Free List for March 15-16, 2014

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This was another hard week for picking my favorite free activities of the weekend.  This list doesn’t even scratch the surface of fabulous free activities this weekend.  If you don’t see anything you like here, check our Free Calendar for more options.  Some other options are the YOXO Unlimited Build Event, a Minnesota Sinfonia Concert, and a Music & Melody Makers Program.  Here are my picks:


Photo Source: Friends of the Hennepin County Library Website

Photo Source: Friends of the Hennepin County Library Website

Childish Films: Dreams in Cartoonland

Minneapolis Central Library, 300 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis, 55401
Doors Open at 10:00 a.m.  — Get there early.

This month, Childish Films’ theme is vintage cartoons set in a dreamland.  Before the show, there will be live storytelling.  As usual, Whole Foods will be providing free, healthy snacks.  This month, Childish Films is part of a bigger Family Day on Hennepin.  Some of this stuff requires pre-registration, but it is all really cool.  I wish I could take this whole Saturday as a downtown play day.  If you can, I think this would be the best way to while away a day.  If you don’t have a whole day, any one of these activities would be great.

  • 10:30AM – 11:30AM Childish Films
  • 11:30AM – Noon or Noon – 12:30PM Dance Neverland: Imagine. Explore. Create. at the Cowles Center
  • 11:30AM – Noon or Noon – 12:30PM Acting the Story in the City Center Atrium
  • 12:30PM – 1:30PM Recycled Objects to Art Workshop with the Walker at FAIR Downtown School. (More snacks from Whole Foods).
  • 2:00PM Matinee performance of Peter and the Starcatcher at the Orpheum Theatre.

Reservations for Family Day on Hennepin are required — except for Childish Films.  Everything is free except the matinee at the Orpheum. Don’t want to pay for the matinee?  The Minnesota Sinfonia Concert is at the same time at the Basilica — a quick bus ride.  Family Day (except Childish Films, again) is recommended for ages 10+, but I know my 8-year-old would enjoy all of these activites.  I think you can smudge the age recommendations based on your own knowledge of your child.

Johnson Senior High School
1349 Arcade Street, Saint Paul, MN
Saturday March 15, 2014; 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.Mexicana

The Aztec New Year was Wednesday, March 12th.  Celebrate it this weekend with a family-friendly festival at Johnson Senior HIhg in Saint Paul.  You and your family can watch a traditional Aztec/Mexica dance ceremony, create stamp art with Aztec symbols, and participate in other games and activities to celebrate the New Year!

Photo Credit: Minnesota Children's Musem

Photo Credit: Minnesota Children’s Musem


Free Third Sunday at the Minnesota Children’s Museum,
Minnesota Children’s Museum, 10 West Seventh Street, St. Paul, MN 55102
Sunday, March 16, 2014; 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

I know that I am in the minority — at least among bloggers, but I really enjoy Free Third Sundays at the Children’s Museum.  I don’t want to go every month, but when we go, I have a good time.  I think this is because the Children’s Museum is built for kids — a lot of kids.  Unlike other museums that host family events, but aren’t necessarily created for children, it’s okay if you lose sight of your kid for a minute or two.  There isn’t much they can’t get into.  That said, this month is one of the two busiest months of the year.  If it wasn’t for the Dinosaur exhibit that we are really, really excited about, I’d put it off a month or two. April, May and June are much less busy.  If you choose to go this month, you may want to make a quick stop at Target’s Dollar Spot before going.  They have plastic dinosaurs right now.  It would make a great incentive to get out when you are done.  “Hey Jimmy, I’ve bought you your own plastic dinosaur and its in the car.  Want to go get it?”

Leprechaun_01Free Family Fun Day: Leprechaun Antics

Carl Kroening Interpretive Center,  4900 Mississippi Court,Minneapolis, MN 55430
Sunday, March 16, 2014; 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Want some St. Patty’s Day fun?  You and your family can walk the trails of North Mississippi Regional Park and visit the exhibits in the Carl Kroening Interpretive Center to discover the tricks the leprechauns have played on the nature center. Everyone goes home with a lucky Mississippi River rock. Drop in anytime! This program is free and open to all ages.  Sunday’s weather is nothing to complain about, but it will be the coolest day of the week, so bundle up and LOVE the fact that 28 degrees is cold again.

Joy Peters is a co-creator and writer for

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About the author

Joy Peters

Joy Peters – co-creator and writer for

Besides Family Fun Twin Cities, I spend my 9 to 5 at a day job pursuing my weird passion for calendars and organizing things as a legal secretary. When I get home I spend my time with my four kids, 10, 6, 4 and 1. My amazing husband is both a full-time musician and full-time stay-at-home dad. Together we run a small radio empire — SiaNet Radio — playing, promoting and enjoying the wide variety of local music and art in the Twin Cities. I juggle all this while writing about exploring the Twin Cities with kids. I couldn’t be happier.

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