Bloomington Minnesota Family Fun - Things to Do With Kids in Bloomington Minnesota - Family Fun Twin Cities


Welcome to Bloomington! The city is the fifth largest in Minnesota and home to one of the country’s top tourist attractions – the Mall of America. While the Mall is certainly packed with fun, don’t overlook Bloomington’s natural spaces. The mighty Mississippi River forms the southern boundary of the city, nourishing a stretch of the Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge and Fort Snelling State Park. Read on for the best Bloomington, Minnesota family fun!

Spend a day in Bloomington and try these ideas for family fun, including kids-eat-free restaurants, the best things to do, family friendly activities & parks.

Bloomington Minnesota Family Fun
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    Find this week’s Bloomington, Minnesota, family fun including the nearby southwest suburbs of the Twin Cities: Chaska, Eden Prairie, Edina Minnetonka, Minnetrista, Prior Lake, Richfield, Savage, Shakopee, Victoria, and Wayzata. Find our full Twin Cities Family Fun Calendar here.

    What is Your Favorite Bloomington Minnesota Family Fun? Submit your ideas to share with the community.
    Bloomington Minnesota Seasonal Fun Ideas


    Summer in Bloomington: Festivals & activities

    Bloomington Summer Fete

    W 84th St & Chalet Rd, Bloomington, MN 55437
    Bloomington’s annual Independence Day event includes a Kids Zone and the 84th Street Kids Stage, live music for all ages, tons of food vendors and fireworks at dusk. July 32024.


    • MONDAY MORNING KIDS SERIES – The kid concerts and entertainment alternate between Moir Central Park and Valley View Park and include local acts like the Bazillions and the Jolly Pops. June 3 – August 12, 2024. 10:30-11:30am. 
    • TUESDAY EVENING PERFORMANCE SERIES – Shows performed at the Normandale Bandshell. June 4-July 30, 2024, 7pm.
    • MIDWEEK MUSIC & MARKET – Music, food trucks, a farmers market and lawn games at Civic Plaza. Wednesday evenings, July 10-August 21, 2024. 5-8pm.
    • THURSDAY BLOCKBUSTER SERIES – Normandale Bandshell. June 6-August 8, 2024, 6:30-9:30pm. W 84th St & Chalet Rd, Bloomington, MN 55437.
    • SUNDAY FUNDAY – locations change weekly and include destinations like the historic Pond House and Bloomington Central Station. Family-friendly live entertainment and food. June 16-August 11, 2024. 4-6:30pm.

    Bloomington swimming & beaches

    Bush Lake Beach

    9140 East Bush Lake Road, Bloomington, MN 55438
    The popular, sandy beach is located on the east side of Bush Lake in Bloomington. It is guarded during open hours (11am to 7pm daily during the season) and amenities include a volleyball court and concessions stand. Families can canoe, picnic and explore the trails. An annual tradition, each June a sandcastle building contest is hosted at Bush Lake Beach. Admission and parking are free. June 1-August 31, 2024.

    Bloomington Family Aquatic Center

    201 E 90th St, Bloomington, MN 55420
    Fun features include a zero-depth entry pool, aqua climbing wall, water slides, diving boards, and a concession stand. Tot Time is held 10am to 12pm on weekdays for children ages 6 & under. Find more community Tot Time Open SwimsOpen June 8 – August 18, 2024. $10/pp, just $5 after 4pm.


    Spring in Bloomington: Festivals & activities

    Free Family Fun Day: Maple Syrup at Richardson Nature Center

    8737 East Bush Lake Road, Bloomington, MN 55438
    We are big fans of RICHARDSON NATURE CENTER and appreciate their steady stream of free event days each month. In March, you can drop in to learn about maple syrup free of charge. March 3, 2024, 3-4pm. FREE.

