Twin Cities Guide To Family Activities This Week: January 15-19, 2024

Things to do this week in Minneapolis & St Paul with your kids!

This guide covers Twin Cities family activities for the week of January 15-19, 2024. If you are in search of things to do with your family this weekend, jump over to our WEEKEND FAMILY GUIDE.

Weekend Family Guide - Family Fun Twin Cities Banner.

Best wishes for extra family fun in 2024! For more winter inspiration you can check our JANUARY FAMILY GUIDEULTIMATE TWIN CITIES WINTER SURVIVAL GUIDE or our FAMILY FUN CALENDAR for more fun ideas on what to do this week in the Twin Cities with your kids – satisfaction guaranteed (or close to it!) 

Fun things to do in the Twin Cities on Monday, January 15, 2024

Tot Time Open Gyms in the Twin Cities Minnesota this week

Tot Time Open Gyms on Monday:

Let them bounce off someone else’s walls! Our list covers open gyms for tots across the Twin Cities where they can work their wiggles off during colder weather either FREE or at a low cost to you. A few of our regularly-listed open gyms are on break today to observe MLK Day, but several remain open to give kids a space to run around during this cold snap. SEE OUR FULL LIST OF TWIN CITIES TOT TIME OPEN GYMS THIS WINTER!

MONDAY FEATURED TOT TIME: Open Play at Plymouth Community Center

14800 34th Ave N, Plymouth, Minnesota 55447
A great deal on indoor play while the kids have a school break today – $10 wristbands include access to inflatables in the fieldhouse, the KUBE Indoor Playground and open gym time. A full day of fun that should wear the kids out. January 15, 2024, 9am-2pm. $10/child.

Kids Ultimate Backyard Experience (KUBE) in Plymouth, Minnesota

Martin Luther King Jr Day in the Twin Cities

Traditionally, we list the day’s library storytimes here, but most city facilities are closed today to observe MARTIN LUTHER KING JR DAY. Hit the link for ways to participate or ideas for activities you can do at home. 

MLK featured event: Celebration at Powderhorn

Powderhorn Recreation Center, 3400 15th Ave. S Minneapolis, MN 55407
Powderhorn neighborhood’s family-friendly, 2-hour artist showcase featuring storytellers, visual artists and performing artists and art activities. January 15, 2024, 11am-2pm. FREE.

Family Fun Twin Cities Martin Luther King Day Guide: Family Events & Activities

Take a spin: Outdoor ice skating rinks

We’re the metro area of 10,000 rinks in the wintertime. From frozen puddles at the local park to beautiful, refrigerated outdoor rinks, we catalog as many as possible in our TWIN CITIES ICE RINK-FINDER (most of them featuring FREE opportunities to skate). This week we’re highlighting the free skating ice skating rink at VIKING LAKES in Eagan. During their Winter Skolstice event both a refrigerated and an indoor skating rink will be open daily. Skate rental is $5/pair and there’s a warming house nearby. January 15, 2024, hours from 12-9pm. 2611 Nordic Way, Eagan, Minnesota, 55121.

More family fun ideas for Monday: Warm up indoors

Tropical Snowfari Weekend at Como Zoo & Conservatory 

1225 Estabrook Drive, St Paul MN 55103
Escape the cold this weekend and head someplace a little more balmy. Free special adds at Como during MLK break include crafts, games, a scavenger hunt and animal enrichment programs. Plus, the Winter Flower Show has just opened and brightens up the Conservatory. Our family loves to escape the winter for a couple hours at Como. January 15, 2024, 10am-4pm. FREE.

IKEA Polar Bear Scavenger Hunt

8000 Ikea Way, Bloomington, MN 55425
There are outdoor gnome and yeti scavenger hunts scattered around the Twin Cities this winter – how about staying cozy indoors and scouting polar bears at IKEA? Register online first to make sure there’s space. IKEA Family members can also check kids into Smaland, a fully-supervised play area for up to an hour for FREE between 12pm and 6pm daily while their adults can shop or just relax. January 15, 2024, 10am-1pm. FREE.

