Free Twin Cities September Family Events & Activities

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Free Twin Cities September



9/1: Forever Wild Family Friday | Lebanon Hills Regional Park Visitor Center, Eagan | 7-8:30pm | Get out as a family and hike the fall trails.

9/2/17: First Free Saturday Garden Party: Move | 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. Get out and explore the new sculpture garden!

9/2/17: 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.

9/5/17: Free Tuesday @ Washington County Parks | find a listing of parks here | Explore Washington County Parks free on the first Tuesday of every month (non-holiday). No vehicle permit required.

9/6/17: Let’s Get Crafty | American Girl Store, Mall of America | Ongoing first Wed/month, 4-6pm

9/8/17: Movies on the Hill: LEGO Batman | Hyland Hills Ski Area, Bloomington | 6-10pm

9/9/17: Free Family Music Series: The Story of Babar | MacPhail Center for Music, Minneapolis | 10am-12pm open house w/ performances at 10 & 11am | Designed for kids 8 & under, the musical open house features sample classes, crafts, snacks and live performances.

9/9/17: Minneapolis Monarch Festival | Lake Nokomis, 49th & Woodlawn | 10am-4pm | Family highlights: Art-making activities, guided nature walks, music and monarch exhibits.

9/10/17: Minneapolis Institute of Art Family Day: Eyewitness Views | Minneapolis | 11am-5pm

9/16/17: Field Trip | Silverwood Park, St Anthony | 11am-5pm | Make it a family day of art-making, live music, creative play and an outdoor art fair.

9/17/17: Target Free 3rd Sunday | Minnesota Children’s Museum, St Paul | 9am-5pm | Explore the revamped museum FREE of charge; expect to wait in line for admission.

9/18/17: Free 3rd Mondays | Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, Chaska | 8am-8pm | For family-time inspiration at the Arb, check out 10 Things For Kids: Minnesota Landscape Arboretum.

9/23/17: Fall Raptor Release | Carpenter St. Croix Valley Nature Center, Hastings | 10am-3pm | The Raptor Center releases rehabbed birds at 11am & 2pm plus wagon rides, kids activities and educational displays. FREE admission.

9/30/17: Family Hour: Stories & Crafts | Mississippi Market, E. 7th St Paul | 10-11am

9/30/17: National Public Lands Day Celebration | Hidden Falls Regional Park, St Paul | 11am-3pm | Bring the family for free canoeing, archery, fishing, a climbing wall and outdoor games.

9/30/17: Watch the Twin Cities Marathon


Free Twin Cities September

9/6-9: Burnsville Fire Muster | Family highlights: Don’t miss the fire truck water display, annual community and fire truck parade and fireworks.

9/8-10: James J. Hill Days | Downtown Wayzata | Family highlights: $5 cruises on the Steamboat Minnehaha, a carnival, parade and fireworks.

9/8-10: Inver Grove Heights Days | Family highlights: Community Family Fun Night, kids treasure hunt, grand parade and fireworks.

9/16/17: Otsego Prairie Festival | Prairie Park, Otsego | Family highlights: Catch firetruck displays, a carnival and fireworks at dusk.

9/16/17: Bloomington Heritage Days | Nativity of Mary Catholic Church grounds | Family highlights: Live music and performing arts and a parade.

9/16/17: Excelsior Apple Day | Downtown Excelsior | 9am-10pm | Family highlights: Tots will love the Happy Apple Kids Corner, parents may like the artisan vendors, music and street dance.

9/16/17: Golden Valley Arts & Music Festival | City Hall Campus | Family highlights: Family-friendly live entertainment, games, art activities and artist vendors to browse.

9/16/17: Wild Rice Festival | Harriet Alexander Nature Center, Roseville | Family highlights: Games for all, activities with Gibbs Farm, Native American dancing and drumming, hands-on demos and much more.

9/16/17: Nickle Dickle Day | Waconia | Family highlights: Kid Zone, live music, library sale. FREE admission.

9/16-17: Lakeville Art Festival, Downtown Lakeville | Family highlights: 70+ exhibitors and a “Young at Art” tent for youth.

9/23/17: Plymouth on Parade | Plymouth City Center | 10:30am-2pm | The parade kicks off at 10:30 followed by free family activities such as ice skating and swimming.

9/23-34: Afton Art in the Park | Town Square Park | Family highlights: Art vendors and Franconia Sculpture Park’s free art pavilion for kids with fall crafts and spin art.

9/23-34: Lone Oak Days Fall Festival | Holz Farm, Eagan | Family highlights: Old fashioned fun farm includes pedal tractors, kids coin hunt, animals in the barn, fun farm chores & more.

9/24/17: Open Streets on 50th | W 50th Street, Edina | 1-5pm | Visit the shopping district for food samplings, free fitness activities, music, games and more.