    Maple Sugaring at the Gideon Pond House

    Pond-Dakota Mission Park, 401 East 104th Street, Bloomington, MN 55420
    The annual, family-friendly spring program is all about learning how maple sugar is made, including choosing trees to tap, collecting the sap, and the boiling process of making collected sap into syrup and sugar. Drop-in program for all ages. March 23, 2024, 1-4pm, FREE.

    Find our complete guide to maple syrup programs in the Twin Cities.

    Volunteer showing girls how to tapa maple tree at a Warner Nature Center maple-syruping event, Minnesota

    Bloomington Public Works Open House

    Featuring snowplow and tractor displays and rides, demos, interactive displays, prizes and refreshments. Kids can get a passport to collect stamps as they visit stations, then turn in completed passports for a prize. May 18, 2024, 9am-12pm. FREE.

    GOT KIDS WHO LOVE BIG RIGS? Our calendar of Twin Cities Touch-A-Truck events and Public Works Open Houses will help you find them all across the Minneapolis-St Paul metro area.

    Easter egg hunts & activities in the Twin cities

    Easter egg hunts near Bloomington

    Legacy Toys Easter Egg Hunt

    Mall of America, Bloomington
    Kids are welcome to search for up to five eggs hidden around the toy shop to redeem for a treat or prize. There will also be crafts, a family photo booth and games. March 16, 2024, 10am-2pm. FREE.

    Bloomington Optimists Egg Hunt

    Normandale Lake Bandshell, 5901 West 84th Street, Bloomington, MN 55438
    A 9000 egg hunt with different areas for each age group. Arrive early for the Teddy Bear Band at 10am. Egg hunt starts promptly at 11am. Learn more from the Bloomington Optimist Club. March 30, 2024.


    Spring registration for summer camps

    Yes, it’s about that time to start planning summer camp opportunities for your kids! As many camps open registration as early as February (and many fill almost as quickly), we strive to publish our 2024 GUIDE TO TWIN CITIES SUMMER CAMPS accordingly. We work closely with local businesses and camps to provide a wide variety of activities and concentrations. Some camps we are proud to highlight in Bloomington, Minnesota, include:

    The Works Museum Summer Camps

    Works Museum, 9740 Grand Ave S., Bloomington MN 55420
    At The Works Museum, kids are the designers, creators, and problem solvers – the engineers! Summer camps for kids ages 5-12 include topics like robotics, architecture, coding, LEGO engineering, carpentry, and more. With half-day, whole-day, 1-day, and 4-day options, there’s a summer camp that will fit your family’s schedule. Camp prices range from $110 to $250. Scholarships are available. June 10-August 29, 2024.

    More summer camps in Bloomington

    Bloomington Center for the Arts: Artistry Summer Camp

    1800 W Old Shakopee Rd, Bloomington, MN 55431
    Four sessions of weeklong, half-day camps in one of two art mediums: visual arts and performing arts. Camps are for grades K-2. June 3-August 23, 2024. $185.

    Base Camp (Northern Star Scouting)

    201 Bloomington Road, Saint Paul, MN 55111
    Camp Northern Star offers a lineup of  summer camps with time spent at Base Camp including a Discovery Adventure Camp for kids entering grades 6-8. Camp offers 7 five-day sessions running June 17-August 9, 2024. $475/session.

    Camp Kota

    East Bush Lake Park, 9140 East Bush Lake Road, Bloomington MN 55438

    Outdoor skills camp through Bloomington Parks for kids entering grades 2-7. Four weekly sessions: July 8-August 2, 2024. $300-$365/session.

    Dakota Language Camps 

    Pond-Dakota Mission Park, 401 E 104th St, Bloomington, MN 55420
    For kids and adults of all ages (under 7 to be accompanied by adult). Make reservations through Bloomington Parks & Rec. 2024 dates still TBA. $50/pp includes lunch.

    Vertical Endeavors Climbing Camps

    9601 James Ave S, Bloomington, MN 55431
    2540 Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55404
    Summer climbing day camp (9am-3pm) at all Twin Cities climbing gyms. Ages 6-13. June 10-August 9, 2024. $390.

