Twin Cities Guide To Family Activities This Week: November 13-17, 2023


This guide covers Twin Cities family activities for the week of November 13-17, 2023. 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.

For more late, great autumn inspiration you can check our NOVEMBER FAMILY 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, November 13, 2023

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 either FREE or at a low cost to you.

TAKE NOTE! Several Twin Cities Tot Time Open Gyms are just getting started in the month of November. We’ve added several to our usual listings this week so make sure to check if your community has been included. SEE OUR FULL LIST OF TWIN CITIES TOT TIME OPEN GYMS THIS FALL!

MONDAY FEATURED TOT TIME: Preschool Playtime at New Brighton Community Center

Preschool Playtime in New Brighton is double the fun because it includes open play in the gym w/ equipment and inflatables AND admission to EAGLES NEST INDOOR PLAYGROUND. This special indoor playtime is held each Mon & Wed when school is in session. November 13, 12-3pm, $8/child. 400 10th St NW, New Brighton, MN 55112.


More family fun ideas for Monday: Twin Cities Holiday Tree Lightings

It’s about time for the Twin Cities to sparkle! Several Minneapolis-St Paul Metro Area communities are lighting up their holiday trees in grand style over the next few weeks. Featured community today is Shoreview, Minnesota, and their holiday tree lighting tradition:

Shoreview Holiday Lighting Event

Shoreview Community Center, 4580 Victoria St. N., Shoreview, Minnesota 55126
The grounds of the Shoreview Commons will be lit up for the holiday season. A choir performance, cocoa and cookies will accompany the event. November 13, 2023, 6pm.

Prepare to shine on in the Twin Cities with our big list of community HOLIDAY TREE LIGHTINGS and our even brighter TWIN CITIES HOLIDAY LIGHTS GUIDE.

Twin Cities Holiday Lights - Map Your Route Banner

Fun things to do in the Twin Cities on Tuesday, November 14, 2023 

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 playground season has come to an end.

TUESDAY FEATURED TOT TIME: Savage Sports Center Tot Time

13450 Dakota Ave S, Savage, MN 55378
STARTS TODAY! Kids ages 5 & under can play freely with inflatables, balls, bats and more, all equipment provided for an energy-busting time. November 14, 2023, 9-11:30am. $3/child.

Twin Cities Storytimes on Tuesday:

TUESDAY FEATURED STORYTIME: Preschool Storytime in the Gym at Arlington Hills

Arlington Hills Community Center, 1200 Payne Avenue, Saint Paul MN 55130
Stories, songs, rhymes, and fun in the gym followed by Tot Time open play, which runs until noon. November 14, 2023, 10:30am. FREE.

More family fun ideas for Tuesday: Indoor activities

Mall of America Toddler Tuesday

This week features a live classical ballet performance and mini lessons for kids. Plus, on Toddler Tuesdays you can purchase an unlimited ride wristband for Nickelodeon Universe for just $15 and kids eat free at participating restaurants w/ purchase of an adult meal. November 14, 2023, 10am-12pm.

Family fun Twin Cities' Guide to the Mall of America - floor by floor - Title backdrop Pineapple Poppers ride at Nickelodeon Universe in the Mall of America, Bloomington, Minnesota

Fun things to do in the Twin Cities on Wednesday, November 15, 2023 

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. November 15, 2023, 10:30am to 1:30pm, ages 12 & under, $5-$7/pp. 14800 34th Ave., Plymouth, MN 55447-1482.

Twin Cities Storytimes on Wednesday:

WEDNESDAY FEATURED STORYTIME: Storytime at Kiddywampus Hopkins

1023 Mainstreet, Hopkins, MN 55343
Interactive stories, songs & rhymes for kids ages 2-5 at one of the coolest independent toy shops in the Twin Cities. No registration required. November 15, 2023, 10:30am. FREE.

More family fun ideas for Wednesday: Cozy indoor play

Love cats? Visit the Cafe Meow! 

