According to the Legacy Project, children benefit emotionally and socially from relationships with grandparents in multiple ways. They have a better perspective of their own history. They gain life skills and confidence and are less likely to adopt self-destructive behaviors (such as drugs) while doing better in school. Grandparents can also provide moderate spoiling and undivided attention that parents can’t always and may not want to do. They can be a confidant and help develop new interests in their grandchild. Plus, they just give kids a chance to interact with people who are outside their usual social circles. While most of our calendar events work just as well for grandparents as for parents, there are some options that are geared toward intergenerational bonding. Check out these ideas for fun with Twin Cities grandparents!
Year Round Fun for Twin Cities Grandparents
Intergenerational Family Fun for Twin Cities Grandparents
Kiddywampus Grandparents Group
This club is free to join and gives members a store discount and access to exclusive events like special storytimes, toy testing, arts & crafts projects. Sign up in store.
Silverwood Park Family Clay Events
Although they’ve changed the name of this to include any adult/child pair, it began as a program for grandchildren/grandparents and is still a great way to spend time with the grands. $18/pair. (Find the next event on Three Rivers event listings – Keyword “Clay”).
Intergenerational TogetherTime @ Minnesota Landscape Arboretum
While this, again, is not limited to grandparents, these programs would be ideal one-on-one mornings. Select Saturdays, $65/pair. (Sign Up For Upcoming Workshops).
- Let’s Celebrate Harvest Festival Traditions Together!
Saturday, November 9, 9-11 a.m.
- Let’s Make a Feathered Friend with Clay Together!
Saturdays, January 11 & 25, 9-11 a.m. each day
- Create & Photograph Frozen Ice Bubbles!
Saturday, February 8, 8-10 a.m.
- Let’s Cheer the Equinox Together!
Saturday, March 21, 9-11 a.m.
Playtime with Grandparents | Amma, Edina
These classes for grandparents and babies incorporate songs, games and stories into a bonding experience with the new grandbaby. $15/pair. (Sign Up For Upcoming Classes).
Grandparent and Grandkids Overnight Camp @ Baker Park Reserve
Grandparents can cabin camp with up to 3 grandchildren per adult at these events. $275/cabin. (Find the next event on Three Rivers event listings – Keyword “Grandparent”).
Grandparent Membership to Your Favorite Museum
If you live close enough to spend lots of time with the grandparents, many memberships can be purchased by that include their grandchildren or by parents that extend to grandparents. If you don’t live close, this is still a good gift, because it gives you something to plan for your next visit!
Hanging out With Grandma and Grandpa at Home
Of course, you don’t have to go anywhere to have fun together. My favorite grandma memory is when she would make bread and give me my own piece of dough. Author Sharon Lovejoy has written the book, Camp Granny, to offer ideas for fun together.
Intergenerational Family Fun For Far Away Grandparents
SteppingStone Theatre has shared this Guide For Older Adults Connecting To Young People In A Virtual World. This resource includes an action plan for finding resources, reaching out, engaging in fun and making connecting a ritual.
Sticking with Family – created by local grandparents, Angela and Rick Blesi, these custom sticker books help small children put themselves and their grandparents into a story with personalized stickers of their faces.
My amazing grandmother lived to a month shy of her 104th birthday. I’m blessed to have spent some wonderful summers with her growing up, but I’ve discovered so much more about her life in the last couple of years. She was an amazing woman. I hope that my children will get the chance to learn how amazing my and my husbands parents are, too. For those grandparents who don’t have the luxury of living close to their grandchildren, I think a journal would be a wonderful gift. If you are not sure where to start, there are resources like the one below from Amazon that offer guided questions to get you started.
Intergenerational Family Fun With Other “Grandparents”
What if you don’t have nearby family and still want your children to reap the benefits that grandparents offer? You still have options:
Intergenerational Playtime at The Glenn of Hopkins
No longer monthly, but sign up at the link to get Facebook invites to less frequent events. Monthly themes often include arts and crafts, singing, and story time. Snacks and supplies are provided so an RSVP is appreciated. Join their Facebook group (link above) to get monthly reminders. FREE.
Intergenerational Story Time at the Minnesota Veterans Home
This popular program is continuing into 2019. Stories are read by Minnesota Veterans and songs are lead by staff. You can learn more and RSVP by calling Erin Betlock 612-548-5754. Third Tuesdays, 10:30-11am, FREE.
Stories with Grand Readers at Scott County Libraries
Volunteer “Grands” read stories at these all-ages, drop-in events. Search Keyword “Grands” on the library’s calendar. FREE.
I have not come across a lot of books that explore visiting older adults. Sunshine Home by Eve Bunting is one. Although I found it to be one of those books that adults like to read more than kids like to have read to them; it is still someplace to start a conversation before or after your visit.
What are some other ways to introduce our children to our parents and grandparents generations? We would love to hear what you do.
Celebrate Grandparents Day in September
Grandparents day is celebrated on the first Sunday in September after Labor Day — September 13, 2020. There are often special events planned for Twin Cities grandparents and their grandkids. We’ll list them here as we find them. But, why only celebrate once a year?
Past Grandparents Day Events
These have been consistently annual events, but the announcement usually comes very close to the date. If this is something you don’t want to miss, we recommend signing up for eamils.
- Grandparents Day at The Works – Grandparents Free.
- Crayola Experience – Free Admission for Grandparents on Grandparents Day
- Minnesota Zoo – Free Admission for Grandparents on Grandparents Day
Book images in this article are Amazon affiliate link and Family Fun Twin Cities receives compensation on purchases made through this link. Check your local library, too.