Handcraft Holiday Gifts can be extra special when the creative process is half the fun! We’ve rounded up seven local spots where your kids can mess up someone else’s space, let their imaginations run wild, and craft some serious masterpieces this holiday season:
Offers: Saturday, Dec 3, Articulture opens its doors for a free studio art day in conjunction with the annual Seward Winter Frolic. Make ornaments, cards & garlands, all ages plus cookies and cider.
Color Me Mine, Eagan & Maple Grove
Offers: Young artists have a whole palette of choices here – they can drop in to paint ceramics, spend a Kids Night Out (3rd Fri/each month, $32/child ages 5+ includes painting, pizza, games, and a movie – EAGAN location only) or Paint With Santa (both Eagan & Maple Grove locations).
Cost: Drop in studio fees are $5/ages 1-9, $6/ages 10-15, $10/ages 16+ and include use of paints, studio space, and the firing.
Coon Rapids Dam Regional Park, Brooklyn Park
Offers: Elves Workshop gives kids the chance to craft gifts by hand with supplies and instructions provided. Event takes place 12/17, reservations required by 12/13.
Created to Grow, St. Anthony
Offers: Every Saturday is Family Fun Day here – from 10:30am-1:30pm all ages can drop by to work on a variety of projects. Gifts for the grandparents perhaps?
Cost: $15 per session, discounts if you purchase a pack of 10 family visits
Offers: Monthly preschool festivals, drop-in crafts and a comfortable, child-friendly environment to spend some time. Browse their Holiday Gift Digest, filled with 30 holiday projects from tabletop reindeer to wood-burned picture frames, that can be given as handmade gifts.
Cost: Most drop-in crafts are priced between $10-$20 apiece.
Offers: In addition to the menu of kids classes and the wide range of quality playthings the store offers, come check out the Maker’s Studio, a space dedicated to letting little ones get creative.
Cost: $8/child per hour ages 18 mon-10 years, open daily 10am-5:30pm.
Leonardo’s Basement, Minneapolis
Offers: Elf Apprenticeship Program: Holiday Gift Making lets tinkerers ages 6-12 choose from a wide range of projects – sewing, woodworking, stained glass, jewelry making and more – to craft homemade holiday presents. Dates: Nov 26-27 & Dec 3-4. Pre-registration required.
Michaels, various Twin Cities locations
Offers: Kids Club crafts are simple and inexpensive yet could lend a nice personal touch to a small gift. Drop in Saturdays 10am-noon during Nov and Dec to make felt ornaments, clay pot elves and other holiday themed items.
Cost: $2 per project, supplies included
Rumriver Art Center, Anoka
Offers: Free Family Art Day will take place Saturday, Dec 3. Two sessions are available (11am-noon or 1-2pm) and reservations are required either by calling 763.323.8830 or using this form. The hour-long class is appropriate for kids ages 5+ with a caregiver and the holiday-themed project will be something suitable to give as a gift.
Simply Jane, Minneapolis
Offers: Toddler Time Thursdays from 10am-noon are suitable for your littles to create a homemade holiday gift. Experiment with paint, play with toys, books, dress-up and more. The studio also offers drop-in painting for all ages; hours can be found here.
Cost: Toddler Time is $10 per child.
While Family Fun Twin Cities is not a website focused on family volunteering, we like to feature family volunteer opportunities in November because we believe giving back with your family can be a lot of fun and teach important lessons. We have collected ten different opportunities to volunteer with kids.
Other ideas can be found here.
October 31-November 4, 2016
• Candy for Troops/Books for Kids @ Fairview Clinics throughout the metro • Even the littlest goblins can bring Halloween candy into a clinic this week to donate to the military troops overseas. For your donation, you will receive a new book and bless our service men and women who would love a little taste of home. Read More
What are some ways to get your hearts ready to give thanks?
The Hosts of the Great Give Back Challenge are excited to help you get your hearts ready for the upcoming holidays! If you haven’t been able to participate in the GGBC of 2015, here are some options for the week of Thanksgiving.
No matter how long we’ve been residents of the Twin Cities it seems there’s always some hidden fun out there we haven’t discovered yet. Our family, for instance, hadn’t made the trip out to Carver Park Reserve in Victoria until last year when we decided to make an afternoon of it at the historic Grimm Farm Open House and the Lowry Nature Center. That’s just one of the ideas we’ve got on this weekend’s free family events list – as always, check our extensive Family Fun Calendar for more. Happy exploring!
SATURDAY, JUNE 27
Grimm Farmhouse Open House
@ Grimm Farm Historic Site, Carver Park Reserve
7025 Victoria Dr, Victoria, 55386
Details: Step back in time for a few hours at the historic home of Wendelin Grimm and his family. My kids have done this event and enjoyed the old-fashioned porch and lawn games, and the peek into daily life inside the farmhouse. Leave time to explore the Lowry Nature Center (also located within Carver Park Reserve) and its nature playground.
Saturday Puppet Shows for Kids w/ In the Heart of the Beast Puppet & Mask Theatre
@ Calhoun Square
3001 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, 55408
Time: Shows at 10am & 11:30am
Details: Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre is bringing Saturday shows to Calhoun Square every Saturday in June & July. This Saturday’s show is based on There Was an Old Woman Who Swallowed a Fly and the first 45 kids between shows will get to participate in a make-and-take activity.
Minneapolis Movies in the Parks: We Bought a Zoo
@ Kenwood Park
2101 Franklin Ave W, Minneapolis, 55405
Time: Starts at 8:30pm
Details: Not limited to Saturday nights (we chose this one because it’s rated PG), Minneapolis Movies in the Parks run every night except Sundays through August 29th. You can find the complete list of parks and the featured movies for 2015 here.
Details: Celebrate what would have been Gilda Radner’s 69th birthday at her namesake club, an organization dedicated to supporting those impacted by cancer. Activities include family yoga, comedy theater, cupcake decorating, kids crafts, games and more.
SUNDAY, JUNE 28
Fun with the Science of Bubbles
@ Wood Lake Nature Center
6710 Lakeshore Dr, Richfield, 55423
Ages: Ideal for kids ages 4-10 but all ages are welcome
Details: Join kiddywampus for an afternoon of exploring the science of bubbles. Discover how animals use bubbles and explore Wood Lake Nature Center in search of them.
We received this fun suggestion from local illustrator, Erin Boe:
I am a children’s book illustrator located in Hopkins, MN, and Red Heart Books has just published my children’s book, The Tryceratops, a book about trying new things. I’m doing a book reading and a dinosaur art project (free) at Kiddywampus in Hopkins on Tuesday, May 19 from 10:00–10:45. You can see my book at www.ErinBoe.com.
“This book gives kids the permission they often seek from peers and adults to try new things,” said Boe. “The Tryceratops shows children that good or bad, new experiences provide the adventure we all seek in life.”
Arts and crafts for kids — My kids love crafts.
I hate crafts.
Not because they aren’t cool, but because I don’t like the mess. Which is so funny because I have a very messy house. That aside–and the contradiction it is–I love to take my kids places to be creative. Where I don’t get upset because they made a crazy mess to create something cool. Read More