We were blessed with gorgeous weather for a long weekend camping trip along scenic Highway 61. The first thing we did upon tumbling out of the camper in Wabasha, Minnesota, was spend a good fifteen minutes soaking up the sun along the Mississippi. It’s along these banks that majestic bald eagles winter and build nests to raise their young. You can learn all about these raptors – and get just about nose-to-beak with them – at the adjacent National Eagle Center. Read More
To celebrate birthdays in my daughter’s kindergarten class, the birthday child simulated a walk around the sun. One orbit is tread for each year of the child’s life, while the teacher reads aloud personal milestones supplied by parents. It was a fun coincidence that the night before Emily’s birthday walk we attended one of Como Planetarium’s public programs. Right there on the domed ceiling was a visual of the planet Earth marking time by making its tireless orbit around the sun. Read More
April is literally blooming with free events and activities in the Twin Cities!
“Girls need to know that there is room for them in this space,” Gaby Ruiz-Colon, biologist.
MLK Monday – So, what’s closed today? Or, perhaps more importantly, what’s open and where can I get the kids out of the house? We’ve got ideas both indoor and out plus a couple of fun family events to observe the day:
- Rev Dr Martin Luther King, Jr Day 2017 | Powderhorn Park, Minneapolis, 11am-2pm • Celebrate with a community meal, theatre performances and art activities.
- Dr Martin Luther King Holiday | Conway Recreation Center, St Paul, 2-5pm
- Rev Dr Martin Luther King, Jr Celebration | Dr MLK Recreation Center, Minneapolis, 6:30-7:30pm
- Snowman Making Contest & Winter Concert | Silverwood Park, St Anthony • 1-4:30pm • Come build your best snow creature, then warm up with cocoa and an indoor concert courtesy Bunny Clogs.
- Find your nearest Twin Cities-area sledding hill.
- Find your local Twin Cities-area outdoor ice skating rink.
- Como Park Ski Center | St Paul, 10am-6pm • Special MLK hours for cross-country skiing, downhill skiing and snowboarding.
- Go snow tubing with special hours at Theodore Wirth Park ($10/pp) or Columbia Golf Course | Minneapolis.
- Tail Time | Wild Rumpus Books, Minneapolis, 10:30am • Arrive early if you want to get a decent spot. Stick around to see how many critters (yes, animal critters) you can spot slinking around the store!
- PolarPalooza | Como Park Zoo & Conservatory, St Paul, 10am-4pm • Educational games and activities.
- Behind the Scenes: Research Labs | Science Museum of MN, 12-4pm • Included with museum admission, $12.95-$18.95.
- Mill City Museum | Minneapolis, 10am-5pm • Special holiday hours – see our tips at 10 Things For Kids: Mill City Museum.
- Bakken Museum | Minneapolis, 10am-4pm (special holiday hours), $5-$10/pp
- Preschool Open Play | The Blast Indoor Playground, Eagan Community Center, 9:30-11am • A variety of equipment is available to play in the gym as well as play time in the Blast Indoor playground. $4/child ages 1-5.
- Find MORE preschool open gym and open play times.
- Trolls | Riverview Theater, Minneapolis, 1 & 5pm • $2/pp plus awesome popcorn!
- Half-price Open Swim | Great River Water Park, St Paul, 10:30am-8:30pm (activity pool and waterslides open 10:30-noon)
- Find drop-in crafting opportunities for kids of all ages in our Winter Survival Guide.
Couldn’t we all use a little help getting through the long Minnesota winter? Family Fun Twin Cities Winter Break Survival Guide has something for everyone.
We have a unique opportunity in the Twin Cities to enjoy the holidays on trains and planes and sleighs, and we’ve rounded up all we can find just for you and your family!