Fun things to do in the Twin Cities on Tuesday, January 16, 2024

Tot Time Open Gyms in the Twin Cities Minnesota this week

Tot Time Open Gyms on Tuesday:

Tot Time open gyms across the Twin Cities are absolutely a saving grace for parents of squirrelly kids when it’s too cold or sloppy to be outdoors:

TUESDAY FEATURED TOT TIME: The Rookery Activity Center in Lino Lakes

Rookery Activity Center, 7690 Village Drive, Lino Lakes, MN 55014
A special Tot Time held in the gym for ages 1-10. Make sure your little ones wear socks for the bounce house! January 16, 2024, 9am-12pm,  $4/child.

Twin Cities storytimes on Tuesday:

TUESDAY FEATURED STORYTIME: Family Storytime at Woodridge Park

9000 90th St S, Cottage Grove, MN 55016
Singing, literacy and playing are all part of this indoor storytime at the park followed by a related activity for kids up to age 6. January 16, 2024, 10:30-11am. FREE.

Jr Naturalists: Drop In Discovery at Minneapolis Parks

Nature games and activities presented by community parks in Minneapolis. Drop in for free fun in the parks. Here’s the Tuesday schedule:

Fun things to do in the Twin Cities on Wednesday, January 17, 2024

Tot Time Open Gyms in the Twin Cities Minnesota this week

Tot Time Open Gyms on Wednesday:

WEDNESDAY FEATURED OPEN GYM: Plymouth Fieldhouse Open Play

When the temps dip, field house opens up for kids who need to run and scoot around indoors. Balls and objects for free play are provided – and inflatables for kids up to age 12 make a special appearance on Wednesdays. The fieldhouse is heated to 55 degrees so dress accordingly. January 17, 2024, 10:30am to 1:30pm, ages 12 & under, $6-$8/pp. 14800 34th Ave., Plymouth, MN 55447-1482.

Twin Cities storytimes on Wednesday

WEDNESDAY FEATURED STORYTIME: Family Storytime with the Minnesota DNR

Mounds View Library, 2576 Mounds View Blvd, Mounds View, MN 55112
A park naturalists presents a special storytime about Minnesota’s environment for ages 2-5. January 17, 2024, 10:30am. FREE.

More family fun ideas for Wednesday: Indoor activities

Mid-week is excellent to spot trains in the Twin Cities if that’s what your little ones (or big ones) are into. Here’s are a couple of places to consider; plan ahead and find more on our article MINNEAPOLIS-ST PAUL, A TRAIN LOVERS DESTINATION:

  • TOTS & TRAINS AT JACKSON STREET ROUNDHOUSE – Play at the train tables, run through a read train car, hear a train-themed story and more. Located in St Paul. January 17, 2024. $9-$15/pp or $45/family.
  • GAMES GALORE AT UNION DEPOT – Play life-sized versions of favorite games like chess & Connect Four in the historic depot, then watch some of the modern trains roll in outside. January 17, 2024, 10am-8pm. FREE.
Girl by train car at the Minnesota Transportation Museum in Saint Paul, MN

Heartfelt Preschool Winter Festival

4306 Upton Ave S, Minneapolis MN 55410
The seasonal festivaloffers a simple craft or two for the kids and their adult plus a wholesome snack. To get an idea of Heartfelt’s winter craft lineup, browse hereJanuary 17, 2024. $24/first child, $12/additional. Please register in advance.

Heartfelt Parties

Children’s Pool Hour at Great River Water Park

270 Lexington Pkwy N, St Paul, MN 55104
Monday, Wednesday and Friday hours are “children’s pool only” from 9am-10am at this perfect little indoor splash spot. And admission isn’t bad either – $7/pp or $25 for a group of 5. January 17, 2024.


Fun things to do in the Twin Cities on Thursday, January 18, 2024

Tot Time Open Gyms in the Twin Cities Minnesota this week

Tot Time Open Gym on Thursday:

THURSDAY FEATURED OPEN GYM: TCO Sports Garden Toddler Thursdays

Little ones with energy to spare: Come to Field 1 for indoor activities such as a bouncy house, kicking around soccer balls and open field time with room to run.  The fieldhouse is kept at 55 degrees so dress with this in mind. January 18, 2024, 9:30-11:30am. FREE.