    Fall in Bloomington: Festivals & activities

    River Rendezvous at Pond Dakota Mission Park

    401 E 104th St, Bloomington, MN 55420
    Learn about life in Minnesota between 1800-1870 through living history activities, storytelling, costumed interpreters and tours of the restored 1856 Gideon and Agnes Pond House. September 23, 2023, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. $10/adults, $5/children. Learn more about visiting POND DAKOTA MISSION PARK in Bloomington year-round – it’s a fun place to bring kids to learn about the history of the area!

    Bloomington Heritage Days Parade

    TBA FOR 2023! The annual Bloomington Heritage Days parade invites the public to participate. Parade travels west along 102nd Street beginning at 3rd Avenue S (east of Nicollet, south of 98th St), to Harriet Ave at 10:30am. (September 17, 2022)


    Fall Hyland Hills Chairlift Rides

    8800 Chalet Rd, Bloomington, MN 55438
    Take in the splendid fall colors view as you glide to the top of Mount Gilboa at HYLAND HILLS SKI AREA, the highest natural point in Bloomington. Enjoy some live tunes, too. Food will be available for purchase. October 7-8, 2023. $7/pp. Get your tickets fast as this event sells out.

    October Weekend Family Fun on the Chairlift at Highland Park in Bloomington, Minnesota

    Bloomington Halloween Events

    Bloomington Citywide Halloween Trick-or-Treat Trail

    W 84th St & Chalet Rd, Bloomington, MN 55437
    Bloomington’s first trick-or-treat trail will take place at NORMANDALE LAKE PARK. This FREE event will include live music by Wendy’s Wiggle, Jiggle and Jam starting at 4pm. No registration required! Costumes encouraged but also not required. October 31, 3-5pm.

    FIND MORE TWIN CITIES HALLOWEEN EVENTS near Bloomington, Minnesota!

    More Fall Fun Near Bloomington

    All the best fall fun for families near Bloomington – the best apple orchards, pumpkin patches and corn mazes to take the kids and enjoy a beautiful fall day in Minnesota. Our guides are bursting with ideas for things to do.

    Winter In Bloomington: Sledding, snow tubing, skiing & ice skating in Bloomington

    Outdoor Ice skating rinks in Bloomington

    The city of Bloomington plans to maintain outdoor ice skating rinks at nine community parks. Each has a general ice skating rink, a hockey rink, warming house and outdoor lights. Find the rinks at Brookside Park, Bryant Park, Kelly Park,  Poplar Bridge Park, Ridgeview Park, Running Park, Southwood Park, Sunrise Park & Westwood Park.
    The skating season typically runs from mid-December through mid-February (though the winter of 2023-2024 has been an exception). Looking for an indoor skating option? The BLOOMINGTON ICE GARDEN offers year-round ice skating (fees apply). Find more information on Bloomington ice rinks here.

    Winter at Bloomington’s Hyland Hills Ski Area

    During the winter months in Bloomington, Hyland Hills is a premiere family skiing and snowboarding destination. The terrain of the park is full of innovative features and offers some of the best snowmaking and grooming in the Midwest. Lessons are offered if you’re just getting started on skis or want to sharpen your skills. Find current ski prices here. Learn more about HYLAND HILLS SKI AREA in Bloomington.

    Hyland Hills Ski Area

    The best sledding hills in Bloomington 

    HYLAND LAKE PARK RESERVE: This is a winter recreational haven – bring your own sleds or rent one for a buck at the Richardson Nature Center (please check at the nature center for rentals – it’s also a fun place to warm up). The sledding hill is close to the nature center parking lot.

    RUNNING PARK: Has a hilly terrain that is good for sledding. Bring along your skates for the outdoor ice rink. A warming house is open and staffed daily during the winter season. Find more of the best sledding hills near Bloomington, Minnesota.

