50 Free Things To Do in May: Twin Cities Family Events

May is literally blooming with free events and activities in the Twin Cities! Make sure to check our TWIN CITIES MAY FAMILY GUIDE , our ULTIMATE GUIDE TO SPRING IN THE TWIN CITIES and our FAMILY FUN CALENDAR for a complete listing of events around town.

Want to find free things to do in the Minneapolis-St Paul area this weekend with your kids? Find our current TWIN CITIES WEEKEND FAMILY GUIDE, packed with suggestions.

children in a family bike ride


There is so much FREE family fun to be had out in Twin Cities-areas parks during the lovely month of May. Here’s a sampling of the best free events Twin Cities-area parks have to offer this month:

Como Park Zoo & Conservatory

1225 Estabrook Dr, St Paul, MN 55103
Seasonal events in May include the Summer Flower Show (starting May 6, 2023) in the Conservatory’s sunken garden. Warm up with the indoor exhibits when the weather isn’t cooperating. Currently, the Zoo & Conservatory are open by reservation only.  Suggested donation of $2/child & $3/adult, but all welcome whether or not you choose to donate. 10am-6pm.

More free spring fun at COMO PARK ZOO & CONSERVATORY: Don’t miss Como Lil’ Explorer ThursdaysEach themed week is packed with free games, art projects and sensory tables. Thursdays in May 2023, 10am-12pm.

Free Twin Cities April

Caponi Art Park

1220 Diffley Rd, Eagan, MN 55123
Wander the self-guided trails through the sculpture park. Opens May 1, 2023. 9am-8pm. FREE admission, donations appreciated.

Free Tuesday @ Washington County Parks 

Explore Washington County Parks free on the first Tuesday of every month (non-holiday). No vehicle permit required. Find a listing of parks here. May 2, 2023.

Forever Wild Family Friday

Thompson County Park, 1200 Stassen Lane, West St. Paul, MN 55118​
All ages can join park naturalists to learn about reptiles and amphibians. May 5, 2023, 6-7:30pm. FREE.

Staring Lake Animal Open House 

Eden Prairie Outdoor Center, 13765 Staring Lake Parkway, Eden Prairie, Minnesota 55347
Interact with a variety of animals including rabbits, a hedgehog, turtles and more. May 6, 2023, 1-4pm.

Drop-in Discoveries at Tamarack Nature Center 

5287 Otter Lake Rd, White Bear Township, MN 55110
Hands-on, family-friendly themed nature stations. If the weather permits, make sure to let the kids run and explore the amazing DISCOVERY HOLLOW NATURE PLAYGROUND. May 6, 2023. Drop in anytime between 10am-12pm.

Nature Rocks! Eden Prairie Outdoor Center May Open Houses

Eden Prairie Outdoor Center, 13765 Staring Lake Parkway, Eden Prairie, Minnesota 55347
Drop in to meet the resident animals, learn about programs and events. Saturdays, May 6-27, 2023, 10am-1pm.

May Free Family Fun Days with Three Rivers Parks

Three Rivers Parks locations
Drop in for free nature programs at EASTMAN NATURE CENTER, MISSISSIPPI GATEWAY REGIONAL PARKRICHARDSON NATURE CENTER. New themes each week, make sure to check the link for the most up to date schedule. Sundays, May 7-28, 2023, 1-4pm.

Puppet Adventures & Let’s Get StARTed

Silverwood Park, 2500 County Rd E, St Anthony, MN 55421
Take in a puppet show followded by make-and-take nature-inspired art. May 14, 2023, 1-3pm.

Photo Collage of kids enjoying Silverwood Park in St. Anthony Minnesota -- Girl in a pink dress dancing in field of yellow flowers, girls skipping rocks, girls in the doorway of a tiny art house

Family Funday: Toads, Frogs & Polliwogs 

North Mississippi Regional Park, 4900 Mississippi Ct, Minneapolis, MN, US 55430
Learn about amphibians, play games and create a toad home for your yard. Drop in, FREE.
May 20, 2023. 1-3pm.

Free Twin Cities Nature Centers

Nature and outdoor interpretive centers are wonderful places that offer free admission and hands-on exhibits and outdoor play opportunities most days of the week. Find our complete listing of TWIN CITIES NATURE CENTERS.


These outdoor swimming holes typically open Memorial Day Weekend, weather permitting. Make sure to double check the websites before packing up the swimsuits and heading out.

Nicollet Commons Park water feature

12550 Nicollet Ave, Burnsville, MN 55337
The prettiest splash pad you ever did see. Open daily when weather permits. Free entertainment offered during the summer.

Girl playing in Nicollet Commons Park - Splash Pad in Burnsville, Minnesota


Oak Hill Park Splash Pad 

3201 Rhode Island Ave S, St Louis Park, MN 55426
Residents admitted free, non-residents pay $1/pp, cash only. Opens May 26, 2023. Daily, 10am-8pm.

Minneapolis Wading Pools & Beaches

We have all the details on the FREE MINNEAPOLIS WADING POOLS and the FREE MINNEAPOLIS BEACHES Please note that wading pools attached to a Minneapolis public school will remain closed until the school year is done. Beaches remain unguarded until mid-June. Open daily 10am-9pm. FREE.

Wabun Picnic Area Pool

Webber Natural Swimming Pool 

4300 Webber Pkwy, Minneapolis, MN 55412
The pool water is treated with plants instead of chemicals. Zero-depth entry for the littlest swimmers.
FREE admission.


