Free & Budget Family Weekend Events List for August 22-23, 2015

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Ideas for free & budget this weekend could take you to a foodie festival in Minneapolis, a Japanese lantern lighting ceremony in St. Paul, or on a quick road trip to discover historic sites in Scandia. Or, for more ideas on how to spend the weekend and beyond, there’s always our Family Fun Calendar. Happy exploring!



Chipotle Cultivate Festival
@ Loring Park
1382 Willow St, Minneapolis, 55403

Time: 11am-7pm
Cost: Free
Details: Presented by Chipotle, the Cultivate event brings the community together to talk about food and where it comes from (and you can bet there will be plenty of Chipotle available for purchase, as well). There’s also live music, family activities like T-shirt decorating, and celebrity chef demonstrations.

11351314_10153382663986660_3236082928516166497_n[1]Way Cool Back-to-School Fair
@ Whole Foods Market – Lake Calhoun
3060 Excelsior Blvd, Minneapolis, 55416

Time: Noon-3pm
Cost: Free
Details: Free reusable lunch bags and water bottles for the first 50 kids (12 and under) who show up, kid-friendly food samples, a hands-on cooking activity with Chef Ani in the cooking classroom and a craft just for kids in the cafe.

Playground Dedication at the Celebrate Our Beloved Community Festival
@ Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. Park
4055 Nicollet Ave S, Minneapolis, 55409

Time: Event begins at Sabathani Community Center at 10:30am, concludes at King, Jr. Park at 4pm.
Cost: Free
Details: Join the dedication celebration of a unique new playground. Its creative design honors Dr. King, the Civil Rights Movement, African American history and inventors with custom-built play elements. Dedication will take place at 1pm followed by live entertainment, free arts activities and food vendors.


DSCF1581[1]Japanese Lantern Lighting Festival
@ Como Park Zoo & Conservatory
1225 Estabrook Dr, St Paul, 55103

Time: 3-9pm
Cost: $5/adults, $3/kids ages 3-12 & seniors, under 3 free
Details: One of Como’s most highly-anticipated events of the year, the Japanese Garden will overflow with cultural music, dance, food and exhibitors. Lanterns will be lit in the garden at 8:30pm. To get the full schedule of events, click here.

“One-Room Schools” Program
@ Hay Lake School Museum
14020 195th St N, Marine on St Croix, 55047

Time: Event begins at noon, speaker at 2pm
Cost: Free, donations appreciated
Details: Free tours of the one-room schoolhouse begin at noon complemented by schoolhouse activities and games. If the kids won’t sit for the speaker at 2pm, consider heading over to the following event on this list to let them run off some steam…

tm gammelgarden museumBluegrass JAM & Lemonade in the Shade
@ Gammelgarden Museum
20880 Olinda Trail, Scandia, Minnesota

Time: 2-4pm
Cost: No charge for lemonade, to listen to the music or wander the grounds in search of the four colorful Dala horses (my kids’ favorite activity). Tours of the historic Swedish buildings are available from 1-3pm and cost $7/adults, kids free.
Details: This would make a great companion activity to the one-room schoolhouse tour in the Scandia area. The grounds of Gammelgarden have a picnic area, a playground, and lots of space to run freely. Enjoy the live pickin’ and a glass of cold lemonade.

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About the author

Anne Kingston

If we left it up to Anne to write her own bio, it would never get posted. She doesn't enjoy talking about herself, but Anne does love exploring the Twin Cities with her family and sharing her finds here. She, her husband and their four kids are lifelong residents of St. Paul.

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