Friday, September 9, 2016

St. Cloud Area Comic Lovers Visit Lioncon at the River’s Edge

Anime, comic books, video games, and all things nerd livened the River’s Edge Convention Center when LionHeart Games of Waite Park presented LionCon on Saturday, August 27th.

Justin Willard, owner of LionHeart games, organized the event. Planning began in January 2016, but until LionCon, St. Cloud had never seen a comic con-esque event like this.

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Conventions like this are sometimes misunderstood. In the last few decades, the term “nerd” has come to be used as a term of endearment rather than an insult. Conventions such as LionCon are an opportunity to bring like-minded people together to celebrate arts and entertainment that they love and that have been sadly lacking in Central Minnesota.

LionCon showcased game displays, comic book and graphic novel displays and artists, toys, and plenty of fans dressed up as their favorite video game, movie, and TV show characters. Attendees played board games and role-playing games and some took part in a cosplay competition.

The first in Central Minnesota, LionCon provided the opportunity for area comic book convention fans to stay a little bit closer to home. Popular conventions pop up annually in the Twin Cities, but in St. Cloud, we have yet to begin a tradition of our own.

Justin Willard hopes to hold the convention again next year, making it even bigger than the success it was this time around. Plans for next year at this point are preliminary, but it seems that the St. Cloud River’s Edge Convention Center can expect a 2-day event for LionCon 2017. Area fans can only hope that LionCon will grow and continue for years to come.

Monday, August 8, 2016

River's Edge Convention Center Parking Ramp Nearing Completion

The long-awaited downtown River’s Edge Convention Center parking ramp is nearing completion, and construction crews are working around the clock to complete the $11.56 million project in time for the Convention Center's busy season and holiday shoppers. The new parking ramp will increase parking capacity by 400 stalls and will provide easier accessibility for convention center guests, downtown employees, shoppers, and visitors. The parking ramp will straddle 5th Avenue North providing direct access to downtown businesses. When completed, the ramp will be five stories tall on the west side and three stories tall on the east side of 5th Avenue.

Governor Mark Dayton visited downtown St. Cloud in June 2014 to celebrate the fact that $11.56 million was allocated to expand the River’s Edge parking facilities and accommodate the community’s many visitors.

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Construction began on November 16, 2015, and is expected to reach completion in October, making it a perfect addition just in time for holiday shoppers. Current downtown visitors have been using the Timber Lot and the Convention Center Surface lot as alternative parking. With the parking ramp nearing completion, it will greatly alleviate current parking and traffic congestion, adding 400 stalls and 155,040 square feet of space for downtown visitors.

In addition to the new parking ramp, the City of St. Cloud has additional projects that will help change the skyline of downtown St. Cloud. Other new projects coming to St. Cloud are the expansion of the Beaver Island Trail on the north side of the River’s Edge Convention Center, which will provide more recreational area, greater bike and walking trails, and The Lofts — a 47-condominium building that will add stylish and modern living options for downtown dwellers.

Monday, June 6, 2016

The 2016 Minnesota Quilters Show and Conference

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The Minnesota Quilters will be holding their 38th Annual Quilt Show and Conference at the River's Edge Convention Center in downtown St. Cloud from June 9-11. Minnesota Quilters, Inc. is a non-profit organization comprised of volunteers who celebrate the craft of quilting. The organization is rooted in learning the history and new advancements in quilting in all its forms, as well as documenting the art and craft of quilting in Minnesota.

The organization was founded in 1978 as a result of renewed interest in quilting, brought on by the U.S. Bicentennial. The first 18 women were assessed $10 dues to battle the seemingly high postage costs of the time. They also worked tirelessly on the task of recruiting for and setting up the organization.

In their first year, the group was invited to quilt at the Minnesota State Fair - a group of 40 women. Despite rain and building and location switches, the booth was manned by volunteers for ten days - at the end of which the displayed quilt was completed. The first official show was held in 1979 in St. Paul. Meetings were held in different areas in order to allow more attendance. One of the largest in the first year was seen at the Dakota County Fair, in which 95 people attended. Now, the annual Minnesota Quilters’ Show and Conference is the largest volunteer quilt show in the U.S., draws visitors from around the world and is one of the premier quilting events in the country.

Once a one-page publication produced from a typewriter, you can now view the MQ Newsletter on their website. The schedule of events for the 2016 MQ Quilt show and conference - which includes exhibits, classes, lectures, awards, actions and more - can be viewed here.
If you’d like to get involved in quilting, check out the 2016 Minnesota “Hail to Thee” challenge fabrics, consisting of two groups - a blue/green/gold group and an orange/red group. Using these fabrics, contestants must make a quilt, clothing item, or three-dimensional piece that depicts something they like about Minnesota. You can pick up your packet at any MQ monthly meeting, at the MQ office in Minneapolis, or by calling (612) 436-0449. Packets cost $18.