    Winter festivals & activities in Bloomington

    Bloomington Winter Fete

    Bloomington’s annual winter festival packs weeks of frosty fun activities between mid-December and the middle of February. Highlights include free indoor skating, a traditional Ice Harvest Day at Richardson Nature Center, and the Pond House Winter Festival. You can find the complete schedule of Bloomington Winter Fete activities at the link. Find more WINTER FESTIVALS near Bloomington, Minnesota.

    Christmas & holiday events in Bloomington

    The Santa Experience at Mall of America

    Mall of America Level 1, 2131 Lindau Lane, Bloomington, MN 55425
    Book your appointment with Santa Claus at the Mall. Packages for purchase. TBA for 2024. FIND MORE PLACES TO VISIT SANTA NEAR BLOOMINGTON!

    Flyover Holidays at Mall of America

    Flyover America, Mall of America, 5120 Center Ct, Bloomington, MN 55425
    Flyover America traditionally becomes a holiday sleigh adventure in December. Stay tuned for more details! Sunday-Thursday, 11am-7pm & Saturday, 11am-8pm. $16.19-$21.99/pp (best prices online).

    Frontier Christmas Celebration at the Pond House

    Costumed re-enactors at the historic Pond House will sing carols around the pump organ, read the Christmas story, and serve tasty holiday refreshments. Warm up by the fireplace and make paper star ornaments to take home. December 16, 2024, drop in from 1-4pm. FREE; donations appreciated.

    Christmas & Holiday Lights Displays in Bloomington

    Founders Ridge Senior Community, 6600 Auto Club Rd, Bloomington, MN 55438
    Trees and decorated and lights throughout the entrance of the campus along circular drive, including a 12-foot tree at the entrance of the building. Collecting Toys for Tots in a collection box under the awning of the front entrance. Submitted by the community in 2020.


    Christmas and Holiday Guide Twin Cities

    More winter fun in Bloomington

    For more outdoor winter fun in the Twin Cities check out our round up of free outdoor ice skating rinks our Winter Survival Guide and our Winter Family Festival Calendar – all filled with ways to enjoy the cold season.

    Top Family Attractions in Bloomington Minnesota


    Mall of America

    60 E Broadway, Bloomington, MN 55425
    The sprawling Mall of America in Bloomington is one of the state’s top tourist destinations. It boasts four levels packed wall-to-wall with shopping, dining and fun family attractions including a large indoor amusement park, an aquarium, a cinema and oodles of entertainment you can sort through in our MALL OF AMERICA FAMILY GUIDE, Floor by Floor. Make sure to pocket this before your trip so you can make the most of your trip to the mega-mall (as we coined it upon opening day, 1991.)

    Family fun Twin Cities' Guide to the Mall of America - floor by floor - Title backdrop Pineapple Poppers ride at Nickelodeon Universe in the Mall of America, Bloomington, Minnesota

    See More Mall of America Attractions:

    The Works Museum

    9740 Grand Ave S, Bloomington, MN 55420
    THE WORKS MUSEUM has exhibits, programs, and design challenges that engage kids in science, technology, and engineering while making learning memorable and fun. Kids of all ages love the Works for its hands-on science fun.

    See more about Pre-K Mondays at the Works Museum in Bloomington, Minnesota.

    Rainbow Play Systems Indoor Playground

    900 W 80th St, Bloomington, MN 55420
     is a retail outlet for backyard play equipment systems. They host birthday parties and offer pay to play times in their Bloomington showroom. You can book a fun indoor playdate to monkey around on the swingsets, slides and trampolines. We recommend checking the website to verify times before heading out for Pay to Play times. Cost is $8 per child for a 2-hour block of playtime on the showroom equipment. Mon-Fri, 10am-4pm.

    Find more indoor playgrounds near Bloomington, Minnesota.

    Base Camp – Northern Star Council

    6202 Bloomington Rd, St Paul, MN 55111
    Located in the century-old Cavalry Drill Hall near Fort Snelling,
    BASE CAMP is operated by the Northern Star Council. Public programs include rock climbing, archery, high ropes, camping and outdoor skills, space simulator, and cycling. The first Tuesday of each month, Base Camp is open for drop in indoor rock climbing between 5-9pm. Ages 5 & up, $10/participant.

