Twin Cities Southwest Metro: Things To Do This Summer

Twin Cities Southwest Metro: Things To Do This Summer – Covering the Twin Cities, Minnesota, communities of Bloomington, Chaska, Eden Prairie, Edina, Golden Valley, Hopkins, Minnetonka, New Hope, Richfield, Shakopee, St Louis Park & Victoria.

School’s out and your family is just itching to explore beyond the backyard. We have the scoop on your community entertainment – live music in the parks, family festivals, swimming and splash pads, the puppet wagon and lots more to keep you busy this summer.

Get started planning your best summer!

Everything under the sun you need to know about family fun this summer in the Twin Cities. Beat boredom and fill your long school break days exploring the best the Twin Cities has to offer in the way of parks, swim spots, community entertainment and local festivals with our 2023 TWIN CITIES ULTIMATE SUMMER EVENTS GUIDE.

Family Fun Twin Cities Ultimate Guide to a Summer to Remember



Bloomington parks – summer events

Want to get out and play in Bloomington parks this summer? Try starting with our list of the best: Bloomington Family Fun – 10 Parks To Explore This Summer.

Hyland Lake Park Reserve

10145 E Bush Lake Rd, Bloomington, MN 55438
Hyland Lake is part of the larger Hyland-Bush-Anderson Lakes Park Reserve and contains such delights as a nature center, gigantic playground, disc golf course and two swimming beaches. To entertain on a budget this summer try:

  • RICHARDSON NATURE CENTER is stuffed with bright, interactive exhibits and is home to live raptors. Outdoors, kids can play and build freely in the Nature Exploration Area.
  • FREE FAMILY FUN DAYS are held ongoing Sundays at the nature center during the summer. Drop in from 1-3pm.
Richardson Nature Center in the Twin Cities Southwest Metro
Richardson Nature Center in the Twin Cities Southwest Metro

Bloomington Arts in the Parks

  • MONDAY MORNING KIDS SERIES – Moir Central Park, June 5 – Aug 7, 2023. 10:30am. 10320 Morgan Ave South, Bloomington, MN 55431.
  • TUESDAY EVENING PERFORMANCE SERIES – Normandale Lake Bandshell, starts June 6, 2023, 7pm.
  • MIDWEEK MUSIC & MARKET – Music, food trucks, a farmers market and lawn games at Civic Plaza. Wednesday evenings, July 12-Aug 23, 2023. 5-8pm.
  • THURSDAY BLOCKBUSTER SERIES – Normandale Bandshell, June 8-August 10, 2023, 7pm. W 84th St & Chalet Rd, Bloomington, MN 55437.
  • SUNDAY FUNDAY – Family-friendly entertainment and food. June 18-August 23, 2023, 4-6:30pm. See link for locations around Bloomington. 

Bloomington summer festivals

Bloomington Summer Fete

W 84th St & Chalet Rd, Bloomington, MN 55437
The annual summer event includes a c
arnival, live music and fireworks at dusk. Learn more about Bloomington’s at Normandale Lake Park. July 3, 2023.

Bloomington swimming & beaches

Bush Lake Beach

9140 East Bush Lake Road, Bloomington, MN 55438
The popular, sandy beach is located on the east side of Bush Lake in Bloomington. It is guarded during open hours (11am to 7pm daily during the season) and amenities include a volleyball court and concessions stand. Families can canoe, picnic and explore the trails. An annual tradition, each June a sandcastle building contest is hosted at Bush Lake Beach. Admission and parking are free. June 1-Labor Day, 2023.

Bloomington Family Aquatic Center

201 E 90th St, Bloomington, MN 55420
Fun features include a zero-depth entry pool, aqua climbing wall, water slides, diving boards, and a concession stand. Tot Time is held 10am to 12pm on weekdays for children ages 6 & under. Find more community
Tot Time Open Swims. Open June 10 – August 20, 2023. $8-$10/pp. Save with twilight rates of $7-$8/pp after 4pm.

Find more of the best Twin Cities beaches and playgrounds.

Explore more things to do this summer in Bloomington – with kids!

Bloomington Minnesota Family Fun - Things to Do With Kids in Bloomington Minnesota - Family Fun Twin Cities


Chaska parks – summer events

Firemen’s Park

3210 Chaska Blvd, Chaska, MN 55318
Chaska’s Firemen’s Park is a popular summer destination for families. The park’s amenities include playgrounds, a simple splash pad, a beach and boardwalk, plenty of picnic space plus a concession area, flower gardens, archery range and horseshoe pits.

  • MONDAY FRIENDS AT FIREMENS – Meet up w/ local families at the park for swimming and outdoor play. Ages 6+. Mondays, June 12-August 21, 2023. 1:30-3pm. FREE.
  • WEDNESDAY NIGHT CONCERTS – Family-friendly live music in Firemen’s Park. Tuesdays, June 14-August 9, 2023. 6pm.

