Northern Spark won’t be in St. Paul this year

The popular all-night cultural event will only be in one of the Twin Cities this year.

“Northern Spark” took place last year from 8:58 p.m., June 4, to 5:58 a.m., June 5, and transformed both Minneapolis and St. Paul into a sprawling art festival with a wide array of events on offer throughout the night.


Artist Jim Campbell’s piece “Scattered Lights” seen at Upper Landing Park in St. Paul. It was one of the more popular works of art in last year’s Northern Spark arts festival. Image courtesy Jim Campbell

In an interview with MPR’s Chris Roberts last year, Northern Spark organizer Steve Dietz said one of the traits that would make Northern Spark so special was its scope:

One thing I want to emphasize is that …the festival takes place in both Minneapolis and St. Paul, and it’s one of the few festivals that really tries to formally bridge the both cities and really think of the Twin Cities as an artistic region.

Now Dietz says this year’s festival will only take place in Minneapolis:

Basically, some major projects fell through, and we felt it was better to do Northern Spark really well in one city and hopefully start working on June 11 to help make it happen again in St. Paul in 2013.

One of those projects included participation of the Minnesota Museum of American Art, which bowed out of the festival in order to intensify its efforts to find a permanent home in St. Paul.

Dietz says while the development is disappointing the festival has a great program lined up.

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