Twin Cities Budget Events & Activities in April

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Budget May

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 listed here that all cost $5 or less per person to attend.

4/9: Brickmania Toyworks Open House, 1620 Central Ave NE, Suite 170, Minneapolis • 10am-4pm • $5/pp or $10/group of 4, under age 4 FREE • Details: Intricate LEGO train layouts, hands-on LEGO activities and displays. This popular event is held the 2nd Saturday of each month. Read about a trip to the open house here.

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4/15: Family Fun & Fitness Fridays @ Great River Water Park, 270 N Lexington Pkwy, St. Paul • find Open Swim hours here • $2/pp during Open Swim hours.

4/15: Kids at the Castle: April Showers Bring May Flowers @ American Swedish Institute, 2600 Park Ave, Minneapolis • 11am-noon (feel free to stay after and explore the castle) • $5/family • Details: 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.

4/16: Choo Choo Bob’s Train Store Presents: Train Movies! @ Riverview Theater, 3800 42nd Ave S, Minneapolis • 9:45-10:45am • $5/pp – tickets available at Choo Choo Bob’s Train Store (2050 Marshall Ave, St Paul) or at the door the day of if not sold out.

4/23: Family Dance @ Tapestry Folkdance Center, 3748 Minnehaha Ave, Minneapolis • 6:30-8pm • $5/pp or $10/family • Details: The focus is on teaching simple dances that everyone in the family can enjoy. A caller teaches dances from the British Isles and America, including group circle and longways dances and play-party (singing) games. Breaks will feature snacks and kid-friendly activities.



4/2: First Saturdays: Introducing Wild Edibles @ Coon Rapids Dam Regional Park, 10360 West River Rd, Brooklyn Park • 10am-noon • $5/pp • Details: Learn where to forage for these tasty edibles and sample.

4/2: Flights and Kites @ Lowry Nature Center, 7025 Victoria Dr, Victoria • 1-2:30pm • $5/pp • Details: Learn about raptors and make your own high-flying kite.

4/2: Maple Syrup: Tapping Into Nature @ Cleary Lake Regional Park, 18106 Texas Ave, Prior Lake • 1-2:30pm • Details: Bring the family to learn about the maple syruping process.

4/7: My Preschooler & Me – Puppet Escapades: Mushy Mud @ Richardson Nature Center, 8737 East Bush Lake Rd, Bloomington • 10-11am • $4/pp (adult & child both pay) • Details: Themed activity stations & puppet show.

4/7: Young Explorers Club: Super Spring @ Wargo Nature Center, 7701 Main St, Lino Lakes • 1-2:30pm • $4/child • Details: Drop off your 4-5 year olds for hikes, games and crafts. Pre-register.

4/11: My Preschooler & Me – Lowry Little Ones: Beautiful Rainbows @ Lowry Nature Center, 7025 Victoria Dr, Victoria • 10-11:30am • $5/pp.

4/11: Puppet Storytime: Mud is Fun @ Westwood Hills Nature Center, 10-11am, also presented 4/15/16 • $4/resident, $5/non-res • Details: The Westwood puppets tell a muddy story in their animated and comical style, then naturalist led activities will follow to highlight the story.

4/14: Big River, Small Fry: Nature for Curious Kids – Spring Babies @ Carl Kroening Interpretive Center, 4900 N Mississippi Dr, Minneapolis • 9am-noon (drop in) • $5/pp.

4/16: American Stories & Dolls – The 1950’s @ Lowry Nature Center • 2-4pm • $5/pp • Details: Bring your doll and craft her a poodle skirt then cook over a campfire.

4/22: Preschool Storytime: Earth Day Celebration @ Carpenter St. Croix Nature Center, 12805 St Croix Trail S, Hastings • 10-11am • $5/child, adults free • Details: Activities include a nature story, a craft project, exploring the outdoors, and observing live animals. Call 651-437-4359 to pre-register.

4/25: My Preschooler & Me – Puppet Escapades: Earth Day Celebration @ Lowry Nature Center • 10-11am • $4/pp.

4/26: My Preschooler & Me – Puppet Escapades: Frogs @ Eastman Nature Center • 10-11am • $4/pp.


Hopkins Pavilion: Pavilion Turf Tots
11000 Excelsior Blvd, Hopkins • Ongoing Mon-Fri (exception of 4/22), 9am-2pm • $4/child, caregivers free • Details: Drop in for play with equipment including balls, crawl tunnels, bounce houses, blocks, and more. Suited for kids ages 1-5.
Shoreview Community Center: Tropical Adventure Indoor Playground
4580 Victoria St. N, Shoreview • Open Play hours: Mon-Sat: 8am – 8pm, Sun: 8am – 6pm • $5/per child ages 1-12, adults free.

Eagan Community Center: Preschool Open Play
1501 Central Pkwy, EaganOngoing Mon-Fri, 9-11:30am • $4 per child, under 18 mons free • Details: 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.  For kids ages 1-5.

Eden Prairie Community Center: Tot Time Open Gym
16700 Valley View Rd, Eden Prairie • Ongoing Mon-Fri, 9:30-11:30am (9:15-11:30 Thurs) • $4/pp ages 1-4, $5/pp ages 5+, under 1 and caregivers free • Details: 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. Best for ages 1-4.

Maple Grove Community Center: Parent-Tot Time
12951 Weaver Lake Rd, Maple Grove • Ongoing Mon & Wed, 10-11:30am • $2.50/resident youth, $4/non-res youth, caregivers free. Best for ages 5 & under.


Michaels Kids Club Crafts @ Twin Cities Michaels locations • Ongoing Saturdays in April, 10am-noon • $2 per project, ages 3+. Check the link for details.

Saturday Mornings on the Farm @ Gale Woods Farm, 7210 Cty Rd 110 W, Minnetrista • Ongoing Saturdays in April, 9:30am-noon • $5/pp • Details: 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.

FANtastic Saturdays @ The Blast Indoor Playground, Eagan Community Center, 1501 Central Pkwy, Eagan • 5-8pm • $4/pp ages 18 mon-12 years, all others free. Details: Better bang for your buck every Saturday evening: $4 will get you into the Blast Indoor Playground, the gym for games, and provide a movie and crafts (parents must stay to supervise their kids).

Anne's Family Attended A Family Fun & Fitness Friday at Great River Waterpark.$4 Sundays @ Great River Water Park, 270 N Lexington Pkwy, St. Paul • 11am-5pm • $4/pp • Details: Read about the kid-friendly amenities at Great River Water Park here.

“The Secret of the Cardboard Rocket” @ Como Planetarium, 780 W. Wheelock Parkway
St. Paul
• Ongoing Tuesdays in April, starting 4/12, 5:30-6:30pm • $5/pp, 2 & under on laps are free • Details: Join two children on a magical journey through the solar system, guided by a talking astronomy book.

Raptor Center Tours @ Gabbert Raptor Center, 920 Fitch Ave (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
Details: 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.

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.

Friday Family Funday @ Grove Cove Aquatic Center, 12951 Weaver Lake Rd, Maple Grove • Ongoing Fridays in April, 9am-8pm • $5/pp or $19/family for all members.

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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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