Southern Minnesota

The International Festival of Owls will be held Friday through Sunday, March 4-6, at the Houston Elementary School. Highlights include seven species of live owls, an outdoor photography session with the owls, and owl prowls to call in wild owls. Families can build an owl nest box, make a variety of owl crafts, search for the medallion, and have a hoot eating owl-themed food. There will also be presentations by Norwegian owl biologist Roar Solheim, writer and humorist Al Batt, and author Jan Dunlap. This is the only annual, all-weekend, all-owl festival in the North America. 507/896-4668;

Turner Hall in New Ulm will be the site of Fasching, a traditional Mardi Gras celebration, on Saturday, March 5. Highlights include non-stop performances by authentic German bands, as well as ethnic food and drink, dancing, and a hilarious evening “Parade of Costumes.” And while in New Ulm on March 5, be sure to check out the 26th Annual Bock Fest. This outdoor event held on the grounds of the historic Schell”s Brewery in New Ulm includes the release of the seasonal “Bock Beer,” live music, food stands, a bonfire, Jaeger”s Ruh Bar in the woods on the Bock Hunt Trail along the Cottonwood River, and cash and other prizes for winners of the Bock medallion hunt. Due to the popularity of this event, attendance will be limited to the first 5,000 attendees – purchase tickets in advance to reserve your spot! Proceeds will support of New Ulm’s National Guard Unit and the New Ulm Area Food Shelf. 1-800-4-NEW-ULM;

Soar with the Eagles programs will be offered at the National Eagle Center in Wabasha each Saturday and Sunday, March 5-27. Enjoy a variety of guest presenters, artists, photographers, flying bird programs, and much more! Each weekend will have a different theme and a new lineup of guests to entertainment and enlighten audiences of all ages. Just some of the highlights March 5 & 6 include live eagle feeding programs, the 2nd Annual Eagle Calling contest, the Minnesota Zoomobile, and presentations on the Boundary Waters, animal communication systems, eagles in literature and myth, habitat facts, and lures, decoys, and the people-powered peddlers. And on Saturday evening, March 5, the National Eagle Center will offer A Taste of Wabasha, with food samples from several local establishments, along with live music and a silent auction – perfect for the entire family! 1-877-332-4537;

The Owatonna Country Club in the city of Owatonna will hold an Irish Brewfest on Friday, March 11. Come help celebrate the art of beer brewing and enjoy an evening of Irish festivities, with a variety of Irish brews, home brew demonstrations, entertainment by the Irish Minstrels, and a three-course dinner prepared by guest chefs. This is the annual fundraiser for Culturfest, a multi-cultural outdoor festival. 507-451-3920;

A Home, Garden & Vacation Show will be offered at the Wabasha-Kellogg High School in Wabasha, Saturday and Sunday, March 12 & 13 Wabasha, with an abundance of presenters and vendors offering information and projects for building and remodeling projects, as well as vacation ideas. 1-800-565-4158;

The Four Seasons Centre in Owatonna will be the site of the North American Farm & Power Show, Thursday through Saturday, March 17-19. The show features a wide array of indoor and outdoor agricultural and ag-related exhibits, as well as free ag seminars, and information on the world economy and the outlook for cattle, corn and beans. 1-800-423-6466;

Twin Cities Greater Metropolitan vicinity

The Minneapolis Home & Garden Show will be held at the Minneapolis Convention Center, Wednesday through Sunday March 2–6, with everything new in home, gardening, remodeling and home decor, as well as more than 1,000 experts, seminars, and thousands of products and services. The Minneapolis Convention Center will also host the 11th Annual Body Mind Life Expo, Saturday and Sunday, March 5 & 6. This is the original and largest health and natural products expo, with experts to help you find more peace, fun and balance in your life. 612/335-6000;

The Crowne Plaza Minneapolis West in Plymouth, formerly the Radisson Hotel & Conference Center, will be the site of a Winter Bluegrass Weekend, Friday through Sunday, March 4-6. This three-day indoor music festival features the Showcase of Bands, with more than 40 groups performing bluegrass, old-time stringband, and related forms of acoustic music. Also included are dances, workshops, instrument exhibitors, a swap meet, jam sessions around the clock, and a Saturday headline concert. Discounts for combination packages and members are available. 1-800-635-3037;

