June explodes with FREE family events that bring on summer: outdoor concerts and movies, the opening of beaches, outdoor pools and splash pads, entertainment in the park and much more. And, in order to better serve our readers, we’ve organized our usual roundup of activities by regions of the Twin Cities Metro. As always, if you don’t see a favorite event listed in YOUR hometown, please drop us a line and we’ll add it. Happy June savings from FFTC.
In case your family is needing a boost this season while you’re out and about, Free Summer Meals for Kids are offered at more public venues than you would imagine – parks, libraries, elementary schools, churches and many more. There is no income level requirement to participate.
Como Park Zoo & Conservatory | St Paul | Daily, spring/summer hours 10am-4pm | Suggested donation of $2/child & $3/adult, but all are welcome whether or not you choose to donate.
Minneapolis Institute of Arts | Minneapolis | Daily, 11am-5pm
Starts 5/18/18: St Paul Music in the Parks | Daily, parks vary
Saturday Live! | George Latimer Central Library, St Paul | Ongoing Saturdays, 11:15am | Fresh entertainment each week including live music, puppetry, magicians and more.
Wee Wednesdays | Midtown Global Market, Minneapolis | Ongoing Wednesdays, 10:30am – 1pm | In the past, MGM has offered dance troupes, cooking lessons, and live animals to entertain kids. Park in the adjacent Midtown Exchange Ramp up to 1.5 hrs. free with validation.
Lil Explorer Thursdays | Como Park Zoo & Conservatory, St. Paul | Ongoing Thursdays, 10am-noon | The hall between the Visitor Center and the Conservatory is filled with hands-on activities, manipulatives, art projects and games perfect for the 4 & under set. Explore a different theme each week.
Starts Memorial Day Weekend: Minneapolis Music in the Parks | Nightly; park vary
Starts 6/1/18: St Paul Movies in the Park | Parks and times vary, check link for schedule
Starts 6/1/18: Go Outside with Hennepin County | Hennpin County Government Center South Plaza, Minneapolis & Target Field Station | A farmers market, outdoor movies, trivia and food trucks encourage families to get outdoors and explore the city.
6/2/18: First Free Saturday: Family Pride | Walker Art Center, Minneapolis | 10am-3pm | Activities are geared towards kids ages 6-12, but don’t let that stop you from bringing your littler ones! Free gallery admission for the whole family.
6/2/18: Home Depot Kids Workshop | TC Home Depot locations | 9am-noon | The first Saturday of each month kids get a kit to build, apron and pin while supplies last; adults must accompany children.
6/3/18: Grand Old Day & Summer Reading Kick Off | Red Balloon Bookshop, 891 Grand Ave, St. Paul |11am – 5pm | Celebrate summer with Grand Old Day and Red Balloon’s Summer Reading Challenge. Keep your eyes peeled for Red Balloon’s entry in Minnesota’s largest summer parade starting at 9:30am, then swing by the store anytime after 11am to pick up your summer reading bingo card and books to go with it.
Starts 6/4/18: Minneapolis Movies in the Park | Mon-Sat, movies begin 15 min. past sunset
Starts: 6/6/18: Groovin’ in the Garden | Como Park Zoo & Conservatory, St Paul | Ongoing Wed in June, 6-8pm | FREE concerts, a climbing wall, bounce house, and lawn games for kids, and food available for purchase.
Starts 6/7/18: Twin Cities River Rats Ski Shows | 1758 N West River Rd, Minneapolis | Ongoing Thurs, 6:30pm.
6/10/18: Open Streets Minneapolis | Lyndale Avenue in Uptown | 11am-5pm | Open Streets Minneapolis is a free event bringing together community groups and local businesses to temporarily close major thoroughfares to car traffic, opening them up for people walking, biking, rolling, and playing. Snapology will be at 26th and Lyndale!
6/11/18: “See You Tomorrow, Samurai” Book Club | Red Balloon Bookshop, 891 Grand Ave, St. Paul | 6:30pm | If you’re 10 or older and a fan of realistic middle grade, join bookseller Sarah this summer for a few of our favorite stories, two of which are by local authors! This month’s book is Until Tomorrow, Mr. Marsworth by Sheila O’Connor.
6/12/18: Bubble Storytime | Red Balloon Bookshop, 891 Grand Ave, St. Paul 6:30pm | Join Storyteller Angela for a special outdoor, evening storytime all about Bubbles aimed | at kids ages 1 – 5. We’ll read, rhyme, sing, and enjoy a bubble dance party!