1718A Lexington Ave N, Roseville, MN 55113
3524 Winnetka Ave N, New Hope, MN 55427
My daughter absolutely loves cats but mean old mom isn’t up for having a pet. Our solution? We book an hour at this sweet rescue coffee shop and she gets a fix without the extra responsibility. Need a cozy indoor activity this week? Kids over 6 (with a parent) can play with the kitties and sip a warm beverage. 11am-7pm, $10/pp.

Where can I see the trains on Wednesday?

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. November 15, 2023. $10-$13/pp or $35/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. November 15, 2023, 10am-8pm. FREE.
Girl by train car at the Minnesota Transportation Museum in Saint Paul, MN
Minnesota Transportation Museum – Jackson Street Roundhouse

Nature play on Wednesday

ExploraTots at Crosby Farm Park

2595 Crosby Farm Rd, Saint Paul, MN  55116
Nature play stations include a story, a hike, and a take-home activity. Must register in advance, space is limited. Don’t grab a spot? Plan ahead – this event is held monthly. November 15, 2023, 10-11:30am. FREE.

Toddler Day Open House at the Raptor Center

1920 Fitch Ave, St Paul, MN 55108
Here’s your chance to attend a preschooler-friendly open house at this University facility that treats hundreds of injured raptors each year. On the schedule: mini-tours, storytime and a coloring activity. November 15, 2023, 10-11am. $10/adult; up to 2 kids FREE.

Collage of visit to Raptor Center in Saint Paul Minnesota: Left: two bald eagles; Right top: little girl playing with eagle puppet. Right Bottom young by examining wing and nest.

Fun things to do in the Twin Cities on Thursday, November 16, 2023 

Tot Time Open Gyms in the Twin Cities Minnesota this week

Tot Time Open Gyms on Thursdays:

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. November 16, 2023, 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: Red Balloon Bookshop Storytime

891 Grand Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55105
We love to feature independent bookshops and encourage you to explore and support them. Red Balloon offers baby & toddler storytime each Thursday. Get there early for the best seating! November 16, 2023, 10:30am.

Summer Reading Programs at Local Bookstores

More family fun ideas for Thursday: 

Try a new indoor playground

For Minnesota parents it’s a must to know where to escape the elements and still keep those kids active and having fun. During the months of November through March we feature the best indoor playgrounds in the Minneapolis-St Paul area in the hopes of helping you discover something new: This week we highlight the KUBE Indoor Playground in Plymouth. Kids Ultimate Backyard Experience (or KUBE) brings backyard fun indoors with playhouses, ramps, slides towers with ladders. Best for ages 2-12. $5-$6/child. Plymouth Community Center, 14800 34th Avenue North, Plymouth, MN 55447.

Find our ultimate list of twin cities-area indoor playgrounds!
Kids Ultimate Backyard Experience (KUBE) in Plymouth, Minnesota
Image courtesy of City of Plymouth

Nature play on Thursday

Lil’ Explorer Thursday at Como Zoo

Como Park Zoo & Conservatory, 1225 Estabrook Dr, St Paul, MN 55103
The beloved (at least by my family) preschool program offers weekly themed activities to the 4-and-under set. Think sand tables, sponge painting, worm digs and storytimes. November 16, 2023, 10am-12pm. FREE.

Free museums to visit on Thursday

Here’s a chance to visit a couple of family-friendly Twin Cities museums FREE today (who doesn’t love some FREE before the holidays?)