Buck Hill Ski Area in Burnsville will be the site of the 13th Annual Subway Bedrace for Bridging on Saturday, March 5, when teams of four, dressed in outrageous costumes, race down Buck Hill”s tubing hill on specially covered queen-sized mattresses to raise money for Bridging, Inc. Prizes will also be awarded for Cities 97 Costume Contest, and for “Bucks for Bridging” fundraising efforts. Afterwards, stick around for the Cities 97 Post-Race Concert, featuring American Idol’s Crystal Bowersox, the Chris Hawkey Band, and Augustana! Gently-used furniture and household goods can be dropped off at this event. Bridging, Inc is a non-profit organization that distributes household goods to individual and families in transition. 952/888-1105;

The 38th annual Twin Cities Auto Show will be held Saturday, March 12 through Sunday, March 20 at Minneapolis, Minneapolis Convention Center. Featured will be an estimated $15,000,000 in new vehicles, and hundreds of new domestic and imported automobile models, trucks and SUVs. In addition, there will be a chance to win $5,000 each night of the show to put towards the purchase of a new vehicle, as well as the Ultimate Garage by AutoMotorPlex, the Green Room Hybrids by Star Tribune, Luxury Lane vehicles, the Bio-Diesel Lounge, and Ride and Drive opportunities to test drive the vehicles on display! This is the seventh largest auto show in the nation. Discount coupons are available. 952/278-3147;

The Minnesota Landmark Center in downtown St. Paul will offer an Irish Day of Dance on Sunday, March 13. Get in the spirit of St. Patrick”s Day, and watch dancers of all ages perform traditional Irish dances. There will also be Irish vendors and cultural activities! On Thursday, March 17, head back to the Minnesota Landmark Center for the Irish Music and Dance Association”s St. Patrick”s Day Celebration, featuring regional and local Irish entertainment, Irish dance, Celtic vendors, Irish cuisine, and pipe bands. And don”t miss the 45th Annual St. Patrick”s Day Parade held at noon on Thursday, March 17, along 4th Street starting at Sibley Street and ending at Rice Park on Market Street. 651/292-3225;;

