Free Twin Cities October Family Events & Activities


With 12 children between them, the parents of the Family Fun Twin Cities team sure appreciate a good deal. And October is filled with them – from FREE Halloween events and fall festivals without admission fees to ongoing family art programs, special grand openings and open houses. For hundreds more ideas on how to find free Twin Cities events & entertainment in October, visit our Family Fun Calendar.

TWIN CITIES OCTOBER SPECIAL EVENTS – FREE

10/1/19: Free Tuesday @ Washington County Parks | SE Metro | Find a listing of parks here | Explore Washington County Parks with no vehicle permit required the first Tuesday of the month (non-holiday).

10/4/19: Forever Wild Family Friday | Lebanon Hills Park Visitor Center, Eagan | 7-8:30pm

10/5/19: First Free Saturday: Clay, Tea & Books | 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.

10/5/19: 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.

10/5/19: Drop-in Discoveries: Owls Up Close | Tamarack Nature Center, White Bear Lake | 10am-12

10/8/19: Ballet Tuesdays | Landmark Center, St. Paul | 12-1pm | Excerpts from the classics, perfect for budding ballerinas.

10/5/19: Start the Music! with St. Paul Chamber Orchestra | Ordway Concert Hall, St. Paul | 2 sessions: 9:15 & 10:30am | Crafts, games and activities, followed by the woodwind ensemble’s accompaniment to a reimagined fairy tale in a 30-minute concert. Tickets are free but must be reserved in advance at the link. Also held 10/26/19.

10/12/19-10/13/19: Highland Park Water Tower Open House | St. Paul | 9am-5pm | One of only two weekends a year the tower is open for viewing! Check out the fall colors and learn about water utility.

10/13/19: Minneapolis Institute of Art Family Day | Minneapolis | 11am-5pm | A day packed with hands-on art activities, scavenger hunts in the galleries and live cultural entertainment.

10/20/19: 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 you may wait in line to be admitted.

10/20/19: Free Family Art Day | Rumriver Art Center, Anoka


Free Twin Cities October Family Events & Activities

FREE TWIN CITIES FAMILY HALLOWEEN EVENTS & ACTIVITIES

Dozens of FREE Halloween events have made their way into our 2019 Twin Cities Family Halloween Guide. Find our quick list here or click on the graphic to get all the details:

Please see our FFTC Guide to Halloween Fun in the Twin Cities for a complete listing of FREE library and bookstore Halloween programs and Halloween events at Minneapolis and St Paul Parks & Recreation Centers.


OCTOBER FAMILY FALL FESTIVAL CALENDAR – FREE ADMISSION

Free Twin Cities October Family Events & Activities

10/6/19: Fall Color Blast | Warner Nature Center, Marine on St Croix | 12-5pm | Paddle & hike free

10/5/19-10/6/19 & 10/12/19-10/13/19: Annual Apple Festival | Fischer’s Croix Farm Orchard, Hastings

10/10/19-10/13/19: Fall Fair | Afton Alps, Hastings

10/5/19: UFC Farm Supply Harvest Festival | Gale Woods Farm, Minnetrista | 9:30am-3:30pm | Free wagon rides, dog shows, crafts & cooking demos.

10/5/19 & 10/12/19: Family Fun Saturdays | Barten Pumpkins, New Prague | 10am-2pm | Free pony rides, hay rides, and caricature drawings.

10/12/19-10/13/19: Apple Fest | Carpenter St Croix Nature Center, Hastings 

10/12/19-10/13/19: Stillwater Harvest Fest, Downtown Stillwater

10/19/19: Wargo Fall Festival | Wargo Nature Center, Lino Lakes 


Free Twin Cities October Family Events & Activities

TWIN CITIES PUMPKIN PATCHES – FREE ADMISSION

Barten Pumpkins | New Prague
Open mid-September through Halloween 2019, 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, 2019. 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 21 thru Oct 31, 2019 – 9 am to dusk. PYO pumpkins/$4 ea. Weekend hayrides $3/pp.

Marshall’s Farm Market | Eden Prairie
Open daily 10am-7pm. 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 21 thru Halloween, 2019. 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
Fall Fun open daily, Sept 21-Oct 31, 2019; 10am-7pm. Hayride to the pumpkin patch is complimentary, pumpkins are sold by size starting at $3. You can also tour Joyer Barnyard without paying an admission fee.


ONGOING OCTOBER WEEKENDS – 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.

Nature Rocks! Open House | Eden Prairie Outdoor Center, Eden Prairie | Ongoing Saturdays in Oct, 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 in Oct, 10am-3pm.

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

October 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.


ONGOING OCTOBER WEEKDAYS – FREE

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.

MGM is also offering free fall Neighborhood Nights Thursdays, Sept 12-Oct 24, 2019 with family entertainment and puppet performances by Heart of the Beast Puppet & Mask Theatre. Family Fridays run year-round with live music and other activities for families from 5:30-7:30pm at the market.

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 through April 2019, 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, noon.


FREE WEEKLY TWIN CITIES ACTIVITIES

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.

Kids Storytimes in the Twin CitiesKid-friendly Coffee Shops
Twin Cities Nature CentersSt Paul & Minneapolis Free Tot Times



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