Chaska community parks

  • TUESDAY KIDS ENTERTAINMENT – Bands just for young ones. Held select Tuesdays, summer 2023. See link for Chaska community park locations and times.

Chaska summer festivals

Fire & Ice Festival Bonspiel

A community festival with food, live music, activities for kids in the park and fireworks. Held in Firemen’s Park. July 14-15, 2023.

Chaska swimming & beaches

Clayhole Swim Beach

3210 Chaska Blvd, Chaska, MN 55318
Firemen’s Park surrounds Clayhole Lake and Swim Beach. We rate this one of the best beaches for families in the Twin Cities.


Eden Prairie parks – summer events

Staring Lake Park

14800 Pioneer Trail, Eden Prairie, MN 55347
There’s so much to explore at Staring Lake. In summer, hit up the playground, archery range, disc golf course, hiking trails and sports fields and courts. There is also free family entertainment at the
Staring Lake Amphitheater throughout the summer months.

Staring Lake Park in the Twin Cities Southwest Metro
Staring Lake Park in the Twin Cities Southwest Metro

Eden Prairie summer festivals

Arts in the Park

Purgatory Creek Park, 13001 Technology Drive, Eden Prairie, Minnesota 55344
Shop local artisans and take in live entertainment, lawn games, art activities and food trucks.
August 19, 2023. 10am-5pm.

Eden Prairie 4th of July Hometown Celebration

Round Lake Park, 16691 Valley View Road, Eden Prairie, Minnesota 55346
Inflatables, chalk art, kids beach party, carnival, music and fireworks.
 July 4, 2023.


Staring Lake Park, 14800 Pioneer Trail, Eden Prairie, MN 55347
The annual festival is a large-scale arts event that bring residents together in celebration of the many cultures that make the community great. July 26-August 5, 2023.

Eden Prairie swimming & beaches

Round Lake Park Beach

16691 Valley View Rd, Eden Prairie, MN 55346
Kids will go crazy for the marine-themed splash pad and treehouse play equipment at the Round Lake Play Area. Older kids might find it fun to rent youth kayaks ($5/hr) or stand-up paddleboards ($8/hr) or bike ride the one-mile path around Round Lake. Nearby is plenty of shaded picnic space and the new Round Lake Skate Plaza.

Round Lake Park in the Twin Cities Southwest Metro
Round Lake Park in the Twin Cities Southwest Metro

Bryant Lake Regional Park

6800 Rowland Rd, Eden Prairie, MN 55344
A wide range of recreational activities await families in the park: swimming in the sand-bottomed Bryant Lake, disc golf on the 18-hole course, hiking and nature watching. There is no fee to swim at the beach.


Edina parks – summer events

Centennial Lakes Park

Edina’s crown jewel of a public park is a haven for summer entertainment. Events are held daily Sun-Thurs and include family-friendly concerts at the outdoor amphitheater, Movies in the Park ongoing Thursday evenings, and the Farmers Market. Open starting Memorial Day are the park’s paddle boats, putting course & lawn games. 

Centennial Lakes Park, Edina

Edina summer festivals

Edina Art Fair

50th & France bustles with vendors, live music and a Kids Zone. June 2-4, 2023.

Edina 4th of July Parade

Parade route: Edina City Hall heading east on 50th Street, ending at Halifax. Fireworks to be set off in Rosland Park after dusk. July 4, 2023, 10am.

Edina swimming & beaches

Edina Aquatic Center

4300 W 66th St, Edina, MN 55435
Located in
ROSLAND PARK the outdoor pool has a pirate-theme and unique water features, a zero depth area, and water slides. For the younger kids, there is a zero-depth water playground named Lil’ Lagoon, designed specifically for them. June 8-July 31, 2023. $10-$13/pp, admission $7 extra for Lost Wave Simulator.


Golden Valley parks – summer events

Schaper Park, Golden Valley

Brookview Park

  • CONCERTS IN THE PARK Mondays, June 5-August 7, 2023. 7pm.
  • GOLDEN VALLEY ICE CREAM SOCIAL – Free ice cream during the concert in the park. July 10, 2023, 7pm.
  • PENNY CARNIVAL – For kids 12 & under, super cheap carnival games, hayrides, inflatables, puppet shows, snacks and more. July 28, 2023, 12:30-2pm.
  • FAMILY STORYTIME – Storytelling by Princess Party Pals for kids ages 12 & under. August 23, 2023. 10:30am.

City Hall – Playground Adventure Van

Kids between the age of 6 to 12 can drop by Golden Valley City Hall between 9:30am and 11:30am on Mondays & Wednesdays to play games, make crafts, and participate in activities all led by park staff. June 12-July 24, 2023. FREE.

