

This is a massive multi-room mixed and gay club, popular for its great house music, piano bar and drag shows.

408 Hennepin Avenue
Tel: (612) 333 7755.
Website: www.gay90s.com

Live Music in Minneapolis-St Paul

First Avenue

Made famous in the film Purple Rain, First Avenue is the city's largest live music venue, booking top touring bands and artists.

701 First Avenue, Minneapolis
Tel: (612) 332 1775.
Website: www.first-avenue.com

The Cabooze

Another top venue, The Cabooze has a huge dance floor and nightly blues, rock and reggae acts.

917 Cedar Avenue, Minneapolis
Website: www.cabooze.com

The Dakota Jazz & Supper Club

This place features some of the best jazz in the area and offers a packed calendar. Music lovers can also enjoy cheap bites.

1010 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis
Tel: (612) 332 1010.
Website: www.dakotacooks.com

Classical Music in Minneapolis-St Paul

Northrop Auditorium

Located on the University of Minnesota's East Bank Campus, this venue attracts regular performances by leading jazz artists and also features concerts by St Paul Chamber Orchestra. The latter perform at a number of different venues including SPCO Center, 90 Summit Avenue, (tel: (651) 291 1144), and Ted Mann Concert Hall on the University of Minnesota campus, 2128 Fourth Street South (tel: (651) 291 1144).

84 Church Street South East, Minneapolis
Tel: (612) 625 6600.
Website: www.umn.edu/umato

Theatre in Minneapolis-St Paul

Brave New Workshop

This is the country's longest running satirical comedy theatre and also holds improvisation nights.

2605 Hennepin Avenue, Minneapolis
Tel: (612) 332 6620.
Website: www.bravenewworkshop.com

Guthrie Theatre

The Tony award-winning Guthrie Theatre is the jewel of the Twin Cities, presenting critically acclaimed contemporary productions that draw a national audience. Its new building contains three stages, three restaurants and a cantilever terrace which provides extra space and scenic views.

818 South Second Street, Minneapolis
Tel: (612) 225 1100.
Website: www.guthrietheater.org

Orpheum Theatre

One of two of Minneapolis's restored classic theatres, the Orpheum Theatre in Downtown Minneapolis's Theatre District often serves as the debut venues for large Broadway productions.

910 Hennepin
Tel: (612) 339 7007.
Website: www.hennepintheatredistrict.org

Penumbra Theatre

This is one of only three professional African-American theatres in the country.

270 North Kent Street, St Paul
Tel: (651) 224 3180.
Website: www.penumbratheatre.org

Music and Dance in Minneapolis-St Paul

Ethnic Dance Theatre

This claims to be one of a handful of professional international dance companies in the USA dedicated to the preservation of world music, dance and song. Its repertoire of folk dance and music includes countries such as Albania, China, Costa Rica, Lebanon, Mongolia, Norway, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Tibet, Russia, Uzbekistan and Ukraine.

3507 Clinton South
Tel: (763) 545 1333.
Website: www.ethnicdancetheatre.com

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