Fall into September savings on fun things to do with your family in the Twin Cities – many apple orchards and pumpkin patches offer free admission along with a full harvest of fall festivals. Also make sure to check our TWIN CITIES SEPTEMBER FAMILY GUIDE our complete GUIDE TO FALL FUN IN THE TWIN CITIES and our FAMILY FUN CALENDAR for a full listing of events around town.
FREE THINGS TO DO IN TWIN CITIES PARKS - SEPTEMBER 2023
1220 Diffley Rd, Eagan, MN 55123
Wander the self-guided trails through the sculpture park. 9am-8pm thru September 2023. FREE admission, donations appreciated.
1225 Estabrook Dr, St Paul, MN 55103
Seasonal events include the opening of the Fall Flower Show in the Conservatory’s sunken garden. Come visit the seals at Como Harbor, new habitat and walk through the peaceful Japanese Garden. Suggested donation of $2/child & $3/adult, but all welcome whether or not you choose to donate. Open daily in September 2023, 10am-6pm.
More free things to do at Como Park Zoo & Conservatory:
Lil Explorer Thursdays are back! The hall between the Visitor Center & 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. Ongoing Thursdays in September 2023.
Free carousel rides in September: CAFESJIAN’S CAROUSEL in Como Park offers free spins on September 26, 2023.
860 Cliff Rd, Eagan, MN 55123
Visit the park the first Friday of every month for outdoor activities. This month learn all about Owls. September 1, 2023, 6-7:30pm. Free. No registration necessary
401 E 104th St, Bloomington, MN 55420
Hands-on living history programs fun and free of charge. New themes each week. Ongoing Saturdays, September 2-23, 2023. Drop in from 1-4pm.
Explore Washington County Parks free on the first Tuesday of every month (non-holiday). No permit required. Find a listing of parks here. September 5, 2023.
1 Theodore Wirth Pkwy, Minneapolis, MN 55405
A naturalist hosts a different nature themed story each week within the Garden followed by an activity. Meet just outside the Visitor Shelter. Bring a blanket to sit on. Ongoing Thursdays (10 am-10:30 am) and Saturdays (2 pm-2:30 pm) in September starting September 2, 2023, FREE.
Hyland Hills Ski Area, 8800 Chalet Rd, Bloomington, MN 55438
Food trucks begin at 5 pm, the movie Hocus Pocus (1993) begins at dusk. September 8, 2023.
Eden Prairie Outdoor Center, 13765 Staring Lake Pkwy, Eden Prairie, MN 55347
Enjoy free family-friendly activities such as hiking, hands-on interaction with live animals, craft projects and more. Ongoing Saturdays, September 9-23, 2023. 10am-1pm.
Silverwood Park, 2500 County Rd E, St Anthony, MN 55421
The 13th annual arts and environment festival. Outdoor concerts, artmaking, crafts, games and food trucks. September 23, 2023, drop in between 12-4pm.
Tamarack Nature Center, White Bear Lake
Stay to play in the amazing outdoor nature playground Discovery Hollow while you still can! Sat, September 9 and 23, 2023, 10am-12pm.
Carpenter St Croix Valley Nature Center, Hastings
The Raptor Center releases rehabbed birds plus wagon rides, kids activities and educational displays. September 23, 2023. More details to come.
5116 N Mississippi Dr, Minneapolis, MN 55412
Birds use the Mississippi Rive to guide them during their migration. Learn more as you hike with a guide along the Mississippi itself. Registration required. September 30, 2023, 2 pm-3:30 pm.
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.
Free September Movies in the Park
FREE TWIN CITIES FESTIVALS FOR THE FAMILY - SEPTEMBER 2023
AFTON: Art in the Park (September 23-24)
BAYPORT: Derby Days (September 15-16)
BLAINE: World Fest (September 16)
BURNSVILLE: Fire Muster (September 6-9)
DELANO: Oktoberfest (September 16)
EAGAN: National Public Lands Day Celebration (September 23)
EDINA: Fall into the Arts Festival (September 9-10)
EXCELSIOR: Art & Apples on the Lake (September 15-17)
INVER GROVE HEIGHTS: Inver Grove Heights Days (September 6-10)
LAKEVILLE: Lakeville Art Festival (September 16-17)
MINNEAPOLIS: Linden Hills Festival (September 30)
MINNEAPOLIS: Open Streets West Broadway (September 10)
MINNEAPOLIS: Monarch Festival (September 9)
OTSEGO: Prairie Festival (September 16)
PLYMOUTH: Plymouth on Parade (September 23)
RED WING: Minnesota Children’s Book Festival (September 16)
ROSEVILLE: Wild Rice Festival (September 16)
ST LOUIS PARK: Roctoberfest (September 23)
ST PAUL: Mac-Grove Fest (September 9)
ST PAUL: Oktoberfest at German-American Institute (September 8-9)
WACONIA: Nickle Dickle Day (September 16)
WAYZATA: James J. Hill Days (September 8-10)
FREE TWIN CITIES FAMILY ARTS EVENTS - SEPTEMBER 2023
725 Vineland Pl, Minneapolis, MN 55403
During this special First Free Saturday, enjoy music and dancing in the garden, pick up a craft kit, and, as always, free admission to the Walker’s galleries. September 2, 2023, 10am-3pm.
