|Highways, Byways, And Bridge Photography|
The I-35W Bridge Light Shows
A Look At The I-35W Saint Anthony Falls Bridge
Light Show Events During 2011 And 2012
The new I-35W Saint Anthony Falls Bridge features an innovative LED lighting
system where each LED element is individually addressable, allowing any
color in the spectrum to be displayed. On most nights, the bridge is bathed
in a eerie blue glow that looks like something out of a science fiction movie.
However, the bridge is occassionaly lit up in other colors for special
occasions. I photographed as many of these events that I was aware of
during 2011 and 2012. Here are the best of the photos from each of
If you would like to see the I-35W bridge lit up in a color other than
blue, check out the bridge on Friday night around major holidays. This
is when the bridge is most likely to be lit up for a special event. Some
of the light shows are announced in advance, but many are not. Some
displays run throughout a weekend, but many are for just a single night.
The photo above is the Saint Anthony Falls Bridge lit up in a rainbow
pattern to celebrate the 2012 Twin Cities Pride Festival on June 22, 2012.
The piers were illuminated in purple, a color often associated with the
GLBT community. The bridge was first lit up for the Pride Festival in 2011.
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used without written permission.
The Saint Anthony Falls Bridge was lit up in red, white, and blue for
Memorial Day. The light display ran from May 25, 2012, to May 28, 2012,
but this photo was taken the night of May 26.
Saint Patrick's Day is a major night out in the Twin Cities. The day would
not be complete without green eggs, green beer, and a green bridge, as seen
on the night of March 17, 2012.
Homecoming 2011 at the University of Minnesota was October 16 through October
22, with the Gophers playing Big 10 rival Nebraska Cornhuskers. Nebraska
ran away with the game, 41-14. As part of the homecoming festivities, the
I-35W bridge was lit up in maroon and gold on Friday, October 21, 2011.
Halloween was October, 31, 2011, and a perfect excuse to light up the I-35W
bridge in pumpkin orange.
October is breast cancer awareness month, with October 14, 2011, being
the focal point for events across the nation. The Twin Cities held
a number of events, including lighting up the I-35W bridge in pink.
April 28, 2012, was Workers Memorial Day. MN-DOT took the opportunity to
light up the I-35W bridge in safety orange to raise awareness for highway
workers. 33 MN-DOT and 15 contract workers have died building and repairing
roads in Minnesota since 1960. This photo was from Friday night, April 27.
Veterans Day was celebrated on November 11, 2011, with this patriotic light
show put on by MN-DOT.
The Saint Anthony Falls Bridge was lit up in gold for Childhood Cancer
Awareness Month on September 27, 2012.
Here we see the structure lit up in alternating red and green to celebrate
Christmas on December 25, 2012.
Below is the I-35W bridge in its typical blue color. This view is looking
south across the Mississippi River along the downstream east face of the
bridge. This view is only possible after the trees lose their leaves.
Fortunately, March 2012 was abnormally warm allowing me to get out during
a winter month without having to brave the snow and cold.