Tag - Lowry Nature Center

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Maple Syruping with Kids in the Twin Cities
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Budget Twin Cities July Events & Activities
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Twin Cities Mother’s Day Events
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2017 Twin Cities Earth Day Family Events
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12 Free & Cheap Things To Do in November
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Nature Playgrounds in the Twin Cities – Get Back to Green
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Archived
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Free Family Weekend Events List for June 27 – 28, 2015
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The Weekend Wish List for April 18 – 19, 2014: Egg Hunts and More!
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Archived: A Syrupy Weekend Wish List for March 7-8, 2014

Maple Syruping with Kids in the Twin Cities

March is maple syrup month in Minnesota, and with an abundance of nature centers around the Twin Cities, we have ample opportunities to learn about and participate in the maple syruping process. Maple syrup events usually contain one or more of the following activities: tapping the maple trees, collecting the sap, boiling it into syrup, and the best part — according to my kids, anyway — a sample of the finished product.

Click through for a list of upcoming maple syrup events across the Twin Cities Metro. Read More

Budget Twin Cities July Events & Activities

It doesn’t have to break the bank to entertain the family away from home in the Twin Cities! You’ll find July’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 July Family Events & Activities page. Read More

Twin Cities Mother’s Day Events

Mothers-Day

How will you be celebrating Mom this Mother’s Day? If your plans include time spent together, here are some ideas around town to make her day extra special:

MOTHER’S DAY EVENTS – FREE FOR THE FAMILY

5/7: Mother’s and Father’s Day Cardmaking @ Articulture, 2613 E Franklin Ave, Mpls • 1-3pm

5/7: Saturday Crafts for Kids: Mother’s Day Cards @ Lakeshore Learning locations • 11am-3pm

5/7: Mother’s Day Cookie Decorating Event @ Jerry’s Foods, Woodbury, Edina and Eden Prairie locations • 11am-1pm • Details: Decorate a treat for mom and, if you’re one of the first 150 kids to show, snag her a free carnation as well.

5/7: Mother’s Day Storytime @ Barnes & Noble MOA • 11am • Details: Plus, make a card for Mom.

5/7: All About Family – Mother’s Day Card/Gift Making @ Community Covenant Church, 901 Humboldt Avenue N., Minneapolis, MN 55411 • 3pm – 6pm • Details: Mothers Day Gift and Card Making.

5/8: Family Day: Mother’s Day Musical @ Minneapolis Institute of Art, Minneapolis • 11am-5pm • Details: Combine words and art through games, storytelling, crafts, and a gallery hunt.

5/8: St. Paul Civic Symphony’s Mother’s Day Concert @ Landmark Center • 1pm

5/8: Mother’s Day Wildflower Walk @ Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden & Bird Sanctuary, Minneapolis • 11am-noon & 3-4pm.


MOTHER’S DAY EVENTS – FREE FOR MOM

5/7-8: Mother’s Day Weekend @ Oliver Kelley Farm, Elk River • Sat 10am-5pm, Sun 12-5pm • Details: Moms free when accompanied by a child; help with spring planting and visit the farm babies.

5/7-8: Macy’s Mother’s Day Weekend @ Minnesota Zoo, Apple Valley • 9am • Moms are in FREE!

5/8: American Swedish Institute, Minneapolis • noon-5pm • Moms and grandmas admitted FREE!

5/8: Como-Harriet Streetcar Line, Minneapolis • 12:30-8:30pm • Moms ride FREE!


MOTHER’S DAY EVENTS – PAID

5/7: Mother’s Day Tea @ Scott County Historical Society, Shakopee • 1-3pm • $5/kids, $10/adults • Details: Kids ages 5 & up and their families can enjoy tea and treats, make a Victorian trinket box and snap a picture in the photo booth.

5/8: Mother’s Day Clay @ Silverwood Park, St. Anthony • 10am-noon • $25/adult-child pair, $15 per additional child. Reservations required by phone only.