501 S 2nd St, Minneapolis, MN 55401
Two sessions will include a half hour of instrument exploration, outdoor activities, and a sample class. The Bazillions, a favorite kid-friendly band, will perform. Snacks to follow. Sept 9, 2023 two performance times: 10:15-10:45am OR 11:15am-11:45pm. FREE.
Arts and Folk Crafts – kid-friendly activities related to the MIA exhibition, then pick up an art kit to experiment with different materials at home. Sept 10, 2023. 10am-5pm.
TWIN CITIES APPLE ORCHARDS WITH FREE ADMISSION
Aamodt’s Apple Farm | Stillwater
Applecrest Orchards | Hugo
Applewood Orchard | Lakeville
Deardorff Orchards & Vineyard | Waconia.
Fall Harvest Orchard | Montrose
Fischer’s Croix Farm Orchard | Hastings
LuceLine Orchard | Watertown
Minnetonka Orchards | Minnetrista
Pine Tree Apple Orchard | White Bear Lake
Pleasant Valley Orchard | Taylors Falls
Sunrise River Farm | Wyoming
Whistling Well Farm | Hastings
TWIN CITIES FREE FAMILY ENTERTAINMENT IN SEPTEMBER 2023
10 7th St W, St Paul, MN 55102
Explore the revamped museum FREE of charge; tickets become available at 10 am on the Monday two weeks before each event September 3, 2023. 9am-5pm.
Live entertainment and activities guaranteed to excite the stroller set at the Mall of America Rotunda. Ongoing Tuesdays in September 2023, 10am – noon.
Fresh, family entertainment – music, storytelling, puppets and more. Check the schedule for more details. Saturdays in September, 2023, 11am.
Blue Tree Music Education created this music class for preschoolers ages 3-5. Preschoolers and caregivers alike make music, move to the beat, sing, dance together! September 16, 2023, 11 am-11:45 am.
Union Depot, St Paul
Play giant-sized versions of classic games including chess, checkers, Connect Four, Dominoes and more. Ongoing Wednesdays, 10am-8pm.
- ST LOUIS PARK FIRE DEPARTMENT OPEN HOUSE – kid-friendly activities, including Sparky the Fire Dog and a squirt house, along with fire truck displays. There will be Hot dogs, chips, cookies and water available. September 19, 2023, 5pm-7:30pm. Fire Station 1, 3750 Wooddale Ave S, St Louis Park, MN 55416.
- COMMUNITY CHILI COOK-OFF – Admission includes police squad and fire truck displays as well as chili tasting, live music, games and Sparky the Fire Dog. Saturday, September 16, 2023, 11am-2pm. $10/pp. Food shelf donations welcome. Faith Church Minnetonka, 12007 Excelsior Blvd, Minnetonka, MN 55343.
- CHANHASSEN FIRE DEPARTMENT OPEN HOUSE – Kids can see firetrucks, try out a fire-fighter obstacle course, play in a bounce house and watch demos. Snacks, ice cream and drinks available. Monday, September 25, 2023. 7610 Laredo Drive, Chanhassen, MN 55317.
- FIRE FIGHTER STORYTIME – meet the Roseville Fire Department with their trucks Free. Drop In. Roseville: Friday, Sept 22, 2023 10:30, 2180 N Hamline Ave
- SPECIAL GUEST LAKE JOHANNA FIRE DEPARTMENT — Meet a firefighter, and explore a fire truck. Free. Drop In.
Shoreview: Monday, Sept 25, 2023 10:30 am and Tuesday, Sept 26, 2023 6 pm, 4560 Victoria St. N
TWIN CITIES PUMPKIN PATCHES WITH FREE ADMISSION
Spending a day in the pumpkin patch is classically fall and can be budget family fun when admission is free! These patches do not charge a fee and some have free activities, too.
MORE FREE THINGS TO DO IN THE TWIN CITIES IN SEPTEMBER 2023
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. Nature centers are wonderful places that offer free admission and hands-on exhibits and outdoor play opportunities most days of the week. And dozens of St Paul & Minneapolis recreation centers offer free open gyms and tot times to run your littles ragged during the cooler months. Explore from our links below.