Twin Cities Business Listing

109 West 4th Street, Saint Paul, MN 55102
Limited Concessions Available
Hours of Operation:
Mon. 06:00 AM – 11:00 PM
Tue. 06:00 AM – 11:00 PM
Wed. 06:00 AM – 11:00 PM
Thu. 06:00 AM – 11:00 PM
Fri. 06:00 AM – 11:00 PM
Sat. 06:00 AM – 11:00 PM
Sun. 06:00 AM – 11:00 PM
City of St Paul parks are open sunrise-11pm unless otherwise noted

Rice Park (named for Henry Mower Rice) is located in downtown Saint Paul and hosts several family-friendly festivals, concerts and events each year. This public space is a nice park for picnics and to explore public art, including  features a delightful fountain. For a fun family day out, pair your picnics with family adventures to see and/or visit bordering historic buildings, including the Landmark Center, the Ordway Center, the Saint Paul Hotel and the Downtown Central Library/George Latimer. Walk a few blocks further to the Science Museum of MinnesotaMinnesota Children’s MuseumUnion Depot and CHS Field. On weekend mornings, the Saint Paul Farmers Market is just 9 blocks away.

Summer Picnics at Rice Park

The Landmark Center recommends Rice park for an afternoon picnic to enjoy the recently revitalized and refreshed historic park:

“Its new amenities include plaza restoration, beautiful floral displays and gardens, and an extensive lawn for throwing down the picnic blanket.”

The walkways are lined with benches and a few tables, plus there is plenty of green space spread a blanket. Rumors aside, residents of the area have assured us that Rice Park and Lower Town Saint Paul are perfectly safe for day-time picnics and public events. The park does not have a playground, but the Depot Tot Lot at TPT is just 7 blocks north east of Rice Park.

Public Gardens:

The park’s gardens are kept by the Saint Paul Garden Club, who maintain beautiful seasonal beds and planters from spring through fall.

Public Art:

Go on a public art scavenger hunt during your picnic, between Rice Park and Landmark Plaza, you can find:

  1. A statue of F. Scott Fitzgerald;
  2. A bronze sculpture of a woman walking in the fountain, called “The Source;” and
  3. Several bronze Peanuts characters created by artist, Tivoli Too – Charlie Brown, Linus, Sally, Lucy, Schroeder, Peppermint Patty and Woodstock
  4. New in 2023: LightWave, an animated LED light installation by artist Jeff Bartlett. This latest public art installation “provides an interplay of light, animated in a color-changing display, with the intent of a dynamic, engaging feature to draw visitors to the park’s center. The installation also provides a safe, outdoor space by further illuminating the park and the fountain.”

Events at Rice Park

The Landmark Center hosts summer walking tours from the park and a weekly music series – Rhythm in Rice. Beginning in November through snowmelt, the park is lit up with Holiday cheer. In January and February, families can visit during Winter Carnival to see amazing ice sculptures.

The Landmark Center in Winter
A view of the Landmark Center from Rice Park in Winter – Image courtesy of the City of St. Paul

Music Programs in the Park

Rhythm in Rice is a 10-week music series featuring both globally inspired musicians and mainstream music. On Fridays from June to August watch two bands beginning at 6:00 p.m. and running to about 8:00 p.m. The music line up can be found on the Rhythm in Rice website or in the FFTC Family Fun Calendar.

The park is also part of the city-wide music in the parks program hosted by St. Paul Parks.

Landmark Center Tours of Rice Park

The Landmark Center offers free walking tours from June through September. Among the tours is the Rice Park Tour. Space is limited on these tours and they often sell out. Reservations are required. During the summer of 2020, the Landmark Center created virtual versions of the tour, so you can do a self-guided walk if you would like.

WinterSkate Has Moved

Winterskate has moved from Rice Park to CHS Field and will be taking 2022/23 off. You are not out of luck, though. Find our complete list of Free Outdoor Ice Rinks around the Twin Cities here.

Rice Park WinterSkate

What Rice Park DOESN’T Have

Located in the heart of the City of St. Paul, Rice Park is not a traditional play park. Visitors will not find a playground or restrooms. There is no splash pad, swings or slides. Families can bring a cold picnic and find space to dine under shade trees, but there are no grills or a Rice Park shelter.

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