And just some of the upcoming concerts and performances include:
Harry Torter And The Magical Law School at the Pantages Theatre in Minneapolis, March 4 & 5
Clay Aiken at the Historic State Theatre in Minneapolis, March 5
Sarah McLachlan at the Historic Orpheum Theatre in Minneapolis, March 9
Jay Leno at Mystic Lake Hotel & Casino in Prior Lake, March 12
Kevin Hart at the Historic State Theatre, March 12
Pat Donohue at the Fitzgerald Theater in St. Paul, March 12
Smucker”s Stars on Ice at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, March 13
Riverdance at the Historic State Theatre, March 18-20
Imagination Movers “In A Big Warehouse” Tour at the Historic Orpheum Theatre, March 19
Amos Lee at the Historic State Theatre, March 24
Kenny Chesney at the Xcel Energy Center, March 25
Patton Oswalt
at the Fitzgerald Theater, March 25
Marat Sade at the Burnsville Performing Arts Center, March 25-April 10
The Avalanche Tour at the Roy Wilkins Auditorium at St. Paul RiverCentre, March 26
Ellie Goulding at the Fine Line Music Cafe, March 31
Madagascar Live! at the Historic Orpheum Theatre, April 1
Tiësto at the Roy Wilkins Auditorium at St. Paul RiverCentre, April 1
Harlem Globetrotters at the Target Center in Minneapolis, April 2
Jeremy Messersmith at the Fitzgerald Theater April 9
Robert Plant
at the Historic State Theatre, April 12
Golden Smog at the Fine Line Music Cafe in Minneapolis, April 15
Kellie Pickler at Mystic Lake Casino & Hotel, April 16
Jeff Beck at the Historic State Theatre in Minneapolis, April 17
Minnesota Varsity at the Fitzgerald Theater, April 17
Jersey Boys at the Historic Orpheum Theatre, April 21-May 5
Celtic Woman: Songs From The Heart Tour at the Historic State Theatre, April 22
Chris Cornell
at the Fitzgerald Theater, April 24
The Pixies at the Roy Wilkins Auditorium at the St. Paul RiverCentre, April 24
Chanticleer at the Fitzgerald Theater, April 27
The Deftones at First Avenue in Minneapolis, April 28
Burnsville Rotary Presents The Second City – Fair & Unbalanced at the Burnsville Performing Arts Center, April 30
The Second City – Fair & Unbalanced at the Burnsville Performing Arts Center, April 30
Jackson Browne at the Historic State Theatre, May 4
The Minnesota Dance Festival at the Fitzgerald Theater, May 6
Colin Hay at the Pantages Theatre in Minneapolis, May 7
Sugarland at the Target Center, May 7
An Evening with CAKE: Showroom of Compassion World Tour at the Historic State Theatre, May 12
Sarah Vowell at the Fitzgerald Theater, May 12
at Mystic Lake Casino & Hotel, May 13
The Screwtape Letters at the Pantages Theatre, May 14
Daniel O”Donnell at the Historic Orpheum Theatre, May 18
Robin Trower at the Fitzgerald Theater, May 18
Score! With Chan Poling Fitzgerald Theater May 21
Usher with special guest Akon at the Target Center, May 21
Bruno Mars & Janelle Monae Hooligans In Wondaland Tour at the Roy Wilkins Auditorium at St. Paul RiverCentre, May 25
at First Avenue in Minneapolis, May 26
Glee at the Target Center, June 1
Lies That Chelsea Handler Told Me Tour with Special Guests at the Target Center, June 4
Brett Dennen: 2011 Loverboy Tour at the Pantages Theatre in Minneapolis, June 5
The Script at the Historic Orpheum Theatre, June 7
The Moody Blues
at the Historic Orpheum Theatre, June 9
Ira Glass at the Fitzgerald Theater in St. Paul, June 11
Taylor Swift at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, June 14 & 15
Rihanna: Loud Tour at the Target Center, June 16
Florence and the Machine at the Minnesota Zoo Amphitheater, June 17
Jethro Tull at the Historic Orpheum Theatre in Minneapolis, June 25
The Black Keys at the Roy Wilkins Auditorium at St. Paul RiverCentre, July 3
Katy Perry at the Xcel Energy Center, July 9
New Kids On The Block & Backstreet Boys at the Target Center, July 15
David Sedaris at the Historic State Theatre in Minneapolis, November 13
For further information on any of these performances or events, please contact Ticketmaster at 651/989-5151, or visit

Central Minnesota

Eileen Ivers, star of Riverdance and founding member of Cherish the Ladies, will perform Immigrant Soul Beyond the Bog Road on Saturday, March 5 at the College St. Benedict”s Escher Auditorium in the city of St. Joseph at 7:30 p.m. Accompany Ms. Ivers on a travelogue that celebrates the Irish immigrant through Celtic music and dance, world music, history and other cultures. St. Joseph is located just west of St. Cloud. 320/363-5777;

St. Urho Days will be held Friday and Saturday, March 11 & 12, in Menahga, with various events to celebrate St. Urho, the Finnish saint who saved the grape crop by running the grasshoppers out of the fields. Highlights will include a queen coronation, pancake breakfast, the changing of the guards, a parade, bar stool races, and a golf tournament on the lake, weather permitting. Menahga is located just south of Park Rapids on Highway 71. 218/564-4753;

The city of Crosslake will host the 37th Annual St. Patrick”s Day Parade at 2:00 p.m. on March 12. Other festivities will include pancake breakfast, ReMax Hot Air Balloon Sunrise Tether Rides-weather permitting, the 2011 Plunge for the Puck, great Irish food, drink specials, the Pot of Gold Treasure Hunt, live music at various venues, and a performance by Tim Mahoney at Manhattans. 1-800-450-2838;

The Ring of Kerry will perform at The Paramount Theatre in St. Cloud on Saturday, March 12, with the St. Paul Irish Dancers, as well as new guests, music and surprises during their annual pre-Paddy”s Day Concert. And on Sunday, March 13, The Paramount Theatre will host The Great BIG Minnesota Variety Show, when Sean Emery, a physical comedian, will welcome others for a 90-minute entertainment event for entire family. 320/259-5463;

The Aitkin High School will be the site of a Commerce and Sport Show, Saturday and Sunday, March 12 & 13. Come meet the area”s finest in commerce, sports and travel, with held drawings each day. 1-800-526-8342;

