Nightlife in downtown Stillwater, Minnesota never sleeps. Year-round the 30 restaurants and pubs burst with culinary greatness and many also have live entertainment. River towns like to rock even when the river is closed during the winter but be sure to come back for patio and outdoor music festival season as well.
With two new boutique hotels right on main street (Lora & Hotel Crosby), this thriving night life scene has become even better as visitors can walk from their downtown hotel room or loft rental to 15 live music venues including restaurant lounges, a new live performance theater, a brewery, and a speakeasy.
Entertainment ranges from live comedy to ukelele open mic jams, acoustic duos to country bands, cover bands belting out top 40 hits to classics of the 70s and 80s, intimate three piece jazz ensembles to local rock band headliners that will make you dance all night.
Romantic date night or “let’s meet for a drink, I had a rough day” friend’s night out, downtown Stillwater’s live music venues offer variety and are easy to get to. Skip the drive into the big city, find free parking on-street year-round or free parking in lots November-April, and stroll to find your new favorite live music joint. Create your own live music walking tour as you sample the sounds criss-crossing beautiful historic Main Street! We’ve preserved the beauty of the past while infusing the fun of the present.
Follow us on Facebook or Instagram as we broadcast live music samples from each venue this winter. After our stop, we’ll update their listing below with each venue’s claim to fame and our favorite fare or cocktail!
Share your nights out downtown with #discoverstillwater on Instagram. Life is short, have fun and don’t forget to travel and try new places!
324 S. Main St.
Open Tues-Sunday. Happy Hour Sun-Fri 4-6pm.
Find Live Music Schedule on their Facebook page or website.
Instagram Story Live Video, FB Live 2/1/19, Artist: Kyle Kohlia
Venue Type: Restaurant with bar lounge area and booth seating (my fav) – music can be heard in either section and the vibe is casual yet lively.
Live Music Genre: Find rotating acts Thursday – Saturday evenings with open mic on Wednesdays. Acoustic guitar singer/songwriters such as Jorgenson Tagg, 3OTT (Three on the Tree), The Third Wheel Project...artists infuse rock, blues, pop, soul and southern classic rock.
Fare: Perfectly sized menu – not too big and not too small. You’ll find a bite for all from the Lion’s Chop salad to the Sweet & Sally burger topped with tomato-serrano marmalade, blue cheese and black pepper bacon.
Cocktails: Try the house wine for only $5 or go for signature cocktails like the Violet Vixen with Tito’s vodka, lavender, blackberry, orange and lemon juice – it’s fruity and refreshing. The house-infused peanut-bourbon old fashion is a great sipper while you enjoy the sounds, too!
Claim to Fame: In the summer the large bluff-side patio is the place to be for live music with an outdoor firepit and fountains adding to the ambiance. Often voted Best Patio by local media outlets.
The Tilted Tiki
324 S. Main St.
Open 7 Days a Week. Happy Hour Mon-Friday 3-6pm.
See live music schedule on their Facebook page.
Instagram Story Live Video , FB Live 1/24. Artist: Grant Walker
Venue Type: Tropical-themed bar & lounge with great attitude of fun and relaxation.
Live Music Genre: Weekly live music inside the tropical vacation oasis or outside on the Main Street facing patio. Great local and national acts on our stages, including Tati the Island Boy, Gary LaRue Ratpack Band, and more events like comedy, open mic or purse bingo.
Fare: Bursting with island flavors and house-made sauces, try any of the sharable plates like the coconut shrimp, luao fries with pulled pork/onions/cheese, salads and vegetarians won’t want to miss the new Vegan menu – the tropical pineapple beyond plant-based burger is delightful!
Cocktails: Strong, citrusy and rum-forward – the colorful menu of tropical cocktails is beautiful. It’s especially pleasing to the eye during the winter months. Go big with a classic Mai Tai or just sample a volcano shooter. Excellent happy hour deals on beer and drinks, too!
Claim to Fame: Best place to feel like you are on a vacation or stay-cation year-round.
317 S. Main St.
Open 7 Days a Week. Happy Hour Wed-Friday 3-6pm.
Find live music schedule on their Facebook page.
Instagram Story Live Video 1/10/19 (technical issues, didn’t save…we’ll stop again) Artist: Brandon Grady
Venue Type: Huge second story recently renovated brick-filled space with large windows overlooking the St. Croix River. The backdrop of the live music stage are windows to Main Street with an adjacent dance floor, pool table, darts & high top tables for seating near music. Large bar area for seating with sports tvs as well as a back section for private rental with fireplace.