Although registration for the show has ended, classes that have remaining space and regular lectures may be purchased at the registration desk. You can contact Minnesota Quilters, Inc. on their website, or send an email to for more information.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Why Hosting Prom at River's Edge is a Good Idea

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One of the most anticipated high school seasons is fast approaching — prom season! Prom is a time for dancing, dressing up and making lifelong memories with friends. Though prom is undoubtedly one of the most unforgettable high school memories, it can be a pain for parents and schools to set up for their kids. That’s why you should book your school’s prom at River’s Edge Convention Center.

Tons of space
No matter the theme, activities, or size of the crowd, the River’s Edge has the space that you can customize to fit your needs. For example, our pre-function space will work perfectly as a backdrop for prom photos. We’ve got 150,000 square feet of space, including a 16,000-square foot ballroom. Download a colored map of the floor plan, or check out our full brochure for more details.

At the River’s Edge, you can do all the decorating yourself. Assemble a prom committee, designate a group of art students, or recruit parents or volunteers to help. You also have the option of hiring a professional to do it for you — we’ve got a great list of them on file!

With the connections we have, you can bet you’ll find tons of catering options for a beautiful evening. Don’t worry about the setup, after party clean-up, or refilling food and beverages throughout the night. We’ve got it all under control.

Equipment Rental
Worried about finding a rental company for prom? Luckily, you don’t have to go through another company to rent your equipment. We’ve got everything you need to host a fun prom: dance floors, pianos, podiums, tables and chairs, microphones, projectors, spotlights and much more. Read our Material Service Price Guide for more information.

We Provide Services
Worried about housekeeping? Not sure if there will be enough parking? Nervous about setting up and executing the perfect slideshow or video? We can help. Just let us know about all your event details and service needs before the event, and our friendly staff will be happy to help.

Planning the perfect prom at the River’s Edge Convention Center makes perfect sense. If we haven’t convinced you yet, contact us with your questions and concerns.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Downtown St. Cloud Has A Lot To Offer

The River’s Edge Convention Center is sitting in the best part of St. Cloud. Historic downtown St. Cloud has a lot more to offer than meets the eye.

Downtowns are becoming cool again throughout the country. City Centers may have lost some of their popularity in the 1980s and 90s, but they’ve come back in a big way in the 2010s.

Downtown meetings have become trendy at hotels and convention centers all around the country again. Convention centers and visitors bureaus throughout the United States help paint a vibrant and exciting picture of what meeting planners and attendees can experience downtown.

The River's Edge can easily accommodate events such as concerts, weddings, trade and consumer shows, conventions, and conferences for a wide array of businesses and group sizes.

The River's Edge offers more than 75,000 square feet of exhibit space along with 24-foot ceilings and easy on-grade load-in access.

The River’s Edge hosts conferences and trade shows throughout the week and on weekends and other events such as weddings, graduations, and proms. Entertainment is also part of what the River’s Edge offers, including sporting events like SCAR Dolls Roller Derby and concerts like Trampled By Turtles. But things aren’t just going on at the River’s Edge. There are plenty of other things to do in Downtown St. Cloud.

There are more than 40 food options in the downtown area. The options include gourmet, down-home buffet, family style, health-oriented, Asian and more. To see a list of St. Cloud’s downtown dining options, visit here.

We'd like to welcome 7 West Taphouse and JL Beers as the latest additions to downtown!

If you want to make a weekend out of it and stay in downtown St. Cloud for a few days because of a wedding, meeting or banquet, Downtown has plenty of  accommodations awaiting you.

The Arts District in Downtown St. Cloud is also very vibrant. The district offers a wide array of theater options, classes, clubs, galleries, shopping and more.

Speaking of shopping, you’ll find more than a few spots Downtown to find what you’re looking for - from specialty shops to department stores, to chic boutiques.

Maybe the best part of downtown St. Cloud is the nightlife. There are plenty of bars and restaurants to have a great time at while also seeing live music, comedians, theater and other entertainment.

So come and see what downtown St. Cloud has to offer you. We promise you won’t be disappointed.

To learn more, or to plan your next event at the River’s Edge Convention Center, call us at 320-255-7272 or visit our website.

Monday, February 8, 2016

2016 PleasureLand RV Camp and Travel Expo

The 45th annual PleasureLand RV Camp and Travel Expo gets under way on Thursday, February 18, at the River’s Edge Convention Center.

