MINNEAPOLIS – July 21, 2015 – The CenterPoint Energy Torchlight Parade will be held Wednesday, July 22 from 8:30 p.m.-10:30 p.m. As one of the biggest and brightest parades in the state and a Minneapolis Aquatennial flagship event, this one-of-a-kind display will light up Downtown Minneapolis with a procession of bands and entertainment units marching down Hennepin Avenue.
This year’s parade marks the fifteenth consecutive year that CenterPoint Energy has taken part in the Aquatennial festivities and sponsored the Torchlight Parade.
“The company is pleased to sponsor the 76th annual CenterPoint Energy Torchlight Parade for the fifteenth consecutive year,” said Joe Vortherms, division vice president of Gas Operations in Minnesota. “Our employees are proud to live, work and volunteer in the communities that the company serves every day. To show our pride and appreciation for our customers and communities, the company would like to invite all to share in the excitement of the CenterPoint Energy Torchlight Parade with friends and families on July 22.”
This year’s parade will feature one of Minnesota’s most recognizable and beloved sports personalities, Mark Rosen of WCCO-TV, serving as the parade’s Grand Marshal. Rosen joined WCCO as a high school junior at St. Louis Park Senior High and was hired on full-time while attending the University of Minnesota. He anchors the 5 p.m., 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. weekday sportscasts and hosts Rosen’s Sports Sunday. Rosen has won numerous regional Emmy Awards and has been named Best TV Sportscaster by City Pages a number of times.
The Aquatennial has partnered with the City of Minneapolis to bring Tap Minneapolis water fountains to the CenterPoint Energy Torchlight Parade. These water stations will be available on both sides of Hennepin Avenue at the intersections of 6th Street, 9th Street and Spruce Place/Laurel Avenue. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own water bottles to the event and utilize the many fountains along the parade route for refills. CenterPoint Energy will also be handing out reusable water bottles to lucky parade-goers, as well as giving away hoop toys to the first 2,000 parade-goers who stop by 6th, 7th, 8th or 9th streets along the route following the parade.
The parade will feature CenterPoint Energy’s Buddy Blue Flame, marching bands, Minneapolis Aqua Jesters and more. K102 returns again this year to emcee the CenterPoint Energy Torchlight Parade featuring their new morning show, Chris Carr & Company.
“We are excited to be kicking off this year’s Aquatennial on Wednesday with the CenterPoint Energy Torchlight Parade. This nighttime parade draws thousands to Hennepin Avenue and it’s truly spectacular to see so many enjoying the evening in downtown Minneapolis,” Aquatennial Festival Director Leah Wong said. “As part of the Aquatennial tradition, it’s great to have long-standing partners that support this civic event, such as CenterPoint Energy who has been the title sponsor of the Aquatennial Torchlight Parade for fifteen consecutive years.”
Attend the Aquatennial’s Loring Park Family Fun Night from 5 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. featuring pony rides, inflatables, canoe rides, a kids’ dance, carnival games, Wilderness Inquiry Voyageur Canoe Rides and more. Following Loring Park Family Fun Night will be the Life Time Torchlight 5K. Watch as thousands of runners take off down Hennepin Avenue beginning at 7:30 p.m.
About the Minneapolis Aquatennial
The Official Civic Celebration of the City of Minneapolis offers outstanding entertainment and activities in the City of Lakes for all ages. It is managed and produced by the Minneapolis Downtown Council. The festival is sponsored by Target, CenterPoint Energy, U.S. Bank, Zeus Jones, Life Time Fitness, Xcel Energy, Hennepin County Medical Center, Minnesota Twins, Minneapolis Recycles, City of Minneapolis, Minneapolis Park & Recreation Board, K102, Go 96.3 and Which Wich. For more information, please visit www.Aquatennial.com or call (612) 376-7669.
About the Minneapolis Downtown Council:
Founded in 1955, and one of the oldest central business associations in the nation, the Minneapolis Downtown Council (MDC) is a membership-based entity that works to create an extraordinary downtown. The MDC’s collaborative developments of Intersections: The Downtown 2025 Plan was designed to help downtown businesses, community leaders and citizens build on downtown assets and implement future goals. For more information, please visit DowntownMpls.com.
CenterPoint Energy, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, is a domestic energy delivery company that includes electric transmission & distribution, natural gas distribution and energy services operations. The company serves more than five million metered customers primarily in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas. The company also owns a 55.4 percent limited partner interest in Enable Midstream Partners, a publicly traded master limited partnership it jointly controls with OGE Energy Corp., which owns, operates and develops natural gas and crude oil infrastructure assets. With more than 7,400 employees, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessor companies have been in business for more than 140 years. The utility also operates a non-regulated business in Minnesota called Home Service Plus®. For more information, visit the website at CenterPointEnergy.com.