Golden Valley Puppet Wagon

Golden Valley’s Puppet Wagon hits a variety of local parks on Monday and Tuesdays, except during the week of July 4th. June 13-July 27, 2023, 9:45-11:15am. See link for park schedule. 


Hopkins parks – summer events

Hopkins summer festivals

Hopkins Raspberry Festival

The festival includes Family Day in Central Park with art activities, fireworks and other entertainment and a Grande Day Parade.  July 12-16, 2023.

Explore more things to do in Hopkins this summer – with kids!


Minnetonka parks – summer events

Minnetonka Art in the Park:
  • MUSIC IN THE PARK & FARMERS MARKET Live music begins June 6, 2023. Market runs Tuesdays, June 6 – September 23, 2023. 7pm. Minnetonka Civic Center Campus, Ice Arena B Parking Lot, 14600 Minnetonka Blvd.
  • MINNETONKA MOVIES IN THE PARK – Bring your blankets and chairs. Movies start at sunset: Lyle, Lyle Crocodie. August 31, 2023. Civic Center Amphitheater, 14600 Minnetonka Blvd, Minnetonka, MN 55345.

Minnetonka summer festivals

Minnetonka Summer Fest

Minnetonka Civic Center, 14600 Minnetonka Blvd
Inflatables, petting zoo, family music, and fireworks. All activities are free except food! June 24, 2023.

Minnetonka swimming & beaches

Shady Oak Beach

5200 Shady Oak Rd, Minnetonka, MN 55343
This 85-acre park in Minnetonka has a large, sandy beach and a play area with misters and a fossil dig. Admission is $6/pp.

Shady Oak Beach, Minnetonka


New Hope parks – summer events

New Hope summer festivals

Wet & Wild Water Fun Day

Valley Place Park, 6822 32nd Ave N, Crystal
Three giant water slides, a kiddie slide and sprinkler fun provided by West Metro Fire’s aerial truck. August 4, 2023, 12:30-3pm. $3-$5/pp.

New Hope HeyDey Festival

New Hope’s new festival (f/k/a Duk Duk Daze) is TBD for 2023.

New Hope swimming

New Hope Aquatic Center

4411 Xylon Ave N, New Hope MN
The new swimming spot includes a recreational pool with zero-depth entry, a current channel, vortex pool and body slides. Open June 3-4 & June 8-August 20, 2023. $10-$11/pp.


Richfield parks – summer events

Richfield’s Veterans Park

6335 Portland Ave, Richfield, MN 55423
Veterans Park (also called Veterans Memorial Park) is Richfield’s largest park. It is home to Legion Lake and several walking and biking paths, an outdoor pool, an ice arena, and a mini-golf course.

Veterans Park, Richfield
Richfield community parks:
  • RICHFIELD SUMMER PLAYGROUND: FREE supervised activities for kids ages 6-12 at 4 Richfield parks. See PDF for more information. Registration required. Mon-Thurs starting June 12, 2023, 9am-3pm.
  • FRIDAY FUN AT AUGSBURG ADVENTURE PARK – Read-a-Story Theater followed by time to play at the inclusive park plus special entertainment such as dance parties and puppet shows. Select Fridays & Saturdays starting May 12 through August 25, 2023. 7000 Nicollet Avenue, Richfield MN.

Richfield Nature Play

Wood Lake Nature Center

6710 Lake Shore Dr S, Richfield, MN 55423
Explore the indoor exhibits, outdoor trails and the nature play area. Check out a free nature exploration backpack at the front desk.

Wood Lake Nature Center

Richfield summer festivals

Richfield Red, White & Blue Days

Celebrate with Family Night Kids Parade, 4th of July Parade and fireworks to follow. TBA for 2023.

Richfield swimming

Richfield Outdoor Pool

630 E 66th St, Richfield, MN 55423
Open starting June 9, 2023. Admission $10-$11/pp.

  • TOT TIME – Ages 7 & under. Mon-Sat, 10-11am.


Shakopee parks – summer events

Shakopee community parks
  • HUBER PARK PERFORMANCE & EVENT SERIES – Family entertainment on the riverfront. Wednesdays, May 31-Aug 25, 2023, 7pm. Fillmore St N, Shakopee, MN 55379.
  • POP-UP SPLASH PADS – Free and presented by Shakopee Fire Department. Plus, free hot dogs, chips and water. Fridays, July 14 & August 11, 2023. Please see PDF link for park locations.
  • SHAKOPEE SUMMER CARNIVAL: Games, prizes and treats for kids ages 3-10. Lions Park. August 4, 2023. 10am, $5/admission per child.