5/8: Mother’s Day Flower Walk & Tea Party @ Lowry Nature Center, Victoria • 1-2:30pm • $5/pp • Details: Take a spring hike, craft a scented firestarter and enjoy tea or juice with Mom.

5/8: Mother’s Day Open House @ Westwood Nature Center, St. Louis Park • 1-4pm • $7-$9/pp

5/8: Mother’s Day Brunch @ Science Museum of Minnesota, St. Paul • seating times: 10am, 12pm, 2pm • $12.95-$27.99, kids 3-5 eat for $4.75, prices include general admission to the Science Museum.


MOM EATS FREE

She hasn’t posted it yet, but Carrie Rocha of Pocket Your Dollars typically has got the best roundup of Moms-Eat-Free deals offered in the Twin Cities for Mother’s Day. When the post goes up, we’ll link to it here.


Want more great ideas?  Check out Family Planning, FFTC’s Monthly Newsletter.

newsletter

2017 Twin Cities Earth Day Family Events

  • REMOVE RE-DIRECT BEFORE REPUBLISHING!
  • Events in Red are 2016 dates that have not been updated
  • Banner needs to be updated for 2017

Earth Day Network’s first Earth Day was in 1970. It’s continuing mission — “to broaden and diversify the environmental movement worldwide and to mobilize it as the most effective vehicle to build a healthy, sustainable environment, address climate change, and protect the Earth for future generations.” For us, it’s a chance to teach our children about good stewardship of our planet, while getting out and enjoying the long-awaited spring. I think the spring thing may be why the Twin Cities Metro does not skimp on Earth Day activities and events.   We have a sampling of Earth Day family events to get out with your kids and celebrate our environment this month.
Earth Day Banner

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12 Free & Cheap Things To Do in November

The novelty of back-to-school has worn off, the excitement of Halloween parties have wrapped up, and it’s still weeks until Thanksgiving break. And so we’re left with…November. But take heart, there’s plenty of free and budget family entertainment going on this month; you just have to dig a little deeper to find it. Here are 12 ideas to get you started:

tm straightlineWednesday Wiggles @ Straightline Dance Fitness
34 13th Ave NE, Suite 104, Minneapolis

When: Ongoing Wednesdays starting Nov. 4 • 10-11am
Cost: Free
Details: Join Straightline Dance Fitness every Wednesday for a playdate in their open studio. Balls, ribbons, mats, scarves, dress up clothes, and music provided.

Get Out For Nature Play!

Nature Play Fall Frolic @ Wargo Nature Center
7701 Main St., Lino Lakes

When: Thursday, Nov. 5 • 10-11:15am
Cost: $3/pp plus tax
Details: Head outside and look for the ways nature is changing and preparing for winter. This program is designed for 2-5 year olds who are accompanied by an adult. Pre-registration is required.

Nature Playdate @ Cleary Lake Regional Park
18106 Texas Ave, Prior Lake

When: Wednesday, Nov. 25 • 1-2pm
Cost: Free
Details: Explore, discover, and play in your local park. Meet families interested in getting their children outdoors. Wear appropriate clothes and shoes.

ExploraTots @ Phalen Lakeside Activities Center
1530 Phalen Dr, St Paul

When: Wednesday, Nov. 11 • 10-11:30am
Cost: Free
Details: Join other families for outdoor adventures with a different theme each month! Search for clues that animals have left behind, enjoy hands-on activities and story times, and get up-close looks at treasures from our naturalist’s backpack. It’s a great way to get outside with your child and learn about the natural world and get inspired with ideas to take home.

tm exploratotsNature Play: Green Time @ Phalen Lakeside Activities Center
1530 Phalen Dr, St Paul

When: Thursday, Nov. 19 • 10-11:30am
Cost: Free
Details: Swap screen time for green time! Meet up with other families for unstructured nature play. Drop-ins are welcome.

