Archive - July 2016

Wolf Tales at Minnesota Fringe Festival
Twin Cities August Family Events & Activities Guide
Budget Twin Cities August Events & Activities
Free Twin Cities August Events & Activities
FFTC Guide to Unique Dance Studios
Beyond Pokémon Go – Twin Cities Quests for Families
Family Fun Idea: ‘Paint Your Wagon’ at The Ordway
Family Fun: Firefighters Hall & Museum, Minneapolis
Pinocchio at Children’s Theatre Company
10 Free & Air-Conditioned Indoor Family Outings

Wolf Tales at Minnesota Fringe Festival

This week my daughter and I had the opportunity to preview Wolf Tales, which will be one of the Minnesota Fringe Festival shows this year. When I asked my kids who wanted to be my date for a ballet review. My daughter yelled “Me!” and my boys yelled “Not Me!” That was easy. Except, it turned out that this would have been a really fun show for little boys as well as a tween girl. Read More

Twin Cities August Family Events & Activities Guide

Twin Cities August Guide

It is our hope that you can use our August Family Events & Activities Guide page as a convenient way to find our traditional Free & Budget lists along with all the special themed activities each month brings. In August we are highlighting one of our absolute favorite events, the Minnesota State Fair, as well as reminding you of all the festivals and outdoor entertainment left to enjoy before summer’s last gasp.  As always, we hope to be inspiration in planning your family time together!

– Anne, Gianna & Joy
Family Fun Twin Cities Read More

Budget Twin Cities August Events & Activities

June budget

It doesn’t have to break the bank to entertain the family away from home in the Twin Cities! You’ll find August’s seasonal and ongoing events and activities listed here that all cost $5 or less per person to attend. For more ideas on budget and FREE family outings, check our Family Fun Calendar or hop over to our Free Twin Cities August Family Events & Activities page.

8/3: Beach Party @ Bryant Lake Regional Park, Eden Prairie • 12-3pm • $5/pp ages 0-17, adults FREE • Details: A water slide, water obstacle course, sandcastle building and other splishy-splashy fun.

8/4-7: Eden Prairie Players Children’s Theater Performance: Happily Forever After, Riley-Jacques Barn, Eden Prairie • 2:30pm & 7pm (Sat/Sun only) • $5/ages 10+, $3/ages 4-9, tickets sold at door only. Read More

Free Twin Cities August Events & Activities


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FFTC Guide to Unique Dance Studios

There must be hundreds of dance studios in the Twin Cities.  Family Fun Twin Cities has collected some of the most unique ones, and we’re excited to share these with you.

*This is an advertorial listing.

TranscenDance Xperiencedance studios
6885 Washington Ave S
Edina, MN 55439

“TranscenDance Xperience is dedicated to providing a FUN, wholesome and family-centered dance Xperience for all students in our programs, both recreational and competition.
Why TDX?
Class sizes are small, which allows instructors to create lesson plans specific to their students’ needs–maximizing learning potential and growth.
We believe families play an important role in the success of our dancers, and encourage open communication within the classroom.
TDX places a strong importance on flattering costumes for all shapes and sizes, as well as family-friendly music.  Our goal is to create passionate, confident young dancers who develop a lifelong love for the art of dance.”

This Guide is Sponsored by Rince na Chroi

dance studio

(651) 645-4292


The Rince na Chroi Irish Dancers are based in St. Paul. Founded in 2003 by owner and director Katie Stephens Spangler, the group of about 200 students performs around the Twin Cities and the Midwest over 100 times each year.  Classes are available for children and adults.”

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Beyond Pokémon Go – Twin Cities Quests for Families

Pokémon Go at the library

Pokémon Go Activities are popping up everywhere – Like This 2016 Library Crawl

I’m a bit on the fence with the Pokémon Go app. On the one side, it sounded instantly appealing to me to take my family out to search for Pokémon. I picture a day of happy bonding while we explore the Twin Cities. On the other side, I am anti-app (an app-atheist? app-athetic?). I would probably need the expert tech help of my 11-year-old. At any rate, I’m still on the fence. I might make this exception or get my husband, who is an app-addict, to download it to his phone.

In the meantime, when asked to explain Pokémon Go, I told a friend, “It’s like geocaching for imaginary creatures.” I know its a bit more. You can train them, and battle them, and act out your cartoon fantasies; but the part that I like is the searching part. This is why, while I’m sitting on the fence, I can start to encourage some other treasure hunts I’ve been wanting to try.

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Family Fun Idea: ‘Paint Your Wagon’ at The Ordway

Paint Your Wagon

photo by Rich Ryan

This past week, I had the privilege of chatting with our beloved local Ann Michels.  Not sure who I’m talking about?  That’s okay.  We are busy parents and are lucky to be able to watch a show without falling asleep halfway through it.

Ann Michels is a talented local actress who has performed in many different roles around the Twin Cities including The Guthrie Theatre, Children’s Theatre Company, Theater Latte Da and many others. Read More

Family Fun: Firefighters Hall & Museum, Minneapolis

So it’s late July and you’re looking for a place to take the kids and cool off. Bet you’d never think of the Firefighters Hall & Museum in Minneapolis, huh? I never guessed my kids would leave soaked to the skin either, but they did and they had a marvelous time getting there. I should have realized what was going to happen when two of the volunteers who run the museum started filling up these cool, old-fashioned hand pumpers with hoses attached. And brought out the bucket of squirters. (And then totally left us to our own devices out back behind the building.) I think one-third of the kids’ aim went towards fighting fires on the “fire wall” display and the other two-thirds went squarely at each other.

Luckily, we’d seen a good chunk of the museum before the waterworks. I appreciated all the hands-on touches, such as the chance to:

  • climb into a fire truck cab and tinker with the switches, operate the lights
  • steer a ladder truck in a simulator
  • pull an old fire alarm box and find out how the signal was received in re-created “Station 8”
  • work an old fire station switchboard
  • slide down the pole!
  • try on firefighter duds
  • And take a ride through the neighborhood on a real fire truck! (Be sure to eat your lunch at least an hour in advance.)

tm firefighters hall museum

The friendly volunteers are a wonderful resource if your kids have questions or would like to see how some of the equipment works. And keep in mind, it’s a museum dedicated to fire,  but it’s a surprisingly refreshing way to spend a summer day.

Firefighters Hall & Museum
664 22nd Ave NE
Minneapolis, MN 55418

Hours: Open Saturdays 9am – 4pm or by appointment.
Admission: $7/adults, $5/seniors, $4/children ages 3-12

Pinocchio at Children’s Theatre Company

My middle grader and I attended opening night of Pinocchio on Friday.

Pinocchio meets the Blue Fairy

This play was developed here at Children’s Theatre in 2013, has traveled around a bit and now come home to CTC. This was my first time seeing this version of Pinocchio.

Would I recommend this play. Well, yeah, I always recommend CTC shows, but as always, it depends on your child.

Photo Credit: Dean Holt as the Blue Fairy. Image by Dan Norman – courtesy Children’s Theatre Company

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10 Free & Air-Conditioned Indoor Family Outings

My kid broke the fan yesterday.Three summers ago, Joy — sweating it out in an un-air-conditioned house — wrote our original article about seeking relief from the heat in a series of much cooler public buildings, most of which offered free family activities to boot. Following a quick check of this week’s weather forecast, I thought it might be time to revive the suggestions for others out there needing to cool off the kids on a budget. Here you have it, freshly updated for 2016: Read More

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