Fargo, ND Arts Scene: Theaters, Galleries, Music and Museums

Museums, theaters, annual events keep the Fargo community entertained

By Pamela Coyle on August 15, 2015 at 4:00 pm EST
Bluestem Center for the Arts in Moorhead, MN

PHOTO CREDIT: Michael Conti

Highlights

  • The Plains Art Museum is the single largest art museum between Minneapolis and Seattle.

In Fargo, concert venues draw top musical acts, while theaters set the stage for live performances and museums and galleries showcase artful creations. Fun annual festivals round out the area's many entertainment options.

Museums and Galleries

The Plains Art Museum is the single largest art museum between Minneapolis and Seattle. It features revolving exhibits, special events and public work spaces. The museum's educational offerings include printmaking, landscape painting and a clay camp for children.

Fargo Air Museum delights aviation lovers with a collection that includes the world's only flying Super Corsair. With more than 50 exhibits, the Children's Museum at Yunker Farm will keep little ones entertained for hours. Housed in an 1876 brick home, the museum has been lauded by Child magazine as one of the best in the nation.

Focusing on regional and international artistic heritage and cultural traditions, the Rourke Art Gallery Museum includes a permanent collection of pieces from artists such as Andy Warhol and Leonard Baskin, as well as many temporary exhibitions.

The Spirit Room includes a gallery with works created by local artists and offers several wellness classes.

Downtown art galleries Gallery 4, Ltd. and Ecce, both located on Broadway Avenue, showcase works by local artists.

Performing Arts

To enjoy a Broadway series show, look no further than the Gate City Bank Theatre, located inside the Fargodome. Fargo has also drawn touring productions by plenty of big-name artists, such as Paul McCartney, Pink and Taylor Swift.

The Fargo Theatre showcases a mix of speakers, concerts, and foreign and independent films. The venue was used as a cinema and vaudeville theater after it was built in 1926.

Bluestem Center for the Arts hosts concerts and events and also is home to Trollwood Performing Arts School. The Stage at Island Park is a half-round theater that hosts plays, concerts and events. Additionally, the Fargo-Moorhead Community Theatre puts on several shows a year and offers acting classes for all ages, and Theatre B has an ensemble cast that puts on about four shows annually.

The Fargo Moorhead Ballet also entertains local audiences, performing in shows such as A Midsummer Night's Dream, while the Fargo-Moorhead Opera and Fargo-Moorhead Symphony Orchestra offer several concerts each season. Great Plans Harmony, a 50-member men's chorus, performs music in genres such as gospel, barbershop and vocal jazz. For even more live music, head to The Aquarium and Studio 222.

The area's colleges and universities also contribute to Fargo-Moorhead's thriving arts and entertainment scene. North Dakota State University's performing arts division features music, theater and visual art, while Minnesota State University Moorhead's school of performing arts includes various choirs and ensembles as well as a university theatre series. In addition, Concordia College hosts a performing arts series and Christmas concerts that showcase the talents of nearly 350 singers and a 72-piece symphony orchestra.

Festivals

The music scene in Fargo heats up each August as the city sponsors a two-day Blues Festival, which has been recognized as one of the best of its kind in the country. Fargo's Jazz or "Jass" Festival also takes place in August, and the free, two-day event includes live performances from local musicians.

In nearby Detroit Lakes, Minn., a favorite summer event is WE Fest, an annual country music festival at the Soo Pass Ranch.

The Fargo Film Festival, held each March, showcases nearly 100 movies created by filmmakers from around the U.S. and beyond.

Fargo's annual Uglued: Craft Fest is a free event featuring more than 70 local and regional artists and crafters. Attendees can take part in free workshops, enjoy live music and shop at an evening gala.

See more on the arts in Fargo, ND.

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