Lil’ Explorer Thursdays @ Como Park Zoo & Conservatory
1225 Estabrook Dr, St. Paul

When: Nov. 5 and ongoing Thursdays through April 28, 2016 • 10am-noon
Cost: Free
Details: The hall between the Visitor Center and the Conservatory is filled with hands-on activities, manipulatives, art projects and games perfect for the 4 & under set. Explore a different theme each week through April 2016. Donations appreciated.

Let’s Get StARTed Fall Series: Gobble, Gobble @ Silverwood Park
2500 County Road E, St Anthony

When: Sunday, Nov. 8 • 1-3pm
Cost: Free
Details: Drop in for art projects, explore the grounds, the sculptures, and the current gallery exhibit.

Ballet Tuesdays @ Landmark Center
75 5th St, St Paul

When: Nov. 10 and every second Tuesday of the month following • Noon-1pm
Cost: Free
Details: Bring a lunch to Landmark Center in St. Paul and enjoy a sampling of the Saint Paul City Ballet training and Company repertoire. Excerpts from Clara’s Dream:from the Nutcracker with audience participation will be performed Nov. 10. Great for budding ballerinas!

Family Volunteer Day Service Fair @ Midtown Global Market
920 East Lake Street, Minneapolis

When: Friday, Nov. 20 • 5-7:30pm
Cost: Free
Details: Hosted by Doing Good Together, a variety of family-appropriate service projects will be available to participate in. DTG is a proud participant of Family Fun Twin Cities’ Great Give Back Challenge!

thWW64I8J0A Charlie Brown Christmas – Pay-What-You-Can Performance @ Stages Theatre Company
1111 Mainstreet, Hopkins

When: Sunday, Nov. 22 • 4pm
Cost: Pay what you can, but note these accessible tickets are only available through the box office by calling 952-979-1111.
Details: Aimed at making theater accessible to all families, take advantage of this special pay-what-you-can offer and enjoy this classic Christmas tale presented by the young actors of Stages Theatre Co.

Volunteer with FFTC @ Feed My Starving Children
401 93rd Ave NW, Coon Rapids

Time: Monday, Nov. 23 • Noon-2pm
Cost: Free
Details: Pack meals with Feed My Starving Children. When the following link becomes live, you can reserve your space to join in!

thO0PBFN04Holidazzle begins @ Loring Park
1382 Willow Street, Minneapolis

When: Begins Friday, Nov. 27 • 5-9m
Cost: Free admission this year!
Details: Holidazzle has moved to Loring Park this year, 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. 20, 2015.


Nature Playgrounds in the Twin Cities – Get Back to Green

Nature Playgrounds are a growing trend for good reason; scientists keep finding connections between nature to child development and well-being.

nature playgrounds
nature playgroundsIt used to be, according to my children, that in order for a park to be authentic, it needed at least a slide and a set of swings. I was less enthusiastic about taking them to places like state parks simply because I felt I’d have to go the extra mile to “prove” that playing and exploring in a natural environment could be just as fun as clambering around a commercially manufactured jungle gym. Don’t get me wrong – the local playgrounds can be a lot of fun, too. And some are really inventive! But I have to say that I get a deeper satisfaction from watching them play in a more natural setting: digging, figuring out how to climb that tree, following paths, building forts. They become immersed in tossing rocks into the water, scouting frogs, collecting wildflowers. They also gradually forget that “playing at the park” requires a plastic treehouse.

So here’s what I find really cool: incorporating natural elements into new playground designs seems to be the trend. More places are popping up where kids get the opportunity to interact with the landscape and, perhaps, develop a greater appreciation for it. Here are seven places I’ve discovered that have those goals in mind:

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Archived

Bring on July, a month fit for beaches and ice cream, outdoor games and perhaps even evenings that can stretch a little later than usual. We’re back with 10 more ideas for low-budget family fun – plus our Top 10 Fireworks Displays and FFTC’s Guide to the Aquatennial could help round out the rest of your family’s free time in July.

