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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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. 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.
Beaches & Recreation at Bde Maka Ska Park
Lifeguards are employed at Bde Maka Ska Thomas Beach and Bde Maka Ska 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.
Archery Range at Bde Maka Ska Park
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 at Bde Maka Ska 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
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This is the most extensive collection of companies, organizations, activities and places to find things to do with kids in the Twin Cities. Find things to do this weekend, things to do today, things to do with toddlers, things to do with teens. We have it all. Sort by indoor things to do with kids or outdoor things to do with kids. Find theater, music, water parks, aquariums, zoos, museums, seasonal fun.
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We share Family Friendly Businesses. We work hard to keep it the most current and accurate parenting resource in the Twin Cities. Not just a blog for moms, we are a informational resource for families. This parent to parent list is perfect for dads, moms and grandparents to find fun things to do with kids year round.
This directory was made for families who live in the Twin Cities metro to connect with local businesses. However, visitors to the Minneapolis/St. Paul area will find our directory useful to learn more about venues with insider tips and details. Use this directory to find the best things to do with families in Minnesota's largest metropolitan area.
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