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Bde Maka Ska Park and Beaches, Minneapolis

3000 Calhoun Parkway Minneapolis, MN 55408
Admission: $0.00
Pay Lot: Parking prices range from 75 cents to $1.50 per hour. Annual Permits Also Available
Concessions Available
Hours of Operation:
Mon. 06:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Tue. 06:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Wed. 06:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Thu. 06:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Fri. 06:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Sat. 06:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Sun. 06:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Park Hours: 6 am-10 pm

Bde Maka Ska Park (f/k/a Lake Calhoun Park) is the largest link in the Chain of Lakes has three beaches and a variety of water recreation activities.

Beaches & Recreation at Bde Maka Ska

Lifeguards are employed at Thomas Beach and 32nd Street Beach. Find up-to-date beach information here. On days when the temperature is 85 degrees or warmer at 6 p.m., lifeguard hours will be extended until 8 p.m. Bde Maka Ska North Beach has no lifeguard on duty.

Wheel Fun Rentals rents out watercraft to get out on the lake. A roughly 3-mile path for walking or biking circles the lake.

For this and other swimming options, explore our guide: Splash Happy: Twin Cities Guide to Beaches, Pools, Water Parks & Splash Pads.

Bde Maka Ska Park is part of the Chain of Lakes in Minneapolis

Fishing Pier installed in 2013. Image Courtesy Minneapolis Parks

Bde Maka Ska Archery Range

Bde Maka Ska's archery range is located at the SE corner of the park (3800 Richfield Rd). Ranges in Minneapolis Park are non-reservable and patrons bring their own equipment and targets. Hay bills are provided. Here is a list of other Twin Cities archery ranges.

Future Skate Park 

A future skate park has been approved but is currently unfunded. Read the Lake Calhoun/Bde Maka Ska and Lake Harriet Regional Park Master Plan for more information.

Public Art and History at Bde Maka Ska Park

In 2019, MPRB dedicated a new gathering space and public artwork to commemorate the Dakota village led by Chief Cloud Man that was located there from 1829 to 1839. Cloud Man invited Samuel and Gideon Pond to build a cabin near his village and teach them Euro-American farming methods, starting in 1834. This began a life-long friendship between the Pond brothers, Chief Cloud Man and members of his village.

While the park was renamed for the Lake's Dakota name Bde Maka Ska (meaning White Earth Lake) in 2015, the Minneapolis Park's Department did not have the authority to rename the lake itself. This was officially changed by the Department of Natural Resources in January of 2018. There has been some continued legal action regarding the name change and the final determination may still be coming. T-shirts are even available on Amazon celebrating the name change. The t-shirt below is an affiliate link and FFTC receives a small commission on sales through our link.

Say it proud Bde Maka Ska

Amazon affiliate link


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