Free Story & Art Time at Eden Prairie Art Center

7650 Equitable Drive, Eden Prairie, MN
Drop in for storytime & an art project. Mondays, May 1-22, 2023, 10-11am.

Walker Art Center First Free Saturday

Walker Art Center, 725 Vineland Pl, Minneapolis, MN 55403
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. Explore the galleries with a scavenger hunt and create art onsite. May 6, 2023, 10am-3pm.

Sing, Play, Learn! with MacPhail Center for Music

MacPhail Center For Music, 501 S 2nd St, Minneapolis, MN 55401
MacPhail’s Free Family Music series features two 30-minute concerts by a very kid-friendly band, instrument-making and snacks. May 6, 2023, concerts at 10:15 & 11:15am. No tickets necessary.

Home Depot Kids Workshops

Twin Cities Home Depot locations
The first Saturday of each month is workshop day at Home Depot. Kids get a kit to build, apron and pin while supplies last; adults must accompany their kids. Please pre-register. May 6, 2023, 9am-12pm.

Michaels May Sunday Makebreak

Participating Michaels stores across the Twin Cities are offering free weekend “Makebreak” classes and “Take & Make” Kids Club crafts. They’re simple, yet could lend a nice personal touch to a small gift. Sundays, May 7-28, 2023, 2-4pm.

Minneapolis Institute of Art Family Day

2400 Third Avenue South Minneapolis, Minnesota 55404
Includes hands-on art activities, live music and dance, artist demos and special tours designed for kids. May 14, 2023, 10am-5pm.

Lakeshore Learning Dinosaur Discovery

1721 Beam Ave A, Maplewood, MN 55109
5699 W 16th St, St Louis Park, MN 55416
Explore color, texture and other sensory activities at this open-house style event. May 20, 2023.



Free Special Events for Families: Touch-a-Truck calendar

Arden Hills Touch-A-Truck

Perry Park, 3700 New Brighton Road, Arden Hills, MN 55112
Got kids who are just crazy about getting up close to big rigs? Celebrate National Public Works Week in Arden Hills by getting a close-up look at some of your favorite vehicles, including a fire engine, squad car, boat, snowplow, and more. May 20, 2023 from 10am to 1pm.

Bloomington Public Works Open House

1700 West 98th Street, Bloomington MN 55431
Equipment rides and demos, interactive displays, free snacks and prizes. May 20, 9am-12pm. FREE.

Coon Rapids Public Works Open House

1831 111th Ave. NW, Coon Rapids MN
Take a tour of the Public Works facility and check out snowplows, tractors and other big rigs. Kids can learn about the city’s Recycling Center and other community services. May 20, 2023, 10am-Noon.

Farmington Police Dept. Open House

Farmington Police Department, 19500 Municipal Dr, Farmington, MN 55024
See squad cars, SWAT vehicles, sheriff vehicles and a helicopter. There will also be a bounce house and food trucks on site. FREE. May 20, 2023; 11am to 2pm.

Inver Grove Heights Touch-A-Truck

Veterans Memorial Community Center, 8055 Barbara Ave, Inver Grove Heights, MN 55077
Kids of all ages will love these photo opportunities with a wide variety of different trucks on display, including IGH Police Cars, Fire Trucks, Public Works Vehicles, Commemorative Air Force MN, and plenty more. Bring money for ice cream! May 20, 2023 from 9:30am-11:30am.

More free events for families:

Saturday Vibe at George Latimer Central Library

Fresh, family entertainment – music, storytelling, puppets and more. Check the schedule for more details. May 6 & 20, 2023, 11am.

First Free Sundays at Minnesota Children’s Museum

Free days are BACK at the museum and we’re super excited about it! Explore the exhibits, including Thomas and Friends admission-free the first Sunday of each month thanks to Securian Financial. May 7, 2023.

Mall of America Toddler Tuesday 

Back in-person entertainment the second Tuesday of the month (plus meal deals and a Nickelodeon Universe wristband deal for kids). May 9, 2023.

Storytime in the Gallery

Museum of Russian Art, 5500 Stevens Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55419
Currently, the museum is offering a FREE Storytime in the Gallery the third Saturday of the month with no charge for adults to accompany their kids. Take home a copy of the story and explore the galleries with a scavenger hunt. May 21, 2023, 10:30-11am.

Immigrant for a Day at Gammelgarden Museum

20880 Olinda Trail N, Scandia, MN 55073 
Step back into the 1850’s with Swedish immigrant family activities and tours. May 28, 2023, 1-4pm.

Memorial Day at Lakewood Cemetery

3600 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55408
Write custom postcards, create origami, take a guided tour, and enjoy live music and refreshments. May 29, 2023, 10am-2pm.

Find more free things to do in the twin cities!

Free abounds in the Twin Cities. Many local bookstores, libraries and other businesses offer free storytimes during the week. Local coffee shops & cafes serve parents with free dedicated play spaces. And dozens of St Paul & Minneapolis recreation centers offer free open gyms and tot times to run your littles ragged.

4 thoughts on “50 Free Things To Do in May: Twin Cities Family Events”

  1. Virginia M Hoffmann

    Great ideas for the family. We have a family of six, so time, scheduling, and money are important. Thank you for the wonderful ideas.

    1. We are so glad you find it useful, Virginia. Anne, Gianna and I also each have 4 kids, so we know the balancing act between time, scheduling & money and still finding family fun time. Please drop us a line if you find anything cool we’ve missed.

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