9/29-30: Taste of Northeast | St Mary’s Orthodox Cathedral, Minneapolis | 11am-9pm | Family highlights: Live music, children’s activities and entertainment.

9/30/17: Rockpoint Church Fall Festival  |  Lake Elmo | 11am-3pm Family highlights: The annual Fall Festival is free event open to all in the community and beyond. It’s a fun Fall activity for you and your family/friends to enjoy. corn maze, corn cannon, pedal karts, carnival games, food trucks, wagon rides, live music, photobooth, bowling alley, and more!

9/30/17: FallOut at Edge | Edgcumbe Recreation Center, St Paul | 5-8pm | Lawn games, crafts, music, bingo, climbing wall and refreshments.


apple orchards - Free Twin Cities September

Aamodt’s Apple Farm | Stillwater
Hours: 10am-6pm daily, PYO 10am-5pm daily | Notes: Limited free kids activities, fees for additional activities and PYO apples.

Applecrest Orchards | Hugo
Hours: Daily, 9am-7pm | Notes: Additional fee for pre-picked apples only, no PYO.

Applewood Orchard | Lakeville
Hours: Daily, 10am-6pm | Notes: Limited free kids activities, additional fees for activities and PYO apples.

Apple Jack Orchards | Delano
Hours: August, Mon-Sat 10am-5pm; Sept-Oct, daily 10am-6pm | Notes: Admission and a limited amount of activities (small playground, petting farm and hay bales) are free; most additional activities require a fee. PYO apples are not available this year.

Carpenter St. Croix Valley Nature Center Orchard | Hastings
Open: Daily, 8am-4:30pm (nature center hours) • Notes: Pre-picked apples only.

Deardorff Orchards & Vineyard | Waconia
Hours: Orchard, Tues-Sun, 10am-6pm & Winery Tasting Room, Winery hours: Friday 12-6pm, Saturday 11-6pm, Sunday 12-6pm | Notes: Free family activities, food and PYO apples available for purchase.

Deardorff Orchards - Free Twin Cities September

Fall Harvest Orchard | Montrose
Hours: Thurs-Sun, 10am-6pm | Notes: Many children’s activities, small fee for additional activities and PYO apples.

Fisher’s Croix Farm Orchard | Hastings
Hours: Tues-Sun, 9:30am-5pm | Notes: Fees for additional family activities.

LuceLine Orchard | Watertown
Weekends, 10am-4pm | Notes: some free children’s activities, fees for additional activities.

Minnetonka Orchards | Minnetrista
Hours: Daily, 10am-7pm | Notes: Admission is free on weekdays, $7/pp on weekends

Minnetonka Orchards - Free Twin Cities September

Pine Tree Apple Orchard | White Bear Lake
Hours: Click here for current hours | Notes: Free admission, additional fees for activities. Apples are pre-picked only.

Pleasant Valley Orchard | Taylors Falls
Hours: Daily, 10am-6pm | Notes: limited free children’s activities, extra fee for PYO apples available on select weekends only.

Sponsel’s Minnesota Harvest | Jordan
Hours: Mon-Fri, 10am-5pm & Sat-Sun, 9am-6pm | Notes: Limited free children’s activities, additional fee for PYO apples.

Sunrise River Farm | Wyoming
Hours: Tues-Sun, 10am-6pm | Notes: Free admission and kids activities, additional fee for PYO.

Victoria Valley Orchard | Shoreview
Hours: 9am-6pm • Notes: Pre-picked apples only.

Whistling Well Farm | Hastings
Hours: Daily, 9am-6pm | Notes: Limited free children’s activities.


Barten Pumpkins | New Prague
Open September 20 through Halloween 2017, 9am to 7 pm. Free admission, thousands of pumpkins are $1 to $6. Free pony rides (see website for day and time), free hay rides (see website for day and time), free play natural play area every day.

Country Sun Farm | Lake Elmo
Open daily, 9am-7pm weekdays & 9am-5pm weekends starting Sept 19 thru Halloween, 2017. Free admission with a charge for all fall activities with the exception of the petting farm and outdoor display photo ops.

Lendt’s Pumpkin Patch | Wyoming
Open daily, Sept 23 thru Oct 31, 2017 – 9 am to dusk. PYO pumpkins/$4 ea. Weekend hayrides $3/pp.

Marshall’s Farm Market | Eden Prairie
Open daily 10-6:30. Free admission, pumpkins range from $1-$12.

Pleasant Valley Orchard | Shafer
Open daily 10am-6pm. Admission is free; extra fee for weekend hayrides to the pumpkin patch ($3/pp).

Tom’s Pumpkin Farm | Lindstrom
Open daily, 10am-dusk Sept 23 thru Halloween, 2017. Free admission, pick-your-own pumpkin and carry it out, $3.99 any size.

Peter’s Pumpkins & Carmen’s Corn | Shakopee
Open weekdays 11am – 6pm, weekends 9am – 6:30pm. Free admission and hayrides to pick-your-own pumpkins from the field. Enjoy the working farm and free face painting on October weekends.

