Twin Cities Guide to Family Activities This Weekend: Sept 4-5, 2021

weekend family guide

Things to do in Minneapolis & St Paul this weekend!

This Twin Cities Family Weekend Guide covers the weekend of September 4-5, 2021 – Labor Day Weekend. To find our most recent guide, click here

This weekend is another chance to visit the MINNESOTA STATE FAIR. If you choose to go, we have some ideas for having a great time with the family. If you’re waiting until next year, we hope you’ll check back with us when it rolls around again. And if you’ve never been a fan of the Fair, we have plenty of other ideas for this weekend. You can SEPTEMBER FAMILY GUIDE or our fully-stocked FAMILY FUN CALENDAR for more last-chance summer fun ideas on what to do this weekend in the Twin Cities with your kids!

going to the minnesota state fair?

The Minnesota State Fair is in full swing this weekend and we’ve got a family guide for you bursting with tips and our picks for the best FREE family entertainment on the Fairgrounds. Discount admission and ride tickets are still available through Wednesday, Aug 25. Skip to our quicklinks:

More Family Festivals this weekend in the twin cities

An alternative to the State Fair? Try the Minnesota Renaissance Festivalthere’s more for families to enjoy there together than you may think. Open weekends Aug 21 – Oct 3: Explore the Fairy Wing Forest and Mermaid Cove, take in a maypole dance, craft a wand or pirate hat, learn to juggle and much more. 9am-7pm, $13.50-$24.95/pp.
Minnesota Renaissance Festival

And another alternative before the line is officially drawn between summer fetes and the beginning of fall festivals:


Chalkfest Family Zone is set aside for families to create together, plus games, music and food.

fun outdoor activities in the parks this weekend

Featured here for the weekend is just a taste of all that’s going on across the incredible Twin Cities park systems. You can get more ideas on our FAMILY FUN CALENDAR or browse the links below to search for local fun events & things to do with kids this weekend in the parks.


MISSISSIPPI GATEWAY REGIONAL PARK in Brooklyn Park is connected to COON RAPIDS DAM REGIONAL PARK by an exciting walk across the dam. So it’s really a double feature – two parks in one straddling the river with things to do on both sides including a visitor center, nature play area, bike trails and a playground.

Girl and boy playing in tree structure at Mississippi Gateway Regional Park Nature Play Area in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota
Mississippi Gateway Regional Park

Each Sunday in September, Mississippi Gateway hosts a FREE FAMILY FUN DAY with drop-in activities from 1-3pm. This weekend the theme is “leaf art”. Take note if you’re from the SW Metro: RICHARDSON NATURE CENTER in Bloomington also hosts this program.

Want to explore more nature centers? Check out the links on our big list of Twin Cities nature & interpretive centers for all the details.

Featured Twin Cities  Park Events this weekend


This gem tucked away in Maplewood is open one Sunday & Monday/month in the summer for FREE. Labor Day is the final chance to visit! There are some fun exhibits for kids, including a fire truck to climb on, and volunteers typically offer a craft and guide you through the farmhouse. Sept 5-6, 11am-2pm.

FFTC city kids have farm fun at Bruentrup Heritage Farm

Saturday Farm Days at Gale Woods

GALE WOODS FARM invites you and your kids to visit the animals and explore the barn, gardens, greenhouses and pastures. Reservations required. Sept 4, 9am-12pm, $5/pp.

Gale Woods Farm, Minnetrista
Meeting Chickens

Eastman Nature Center: Owl at the Mew

Drop in between 1-3 to see the great horned owl in his new home, learn about owls and make an owl craft. Stay to explore the nature center, nature play area & boardwalk area. Located in ELM CREEK PARK RESERVE, Maple Grove. Sept 5.

Pond Dakota Mission Park Living History Open houses

Hands-on living history programs fun and free of charge located in POND DAKOTA MISSION PARK in Bloomington. New themes each Saturday. Drop in Sept 4 from 1-4pm.


Catch the final strains of the summer concert series at the LAKE HARRIET BANDSHELL. Bring a picnic dinner and let the kids have the run of the playground. Music performed Sat-Mon, Sept 4-6.

Visit a twin cities apple orchard this weekend


Apple-picking season has begun at many Twin Cities apple orchards. Find a dozen delicious destinations at the link (our apple orchard guide) or see some of our favorites below:

Apple Jack Orchards | Delano

Admission to the farm is $5/pp and includes the chance to pick apples and attractions such as the petting farm and playground. The $10 wristband includes the corn maze, jumping pillow, cow train ride, the zip line and the apple cannon. All weekend, 10am-5pm.

Fall Harvest Orchard | Montrose

Free admission and free activities, including a petting zoo with goats, pigs, cattle, baby chicks, rabbits and turkeys. Visitors receive one free bag of oats to feed animals. Traditional farm fun is also free, including corn bins to jump and play in, a tire climb and a hay bale climb. All weekend, 10am-6pm.

more ideas for things to do this weekend in the twin cities with kids

August is on the way out but this list of 30 Things To Do in the Twin Cities Before Labor Day still might inspire a fun family outing this weekend.

First Free Saturday at Walker Art Center

A kickoff party to the fall with outdoor music & dancing. Pick up an art kit to do a project in the Sculpture Garden or take home. Free gallery admission for the whole family. Tickets required in advance. 10am-3pm.

Como Park Zoo & Conservatory and Como Town Amusement Park

Como is open Labor Day Weekend and it’s always FREE to visit both the zoo and the conservatory. You will need a reservation to visit. Plus, Como Town Amusement Park is open on Monday if you’d like to treat the kids to some rides.

Go on a Labor Day Family Picnic!

Late summer weather in the Twin Cities just begs for a meal outdoors. Grab your cooler, blanket and kids and join us on a quest for the best spot for a picnic in Minneapolis among its beautiful parks and lakes.

minneapolis picnics


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