On September 9 and 10, 2016, hundreds of attendees experienced the vision of a vibrant River Balcony first-hand as sidewalks, plazas, parks and pathways were filled with public art, live music, great food, tasty brews and scenic views during the first-ever River Balcony Prototyping Festival.

Hosted in partnership with Music in Mears and Rhythm in Rice Production Team, the festival kicked-off with a pre-party on September 9 from 5:00-10:00 p.m. at the Kellogg Craft Beer Overlook located at Kellogg Mall Park with food trucks and special performances by The Wibesman, Maria Isa, Ryan’s Liestman’s Reggae Revival, and Ipso Facto.




On Saturday, September 10 from 2:00-6:00 p.m., the areas surrounding the Science Museum of Minnesota, Kellogg Mall Park and Union Depot featured 11 installations by 10 local artists, food trucks, multiple stages, and the Kellogg Craft Beer Overlook with special performances by Grape Whales, Alex Rossi, Communist Daughter and more.



The Prototyping Festival was a winning idea submitted by Saint Paul Riverfront Corporation to the Knight Green Line Challenge, an initiative of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Prototyping is the use of art, design, and social engagement to envision what a space can become and how it can serve a different role in our community. The artists were selected through an open call to demonstrate the types of activities that a River Balcony could support and included:


  • Water Source by ThreeSeven
  • Sunspot by Alyssa Baguss and Aaron Dysart
  • Dakhóta Wordscapes on the River by Dakhóta Iápi Okhódakičhiye, Healing Place Collaborative, Hamilton Ink Spot and Public Art Saint Paul
  • River Song by Trygve Nordberg, Karen Pollard and Wendie Owens
  • Cultural Exchange Market by Emily Stover
  • River Soundings by Suzanne, Tesia, and Josef Kosmalski
  • River of Birds by Kimley-Horn Landscape Architecture: Jenny Krantz, Katie Leise, Mitch Workmon, & Jacob Oswald
  • Water Bar | Healing Place by Works Progress Studio
  • Portals by Ramsey County Historical Society
  • River Rock! by Gary Johnson
  • Wrapped in Anticipation by Kimley-Horn Landscape Architecture: Jenny Krantz, Katie Leise, Mitch Workmon, and Jacob Oswald

View photos from the festival here.

Special thanks to our partners and sponsors.

For more information on the River Balcony Prototyping Festival, visit To learn more about the River Balcony, visit To learn more about the Great River Passage Plan, visit