TCO Sports Garden sign on the front of the new sports complex.
Image courtesy of Ramsey County Parks & Recreation

Twin Cities storytimes on Thursday:

THURSDAY FEATURED STORYTIME: Lil Explorer Thursday Storytime at Como Zoo

Lil Explorer Thursdays program includes two themed storytimes. This is a fantastic free event aimed at preschoolers and includes all kinds of hands-on activities, manipulatives, games and crafts. Meet in the Visitor Center. January 18, 2024, 10am-noon. FREE.

More family fun ideas for Thursday: Visit a new Twin Cities nature center

Roughly two dozen nature and interpretive centers in the Twin Cities metro are just begging to get your kids excited about the natural world. Through hands-on exhibits, naturalist-led activities and plain old play, these venues make learning fun! This week we would like to introduce you to WESTWOOD HILLS NATURE CENTER in St Louis Park. Special event at Westwood Hills: Family Nature Time – Program includes indoor and outdoor time exploring animals, reading stories, playing games and more. Please register in advance as space is limited. January 18, 2024, 10-11am. $6-$7/pp. 8300 W. Franklin Ave, St. Louis Park, MN 55426.

Nature Storytime at Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden

1 Theodore Wirth Pkwy, Minneapolis, MN 55405
Nature stories and an activity for kids led by garden naturalists – meet inside the trailhead (and dress for the weather). January 18, 2024, 10-10:30am. FREE.

Fun things to do in the Twin Cities on Friday, January 19, 2024

Tot Time Open Gyms in the Twin Cities Minnesota this week

Tot Time Open Gyms on Friday:

FRIDAY FEATURED OPEN GYM: Tot Times at St Paul Recreation Centers

It’s fun, unstructured, nearly always free and a total sanity-saver during our colder months. I used it routinely when my firstborn was a toddler. He thrived on the small bikes, balls, tumbling mats and other provided equipment for free physical play. The following St Paul recreation centers have tot times on Friday mornings this fall:

Indoor Toddler Activities

Twin Cities storytimes on Friday:

FRIDAY FEATURED STORYTIME: Stories with Engineer Paul at Choo Choo Bob’s Train Store

1665 West End Blvd, St Louis Park, MN 55416
The beloved train shop is BACK in a brand new location, complete with Engineer Paul’s train-tastic storytime. Our littles grew up with Choo Choo Bob’s original shop in St Paul so this is happy news. (Photo from the old store until we can get to the new one!) January 19, 2024, 10:30am. FREE, note that the train tables are pay-to-play.

More family fun ideas for Friday: Indoor activities

Kids at the Castle: The Box King

American Swedish Institute, 2600 Park Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55407
Music, movement and play aimed at kids ages 2-5 presented in a real castle-like mansion! Registration in advance is required as space is limited. January 19, 2024, 9-10am. $15/family, museum admission included. Also offered January 20.

More great Twin Cities museums kids will enjoy:

Water play at Mill City Museum

Candyland Trail at Edinborough Park

7700 York Ave S, Edina, MN 55435
A Candyland trail, themed bounce house and other activities are all part of this special event at
ADVENTURE PEAK INDOOR PLAYGROUND – included with admission of $10/child. January 19, 2024, 9am-6pm.

New Brighton Brave the BRRR: 2024 Bartz Snow Sculpture 

1975 Silver Lake Rd NW, New Brighton, MN 55112
Friday is the newest projected date for the completion of the 2024 Bartz Brothers snow sculpture. The team has been working hard in less than idea conditions to make this happen – come out and support! Plus, a gnome search around the golf course, an indoor market and food trucks. January 19, 2024, 3pm. FREE.

Fire & Ice at McRae Park

906 E 47th St, Minneapolis, MN 55407
Bundle up for outdoor ice skating at the park. There will be a bonfire and free hot cocoa to help keep warm and some loaner skates to borrow. January 19, 2024, 6-8pm. FREE.

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