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eidem homestead

Daily Life on the Farm @ Eidem Homestead, 4345 101st Ave N, Brooklyn Park, 55443

When: July 8 & July 22 (Wednesdays)
Cost: $5/pp, ages 4 & under admitted free
Details: Travel back to the turn of the 20th century at this historic farmstead. Kids can get as hands-on as they’d like — participating in farm chores such as feeding animals, picking crops, and hauling wood. Inside the farmhouse, work in the kitchen or assist in spinning wool. Want to visit the farm for free? Attend one of their Storytimes (Tuesdays in July, 10am-noon w/ the exception of 7/28 when stories are read 7-8pm). Read More

Free Family Weekend Events List for June 27 – 28, 2015

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

tm grimm farm

historic grimm farm

Grimm Farmhouse Open House
@ Grimm Farm Historic Site, Carver Park Reserve
7025 Victoria Dr, Victoria, 55386

Time: 1-4pm
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.

Friends-and-Family-day-thumbnail[1]Friends and Family Day at Gilda’s Club
@ Gilda’s Club Twin Cities
10560 Wayzata Blvd, Minnetonka, 55305

Time: 10am-2pm
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

Time: 1-4pm
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.


The Weekend Wish List for April 18 – 19, 2014: Egg Hunts and More!

Our Wish List this weekend features a round-up of Egg-centric activities taking place across the Metro. Note that due to the Easter holiday, all activities listed are taking place Friday (perfect for that day off of school?) and Saturday. All events here have a small fee attached; look for our list of free options to come later this week. For more inspiration, be sure to check our Family Fun Calendar!

Egg Trail & Rabbit Habits
Richardson Nature Center @ Hyland Lake Park Reserve
8737 E Bush Lake Rd.,
Bloomington, MN 55438
Friday, April 18 & Saturday, April 19, 9:30am – 12:30pm
Cost: $5/person, reservations required (763-694-7676)

Hike through the woods around the nature center in search of colorful wooden eggs. Learn about and see live animals that come from eggs, make a craft and enjoy a snack.

Eggstravaganza
Eastman Nature Center @ Elm Creek Park Reserve
13351 Elm Creek Rd.,
Osseo, MN 55369
Friday, April 18, 10am – 2pm
Cost: $5/person in advance, $6/at door
Reservations preferred (763-559-6700)

Drop in anytime for games, live bunnies and treats. Bring your own hard-boiled eggs to try out natural dyes and then search for more on the grounds of the nature center.

Spring Eggstravaganza: Rock Hunt
Lowry Nature Center @ Carver Park Reserve
7025 Victoria Dr., Victoria, MN 55386
Friday, April 18 & Saturday, April 19, 10am – 3pm
Cost: $5/person in advance, $6/at door (763-559-6700)

Bring your own basket to hunt for colorful rocks (2-8 yrs.) or hidden secret messages (8 yrs.+). The rocks and decoded messages can be traded for a bag of treats! Other activities include face painting, crafts, and live animals.

Rabbits & Raindrops Puppet Show
Maplewood Nature Center
2659 E 7th St., Maplewood, MN 55119
Friday, April 18, 10:30am – 11:30am
Cost: $2/child, register at 651-249-2170

Enjoy this springtime puppet show based on Jim Arnosky’s book Rabbits & Raindrops.

Egg Drop
North Mississippi Regional Park

4900 Mississippi Court, Minneapolis, MN 55430
Saturday, April 19, 10am – 12pm
Cost: $5/person, reservations required (763-559-6700)

Using natural materials, create a protective cover for your egg and see how far you can drop it (without breaking it!) All materials provided.

James J. Hill House Easter Egg Hunt
240 Summit Ave., St. Paul, MN 55102
Saturday, April 19, 10am – 11am
Cost: $6/person, $4/MHS member
Reservations strongly recommended (651-297-2555)

Kids ages 2-7 search in designated zones around the Hill House lawn for trinket-filled Easter eggs. Inside the mansion are stories, treats, and history to explore.


