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.
Family Fun Directory of Things To Do with Kids:
Located in Saint Paul, the Minnesota History Center contains permanent and rotating exhibits focusing on Minnesota history. Many of the exhibits are geared toward the youngest of visitors. This is a good starting point when beginning to explore all the historical offerings in our state. If you find your family gravitating toward a particular subject, The Minnesota Historical Society may have options for digging deeper at other sites or in the Gale Library.
What's FREE at the Minnesota History Center?
Children ages 4 and under and Minnesota History Society members are always FREE. Museum admission is FREE for everyone from 3:00–8:00 pm every Tuesday.
In 2018, the FREE Irvine Gallery opened. This rotating exhibit explores community stories and issues affecting Minnesotans today. The 678-square foot space on the museum’s first floor will showcase MNHS-developed exhibits as well as exhibits created by outside organizations. Entrance to the Irvine Gallery is free, and the gallery will be open during regular History Center hours.
The Gale Family Library is dedicated to the history of Minnesota, and Minnesota family lineage. If you are interested in learning about your family or doing a research project, this library is a great resource. There is no fee to use the library. Keep in mind that the library is non-circulating, so you can't check the information out and return it.
Current and Upcoming Exhibits at Minnesota History Center
The Minnesota History Center's exhibits include on-going exhibits and featured exhibits. Exhibits are designed for the whole family to enjoy with many hands-on activities: a soda fountain, ammunition assembly line, airplane staircase, wind machine and weather vanes, a house to explore and touch--and loads of information for adults to digest. Read about our top picks for kids at the Minnesota History Center.
Then Now Wow features:
The Grainland exhibit is a fun interactive exhibit where you get to be a kernel of grain and experience the inside of a working Grain Elevator.
Minnesota's Greatest Generation
Now - Spring 2020: First Avenue: Stories of Minnesota's Mainroom
This exhibit exhibit takes you inside First Avenue, introducing the sights, sounds and stories of this landmark venue that opened in 1970 and put Minnesota music on the map. The exhibit draws from the MNHS Press book "First Avenue: Minnesota's Mainroom” by Chris Riemenschneider.
Opens Dec 7, 2019 (Multi-Year Exhibit): Our Home: Native Minnesota
Learn about Ojibwe and Dakota and their modern and historic traditions, stories, research and archaeology. This exhibit will change every few years.
Architecture Elements of the Minnesota History Center:
The Curtis JN-4 "Jenny" hanging from the ceiling
And if you just want to run around to blow off some steam, check out the plaza outside on the 2nd floor!
*some images are courtesy the Minnesota Historical Society, used with permission
This article originally published by Gianna Kordatzky - February 11, 2014
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What is the Family Fun Twin Directory?
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.
Find the Answers to Your Questions. How much does it cost? What are the hours? Where can I find discount tickets? Where did my favorite store go?
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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