A Maple Syruping Program will be offered at Big Stone Lake State Park near Ortonville on Saturday, March 19. Visitors will be able to see the process of making maple syrup, from tapping trees to boiling sap. Sap and syrup samples will be available for tasting. 320/839-3663;

Comedian Louie Anderson will perform at the Charles Martin Auditorium in Little Falls on Sunday, March 20 at 7:00 p.m. Special guest Jason Schommer will also perform; this is a family-friendly event. 320/632-0960;

Northwest Minnesota

The 6th Annual North Country Women”s Expo will be held Saturday, March 5, at the Northern Lights Event Center in Walker, with demonstrations, break-out sessions, spa services, live music, wine tasting, drawings, and chef presentations. 1-800-252-PLAY;

Cabela”s in East Grand Forks will be the site of Spring Great Outdoor Days, Saturday and Sunday, March 5 & 6. Highlights include the following presentations: Early Catfishing on the Red, Jigs on Rainy River, Early Fishing Electronics, Fly Fishing for Carp on the Red, Camping 101 (on the 5th only), Canoe and Kayak 101, Boat Safety, Turtle River State Park Activities, and Early Fishing Clothing. Experts will be assist with choosing the appropriate gear and outerwear based on activity of choice. 218/773-0282;

Ice Fishing on Ludlow Pond will be offered Saturday, March 12 at Big Bog State Park, located on Highway 72, just north of Waskish. Bring your jig stick for some fishing fun, and try your luck at catching Ludlow Island panfish. Holes will be pre-drilled and bait will be provided. This event is ice/weather permitting. 218/647-8592;

The city of Bemidji will be the site of numerous events on Saturday, March 12, beginning with the 10th Annual Bemidji Pioneer Indoor Garage & Craft Show at Bemdiji State University”s John Glass Fieldhouse, and Ojibwe Storytelling at the Bemidji Public Library. On Saturday evening, don”t miss Monroe Crossing”s Bluegrass Concert at the Paul Bunyan Playhouse in Bemidji. This is the Midwest’s Premier Bluegrass and Gospel Quintet, with an upbeat blend of classic and traditional bluegrass, bluegrass gospel and heartfelt originals. And on Saturday and Sunday, March 12 & 13, the Headwaters Builders” Show will take place at the Sanford Center in Bemidji, with a chance to talk with the building and remodeling experts. 1-800-458-2223;

Northeast Minnesota

The Minnesota Discovery Center in Chisholm will host How People Make Things through May 8. This exhibit explains the manufacturing processes and technology used to make everyday objects in our world, with a chance to use your hands, tools and machines to cut, mold and assemble various items. On Saturday, March 5, enjoy Story Time with Grandma Nancy for a story on how steel is made and a taconite pellet craft! And while at the Minnesota Discovery Center, check out Journey Stories, which uses engaging images, audio and artifacts to tell individual stories that illustrate the critical roles travel and movement have played in building our diverse American society – open through March 12. 1-800-372-6437;

Voyagaire Lodge on Crane Lake will be the site of Crane Lake Challenge Radar & Speed Runs on Saturday, March 5. Come see racers will reach speeds of more than 180mph on a shaved ice raceway – this event is considered by some to be the best snowmobile race in the north! 1-800-362-7405;

A Traditional Music Weekend – Traditional Western Swing will be offered at the North House Folk School in Grand Marais, Saturday and Sunday, March 12 & 13. Pull out your cowboy boots and put on your 10-gallon hat for this year’s traditional music weekend featuring the joy of Western swing music. Highlights include a concert with Western swing band Swiddlin” Fling, as well as accompanying coursework, demonstrations, family programs, and more! 1-888-387-9762;

Giants Ridge Golf & Ski Resort in Biwabik will hold their annual Giants Ridge Spring Carnival, Saturday and Sunday, March 19 & 20. Enjoy a weekend of winter fun and “everything Elvis,” with ski & snowboard competitions, live music, an Elvis impersonator, Elvis or Priscilla Presley costume contests, the annual Slush Cup, outdoor barbeque on the deck, dance contests, and discounted lift ticket rates! 1-800-688-7669;

Source: “The information in this report is provided courtesy of Explore Minnesota Tourism.”