6/17/18: Target Free 3rd Sunday | Minnesota Children’s Museum, St Paul | 9am-5pm | Explore the newly renovated and expanded museum free! Keep in mind that this program is very popular (and might be especially so on Father’s Day!) and you may wait in line to be admitted.
6/18/18: Cafesjian’s Carousel Free Day | Como Park, STP | 11am-4pm
6/20/18: Giraffe Storytime with Elise Parsley & NECK & NECK | Red Balloon Bookshop, 891 Grand Ave, St. Paul | 10:30am | Join special storytime guest star Elise Parsley as she shares her new book Neck & Neck. Afterward, the author will sign copies of her books, and coloring activities will be provided. This family storytime and author signing will be best appreciated by kids ages 2 and up.
6/21/18: Graphic Novel Book Club | Red Balloon Bookshop, 891 Grand Ave, St. Paul | 6:30pm | Graphic Novel Book Club is for kids 8+ who are excited to spend the summer discussing exciting graphic novels. This month’s book is Kid Beowulf: The Blood Bound Oath by Alexis Fajardo.
6/21/18: Alexis Fajardo, KID BEOWULF: THE BLOOD-BOUND OATH – Meet & Greet | Red Balloon Bookshop, 891 Grand Ave, St. Paul | 7:00pm | After visiting with members of the Graphic Novel Book Club, Alexis Fajardo will sign copies of his books and tell us all about his Kid Beowulf series, making comics, and his work as Senior Editor at Charles M. Schulz Studio.
6/26/18: Wings of Fire Party! | Red Balloon Bookshop, 891 Grand Ave, St. Paul |6:30pm | Help celebrate the release of The Lost Continent by Tui T. Sutherland at Red Balloon Booksho p in St. Paul at our first ever Wings of Fire Party! We’ll have a scavenger hunt, DIY dragon crafts, and Wings of Fire trivia.
06/29/18: Free Build Friday! | Snapology, 2649 Lyndale Ave. S, Minneapolis | 9am-8:30pm | Come on over to our Discovery Center any time on Friday, 6/29 for FREE drop-in creative building time!! *Drop-off is still $6 per child per hour*
6/3/18 & 6/17/18: June Free Family Fun Days | Coon Rapids Dam Reg Park, Brooklyn Park | 1-3pm
Starts 6/6/18: Silverwood OnStage | Silverwood Park, St Anthony | Ongoing Wednesdays, 6:30pm
Starts 6/7/18: Summer Concert Series | Coon Rapids Reg Park pavilion | Ongoing Thursdays, 7pm
6/10/18: Puppet Adventures of Ned the Naturalist | Silverwood Park, St Anthony | 1-3pm | Join Ned the Naturalist as he stops Trasher the Trash Can from trashing nature. Try art making with a take-home activity.
Starts 6/11/18: Sounds of Summer | Town Green Maple Grove | Includes Celebrate the Family, ongoing Thursdays and Movies by Moonlight to come in July & August 2018.
Starts 6/12/18: Entertainment in the Park | Hilde Performance Center, Plymouth | Music and other live entertainment with more to follow in July & August.
6/15/18 & 6/16/18: Eidem Homestead Open House | Brooklyn Park | Fri 12-7pm, Sat 10-2 | Farm tours, hayrides & old-time demos.
6/22/18: Night at the Movies | Townsend Park, New Brighton | at dusk
6/29/18: Stories From the Porch | Eidem Homestead, Brooklyn Park | 10am-12pm | Bring your chairs or blanket for storytime on the farm (stories read at 10:15 & 11am) followed by free play. Also held 6/26/18 from 7-8pm featuring bedtime stories.
Starts 6/10/18: Live @ The Rog! Performance Series | Central Park, Roseville | Ongoing Sundays
6/13/18: Concerts in the Commons | Shoreview Community Center | Ongoing Wednesdays
Starts 6/19/18: Roseville Puppet Wagon | Roseville parks | Ongoing Tues-Thurs, 9:30-11:30am
Starts 6/20/18: Discover Your Parks | Roseville parks | Ongoing Wednesdays, 6:30-8pm
6/25/18: Shoreview Puppet Wagon | Commons Park, Shoreview | 6:30pm
6/21/18: Music in the Parks Summer Concert Series | Casey Lake Park, North St Paul
6/22/18: Wet ‘n Wild – Outdoor Waterslide | Shoreview Community Center | 12:30-2:30pm
6/1/18: Forever Wild Family Friday: Pollinators | Lebanon Hills Regional Park, Eagan | 7-8:30pm
Starts 6/7/18: Huber Park Performance & Event Series | Ongoing Thursdays
6/8/18 & 6/22/18: Friday Night Flicks on the Bricks | Nicollet Commons Park, Burnsville | Ongoing Fridays, 6:30 seating, 7pm show.