    Rock Climbers receiving instruction at Base Camp in Bloomington Minnesota

    Vertical Endeavors Indoor Rock Climbing

    9601 James Ave S, Bloomington, MN 55431
    VERTICAL ENDEAVORS is one of the  premiere indoor rock climbing and bouldering facilities in the Twin Cities. The Bloomington location boasts 230 routes and walls of up to 60 feet high. Routes range from a beginner skill level to very difficult, meaning there’s something for every age and ability. Rock climbing makes for a great birthday party activity, too! Browse our directory of birthday party ideas to find one in the Bloomington area.

    Boy climbing wall at Vertical Endeavors in Bloomington Minnesota


    Bloomington bursts with more than 100 parks, playgrounds, athletic fields and more natural spaces to explore. Our list of the 10 BEST PARKS IN BLOOMINGTON is a great place to start no matter the season. Our Parks Search tool also covers most of these parks – just type “Bloomington” into the location search space. Some parks not to miss when searching for things to do with kids outdoors in Bloomington:

    Free Family Fun:

    More Active Fun:

    Bloomington Parks to Visit This Summer - Explore Close to Home - Bloomington Minnesota

    Richardson Nature Center at Hyland Lake Park Reserve

    8737 E Bush Lake Rd, Bloomington, MN 55438
    In addition to one of the largest playgrounds in Minnesota,
    HYLAND LAKE PARK RESERVE is home to the RICHARDSON NATURE CENTER, which is stuffed with kid-friendly exhibits, live raptors, a nature play area and very deserving of your time. Make plans for your visit there with 10 Things for Kids: Richardson Nature Center & Hyland Lake Park.


    Cantina Laredo (Mall of America)

    300 West Market (MOA 3rd Level), Bloomington, MN 55425; (952) 406-8311
    Day/Time: Tuesday, lunch or dinner
    Deal: Toddler Tuesdays: One free kid’s meal per adult entrée purchased. Verified: 6/21/21

    Cedar & Stone Urban Table

    JW Marriot MOA, 2141 Lindau Lane, Bloomington, MN 55425; (612) 615-0124
    Day/Time: Tuesday, lunch or dinner
    Deal: Toddler Tuesdays: One free kid’s meal per adult entrée purchased. Verified: 6/21/21

    Chevys Fresh Mex 

    2251 Killebrew Drive, Bloomington MN 55425; (952) 876-0222 
    Day/Time: Wednesdays, All Day
    Deal: Kids eat $1 with paid adult entrée.
    Verified: 6/21/21


    Mall of America; 368 South Ave Bloomington, MN 55425; (952) 854-5000
    Day/Time: Tuesday, lunch or dinner
    Deal: Toddler Tuesdays: One free kid’s meal per adult entrée purchased. Verified: 6/21/21

    Dickey’s Barbecue Pit

    250 East Travelers Trail, Burnsville, MN 55337; (952) 882-4651
    214 Pioneer Trail, Chaska, MN 55318;  (952) 361-0199
    Day/Time: Sundays, All Day

    Deal: One free kid’s meal per $10 purchase. Valid at participating locations. (Limited time delivery/carry out code: KEFOLO)
    Verified: 6/22/21


    4th Floor, Mall of America, Bloomington, MN 55425; (952) 500-8700
    Day/Time: Tuesday, lunch or dinner
    Deal: Toddler Tuesdays: One free kid’s meal per adult entrée purchased. Verified: 6/21/21

    Green Mill

    1201 West 94th St, Bloomington MN, 55431; (952) 884-9898
    8266 Commonwealth Dr, Eden Prairie, MN 55344; (952) 944-3000

    : Tuesdays, Hours vary by location 

    Deal: Kids Eat Free: 1 child (12 and under) eats free with adult purchase. 
    Verified: 6/21/21


