Stone Arch Bridge is a historical destination for many locals. Besides walking across the bridge, I wondered, what is there to do? It took an out-of-stater–my friend Melody from GRKids to help me to appreciate all the different things to do. We found all kinds of things! A plethora of parks that meet together, for one. And history. Lots of history.
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- Stroll across the Stone Arch Bridge–FREE.
As the most obvious thing to do, you won’t be disappointed as you cross the Mississippi on foot where trains used to roll. You may see a musician or two.
- Discover Mill Ruins Park–FREE
Mill Ruins Park is a fun park to explore. It’s beautiful with a great view of the river.
- Farmer’s Market at Mill City Museum–FREE, Saturdays 8 am-1 pm
The farmer’s market is full of goods, music, and food trucks. It’s a busy and perfect market. It’s what I believe the original millers experienced only without the gasoline-using trucks.
Unofficial Stone Arch Sandbox–FREE
“This is the best sandbox EVER!” My kids found an unintentional sandbox under one of the arches as we walked the Heritage Trail. It’s by the Lock and Dam. Bring some sand toys. You won’t be disappointed.
- St. Anthony Falls Lock and Dam Tour–FREE, Saturdays, 11 am, 1 pm, 3 pm
Don’t miss this! The National Park Service has opened this up for fun family tours this year. Walk over the lock, learn about the dam and the river and enjoy the view. However, please keep in mind that it’s not child-proof at all. Keep your children firmly in your grasp the whole time.
- Izzy’s Ice Cream–$$ The ice cream lover’s dream ice cream shop. You pay for a cone of one flavor, but get an Izzy scoop at the top. It’s a little pricey for ice cream, but made-in-scoop-shop frozen goodness is what we’ve got here.
- Gold Medal Park–FREE
As one of the temporary display areas for the Walker Sculpture Garden, Gold Medal Park is fun to explore. Run up the spiral path to the top of the hill. Peer through the big letters. Touch art.
- Explore Mill City Museum–$6-$9/pp
Full of interactive history, Anne brought her kids and found all the best to enjoy together. I still have yet to visit the Flour Tower.
- First Bridge Park–FREE
This park commemorates the first bridge to span across the Mississippi. Aptly named Frank Steele was the engineer behind this history. Unfortunately, the bridge deteriorated, but the park is worth a visit. Decorated with fun bronze sculptures adorning the wall in the park, you can enjoy the walking/bike path and fishing.
- Check out the view from the Endless Bridge in the Guthrie–FREE
One of the most unique views of the Mississippi River is from the Endless Bridge. The public is welcome to enjoy a self-guided iPod audio tour when the building is open generally from 8 am- 8 pm