Shakopee summer festivals

Happy Birthday America Parade

1103 Adams Street, Shakopee MN.
Starts at
SHAKOPEE LIONS PARK shelter. June 30, 2023, 10:30am. 

Shakopee swimming & beaches

SandVenture Aquatic Park

1101 Adams St S, Shakopee, MN 55379
A hybrid between a pool and a beach, SandVenture Aquatic Park is chlorinated but surrounded by sand for a beach-going experience. The park is home to two 12-drop slides and a 300-foot waterslide. Opens June 9, 2023. Admission is $3-$7/pp.

Sandventure Aquatic Park
Sandventure Aquatic Park, Shakopee

Shakopee Splash Pad

1103 Adams St S, Shakopee, MN 55379
The splash pad is located at

Lion fountain at the Lions Park Splash Pad in Shakopee Minnesota
Splash pad


St Louis Park parks – summer events

St Louis Park community parks
  • KIDS SUMMER CONCERT SERIES Wednesdays starting June 21, 2023, 10-11am. FREE. Veteran’s Memorial Amphitheater, 3700 Monterey Drive, St Louis Park MN.

Carpenter Park Skate Park

4900 MN-7, St Louis Park, MN 55416
Skaters can take advantage of a plaza-style skate park includes stairs, rails and a mini half-pipe.

St Louis Park Nature Play

Westwood Hills Nature Center

8300 W Franklin Ave, St Louis Park, MN 55426
Westwood Hills Nature Center is a 160-acre natural area featuring marsh, woods and restored prairie. Learn more about exploring indoors and out.

Nature Playground at Westwood Hills Nature Center in St. Louis Park, MN
Nature-Themed Playground at Westwood Hills Nature Center

St Louis Park summer festivals

St. Louis Park Parktacular

Wolfe Park, 3700 Monterey Drive St. Louis Park, MN 55416
Grand Day Parade and Kidtacular family & kids activities are free or low cost.
 June 16-20, 2023.

July 4th Fireworks Celebration

Aquila Park, 3110 Xylon Ave S, St Louis Park, MN 55426
Concessions, vendors, live music and fireworks. July 4, 2023, 7-11pm

St Louis Park swimming

St Louis Park Aquatic Center

3700 Monterey Dr, St Louis Park, MN 55416
The pool features sand and water play area, tot whale slide, spray arches, geysers, an aqua obstacle course, drop slides, diving boards and sun decks. Opens June 1, 2023. Admission is $6-$15/pp.

St Louis Park splash pad

Oak Hill Park splash pad

3201 Rhode Island Ave S, St Louis Park, MN 55426
The 2,350-square-foot splash pad lets kids activate bubbling hoses, water nozzles and sprinkler arches.
Admission is free for SLP residents and a buck for non. 


Victoria parks – summer events

Carver Park Reserve

55386, 7400 Grimm Rd, Waconia, MN 55387
Sprawling on the western edge of the Twin Cities, Carver Park Reserve is home to a nature center, historic site, archery range, campgrounds, King Waterbird Sanctuary and many more recreational opportunities.

  • LOWRY NATURE CENTER– free family programs are often offered and it’s always free to explore the nature-themed playground. 7025 Victoria Dr, Victoria, MN 55386.
Grimm Farmhouse, Carver Park Reserve


  • VICTORIA CONCERTS IN THE PARK Wednesdays, June 7-August 9, 2023. 6-8pm. Charlson Thun Community Bandstand, 1730 Stieger Lake Lane, Victoria, MN 55386.
  • LUNCH TIME TUNESkids will enjoy these during the daytime plus a storytime offered by Victoria Library. June 21 & July 19, 2023. Noon.

Victoria nature playground

Lowry Nature Center

7025 Victoria Dr, Victoria, MN 55386
Nature Exploration Area:
There are two playgrounds to explore here. The first is entirely man-made, following a “habitat” theme and prompting kids to learn about the park environment. You can climb to an osprey’s nest, peek into a “beaver dam”, tunnel like a mole and more. The second playground is a rough collection of stumps, fallen trunks, and club-sized sticks.

Lowry Nature Center in the Twin Cities Southwest Metro
Lowry Nature Center in the Twin Cities Southwest Metro

Victoria community entertainment

Victoria Recreation Center

  • POP UP SPLASH PAD July 26, 2023. 1-2pm. Victoria Recreation Ctr, 8475 Kochia Lane, Victoria, MN 55386.
  • TRUCK RODEO – Get up close to big rigs and a helicopter. July 20, 2023, 6-8pm.

Victoria summer library events

The VICTORIA LIBRARY is a branch of the Carver County Library system, located on the first floor of  Victoria City Hall. The City of Victoria’s summer catalog (PDF) lists all of the special summer events hosted by the Victoria Library, including storytimes, StoryWalks and live entertainment.

Summer reading program: All Together Now – June 1-August 12.

150+ things to do this summer in the twin cities with kids!


Drop us a comment if you are aware of something else in the Twin Cities Northwest Metro that we missed.  We will share it with the community.

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