Budget Twin Cities April Family Events & Activities

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Budget Twin Cities April

It doesn’t have to break the bank to entertain the family away from home in the Twin Cities! You’ll find seasonal and ongoing events and activities in April listed here that all cost $5-$6 or less per person to attend. For our complete listing of events (including hundreds of freebies), please check our Family Fun Calendar.

Occasions with Character

We are excited to introduce you to our April sponsor Occasions with Character.  They have a super fun event for anyone who loves a tea party.

Splendidly Spring Tea
Saturday April 28 1:00-2:00
Afton House Inn, Afton MN

Join Tea Party Miss, Magical Nanny and your favorite Fairytale Princesses for a Royal Tea Party! Guests enjoy tableside visits from princesses and other characters, tea party treats, charming character-led experiences, photo opportunities, and delightful memories together at this lovely, intimate event.

Whether you’re looking for a special treat to celebrate Mother’s Day or a fun family outing, this magical tea will be a “splendid” addition to your spring plans!


Spring Make Camp | Michaels – check your location for details | 30 min sessions, 10am-12pm | $2-5 per project | Select Michaels locations are offering weekday kids crafts over spring break in addition to their regular Saturday morning crafts.

4/14/18: Family Dance | Tapestry Folkdance Center, Minneapolis | 6:30-8pm | $5/pp or $10/family | The focus is on teaching simple dances that everyone in the family can enjoy. Breaks will feature snacks and kid-friendly activities.

4/14/18: Family Musique & Interactive Storytelling | Moon Palace Books, Minneapolis | 2-3pm | Suggested $5 donation per kid for instrument play, song and dance.

You are invited toFFTC's Spring FlingFree 

Heartfelt on Saturday, April 14, 2018

10:00 am-1:00 pm

4/20/18: Family Fun & Fitness Fridays | Great River Water Park, St Paul | Find Open Swim hours here | $2/pp during Open Swim hours. Further discounts: Sundays at the waterpark are just $4/pp and half-price swim is featured Mon & Wed.

4/20/18-4/21/18: Kids at the Castle: Searching for Spring | American Swedish Institute, Minneapolis | 11am-noon (feel free to stay after and explore the castle) | $8/family | Before the museum opens, join ASI for visual play, storytelling, music, and movement inspired by ASI’s exhibits that will encourage creative young minds. Suggested for ages 2-5.

4/21/18: Barnyard Babies | Edinborough Park, Edina | 10-11:30am | $5/pp | Petting zoo, pony rides, crafts, and music for ages 7 & under. Adventure Peak admission not included.


Cheap Flicks: Twin Cities Movie Theater Discount Days – all seats $2-$5/pp

Budget Twin Cities April

Saturday Mornings on the Farm | Gale Woods Farm, Minnetrista | Ongoing April Saturdays, 9:30am-noon | $5/pp | Calling all farmhands! Help out with chores, spend time with the animals and participate in other spring farm activities. Closed-toe shoes required. Strollers not allowed in the barn or around animals.

Chickens at Gale Woods Farms

Raptor Center Tours | Gabbert Raptor Center (St Paul campus of the U of M) | 30-minute tours every half hour, 10:30am-3:30pm, ongoing Tues-Fri | $3/ages 3-17, $5/adults | Bring kids of any age for a fun and educational visit to the University of Minnesota’s Raptor Center. Meet some resident raptors, get hands-on with natural materials, and visit the kids’ play corner.

Public Star Shows | Como Planetarium, St Paul | Ongoing Tuesdays starting at 5:30pm | $5/pp | Please check the schedule online for the dates and times of these shows. The earlier show is geared towards younger children; later shows appeal to older kids and adults.

Bowl for a Buck | University of MN’s Coffman Union (Thurs, 5pm-close) & St Paul Student Center (all day Wed) • $1 per game plus $2 shoe rental.

Theater Explorers: Storytime Drop-in | Steppingstone Theater, St Paul | Ongoing Wednesdays in April: 4/11, 4/18 & 4/25 | $5/family | Introduce toddlers and preschoolers to theater arts through this weekly drop-in program filled with stories, songs, art projects and creative play.

Friday Family Funday | Grove Cove Aquatic Center, Maple Grove | Ongoing Fridays in April, 9am-8pm | $6/pp or $22/family for all members.


Explore the great outdoors in the springtime right alongside your children! Nature centers and parks across the Twin Cities host hundreds of low-cost programs throughout the year. Please check our Family Fun Calendar for exact dates, times and costs for each family nature program.

Listen to your Mother! April is the month of Earth Day and most nature centers have free celebrations or volunteer opportunities planned. You can find them here.