Live Music Genre:. Live music every Friday Night (through April) and live DJ every Saturday night year-round (and Fridays in summer). Check Facebook page for other events as well. Genre tends to be Top 40s, rock, pop, dance and a little country.
Fare: Spicy wings, wood-fired pizzas, burgers and a few Chef Smalley signature dishes like the mac and cheese with bacon and jalapenos or pork tacos.
Cocktails: Signature cocktails include ‘single and ready to mingle’ with strawberry infused vodka but a full bar with beer taps and wine are at your service with great drink specials.
Claim to Fame: Best place in town to dance and huge river view windows.
Marx’s Fusion Bistro & Wine Bar
241 S. Main St.
Open 7 Days a Week. Live music every Tuesday night.
Mad Capper Saloon & Eatery
224 S. Main Street
Open 7 Days a Week. Happy Hour Mon-Friday 3-6pm.
Find live music schedule on their Facebook page or website.
Instagram Story Live Video 1/10/19 Artist: Joe Leiner
Venue Type: Feel like you’ve stepped into a classic sports bar or wild west saloon with a long bar area for seating and tables along the narrow Main Street building. Approachable casual vibe for all ages and families welcome.
Live Music: Thursdays 6-8pm and most Saturday nights 9-midnight. See schedule at: https://www.madcapper.biz/events. Mix of music types – classics of 70s/80s and acoustic duos. Frequent acts: Hailey James, Travis Thamert, Joe Leiner (thursdays)
Fare: American. Burgers, Sandwiches, House-made soups (try their famous French Onion!) and dressings. Gluten free options and kids menu. Simple, easy and tasty menu!
Cocktails: In the winter try the Mad Capper (hot chocolate with peppermint schnapps) and in all seasons you can admire the craft beer tap selection said to be one of the largest downtown.
Claim to Fame: This historic site has been operating as a saloon since 1906.
Ziggy’s Street Food & Live Music
132 S. Main St.
Open Tues-Sunday. Happy Hour Thurs-Sat 5-8pm.
Charlie’s Irish Pub
101 Water St. S.
Open 7 Days a Week. Located inside Water Street Inn.
Instagram Story Live Video, FB Live 2/1/19, Artist: Bedlam Boys
See live music schedule on their Facebook page or website.
Venue Type: An intimate authentic Irish pub scattered with Jameson, Guiness and Irish flare as the backdrop for friendly whiskey toasts with the crowd. Located inside a downtown historic hotel, the cozy and vibrant pub is a conventient accomodation for your stay in Stillwater.
Live Music Genre: Sing along with favorites or sit back to admire the variety of celtic instruments from fiddle to mandolin to accordion accompanying guitar and voices of the British islands.
Fare: Nibble on tasty bites like Irish Egg Rolls with corned beef, cabbage, swiss cheese in a crispy fried wontons, house-braised corned beef brisket, or famous fish & chips using Minnesota walleye of course!
Cocktails: Guiness on tap, Minnesota’s own Two Gingers whiskey concocktions, excellent wine list with great prices or in the winter, we love an Irish Coffee topped with whipped cream. Frequent patrons must consider the Whiskey Club for deals and accolades in the pub.
Claim to Fame: A casual pub you can always count on for live music on the weekends year-round. We are looking forward to their outdoor music continuing on the new riverside rooftop this summer as well!
Live Music Genre:
Claim to Fame:
The Velveteen Speakeasy
123 2nd St. N. (underground, unmarked door to the left when you enter JX Event Venue)
Open Wed-Sunday. Live Music Thursdays 7-10pm.
Instagram Story Video 11/6/18 Artist: Miss Myra & The Moonshiners
Venue Type: This event space offers elegance, rustic charm, brick walls from floor to
ceiling and tons of natural light. The recently renovation of this historic building allows for a versatile layout and can accommodate groups of all sizes. Also located in the building is a photography studio, bourbon room, full-service salon, Stillwater Escape Company and the Velveteen Speakeasy!
Live Music: This venue has many opportunities for the public to enjoy live music. From acoustic nights to large concerts to drag shows, this venue has it all! See upcoming schedule.
Fare: Grab a slice of pizza at the bar if you get the munchies while dancing at one of the many concerts. Walking distance to all downtown restaurants so plan to stop there for dinner first.
Cocktails: The bar area is gorgeous and their selection is awesome! Full bar, beer taps and wine available.
Claim to Fame: JX Venue is the largest event venue in the region with the ability to host events up to 720 guests.
422 E. Mulberry St.
Located in the marina, open seasonally. Pappy Hour Wed/Thur 3-6pm & Fri 11-6pm. Live music Thurs-Sunday.