Memorial Day Weekend at Fort Snelling

Fort Snelling is the perfect place to spend part of your Memorial Day Holiday.  There’ll be special events and activities taking place throughout the day on Saturday, Sunday and Monday.  You can find ticket information, as well as the daily schedule, here on the website.

On Memorial Day Weekend at Historic Fort Snelling, explore the grounds, visit with costumed interpreters and engage with the many stories that make up the site’s history. Learn about American Indian history and the fort’s role in U.S. expansion. Explore stories of African Americans at Fort Snelling, including Dred and Harriet Scott whose struggle to gain freedom from slavery helped ignite the Civil War. Watch demonstrations like cannon firings, hearth cooking, blacksmithing and more. Join in historic games on the parade grounds, and kids can try out the History Scavenger Hunt and earn a Fort Kids button.

Throughout the weekend, visit the stone barracks and talk with costumed staff representing different eras of U.S. military history. On Saturday, staff will present stories about U.S. expansion during the 1800s. On Sunday, the focus will be on the 20th century and the growth of the U.S. into a global power. On Monday, don’t miss a special “living timeline” of America’s military past on the parade ground, with costumed staff and reenactors sharing the history of Americans serving in armed conflicts.

Site admission is free for active military and veterans on Memorial Day.

The Opening of Three Rivers Park District Swim Ponds and Beaches

It might not feel like summer today and quite possibly not tomorrow.  However, we live in Minnesota and you just never know what the weather will be from one day to the next.  We can tell you that Saturday, May 27th, will be the day the swim ponds and beaches open for the Three Rivers Park District.  Maybe you just put your toes in the sand.  Whatever you do, at least there’ll be options.   Check out all the locations here on their website.

It’s hot, the sun is shining, and it’s a beautiful day. Is there any better way to enjoy an unbeatable Minnesota summer than to splash around at the beach? Swimming is a great, low-impact way to exercise your whole body. Better yet, it’s fun for the whole family. Swimming areas in Three Rivers are located near play areas, trails, visitor centers, campgrounds, and more so you can make a day of it.

 

 

2017 Flint Hills International Children’s Festival

It’s time for the 17th annual Flint Hills International Children’t Festival.  It takes place inside and outside the Ordway in St. Paul. The Festival is packed full of free and inexpensive entertainment.  The festival takes place SCHOOL WEEK MAY 30 – JUNE 2 and FAMILY WEEKEND JUNE 3 & 4.

For the indoor performances you can purchased tickets in advance here on the website.

WHAT ELSE WILL I SEE AT THE FESTIVAL?

• More than 100 free outdoor performances by almost 600 local artists and groups representing cultural traditions from around the world
• Folktales from across the globe as told by Twin Cities storytellers in the Story Time Corner
• A musical instrument petting zoo with Congolese musician Siama
• Located inside the Ordway: “The Touch of Sound,” an interactive audio installation featuring the sounds of the Galapagos Islands
• An art exhibition titled “Gathering of Contemporary Indigenous Artists,” curated by Gordon Coons (Ojibwa/Ottawa), in the Ordway lobbies
• The Clear Channel Outdoor ARTwalk, a walking tour through downtown St. Paul highlighting hundreds of pieces of art created by young people

WHAT CAN I DO AT THE FESTIVAL?

• New this year: kid’s yoga by 1000 Petals Yoga
• Art-making activities from 21 different arts, cultural and educational organizations from around the Twin Cities
• Join in a lunch time dance party with local DJs spinning tunes in the Ordway lobby
• Dozens of family-friendly activities such as face painting, balloon artists, henna tattoos, juggling, dance lessons, and more!

Minnesota Children’s Museum Re-Opening Events

It’s no secret, the MN Children’s Museum in St. Paul has been quietly working on a remodel and becoming bigger and better.  We’ve all been patiently waiting for it to open back up.  We can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel, the day is almost here, we can once again enjoy one of our favorite indoor activities.

The bigger and better museum will have:  10 new exhibits, additional amenities that include a new cafe, an additional elevator, new box office, plus 35% additional visitor space. There are several opportunities to enjoy the new changes the museum has made:

The museum has been entirely reimagined. The new experiences include:

  • The Scramble: A four-story vertical adventure with climbing towers, a spiral slide and a netted catwalk suspended more than 40-feet high.
  • Super Awesome Adventures: Laser maze, carpet skates, balance boards and green-screen climbing wall
  • The Studio | Target Gallery: Tinker, make and create with real tools and authentic materials
  • Creativity Jam | Target Gallery: Lively and bright collaborative space with face-painting, loose parts and surprising materials
  • Forces at Play | 3M Gallery: Air-powered ball launchers and a wacky car wash
  • Sprouts: Joyful landscape of discovery for babies and toddlers
  • Our World | Best Buy Gallery: Vibrant Minnesota city with a fire station, hardware store, post office, food stand and more
  • Imaginopolis: Fantastical play space where children shape and share their own stories
  • Backyard: Quirky outdoor space for exploring the natural world
  • Tip Top Terrace | Ecolab Gallery: Outdoor space on the roof to see, hear and talk about the city

June 2-6: Sneak Peek Days. Non-members can purchase advance tickets here on their website, members check your email.

June 7th: Grand Opening & Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony, no reservations required.  Museum open from 9-5pm

June 17th:  Museum Free day and Block Party. although free a reservation is required. No reservation needed for block party

June 18th:  Target 3rd Free Sunday.  although free a reservation is required

 

 

 

 

Koo Koo Kanga Roo concert at MN Zoo

In case you haven’t heard the Minnesota Zoo is going down under, well sort of down under. The MN Zoo will be hosting some Australian animals for a few months.  To celebrate, the Koo Koo Kanga Roo band will be in concert at the MN Zoo for a grand opening celebration of the Kangaroo exhibit.

