Skip to main content

Long into the night, Minnesotans celebrate the life and music of Prince

  • Author:
  • Updated:

As the clock ticked forward, past midnight and into the early hours of the morning, the music continued playing and the people kept dancing, all beneath a deep purple glow that illuminated the room.

Thousands of Minnesotans poured into the streets outside First Avenue Thursday night, then continued the party inside, to mourn, remember and celebrate Prince – a musician that defined the Minneapolis sound on his way to becoming a worldwide icon of cool.

Prince Rogers Nelson died Thursday morning in his Paisley Park home at the age of 57. Within hours, fans had gathered outside the Chanhassen complex to pay their respects to the Minnesota native.

And outside of First Avenue, the downtown Minneapolis club whose history is inexorably tied to the Purple One, the scene grew throughout the day from flowers and balloons beneath his iconic star on the wall, to a concert and celebration that shut down the street.

Block party

First Avenue became the center of the music world Thursday night.

The city shut down 7th Street outside of First Avenue for a special Prince tribute, with The Current hosting a Prince Memorial Street Party – bringing thousands of fans to mourn the day's loss while celebrating the man's life.

This was the scene from above:

And here's a little bit from on the ground:

The event featured local musician – DJ Shannon Blowtorch, Lizzo, Chastity Brown, P.O.S, Sarah White, Tiny Deaths, PaviElle, and more – playing music and doing covers of Prince classics.

And out east in Brooklyn, famed director Spike Lee held his own block party, The Cut reports. Here's a video from that:

Dance party goes into the night

The crown outside of First Avenue moved inside for an 11 p.m. free dance party the venue promised would be an all-nighter, ending at 7 a.m.

People packed the floor for hours, as Prince tunes played over the speakers.

Video and photos show the scene in the club.

While the crowd had thinned out as 7 a.m. neared, there were still dozens of people inside First Avenue.

This embed is invalid

Next Up


Hospital chiefs say nursing strike will come at 'worst possible time'

A nurses union announced an almost three-week strike to take place in the Twin Cities.


Sven Sundgaard: What's in store for MN's weather in December?

Sundgaard recaps Minnesota's fall and looks ahead to December.


Manure spill in Wisconsin leads to hours-long main street disruption

The spill was first reported just before 7:30 a.m. Tuesday morning.


Ice Cube to perform 2 nights at Mystic Lake Casino

The rapper hasn't performed in Minnesota since 2018.


Nicollet Mall's new Ties Lounge & Rooftop closes 'indefinitely'

The establishment aimed to reconnect the downtown community.

Screen Shot 2022-12-01 at 9.15.44 AM

Chinese restaurant closing after 50 years in Columbia Heights

The beloved family-owned restaurant will close Dec. 24.

Screen Shot 2022-12-01 at 9.43.40 AM

Kris Laudien leaving KARE 11 after four years on 'Sunrise'

KARE 11 announced the appointment of Jason Hackett to the morning show this week.