Welcoming April by gathering a stock of fresh (and FREE) events is one of our favorite things to do here at FFTC. We’re ready to put the cold months behind us for awhile and look ahead to spotting signs of spring, garden walks, Earth Day events and Easter egg hunts. Read on for 10 ideas for free family fun in April.1) Free Easter egg hunts galore
We’re not eggs-agerating when we say our Twin Cities egg hunt round-up is more massive than ever this year. A few highlights have been listed below to give you just a taste of what I mean, one or two for each corner of the Metro. Hit the link for our complete list of where to find the hunts:
MINNEAPOLIS & ST PAUL
April 13: Vadnais Heights Easter Egg Hunt | Community Park, Vadnais Heights | The Easter Bunny will visit while you hunt for eggs redeemable for prizes.
April 20 & 21: Largest Egg Hunt in Blaine | Northpoint Elementary School, Blaine | 20,000 eggs filled with candy, bouncy balls, stickers, and prizes from donors like Chick-fil-A and Culver’s.
April 7: Community Egg Hunt | Rich Valley Athletic Complex, Inver Grove Heights | Scramble for eggs, some of which contain special prizes. Pre-registration required. THIS EVENT IS NOW FULL.
April 13: Easter Egg Hunt & Candy Grab | Shakopee Community Center, Shakopee | Egg hunts by age start at 11am with activities, games and prizes until 1 pm. Bring your own basket.
April 20: Bloomington Egg Hunt & Family Fun | Normandale Lake Bandshell | Kids ages 8 and under are invited to scramble for their piece of 9,000 and enjoy family entertainment.
2) Lil Explorer Thursday | Como Park Zoo & Conservatory
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 the end of April. Donations appreciated. And don’t forget about all of the other free exhibits offered on our Como Park Zoo & Conservatory Spring Checklist. Thursdays, 10am-12pm.
Update: Lil Explorer Thursday has been extended through summer 2019! You can get the schedule here.
Earth Day is a chance to teach our children about good stewardship of our planet while getting out and enjoying the long-awaited spring as a family. Here’s just a small sample of all the Earth Day events there are to choose from at Twin Cities parks and nature centers:
Earth Day Celebration | Harriet Alexander Nature Center, Roseville | Enjoy free entertainment, beat a drum in the parade, and help with planting at this annual celebration. Top off the day with a slice of cake to celebrate the nature center’s birthday! April 20, 10am-2pm.
Family Earth Day Celebration | Wargo Nature Center, Lino Lakes | All kinds of family fun at this Earth Day celebration: climbing wall, light refreshments, and a make-and-take art project. April 20, 12:30-3pm.
For our complete listing of family events, jump over here.
4) Animal Open House | Eden Prairie Outdoor Center
Stop in and meet a variety of animals, some of whom you can get hands-on with. There will also be raptor shows and a peek at the Staring Lake Observatory’s solar telescope. When we visited this even a couple years back, it proved to be so popular we had to wait in line to go through the cabin. Dress for the outdoors. April 13, 1-4pm.
And while we’ve got this corner of the Twin Cities on the brain, the Eden Prairie Art Center hosts its own open house April 14 with free art projects and face painting for all.
Celebrating its twelfth year, the EcoArts Fest has something for everyone: cultural dance and music performances, nature activities led by Refuge staff and art activities lead by ArtStart artists. Spend the day learning about strategies for preserving and conserving the environment. April 20, 10am-3pm.
6) Family Arts Blast | Ordway Center for Performing Arts, St Paul
So much to love here for kids: try out instruments, learn new dance moves, watch cultural performances and go behind the scenes of productions. April 20,9:30am-12pm, FREE.
7) Music & Melody Makers | Minnesota Youth Symphonies, St Paul
This program is a wonderful way to spark interest in playing an instrument before committing to taking lessons. Kids ages 3-14 can try out instruments of the orchestra, ask the musicians questions, and hear a mini-concert. All activities are free. As attendance is limited to keep the noise down, registration is required. April 6, 9-11am.
8) Saturday Family Fun: Garden Starters | Springbrook Nature Center
One Saturday per month, Springbrook offers free family programming. If we’re lucky, the weather will permit a run around their new nature play area, opened summer 2017 and pictured with happy, sandy kids below. Reservations are recommended. April 14, 10-11am.
9) Family Forest Walks | Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden & Bird Sanctuary
Spring means the arrival of new growth, birdsong, and family rambles in the Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden. Naturalists will guide you in spotting signs on the season each Sunday afternoon or, if you’d like, drop by the sanctuary to explore at your leisure during the week. It’s always free to explore. Tours meet at the Visitor Center. Starting April 1, ongoing Sundays, 1-1:45pm.
10) Family Art Sunday | Banfill-Locke Center for the Arts, Fridley
Take a scavenger hunt through the galleries and do a make-and-take project. April 14, 1-3pm.