May 27th & 28th.
Playing at 11:30am & 1:30pm both days
Show is free with general zoo admission.

Koo Koo Kanga Roo are a party band who are on this planet to make you dance while laughing so hard that milk comes out of your nose. Whether you’re getting sweaty at their live show, listening to their concept albums or dancing along in your classroom via GoNoodle, Bryan and Neil just want to make sure you’re having a blast.

Since 2008, Koo Koo Kanga Roo have been touring and putting on shows at elementary school gyms, bars, church basements and even nursing homes. The duo has toured stateside and internationally with the likes of Frank Turner, The Aquabats, MC Lars, Yo Gabba Gabba Live and have been featured on the Vans Warped Tour. In 2015 and 2016 the band played over 250 live shows.

Holz Farm Spring Festival

We might have to dress warmer this weekend but it’s still technically spring.  So find a warmer coat and maybe some rain boots and head to the Holz Spring Festival tomorrow in Eagan.  The Spring Festival is a free family friendly event that takes place from 11-4. Some of the activities taking place will be: barnyard animals, pie eating contest, corn grinding, honeybee lesson, live music, and more.  You can find more information as well as the schedule of events here on their website.

Holz Farm bridges Eagan’s past and present, old and young, and rural and urban communities. Visitors can experience family life from the Great Depression through World War II. Holz Farm provides the community with an educational, cultural and historical resource. The farm offers a unique opportunity to experience rural life as it once existed in Eagan through events and programming benefiting people of all ages. A Walking Tour of Holz Farm booklet has been developed for those that want to learn more about each of the buildings on the property as well as the history of Holz Farm.

Photo Courtesy of Alan Kieker

 

The Play Ball Minnesota Youth Clinics

Play Ball Minnesota Youth Clinics is a program that was started back in 1961, and continues today.  It’s a free program that takes place in many communities throughout MN.  The program is a way to promote baseball and softball to boys and girls throughout the region.  There are two age group options, 6-9 and 10-13.  Check out the complete list of locations to find one near you, here on the program website.

The spring and summer of 2017 is the 57th season the Minnesota Twins, Twins Community Fund and Play Ball! Minnesota, in partnership with Great River Energy, will offer free youth baseball/softball clinics. Created in 1961 by longtime Twins scout Angelo Giuliani, the clinic program serves as a way for Play Ball! Minnesota to promote the baseball and softball to boys and girls throughout the region.

The Play Ball! Minnesota Youth Clinics have always been, and will continue to be, available to participants and communities free of charge. Funding for the Play Ball! Minnesota Youth Clinics is provided by the Twins Community Fund and Great River Energy. No advanced registration is required to participate in a clinic, but participants must complete a waiver form before they will be allowed to participate.

The current baseball clinic format was developed by former Twins general manager, and amateur baseball supporter, Terry Ryan and former Twins executive Bob Gebhard. The current softball clinic format was developed by Terry Ryan Award winner and longtime softball instructor Jim Berbee. Clinics are broken up into two sessions (unless otherwise noted); the first session is for 6-9 year olds, and the second for 10-13 year olds.

Art-A-Whirl

It’s time for the 22nd annual Art-A-Whirl.  It takes place in Northeast Minneapolis.  You’ll find almost every type of art imaginable, with over 20 different mediums. A great time to shop for gifts or something for your home.  There are over 700 different artists on hand, showcasing their best work.  You can find more specifics on the schedule, parking and the artists on hand here on the website

Join us for the 22nd Annual Art-A-Whirl!

Presented by the Northeast Minneapolis Arts Association (NEMAA), Art-A-Whirl is the largest open studio tour in the country, and it takes place all over Northeast Minneapolis. It’s a great opportunity to tour private artist studios and galleries, purchase original artwork, and connect with over 700 artists working in more than 20 different mediums.

Art-A-Whirl takes place annually throughout Northeast Minneapolis, the third weekend of May. This event is free and open to the public.

Friday, May 19th – 5:00-10:00 p.m.
Saturday, May 20th – Noon-8:00 p.m.
Sunday, May 21st – Noon-5:00 p.m.

 

 

A Fun Kids Day in Prior Lake

This Saturday, May 20th is Kids Day at the Maintenance Center in Prior Lake.  A day to to check out some of the vehicles and machines that they use around town.  Do you have a kid that loves to watch the snowplow or the tractor mowing the city trails? This is a time to safely get up close to some of the big vehicles and machines.  It takes place from 8-10am and you can find more information here. 

Families are invited to this free event to come and see up close, some of the vehicles that come and go through your neighborhood. A wide variety of vehicles will be on display for you and your child to explore.

A Quiet Nature Hike in Bloomington: Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge

A Quiet Nature Hike in Bloomington: Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge

Sometimes you find nature in the most unsuspecting places.  Just a few blocks from the Mall of America and just a few short blocks from the airport, nature quietly awaits those who choose to find it.  The Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge is home to countless birds and other creatures.  So close to the hustle and bustle and yet so far away, it almost feels like you are hundreds of miles from anything.

We spent our Sunday walking along the trails, watching an eagle, and listening to the sounds of an abundance of other birds.  One of our girls spotted a snake in the weeds along the trail and another one pointed out the orange feet of a duck in the pond.

I can honestly say that the weather was perfect on our hike and we had the perfect mix of shade and sun as we walked.  Next time I think we will bring binoculars so we can get a better view of some of the wildlife.  If you’ve never been to the Minnesota Wildlife Refuge, put it on your list of must see places.

A Quiet Nature Hike in Bloomington- Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge