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Alexandria is a city and the county seat of Douglas County, Minnesota. First settled in 1858, it was named after brothers Alexander and William Kinkead from Maryland. The form of the name alludes to Alexandria, Egypt, a center of learning and civilization.The village of Alexandria was incorporated February 20, 1877. Its city charter was adopted in 1908, and it was incorporated as a city in 1909. W.E. Hicks was pivotal to the early development of the town. He purchased the townsite in 1868 and established a mill, hotel, newspaper, and store. He donated property for a courthouse, jail, and two churches: Methodist and Congregational.The population was 11,070 as of the 2010 census. Alexandria is located near Interstate 94, along Minnesota State Highways 27 and 29. Lake Carlos State Park is ten miles north of Alexandria. In 2013, Alexandria was picked as a "Top 10 Best Small Town" by the Livability website. The city is often abbreviated as "Alex" (pronounced "Alek").EconomyThe city is known as a tourism center due to its many lakes and resorts. Tourism events include a Grape Stomp hosted by the Carlos Creek Winery every September, an Apple Fest in October, the Douglas County Fair every August, and Art in the Park every July. The city has a museum housing the controversial Kensington Runestone, which is thought by some to indicate that Vikings had visited the area in the 14th century. Outside the museum stands Big Ole, a 25-foot-tall statue of a Viking which was built for the World's Fair in New York City in 1964. Extensive repairs to Big Ole were completed in 2016. The city hosts the annual Vikingland Band Festival parade marching championship.With our international travel planner, United States vacations can be built around trips to Alexandria and other destinations in United States.
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