Chanhassen-Carver County Day at the Arboretum

For those of you lucky enough to live in either Chanhassen or Carver County, July 14th is your lucky day.  Tomorrow, Friday July 14th is Chanhassen-Carver County Day at the Arboretum.  That means a full day of free admission for all of you.

Chanhassen and Carver County residents will get a free entry to the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum (8am-8pm) on July 14 where they can meet city and county officials, have coffee, juice and bagels and take in the summer exhibits at the Arboretum.

Arboretum Director Peter Moe and other elected city and county officials will start the event with a public welcome to  residents and visitors in the Oswald Visitor Center at 10 a.m.  Enjoy complimentary coffee, juice and bagels during the welcome.

Plan your family friendly day with these activities in mind:

  • Storytime at 10:30
  • Free, guided garden highlights tour starting at 11am
  • Take a ride on the free BeeLine Shuttle

Plus a lot more.  You can find the schedule of events and more information on the event webpage.

Shockwaves Water Ski Show in Plymouth

If you’ve never seen a water ski show, now is the time to go.  On Monday July 10th the Shockwaves  will have a show in Plymouth at the Parkers Lake Park in Plymouth.  It takes place from 7-8:30.

Grab your lawn chairs or blankets and join us for a free water ski show featuring the Shockwaves (Shakopee-Prior Lake Water Ski Team) July 10 at Parkers Lake.
The show features music, costumes and water ski entertainment, including jumps, pyramids and choreographed moves.
Arrive early to claim a good seat, as beach-front space and event parking is limited.
Bring snacks / picnic dinner. Ice cream and kettle corn will be available for purchase.
A second water ski show is set for Tuesday, Aug. 15.
Weather Hotline: 763-509-5205

Three Rivers Park Dragon Fly Festival

The Three Rivers Park Dragon Fly Festival is coming up this Saturday July 8th.  It takes place at the Eastman Nature Center in Dayton.  This event is a time to learn about dragon flies, make some crafts, catch some dragon flies and more.  It’s a fun for all ages event.  There is a small admission fee of $5 per person.  It takes place from 10-1 and you can drop in anytime, you do not have to be there right at 10.

Dragonfly Festival – Celebrate dragonflies and their life cycles. Visit the dragonfly tent, catch some of these insects, and learn how your actions affect their health. Explore with microscopes; make a craft. $5/person. Ages: All.  Saturday, July 8, 10 am – 1 pm.

 

Dakota Valley Summer Pops Orchestra Concert at Caponi Art Park

We have mentioned Caponi Art Park in Eagan a few times in the past.  They offer a wide range of free or inexpensive activities and events in a beautiful setting.  This coming Sunday, July 9th Dakota Valley Summer Pops Orchestra Concert at Caponi Art Park will take place at 6:30pm.  Tickets are $5 for 12 and over and can be purchased here.  Even if you can’t make it for one of the special events, pick a day and explore the park for what it it is, you won’t be disappointed at this hidden gem.

Dakota Valley Summer Pops Orchestra

A family-friendly evening of American music featuring Broadway and Hollywood show tunes and works by composers such as Aaron Copland and John Williams.

Event tickets: $5/person, children 12 and under free!

Since 1986, the Dakota Valley Symphony has brought together skilled volunteer musicians to perform and promote diverse symphonic musical experiences of all periods and styles. Performing concerts around the south suburban Twin Cities area, the symphony has a 60-member orchestra, a 40-member mixed chorus and a 90-member summer pops orchestra and chorus, all under the direction of founder and music director Stephen J. Ramsey.

Wandering the State Forest Areas of Minnesota

The best part about Minnesota is the variety of landscape it offers.  Sure, we don’t have an actual mountain range but we still have plenty of areas to climb on rocks.  There are pine trees, prairies and everything in between.  Lakes, rivers, and even some puddles to be found.  If you want to go exploring, check out the State Forest areas around Minnesota.  A great, budget friendly and thrifty way to enjoy a bit of nature.  If you go to the website, you can get more information on all the different places you can explore.

 

State forests

You can enjoy a variety of outdoor activities – hiking, camping, wildlife viewing – in any of Minnesota’s State Forests.

State forest campgrounds and day-use areas are developed with a minimum of disturbance to the natural environment and are often in remote locations. This means that they are less likely to be as accessible as many state park campgrounds and facilities. Also, state forests do not have full-time staff available.

 

What we offer:

  • 1000 campsites at 46 campgrounds,
  • 44 day-use areas,
  • about 900 miles of trails, and
  • 142 water accesses.

