In Minnesota, family fun outdoors means embracing all four seasons. If you are on this page because you are looking for a new Twin Cities-area park, playground or nature center to explore, hundreds of entries can be found through our Parks & Playgrounds Search feature. Or, continue searching hundreds more ideas of things to do with kids in the Twin Cities through our Family Directory, including family outings, services, classes, camps, birthday parties and more.
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Carpenter St. Croix Valley Nature Center provides a unique opportunity for families to learn and explore the outdoors. The park is approximately half an hour east of the Twin Cities near the junction of the St. Croix and Mississippi Rivers. Hiking trails wind throughout the pines, savanna, prairies, ravines, an apple orchard, and along the river.
The Nature Center also offers classes, camps and activities for families, including story times and bird banding.
Eagle Ambassador at Carpenter Nature Center
Carpenter's Eagle Ambassador, Phoenix, is a young male bald eagle who was found on the side of a road when he was less than a year old. At the time that he was brought to the Raptor Center, he was very thin, exposed to lead, and unable to fly and unable to be returned to the wild. In May of 2017, he was re-homed to Carpenter and can be viewed at the Visitor's Center.
Story Times at Carpenter Nature Center
Preschool story times are offered once a month on Fridays from 10 am to 11 am. Check out the Family Fun Calendar for the next date. These story times are designed to introduce young children, ages 2 through 5 and their grown up to nature in a fun and safe environment. It includes a nature story, an art or craft project, outdoor exploration, and live animal observation. Pre-registration is required; call 651-437-4359. Each child costs $5.00 (or $3.00 for Friends of CNC.) No charge for the chaperone.
Annual Events at Carpenter Nature Center
Birthday Parties at Carpenter Nature Center
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