Social Engagement:

Parks usage

Visits to riverfront regional parks, 2004-14

Over the last decade, Minneapolis has been making a continual commitment to the evolution of its riverfront parks. And one of the key effects of that commitment is a dramatic growth in the use of those parks.

This trend is most pronounced in the Central Riverfront, where between 2004 and 2014, the number of visits to riverfront regional parks has nearly tripled. This closely mirrors the increase in adjacent residential and commercial development over those same years.


Total riverfront regional park visits


over last year


over ten years

Central Riverfront regional park visits


over last year


over ten years

Revitalization: Mississippi River Boat Ballet 2015

As founder of Patrick’s Cabaret in Minneapolis’ Longfellow neighborhood, choreographer Patrick Scully has long been an innovative and creative presence in Twin Cities dance production.

This summer, Scully brought his choreography skills to an entirely new venue: the Mississippi River.

Scully enlisted the help of dozens of performers - sailboats, motorboats, and musicians - to stage a stunning riverine ballet on a beautiful mid-summer evening.  These are a few of the highlights.


Revitalization: Minneapolis Bicycle Tour

The number of events held in riverfront parks has exploded in the last ten years as people are drawn to the beauty and accessibility of parks near the downtown core.

The Minneapolis Bike Tour is one such event. In its eighth year, more than 3200 riders participated in the September, 2014 ride. It has become a yearly tradition for cyclers of all ages and abilities. This year, Boom Island Park, along the river, was the start and finish point for riders.


Boat Ballet photos, clockwise from top right: (1) courtesy video still from John Akre; (2) courtesy Max and Peter of copyrighted and provided by Patrick Scully. Video still; (3) courtesy video still from John Akre; (4) courtesy Max and Peter of copyrighted and provided by Patrick Scully.
Bike tour photo: courtesy Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board; resized for context. Segway tour page background image: courtesy Eric Kilby under CC-BY-SA 2.0 license via; resized to fit page.