Get ready for a big serving of old-fashioned fun, cultural traditions and special holiday events at Twin Cities-area museums and historic sites!
This post is sponsored by the American Swedish Institute.
‘Tis the season for holiday fun at the American Swedish Institute where you can enjoy many kid and family friendly activities including the Nordic Holidays exhibition of decorated rooms, Kids at the Castle playdates Dec. 9, 16 & 17, our Making Traditions weekend music/craft series, Lucia Celebrations, Santa and Tomte visits, FIKA’s food for kids, a Family Gallery and a FREE Holiday Open House on Dec. 14. For complete info., visit ASI at 2600 Park Ave., go to ASImn.org or call (612) 871-4907.
11/25: Gingerbread House Workshop @ American Swedish Museum, Minneapolis • 1-2:30pm • $35/family (limit 5 people per family) • Details: Decorate a gingerbread house as a family using Swedish candy from the Candy Shop Stuga.
11/25-27: Christmas at the 1855 Folsom House, Taylors Falls • Fri 3-8pm, Sat 10am-6:30pm & Sun 1-4pm • $1-$3/pp
11/25-27, 11/30 & 12/1-1/1/17: A Victorian Christmas @ Alexander Ramsey House • 10am-3:30pm, tours on the half hour • Details: See, hear and taste a Victorian Christmas during this holiday guided tour. There are homemade cookies in the kitchen, holiday music of the era on the piano, and original family decorations.
11/26-12/24: Holiday Saturdays @ Minnesota History Center • Saturdays, 10am-5pm • $12/adults, $6/ages 5-17, free ages 4 and under & members • Details: Every Saturday during the holiday season enjoy crafting holiday cards, community concerts and a wintry storywalk around the History Center based on the book North Woods Girl.
12/1-2: A “Little Women” Christmas @ Alexander Ramsey House • 6 & 7pm • $9-$13/adults, $3 member discount • Details: Discover how the “Little Women” of the classic book celebrated Christmas in the 1860s. Play Victorian parlor games, sing carols, enjoy gingerbread cake, and make a Christmas craft in the Carriage House. Ages 6+.
12/2: Holiday Fest @ Scott County Historical Society, Shakopee • 6-8pm • Details: Free historic holiday fun – hot cocoa in the historic Stans House, decorated for a 1920s Christmas; toasted marshmallows in the Stans Garden; and ornament-making in the museum.
12/3: Star Tribune Holiday Cookie Contest Winners @ Mill City Museum • 1-3pm • $6-$12/pp, free ages 4 and under & members. Star Tribune’s annual Taste Holiday Cookie Contest finalists bake their winning recipes in the Mill City Museum Baking Lab. Get tips and inspiration!
12/3: Holiday Tours @ Fillebrown House, White Bear Lake • 1, 2 & 3pm • $5/pp
12/3-4: Holiday Open Haus @ Germanic-American Institute, St. Paul • 12-3pm • Details: Get the feel of a European market with vendors selling German Christmas gift items, model trains, and festive food and drink. Craft ornaments on Saturday and meet St. Nikolaus on Sunday.
12/3-4: Christmas on the Farm: A Norwegian Christmas @ Eidem Homestead, Brooklyn Park • 1-4pm • $4-$6/pp, cash or check only • Details: Old-fashioned festivities include carolers, ornament-making, freshly-baked treats and a visit with St. Nick.
12/3-4 & 12/10-11: Christmas in the Village @ Dakota City Heritage Village, Farmington • 1-8pm • $3-$6/pp • Details: Dickens’ A Christmas Carol comes to life in the village with a horse-drawn trolley, caroling, holiday cooking, demonstrations, a visit with St. Nicholas and other turn-of-the-century traditions.
12/3-18: Folkways of the Holidays @ The Landing, Shakopee • Sat 10am-4pm, Sun 11am-4pm • $5-$8/pp • Details: Folk art performances, a horse-drawn trolley, and tours dressed in 19th century decorations. Dress for the outdoors.
12/3-24: Hill House Holidays @ James J. Hill House • Ongoing weekends, 1-4:30pm • $8-$12/pp, $2 member discount • Details: Witness the servants bustling around, busy with holiday preparations – the script based on letters and oral histories of people who worked for the Hill family.
12/4: Old Fashioned Holiday @ Holz Farm, Eagan • noon-3pm • Details: Come visit Santa at this 1940s-era event. Also enjoy hayrides, a bonfire, carols, live reindeer and treats. All activities are FREE!
12/4: 1850’s Holiday Party @ Ard Godfrey House, Minneapolis • 12:30-3:30pm • Details: Period decorations, tours and treats. FREE.
12/8: Children’s Story Time @ Fillebrown House, White Bear Lake • 6:30-7:30pm
12/11: Lucia Dagen Celebration @ Gammelgarden Museum, Scandia • $12/adults, $5/kids under 12 • Details: Following a quick morning Swedish prayer service (6 or 8:30am) in the 1865 church, head to the community center for a full Lucia Fest breakfast and program (7 or 9am).