The expo, which started in 1971, is free and open to the public.

There will be more than 100 new RV units taking up the convention center floor. There were 125 units at last year’s show, according to PleasureLand assistant sales manager Vinny Binsfeld.

“Last year we put in more units than we have ever had before,” said Binsfeld, who has worked for PleasureLand for 11 years. “It’s really expanded more and more every year.”

There will be everything from motorhomes, travel trailers, ice houses to pop-up campers at the expo.

The expo goes from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Thursday and Friday, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday and from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, February 21.

Some of the companies represented at the expo will include Winnebago, Keystone, Thor, Grand Design, Forest River, Crossroads, Cruiser RV and Palomino.

Fitting in all of the RVs on the convention center floor certainly isn’t an easy task for PleasureLand to accomplish.

“The River’s Edge does a great job of working with us,” Binsfeld said. “It’s almost like putting together a puzzle. Our GM does a fantastic job of making it all happen. Sometimes it comes down to a matter of feet and inches to fit all of these units in.”

RVs have come a long way since 1971. Binsfeld said the general public will be amazed by some of the technology advancements if they step into an RV today.

“There are always floor plan and technology changes,” he said. “There are so many more features like bluetooth, LED lights, larger bathrooms. The technology continues to grow and I think people love it.”

PleasureLand has six different locations in Minnesota including two in St. Cloud and Brainerd and one each in Ramsey and Long Prairie.

Friday, January 15, 2016

Upcoming Events at the River's Edge ConventionCenter

River’s Edge has a number of exciting events coming up in the next few months and we couldn’t hold back from giving you a little preview. So mark your calendars because you won’t want to miss these!

St. Cloud Sportsmen's Show - February 5-7

From camping and outdoor equipment to travel and boats, this show will cover everything a sportsman needs to know! This show will also feature two famous speakers, Ted Takasaki and Billy Molls, who will host alternating seminars each day. This event is not just for the avid sportsman because the whole family is invited to attend. We even have unique shows running especially for families, which include (but are not limited to): The Live Trout Pond, The Great American Duck Race, and The Fur-Ever Wild show. For further information, visit

St. Cloud Boat Show - February 12-14

You live in the land of 10,000 lakes. You would get real tired swimming through all of them, so how about exploring them in a new boat? The St. Cloud Boat Show has everything you’re looking for, whether it is a new pontoon to enjoy family weekends with, or a top-of-the-line fishing boat that makes fishing a whole new experience. Why settle for less when you can have the best? Help picture yourself in the best ride of the summer. Don’t forget to check out booths showcasing the latest engines, electronics, fishing gear and accessories to make this summer better than the rest! For more information, visit

Camp and Travel Show - February 18-21

Sick of the cold and eagerly waiting for spring? The Camp and Travel Expo is a great place to check out all the latest campers and trailers to make this summer’s vacation one to remember. Pleasureland will feature about 100 different recreational vehicles, which will make any camper’s mouth drop. Event planners say that February is the kick-off for planning summer activities, so don’t fall behind and make sure not to miss out on any specials going on during this expo. Best of all, admission is free!

Central Minnesota Farm Show - February 23-25
Come check out the Central Minnesota Farm Show, which showcases agricultural equipment, electric motors, barn flooring, milking equipment and other products in the Agriculture & Forestry field. There will be more than 300 professional vendors from the five-state area on hand to talk about their new products and services for the upcoming year. Come hang out with those who know how to grow.

Central Minnesota Wellness Expo - March 5

New Years Eve resolution dying down? Not sure what more you can do? The Central Minnesota Wellness Expo has all the information you need from health to fitness and even a little general wellness. This is your go-to expo where you can learn all you need to know about health and wellness without the pressure of buying anything. The show will also feature amazing guest speakers who will talk about how to unlock your full potential. To get a sneak peak of which exhibits will be there, and a preview of what you can expect, visit

St. Cloud Home Show - March 11-13

One of the most anticipated events of the season is St. Cloud Home Show put on by the Central Minnesota Builders Association. This show will have more than 200 exhibits displaying enchanting landscapes, breath-taking carpentry and vendors from all over the state to help with those special projects that make your house a home.

There will also be seminars on DIY gardening, beekeeping, home building and selling tips as well as a project and play area for the kids and a fish fry and music on Friday. The show will also be auctioning off a brand new home. Don’t miss out on this year’s biggest show. With more than 5,000 people attending, you’re going to want to come early.

Check in with Facebook and Twitter to keep up with up-to-date information on these upcoming events and other sneak peaks!