6/9/18: Free Movies in the Park: LEGO Batman Movie | Central Park, Rosemount | 9pm
Starts 6/11/18: Woodbury Puppet Wagon | Woodbury parks | Ongoing Mon-Thurs, plus, Puppet Wagon Preview Party at Kinderberry Hill, 6/7/18, with shows, crafts and popsicles.
Starts 6/12/18: Free Summer Events in the Park | South Valley Park, Inver Grove Heights | Select Tuesdays.
Starts 6/14/18: Thursday Rockin’ Lunch Hour Concerts & Thursday Rockin’ Readers | Nicollet Commons Park, Burnsville | Ongoing Thursdays, stay to enjoy the landscaped splash pad!
Starts 6/14/18: Music in the Parks Series | Central Park, Rosemount | Ongoing Thursdays, 10am
6/14/18 & 6/28/18: Starlight Cinema Outdoor Movie Series | Ojibway Park, Woodbury | Pre-show activities begin at 7pm, movie starts at dusk.
Starts 6/15/18: Music in Kelley Park | Apple Valley | Ongoing Fridays | Music 6-9pm, food available for purchase, prizes and a splash pad for the kids to cool off in.
Starts 6/18/18: Eagan Puppet Wagon | Eagan parks | Ongoing Mon-Fri | Bring a blanket for the shows, then stay after for art projects and interactive activities.
Starts 6/18/18: Apple Valley Puppet Wagon | Apple Valley parks, ongoing Mon-Fri
Splash Pad Special Events | Highlands Park, Cottage Grove | Ongoing Fridays, 11am-noon
June Universe in the Park | 8:30-10pm | See our out-of-this-world Universe in the Park article to get more details on these stargazing opportunities. $7 vehicle permit required in state parks, no fee at nature centers.
Starts 6/2/18: Nature Rocks! Open House | Eden Prairie Outdoor Center | 9am-noon | Ongoing Saturdays of each month enjoy free family-friendly activities such as hiking, hands-on interaction with live animals, craft projects and more.
Starts 6/2/18: Grimm Farmhouse Open House | Carver Park Reserve, Victoria | Ongoing Sat, 1-4pm
Starts 6/3/18: Entertainment at Centennial Lakes Park | Edina | Events Sun-Thurs including movies in the park (Thursdays, dusk), live music, kids entertainment (Tuesdays, noon) and farmers markets.
Starts 6/4/18: Concerts in the Park | Brookview Park, Golden Valley | Ongoing Mondays, 7pm,
Starts 6/5/18: MOA Summer Toddler Tuesdays, Mall of America Rotunda | Ongoing Tuesdays, 10am – noon | Live entertainment and activities guaranteed to excite the stroller set.
6/8/18: Moonlight Movies | Red Haddox Field, Bloomington | Ongoing Fri & select Saturdays, 9pm
Starts 6/10/18: June Free Family Fun Days | Richardson Nature Center | Ongoing Sundays, 3-4pm
Starts 6/11/18: Arts in the Parks: Monday Morning Kids Series | Moir Park, Bloomington | 10:30am
Starts 6/12/18: Kids Summer Movie Escape | CMX Cinemas – Mall of America & Burnsville | Ongoing Tues-Thurs, doors open at 9:30.
6/12/18: Kids Summer Entertainment Series | Firemen’s Park, Chaska | Ongoing Tues, 10:30am – also Clayhole Concerts, Wednesdays starting 6/13/18. Ice Cream Social & Beach Bash 6/13/18, 6pm
6/12/18: Music in the Park & Farmers Market | Minnetonka Civic Center Amphitheater | Ongoing Tuesdays, 7-8:30pm
6/12/18: Kids Entertainment in Augsburg Park | Richfield | Ongoing Tuesdays, noon. Evening Series, ongoing Thursdays starting 6/7/18, 7pm.