Free Thursday Night at American Swedish Institute

2600 Park Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55407
Have your kids ever thought it would be awesome to explore a castle? Here’s their chance (and yours) while the very family-friendly AMERICAN SWEDISH INSTITUTE offers FREE admission every Thursday after 3pm. There is a rotating family gallery kids will enjoy playing in and nooks and crannies to explore. PLUS! ASI’s holiday exhibit Once Upon  Mansion has opened. November 16, 2023.
PAIR A VISIT WITH DINNER: Our kids have enjoyed the Swedish meatballs at FIKA Cafe in the museum. Plus happy hour pricing from 3 until 8 p.m. on Thursdays.Dala Horse at American Swedish Institute

Free Thursday Night at Walker Art Center

725 Vineland Pl, Minneapolis, MN 55403
We recommend this chance to visit the Walker for free with older children or teens who enjoy art in a less hands-on experience. For a more kid-friendly (and still admission-free) opportunity, make sure to visit the first Saturday of each month for special programming. November 16, 2023, 5-9pm.

KidsJam with Schubert Club Museum

Landmark Center, 75 W 5th St, St Paul, MN 55102
This month, kids can listen to and learn about different cultures and instruments in the program Speaking in Tongues. Registration is required and space is limited. If you don’t grab a spot, consider stopping by the SCHUBERT CLUB MUSIC MUSEUM for free, hands-on fun our own kids have enjoyed. November 16 & 17, 2023.

Girl trying bell tree at the Schubert Club Museum in Saint Paul, MN


Text: Family-Friendly Museums & Historic Places in the Twin Cities & Greater Minnesota. Family Fun Twin Cities. Background of kids exploring the Minnesota History Museum in Saint Paul, Minnesota.

Fun things to do in the Twin Cities on Friday, November 17, 2023

Tot Time Open Gyms in the Twin Cities Minnesota this week

Tot Time Open Gyms on Friday:


14645 Felton Court, Suite #104, Apple Valley, MN 55124
Work out the wiggles with indoor playsets, trampolines and basketball courts. Cost is $8/child; parents and babies under 18 months free. Open play 9am-4pm.

Millz House Indoor Playground in Minnesota
Millz House, Apple Valley

Twin Cities Storytimes on Friday:

FRIDAY FEATURED STORYTIME: Barnes and Noble Galleria Storytime

3230 Galleria, Edina, MN 55435
While most Barnes & Noble Stores offer a themed storytime on Saturdays, the Galleria offers weekly story hours on Fridays. 10am. FREE!

Nature play on Friday

Turkey Talk Naturalist Program

Fort Snelling State Park
Turkeys can often be spotted at Fort Snelling State Park. In this family-friendly program you’ll learn to “talk turkey”, and find out more about these park residents. Dress for the weather and meet at the Thomas C. Savage Visitor Center. November 17, 2023. 10am, FREE, but $7 vehicle permit required for park entry.

Nature Playdate: T Is For Turkey at Dodge nature Center

365 Marie Ave W, West St Paul, MN 55118
Learn all about turkeys, including the ones who inhabit the nature center preserve, through storytime, a craft and outdoor walk. Program is designed for all ages. Pre-registration required. November 17, 2023, 10-11am. $10/child.

More family fun ideas for Friday: Friday night fun!

Bell Museum Star Party

Bell Museum of Natural History, 2088 Larpenteur Ave W, St Paul, MN 55113
GREAT FOR TWEENS AND TEENS! Explore the night sky with the aid of pros and a telescope on the museum’s outdoor observation deck. Recommended for families with kids ages 7+. FREE, but please register. November 17, 2023, 8:30-10pm.

Grand Slam Weekend Special

12425 River Ridge Blvd, Burnsville, MN 55337
My tweens and teens request this outing every so often because they’re confident everyone is going to end up having fun. Included in the $12.95 package price: unlimited laser tag, mini golf & krazy kars and 12 arcade credits. We choose to add on the trampolines for $4. Friday & Saturday nights, 7-10pm.

Fun things to do this weekend in the Twin Cities, November 18-19, 2023 

Too many fun things to list here, I’ll tell you that. So we publish a separate guide each weekend with up-to-the-last-minute ideas for spending family time together. Here’s a sneak peek of what to look forward to this weekend in the Twin Cities:


weekend family fun guide

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