Archived: A Syrupy Weekend Wish List for March 7-8, 2014

When it comes to my wish list for family fun, I find more and more I’m wishing for a date night.  I never used to need one of those — family dates were just fine.  But almost 9 years into the whole parenting experience, sometimes I just want to be with the love of my life without our offspring.  Where ever you stand in the parenting continuum, I say embrace it. If you don’t need special date nights, there are some great activities for the whole family.  If you want to hire a babysitter or send the little ones to grandmas house for the night, how about a Date Night at Silverwood Park?  No matter what, here are some wishful options for the upcoming weekend.

Friday:

Date Night at SilverwoodDate Night  –  How Sweet It Is to Be Loved by You: Maple Syrup Making and Pitchers
Silverwood Park, 2500 County Rd. E,St. Anthony, MN 55421
Friday, March 7, 2014; 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
$25.00 per couple (Reservations required by Thursday)

Since March is Maple Syrup month, what better way to have a date night than by making some sticky sweet maple syrup and a pitcher to pour it from.  You’ll have something special to take home to the kids at the end, too.  Date Nights at Silverwood are always part indoor clay project and part outdoor — so this is a dress down date.  Dress to get dirty and stay warm.  But wear layers, because you are going to want to peel them off by the fire after all the fun.  “Wine and beer are allowed” — That sounds like a bring-your-own kind of deal.  Reserve your spot by Thursday by calling 763-559-6700 to make a reservation and reference activity number #237811-16. This program is for ages 21+.


Alexander graphicOpening Night: Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
Stages Theatre Company, 1111 Mainstreet, Hopkins, MN 55343
Friday, March 7, 2014; 7:00 p.m.
$15 per person; Pre-Buy Tickets Here.

I went to sleep with gum in my mouth and now there’s gum in my hair and when I got out of bed this morning I tripped on the skateboard and by mistake I dropped my sweater in the sink while the water was running and I could tell it was going to be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

Based on the children’s book by Judith Viorst, Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day opens at Stages Theatre this weekend.  We visited Stages to see Aladdin earlier this year, as I said in my review of that production, the actors at Stages are gifted young people.  It is so worth it to get to these shows if you can.  Maybe if you take your kids to see Alexander, they won’t want to move to Australia.


Saturday:

Mu Daiko
Cowles Center For Dance and The Performing Arts, 528 Hennepin Avenue, Minneapolis, MN 55403
Saturday, March 8, 2014; 2:00 p.m.
Special Family Performance Pricing: $22 for Adults and $14 for students.

This weekend the Cowles Center will host Mu Daiko – a performance based on Japanese drumming.  Saturday’s show is cut a little shorter (45 minutes) and is specially priced for families.  It’s recommended for ages 3 and up.  If you go to one of the other performances, they suggest 7 and up.  After the show, your kids will be invited up on stage to try the drums themselves.  If you want to prep them for this show, you can watch several videos on YouTube, including the one below:


Little House in the Big WoodsIn Laura’s House: Sugar on Snow
Lowry Nature Center, Carver Park Reserve, 7025 Victoria Drive, Victoria, MN 55386
Saturday, March 8, 2014; 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
$5 per person (20% discount for groups of four or more)

Like I said above, we’re all about the maple syrup experience this month.  There is no shortage of events throughout the Twin Cities during March.  However, when I think of maple syrup, I immediately think of that Chapter of Little House in the Big Woods, where they eat nothing but maple syrup for like 24 hours straight.  If that’s what you think of too, you may want to haul out to Victoria with your family to experience maple syrup Laura Ingall’s style.  Here some stories from the book – probably the syrup-gorging chapter, make a sugar on snow treat just like Laura, sample real maple syrup and sugar. You can even start a quilt sampler like Laura’s.


 

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