We wanted to give you a heads up to some of the most exciting Christmas experiences happening this year. We’ll soon have an all-encompassing list for your family, but here are our Top Ten that you won’t want to miss – get them on your calendar! Read More
When: Ongoing Sat Nov 5-Feb 25, 2017 • 6-9pm
Cost: $15/pp, family rates available, children 4 & under FREE
Details: A special holiday tradition at the Twin City Model Railroad Museum, Night Trains season magically transforms the museum layouts. Buildings and street lights glow, and throughout the museum the layouts are adorned with Christmas lights.
Nature Arts & Crafts Fair @ Richardson Nature Center, Bloomington
When: Saturday, Nov 5 • 10am-3pm
Cost: Free admission
Details: Local artisans of jewelry, felting, painting and more display their wares; afterward enjoy the park reserve. All vendor fees donated to the VEAP-Bloomington Food Shelf.
Santa’s Arrival Ceremony @ Mall of America
Details: The holiday season officially kicks off at Mall of America with Santa’s Arrival Ceremony. Santa will be greeted in holiday style with live performances.
When: Sunday, Nov 13 • noon-5pm
Details: Explore Nordic holiday traditions, see the historic Turnblad Mansion decked out for the season, and join in family craft activities. Included with museum admission.
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Musical @ Stages Theatre Company, Hopkins
When: Runs Nov 18-Dec 28, 2016
Cost: $25/pp, $5/lap passes for children ages 3-4, under 3 are free. Nov 20 is pay-what-you can day for this particular performance. These special accessible tickets are available at the box office only.
Holiday Open House featuring Santa & Albert’s Arrival and Annual Holiday Play
@ Bachman’s on Lyndale, Minneapolis
When: Saturday, Nov 19 • 9am-4pm
Details: Join us as we welcome Santa and his sleigh Saturday morning and kick off the holiday season! Visit Bachman’s on Lyndale for treats, shopping, and season’s greetings during store hours. Kids can visit the live reindeer corral and stop by the craft counter for crafts and activities. Cookies, juice, and coffee available for snacking! And of course, see the annual Santa & Albert holiday play at 10am, 11:30am, 1pm and 3:30pm.
Rice Park Tree Lighting Ceremony, St. Paul
When: Nov 19 • 5pm
Details: Rice Park sparkles with thousands of twinkling lights! The tree will be up through January 1, 2017. The other lights will stay up and illuminate the park through the end of the Winter Carnival.
Holiday Lights in the Park @ Phalen Regional Park, St. Paul
When: Runs nightly Nov 22-Jan 1, 2017 • 5-10pm
Cost: $10 cash per vehicle at gate or $8 online ticket only
Details: All of the net proceeds from the event will be distributed to a community non-profit. 60 holiday light sculptures and animated displays entertain guests as they cruise through the park in the evening hours.
When: Wednesday, Nov 23 • 6-6:45pm
Details: Making an appearance are local choirs, refreshments, Mr. and Mrs. Claus, 200,000+ lights, and a 30-foot-tall tree.
Holidazzle begins @ Loring Park, Minneapolis
When: Begins Friday, Nov 25 • 5-9m
Details: Holidazzle has moved to Loring Park, is offering free admission to all, and there will be vendors, activities, food, and fireworks for all. Holidazzle will run Thurs-Sun from 5-9pm on Thursdays & Fridays and 11am-9pm Saturdays & Sundays through Dec. 22, 2016.
When: Friday, Nov 25 – Sunday, Nov 27
Details: Family highlights include the Grand Lighting & Santa Parade (11/26), Christmas at the Folsom House (11/25-27), storytime with Mrs. Claus and wagon rides.
Tree Lighting Ceremony @ 50th & France, Edina
When: Saturday, Nov 26
Details: Holiday Market is open 12-5pm followed by tree lighting, carolers and visits with Santa.
MEA Weekend isn’t that far away, so if you like to plan ahead Family Fun Twin Cities has compiled a list for you to use as a starting point for this fabulous, fall four-day weekend. If you plan more spur of the moment like me, these options will be on our October Family Events & Activities Guide for quick access. Read More