Campgrounds

There are two types of campgrounds in state forests, developed and primitive.

Developed campgrounds charge a fee and have at least one accessible campsite with a level surface, accessible picnic table, and fire ring. Accessible paths lead from the campsite to a well and accessible vault toilet.

Primitive camp sites are also available at no charge. Most of these do not have accessible features.

  • State forest campgrounds do not have electric hookups or showers.
  • Most drinking water is provided from hand-pumped wells. Some campgrounds have accessible wells with a concrete pad and level approach.
  • Reservations at state forest campgrounds are not required or accepted.

Day Use Areas

Many state forests have day-use areas equipped with picnic tables, fire rings, drinking water, and toilets. They are often located on lakes and have hiking trails, boat access, and swimming beaches. Some have accessible picnic tables, vault toilets, and wells. Overnight camping is not allowed at day-use areas.

Book It to the Parks

Books, Parks and Little Free Libraries, three of my favorite things.  Our girls love Little Free Libraries and we try to have books on hand to trade with the libraries when we spot one.  They are so much fun, all with their own variety of books and characteristics. On June 21, Minneapolis parks will open more than 50 new Little Free Libraries at various parks.  You can see the full list of locations here, and the special events at each one.

Love reading, summer, Minneapolis parks, and Minnesota Public Radio? Join us at Book It to the Parks!

Book donations are welcome – help stock your neighborhood’s newest Little Free Library.On Wednesday, June 21, Minneapolis parks will open more than 50 new Little Free Libraries—a gift from The Minneapolis Foundation to local families in honor of Minnesota Public Radio’s 50th anniversary. MPR hosts, local authors, and other guest readers will celebrate by reading children’s books at story times in parks all over the city, from sunrise to sunset on summer’s longest day.

Bring your kids and Book It to the Parks!

National Get Outdoors Day Event

This Saturday June 1oth is National Get Outdoors Day.  REI is stepping up and helping those of us in the twin cities, enjoy the day. You can head to Powderhorn Park in Minneapolis from 11-3 for a whole list of free fun:

  • canoeing
  • fishing,
  • archery
  • roast marshmallows
  • play camp games
  • wilderness camping etiquette
  • fire arms safety at the laser shooting range
  • kids’ outdoor activities
  • climbing wall
  • cool off in the wading pool
  • enjoy food, live music, prize give-aways and more!

National Get Outdoors Day is a nationwide event that offers those new to outdoor activities an opportunity to try them out for FREE. Join us at Powderhorn Park to play outside! We are ready to have some fun outside and hope that you will join us. The event is completely free. There are numerous bus routes to reach the event by public transport. Plenty of parking is available on side streets.

 

Forever Wild Family Friday Events at Lebanon Hills

The first Friday of the month at Lebanon Hills you can attend the Forever Wild Family Events.  This coming Friday, June 2nd will be Forever Wild Family Friday: Campfire Stories.  A time for stories, yarns, and tales around the campfire with Roy Edward Power. The evening events take place from 7-8:30.  You register here for the event as well as search for other upcoming Forever Wild Family Friday Events.

Forever Wild Family Friday

Bring your family to “our house” on the first Friday of each month for fun, family entertainment. A new activity or performance will be waiting each month followed by s’mores and a campfire. Adult must accompany youth. One adult per four youth.

 

WaterFest 2017 at Lake Phalen Park

WaterFest is coming up this weekend.  A great family friendly free event that celebrates clean water, wildlife, and land and water conservation.  WaterFest takes place this Saturday, June 3rd from 11-4pm. It will be held rain or shine at the Lake Phalen Park in St. Paul.  You can find more specific information here on the event page.  Some of the fun activities taking place include: 

  • Voyageur canoe ride
  • Water Games
  • Native Plant Giveaway
  • Live Music
  • Live Animals
  • Jump Castle

Mill Towns State Trail Grand Opening

This past weekend we spent the day biking at one of Minnesota’s bike trails, and there are many.  You can add another to the list as the Mill Towns State Trail Grand Opening takes place this Saturday, June 3rd.  The festivities will take place at Lake Byllesby Park, just west of Cannon Falls.  The event will celebrate the newest trail segment of the Mill Towns State Trail made possible by Dakota County, Goodhue County and the Minnesota DNR. From 2-5pm there will be a ribbon cutting as well other fun activities:

  • bikes available to check out
  • pedicabs for free pedicab rides
  • a bike decorating station
  • naturalists talking about birding
  • plus more fun!