    Third Floor, Mall of America, Bloomington, MN 55425; (952) 896-6278
    Day/TimeTuesday, lunch or dinner
    Deal: Toddler Tuesdays: One free kid’s meal per adult entrée purchased. Verified: 6/21/21

    McHugh’s Public House

    5715 Egan Drive, Savage, MN 55378; (952) 226-5800
    Day/Time: Sundays; 4pm-8pm
    Deal: Kids Eat Free.
    Verified: 6/21/21

    Patrick’s Bakery and Café

    2928 West 66th St, Edina, MN; (612) 861-7570
    Day/Time: Tuesdays; 4pm-close
    Deal: Kid’s Night: Kids eat free – 1 child (12 & under) eats free per adult entrée purchased. Entertainment by Lulu the Clown.
    Verified: 6/21/21


    3849 Gallagher Drive, Edina, MN 55435; (952) 835-6440
    Day/Time: Monday-Thursday; All Day
    Deal: $5 Kids Club Special – $5 Kids Meals & $5/hour gaming with purchase of adult meal
    Verified: 8/9/21

    Pizza Ranch

    1266 Vierling Drive East, Shakopee, MN 55379; (952) 233-2122
    Day/Time: Tuesdays, Regular Buffet Hours
    Deal: Kid’s Night: One child 12 & under per paying adult. 
    Verified: 6/21/21

    Station Pizzeria

    13008 Minnetonka Blvd, Minnetonka, MN 55305; (952) 426-3273
    Day/Time: Monday All Day

    Deal: Kids eat free off the kids menu. (Thanks, Nicole)
    Verified: 6/21/21

    Twin City Grill

    First Floor, Mall of America, Bloomington, MN 55425; (952) 854-0200
    Day/Time: Tuesday, lunch or dinner
    Deal: Toddler Tuesdays: One free kid’s meal per adult entrée purchased. Verified: 6/21/21


    10700 France Ave S, Bloomington, MN 55437; (952) 456-8905
    Day/Time: Sundays, 5-8pm
    Deal: One free kid’s meal per adult entrée purchased.  
    Verified: 6/21/21

    Find More Twin Cities Restaurant Deals: Kids Eat Free or Cheap Twin Cities List.


    Great Wolf Lodge

    1700 American Blvd E, Bloomington, MN 55425
    GREAT WOLF LODGE (in the former Waterpark of America space) is a super kid-friendly hotel and water park located near the
    MALL OF AMERICA. The facility boasts amazing waterslides and pristine pools. They also offer a ton of activities for kids and dining options. Waterpark passes are included in the price of all suites. Don’t miss our 7 Tips for Visiting Great Wolf Lodge in Bloomington.

    Some Boredom Busting Ideas for Your Hotel Room: 75 Indoor Games for Kids of All Ages


    Located on the grounds of the Bloomington Civic Plaza, BLOOMINGTON CENTER FOR THE ARTS (1800 W Old Shakopee Rd, Bloomington, MN 55431) supports performing and visual arts in the community. The building houses two theaters, two art galleries and a dance studio. It is also home to 8 arts organizations that often offer concerts, exhibits and events. You can check their 2022-2023 Performance Series for details on family-friendly shows such as Continental Ballet’s Cinderella (March) Artistry’s Godspell (July & August).

    Watch for more events near Bloomington in our FAMILY PERFORMING ARTS PLAN-AHEAD CALENDAR.



    Bloomington is just the beginning! FAMILY FUN TWIN CITIES tries hard to be the best resource when it comes to finding things to do with your kids and family in the Minneapolis-St Paul metro area of Minnesota. We strive to cover a wide range of communities and share activities and events we have personally experienced with our own kids in tow (all 12 of them!) We call the Twin Cities HOME and are excited to share the area with you! Visitors to Bloomington, Minnesota particularly love these Twin Cities attractions:

    Find things to do this weekend in Bloomington on our Weekend Family Guide!

    children in a family bike ride

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