6/14/18: Theater in the Park: Pirates of Penzance, Jr | Minnetonka Civic Center Amphitheater
6/15/18-6/17/18 & 6/21/18-6/24/18: Eden Prairie Park Players Presents: Beauty & the Beast | Staring Lake Amphitheater
Starts 6/19/18: Kidstock | Staring Lake Amphitheater, Eden Prairie | Ongoing Tuesdays, 10:30am
Starts 6/27/18: Creative Kidstuff Concerts | Shops West End, St Louis Pk | Ongoing Wed, 10-11am.
6/1/18-6/2/18: Flint Hills Family Festival | Downtown St Paul
6/1/18-6/2/18: Johnstock | Johnson St NE, Minneapolis
6/1/18-6/3/18: Edina Art Fair | 50th & France, Edina
6/2/18: Art in the Hollow | Swede Hollow Park, St Paul
6/2/18: Saint Anthony Park Arts Festival | Como and Carter Avenues, St Paul
6/2/18-6/3/18: Discover Aviation Days | Anoka County Airport, Blaine
6/2/18-6/8/18: I Love Burnsville Week
6/3/18: Grand Old Day | Grand Ave, St Paul
6/6/18-6/10/18: Albertville Friendly City Days | Albertville
6/7/18-6/10/18: Spring Lake Park Tower Days | Spring Lake Park
6/7/18-6/10/18: Hugo Good Neighbor Days | Hugo
6/9/18-6/10/18: Art on the Lake | Excelsior
6/9/18-6/10/18: Deutsche Tage | Germanic-American Institute, St Paul
6/9/18-6/10/18: Chalkfest at Arbor Lakes | Maple Grove
6/10/18: Open Streets Lyndale | Minneapolis, 11 AM – 5 PM
6/10/18-6/17/18: Buffalo Days | Buffalo
6/12/18-6/16/18: Farmington Dew Days | Farmington
6/13/18-6/16/18: Faribault Heritage Celebration | Faribault
6/13/18-6/17/18: St. Louis Park Parktacular | St Louis Park
6/14/18-6/16/18: Tater Daze Festival | Brooklyn Park
6/14/18-6/16/18: Fridley Fest (formerly ’49er Days) | Commons Park, Fridley
6/14/18-6/17/18: Cottage Grove Strawberry Fest | Kingston Park, Cottage Grove
6/14/18-7/4/18: Manitou Days | White Bear Lake
6/15/18-6/16/18: Northern Spark | Minneapolis
6/15/18-6/17/18: Stone Arch Bridge Festival | Minneapolis
6/16/18: Maker Fest | Rondo Library, St Paul
6/20/18-6/24/18: Columbia Heights Lions Jamboree | Huset Park, Columbia Heights
6/21/186/23/18: Earle Brown Days Festival | Brooklyn Center
6/21/18-6/23/18: Twin Cities Jazz Festival | St Paul
6/21/18-6/24/18: Oakdale Summerfest | Walton Park, Oakdale
6/21/18-6/25/18: Rosefest | Roseville
6/22/18-6/24/18: Kaposia Days | South St Paul
6/22/18-6/24/18: Blaine Festival | Aquatore Park, Blaine
6/23/18: Minnetonka Summer Festival | Civic Center Campus
6/23/18-6/24/18: Afton Strawberry Festival | Afton
6/23/18-6/24/18: Eagan Art Festival | Eagan Festival Grounds
6/24/18: Scandinavian Summer Fest | Minnehaha Park, Minneapolis
6/26/18-7/4/18: Apple Valley Freedom Days | Apple Valley
6/29/18-7/3/18: Hudson Booster Days | Lakefront Park, Hudson WI
You don’t have to look far to find a free spot to take a dip in the Twin Cities. Starting early June, the following beaches beckon to little swimmers and charge no vehicle fee or admission:
- Dakota County beaches – 2 locations, no vehicle permit required
- Three Rivers Park District Beaches – 7 unguarded locations
- Minneapolis swimming beaches – 8 locations, 2 with lifeguards
- Ramsey County swimming beach – lifeguards on duty at 5 locations
- Webber Natural Swimming Pool – Minneapolis | Water treated with plants instead of chemicals.
Minneapolis Wading Pools are perfect for the splash set and those just learning to swim. Pools attached to a city public school building will open June 9, all others open Memorial Day Weekend.