Lights, camera, Visit Greater St. Cloud! Whether you’re hoping to laugh your way through a hysterical play or dance the night away to some great local live music, the arts and entertainment scene in Greater St. Cloud is one of the best in the state. Check out some of theses recommendations and resources, and get ready to explore your creative side!
PLUS: You can also stay up to date on all things arts and entertainment over at AroundTheCloud.org.
There’s nothing quite like an evening at the theater, whether it be for a play, musical, or even dance performance. St. Cloud is home to both the Pioneer Place on Fifth, an intimate and newly renovated theater in a historic 5th Ave. building and the glamorous Paramount Center for the Arts, where you’ll be dazzled by a stunning & historic stage that you just have to see in person.
Local theater organizations like Great Theater and Great Northern Theater Company perform dozens of shows all year long at these and other venues around the area. There is also the fine arts program at College of St. Benedict & St. John’s University, bringing theater, dance, music and more to life on stage.
Are you looking to watch amazing dance performances – or even learn how to do some moves yourself? Stroia Ballet is known for classic ballet instruction and their annual Nutcracker holiday performance. When you’re looking to take in dinner and a show, look no further than the stages of Greater St. Cloud!
The live music scene in Greater St. Cloud is one of the best in the entire state. Nearly every night of the week, you can find some kind of live performance on stage somewhere in the area. Local bars and restaurants like The Red Carpet Event Center, The Keller Bar, Jules’ Bistro, The Pickled Loon, and Benton Station bring in live bands and musical act of all kinds of styles. Venues like the Paramount and Pioneer Place, as well as the River’s Edge Convention Center and soon-to-be-open The Ledge Amphitheater – which is built into a former granite quarry – bring in regional and even national acts all year, providing fans with intimate and exciting venues to enjoy.
Several annual events bring a huge variety of local musicians together for several days of celebrating the fun and excitement of live music. There’s Common Roots Festival, a three-day festival with 11 venues and over 200 musical acts. Then of course there’s Summertime by George, a weekly summer outdoor concert series featuring local bands plus food and fun. And can’t forget the Minnesota Bluegrass Festival, one of the state’s largest bluegrass music concert, held at El Rancho Manana campground every August. Make sure you don’t ever miss a concert – check out the Events page regularly for all upcoming performances.
Plus, don’t forget the number of area bands such a the St. Cloud Municipal Band and the Meire Grove Band, as well as great local choirs like Great River Chorale and the Minnesota Center Chorale that all hold several concerts throughout the year. There is no shortage of great music to take in all over Greater St. Cloud!
Check out some of the amazing local talent of artists located right her in Greater St. Cloud at an art gallery! The Paramount Center for the Arts is home to two galleries. One in the lobby that features local art on rotation, and another located downstairs called Studio C, which is a multi-functional room and exhibition space for both 2D and 3D art displays. Gallery St. Germain is located across from the Paramount Center for the Arts and displays Minnesota artists who demonstrate a high level of professional achievement, as well as exhibitions that are engaging to Central Minnesota. The Whit Gallery is located in historic downtown St. Cloud and features local and regional mid career artists and traveling exhibitions. Black Box Theater, also located downtown, features rotating exhibits from local artists that often tie into their on-stage performances happening at the time. Plus, both the Kiehle Gallery at St. Cloud State University and the fine arts departnment at CSB/SJU have rotating student exhibitions throughout the year as well.
For an immersive experience, check out these free public art installations and memorials around town. If you’re looking for local art that you can also easily purchase, be sure to attend a St. Cloud Art Crawl. Taking place at participating downtown businesses four times a year, this crawl features local artwork on display for purchase in a wide variety of mediums. Art comes alive in the Granite City!
Hands-On Art Experiences
Sometimes you’re in the mood to get a little crafty yourself. Fortunately there are several fun, unique ways that you can do so in Greater St. Cloud! The Paramount Center for the Arts offers classes in everything from photography and ceramics to fused glass jewelry and wood turning. If you’re just in town for a bit and don’t have time for a class, you can attend Arts Underground, an open studio option available every Thursday evening for both kids and adults to try pottery, mosaics, painting, drawing, and more!
Try something really unique and book a time with Bruno Press, an old fashioned letterpress studio located in St. Joseph. On a Stationary Saturday, Mary Bruno will help you create custom stationary while you learn all about the process of authentic, old-school letterpress art. Or you can even schedule your group for a personalized workshop to create posters, stationary, or something else truly unique to your group! You will definitely discover your inner artist when you visit Greater St. Cloud.