Waldoch Farm Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze | Lino Lakes
Open daily, Sept 23-Oct 31, 2017; 10am-7pm. Hayride to the pumpkin patch is complimentary, pumpkins are sold by size and starting at $3. You can also tour Joyer Barnyard without paying an admission fee.


Rockpoint Church Corn Maze |  Lake Elmo
Open Saturdays (Sep 16 • 23 • 30 • Oct 7), 11am – 5pm. Free admission and open to all. Fun for families and people of all ages. Corn maze includes: corn cannon, pedal karts, tractor-wagon rides, and more (all free).
Minneapolis Institute of Arts | Minneapolis | Daily, 11am-5pm

Como Park Zoo & Conservatory | St Paul | Daily, 10am-6pm, suggested donation of $2/child & $3/adult, but all welcome whether or not you choose to donate. | Seasonal events include the Fall Flower Show in the Conservatory’s sunken garden, storytime at noon, and animal programs throughout the day.

Materials Lab | Minnesota Museum of American Art, St Paul | Open during exhibition hours, ongoing Sat/Sun, 10am-4pm | All ages can drop in and get creative with available materials and a little guidance.

Nature Rocks! Open House | Eden Prairie Outdoor Center, Eden Prairie | Ongoing Saturdays, 9am-noon | Enjoy free family-friendly activities such as hiking, hands-on interaction with live animals, craft projects and more.

Lakeshore Learning Free Crafts for Kids | TC locations | Ongoing Saturdays, 10am-3pm.

Saturday Live! | George Latimer Central Library, St Paul | Ongoing Saturdays, 11:15am | Fresh entertainment every Saturday including live music, puppetry, magicians and more.

Drop-in Discoveries | Tamarack Nature Center, White Bear Lake | Ongoing Saturdays, 10am-12pm | Stay to play in the amazing outdoor nature playground Discovery Hollow while you still can!

Discovery Hollow - Bald Eagle-Otter Lakes Regional Park - Free Twin Cities September

September Free Family Fun Days | Three Rivers Parks
Coon Rapids Dam Regional Park (Brooklyn Park side of the river) select Sundays, 1-3pm
Richardson Nature Center select Sundays, 3-4pm

Open House at Pond Dakota Mission Park | Bloomington | Ongoing Sundays, 1:30-4pm, please check the website first | FREE, donations appreciated | Come by the historic Gideon Pond house in the park for tours, living history lessons and other interactive activities.


Como Park Zoo & Conservatory | St Paul | Daily, 10am-6pm | suggested donation of $2/child & $3/adult, but all welcome whether or not you choose to donate. | Seasonal events include the  Fall Flower Show in the Conservatory’s sunken garden, storytime at noon, and animal programs throughout the day.

Parent/Tot Time & Preschool Open Gym | Apple Valley Community Center | Ongoing Mon/Wed/ Fri, 9:30-11am | Ages: 5 & under w/ caregiver | Burn off some energy with other kids, develop motor skills and coordination. A special tot time for tykes ages 2 & under is held from 9-9:30am followed by open play for 5 & under until 11.

MOA Toddler Tuesdays | Mall of America Rotunda | Ongoing Tuesdays, 10am – noon | Live entertainment and activities guaranteed to excite the stroller set. Upcoming event schedule here.

Free Tuesday Nights | Minnesota History Center, St Paul | Ongoing Tuesdays, 3-8pm

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. Stay for lunch — there are many tasty ethnic vendors to choose from, and several offer specials on Wednesdays. Park in the adjacent Midtown Exchange Ramp up to 1.5 hrs. free with validation.

Games Galore | Union Depot, St Paul | Ongoing Wednesdays, 10am-8pm | Play giant-sized versions of classic games including chess, checkers, Connect Four, Dominoes and more.

Lil Explorer Thursdays | Como Park Zoo & Conservatory, St Paul | Ongoing Thursdays starting 9/7/17 through April 2018, 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.

Free Children’s Entertainment | Edinborough Park Amphitheater, Edina | Ongoing Thursdays starting 9/17/17, noon.

Top Preschool Storytimes in the Twin Cities – many local bookstores, libraries and other businesses offer FREE storytimes during the week. Click the link to read our picks.

Story Time Any Time - Free Twin Cities September

Kid-friendly Twin Cities coffee shops and cafes with dedicated FREE play spaces.

Coffee Shop - Free Twin Cities September

Twin Cities Nature Centers offer FREE admission and hands-on exhibits and outdoor play opportunities most days of the week.

St. Paul Recreation Centers offer free open gym Tot Times at 16 sites across the city.

Minneapolis Recreation Centers also offer free options. Click this link and search “parent tot”.


For more ideas on how to spend September with your family, check out our full Twin Cities September Family Events & Activities Guide.

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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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