Carpenter St Croix Valley Nature Center | Hastings
April special: Preschool Storytime – Welcome Spring! | 4/13/18, 10-11am | $5/child age 2-5

Coon Rapids Dam Regional Park | Brooklyn Park
April special: Storybook Hike | 4/14/18, 10am-12pm | $5, reserve by 4/10/18

Eastman Nature Center | Dayton
April special: Nature Discoveries – Wake up Animals | 4/7/18, 10-11:30am | $5/pp

Harriet Alexander Nature Center | Roseville
April special: Earth Day Celebration | 4/21/18, 10am-2pm | FREE

Lowry Nature Center | Victoria
April special: Laura’s Adventures – Spring Visit | 4/22/18, 12:30-2:30pm | $5

Maplewood Nature Center | Maplewood
April special: Spring Pond Creatures | 4/14/18, 10-11:30 | $5/child up to 5 yrs

Richardson Nature Center | Bloomington
April special: My Preschooler & Me – April Showers | 4/4/18, 10-11:30am | $5/pp

Springbrook Nature Center | Fridley
April special: Saturday Family Fun Day: Garden Starters | 4/14/18, 10-11am | FREE, donations appreciated | New themes each month; dress for the weather.

Wargo Nature Center | Lino Lakes
April special: Nature Play – Spring Animals | 4/5/18, 10-11:15am | $3/pp

Warner Nature Center | Marine on St Croix
April special: No special events scheduled, but the nature center is open for exploration.

Westwood Hills Nature Center | St Louis Park
April special: No special events scheduled, but the nature center is open for exploration.

Wood Lake Nature Center | Richfield
April special: Spring Babies | 4/8/18, 3-4:30pm | $3/pp


Andover Community Center: Tot Time Open Gym & Activities | Most Mon & Tues starting 10/2/17 through April 2018 | 9:30-11:30am | 6 & under w/ caregiver, $3-$4/child | Drop in for unstructured play time and special activities such as a bounce house, book swap and craft days. Be sure to check the calendar for the latest schedule.

Braemar Field: Tot Time, Edina | Ongoing Mon & Wed, 9-11am | $5/child | Room to run, age appropriate toys and some organized games.

Braemar Field: Family Night, Edina | Ongoing Saturdays, 6:30-8:30pm | $5/pp | Stay active under the dome during the cold months with room to run and play. Temp is set at 55 degrees.

Brookview Backyard Indoor Playground, Golden Valley | Mon-Sat, 9am-8pm & Sun, 9:30am-5pm | $4-$5/pp | This brand-new, 3,000 sq ft facility opened December 2017.

Crystal Community Center Gym: Preschool Playtime  | Wed through April 11 | 10-11:30am| ages 1-5, $3/child | Jump, crawl, build and play the winter away in 3 gyms. 1 adult to every 3 kids required.

Eagan Community Center: Preschool Open Play | Ongoing Mon-Fri, 9-11:30am | $4 per child ages 1-5, under 18 mons free | A variety of fun toys and sport equipment are available to play in the gym as well as play time in the Blast Indoor Playground.

Eden Prairie Community Center: Tot Time Open Gym | Mon, Wed & Fri | 9-11:15am | Best for ages 1-4; $4.50-$5.50 per child, adults free | Participate in free play with balls, hoops, scooters, jump ropes, tumbling mats, parachutes, music and more. For $6/pp, admission to the Prairie Play Zone indoor playground is included.

Hopkins Pavilion: Turf Tots | Ongoing Thurs & Fri starting March 1 2018 | 9 mon-5 years | $4/child | In the spring, playtime moves to the indoor turf where there’s more room to run!

Twin Cities Tot Times and other activities to do with my preschool child.

Maple Grove Community Center: Parent/Tot Time | Ongoing Mon & Wed, 10-11:30am | $3/resident youth, $3.50/non-res youth, caregivers free | Best for ages 5 & under.

Millz House (Apple Valley): Open Play | Weekdays, 9am-4pm, $6/child or $18/family & Weekends, $8/child or $24/family. Find weekend hours here. | Work out the wiggles with indoor playsets, trampolines and basketball courts.

Plymouth Field House: Open Play | Mon, Wed, Fri, 10:30am-1:30pm | $4/resident youth, $5/non-resident youth, caregivers free | During the chilly months, heat in the field house is turned on to 55 degrees for fun with inflatables, slides, nets and lots of space to run the kids ragged. Best for ages 3-5.

Saint Louis Park Rec Center: Little Tot Playtime | Tues-Fri, 9:30-11:30am | Ages 1-5 with caregiver | $2 per child | Bounce in the inflatables, ride the big wheelers, play dress up or build with blocks on the creative carpet.

Savage Sports Center: Tot Time | Tue & Thurs | 9-11:30 am thru April 2018 | Ages 5 and under; $3 per child with adult | A variety of fun toys and sport equipment are available. Prepaid passes can be purchased.

Shakopee Community Center – CC Kids Playtime | Ongoing Mon & Wed thru April 2018, 10-11:15am | $1 per child ages 1-5 w/ caregiver | Kids and their parents are invited to run around the gymnasium. Bring your clean trikes, riding toys, balls or use theirs.

Shoreview Community Center: Tropical Adventure Indoor Playground, Shoreview | Open Play hours: Mon-Sat: 8am – 8pm, Sun: 8am – 6pm | $5.25/per child ages 1-12, adults free


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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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