Minneapolis Institute of Art Third Thursday – July 18th

Need a cheap date night? Mark your calendars for Third Thursday events at the Minneapolis Institute of Art! Admission to Mia is always free, but on the third Thursday of every month, you can visit from 6 – 9 pm to experience Mia’s diverse art collection along with unique programs, drinks, and live music.

Upcoming Third Thursday events include:

July 18th – Bike Night
Pedal to the party right through Mia’s doors! Learn more about bike safety and make art while enjoying live music from 26 BATS!, Circa 93, and DJ Jordan of GoMN. Show off your best bike pose in our photo booth, and check out the latest and greatest bike gear. Connect with the Twin Cities biking community and indulge in tasty food truck offerings from Samurai Teppanyaki.

Lake Bemidji Dragon Boat Festival

If you don’t live near Bemidji, it might be time to plan a road trip.  The Lake Bemidji Dragon Boat Festival takes place July 31st- August-3rd.  This is a great family friendly event that includes:

  • Cultural events
  • Food
  • Races
  • Kids activities
  • Plus a whole lot more

You can find the full schedule of events as well as a map here on the event page.

The organizers say, “We’re excited to have you join us at the 14th Annual Lake Bemidji Dragon Boat Festival – July 31st-August 3rd, 2019! From the exceptional viewing area, energizing races, extraordinary team villages, excellent kids activities and evening entertainment, we have something exciting for the whole family.”


Kids Get in Free to the Science Museum of Minnesota for Youth Science Day – Thursday, July 18th

The Science Museum of Minnesota is hosting Youth Science Day this Thursday, July 18th from 12 – 4 pm. This is an opportunity to meet the youth of the Kitty Andersen Youth Science Center and see the awesome things they do in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) and the arts.

Plus, you’ll get up to four free kids admissions (ages 4-17) with each full-priced adult admission (children 0-3 are always free). Regular admission is $19.95/adult, and those with limited income may qualify for $3/adult admission with proper documentation.

In addition, they are offering free Metro Transit rides to Youth Science Day after you complete a short survey HERE.

Highland Park Water Tower Open House, July 20-21

Highland Tower

The Highland Park Water Tower is only open to the public twice a year. The tower is located at the intersection of Snelling Avenue and Ford Parkway in St. Paul.  

This weekend July 20-21 is one of the two weekends. It’s a free opportunity to climb 151 steps and see a rare panoramic view.  The tower is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday.  If you cant make it this weekend, mark your calendar for the other weekend, October 12-13. 

"People check out the view from the top of the water tower Sunday. (Pioneer Press: Scott Takushi) "

“People check out the view from the top of the water tower Sunday. (Pioneer Press: Scott Takushi) “

Additional History of Highland Park Water Tower: 

The tower, which was designed by Clarence Wigington, was completed in 1928. Wigington, a city of Saint Paul architect from 1915 to 1949, also designed many other important structures in the area, including the Keller Golf Course Clubhouse (1929), the Saint Paul Public Safety Building (1929–30), and Como Park Pavilion (1934).
The construction of the Highland Water Tower includes facings of Kasota and Bedford stone and a riveted steel-plate tank with a capacity of 200,000 gallons. The 127-foot tower is still used today to help supply water in the Highland area.


12th Annual Middle Eastern Festival in West St. Paul: July 19-21

The 12th Annual Middle Eastern Festival in West St. Paul is coming up this week.  The fun begins on Friday and continues into the weekend.  Some of the festival highlights include:

Rain or Shine Under the Big Tent
Free Admission
Live Entertainment
Authentic Middle Eastern Food
Roast Lamb, Chicken Kabob, Tabouli, Hummus, Baklawa
Beer & Wine and Much, Much More
Children’s Games and Fun
Church Tours

Additional information about the festival: 

St. George Antiochian Orthodox Church in West St. Paul hosts its 12th Annual Middle Eastern Festival on July 19, 20 & 21, 2019.  Highlights include Middle Eastern cuisine, live entertainment, a traditional marketplace, a silent auction, games for children, and camel rides. Admission is FREE!

The menu includes authentic homemade Middle Eastern cuisine using the finest ingredients made just for you!  Our selections include: roast lamb, grilled chicken, falafel, hummus, gyros, tabouli, homemade traditional pastries, our famous Syrian bread, and more. Beer, wine, and soft drinks will also be served.

The nationally renowned John Khoury Band will perform, in addition to the St. George Dabke Dance Troupe.

The times for the Middle Eastern Festival are:

– Friday,  July 19th from 12:00 p.m. to 10 p.m.

– Saturday, July 20th from 12:00 p.m. to 10 p.m.

– Sunday,  July 21st from 12:00 p.m. to 6 p.m.


Hopkins Raspberry Festival – July 13th to 21st

We all love raspberries, so why not celebrate them?!? The 85th annual Hopkins Raspberry Festival begins today and goes through July 21st. There’s fun for all ages including:

  • Raspberry Royalty coronation
  • Grande Day Parade
  • Family activities
  • Kids’ fishing event
  • Fireworks
  • Ice cream social
  • Festival of Bands
  • and more!

Raspberries in Bowl

More about Hopkins Raspberry Festival:

With enthusiasm, the Hopkins Raspberry Festival began during the depression as a way to boost business in Hopkins. Art Plankers, a pioneer Hopkins food merchant is credited with suggestion of “raspberries” for the theme. About 75 Hopkins businessmen and farmers were organized and July 21 was chosen as the day to hold the festival, to coincide with the peak of the raspberry-picking season.

Jim Markham, editor of the Hennepin County Review, got the word out. Minneapolis mayor Thomas Latimer issued a proclamation urging all citizens of Minneapolis to “motor to Hopkins Sunday to enjoy the hospitality of the Northwest’s greatest suburb, to enjoy the entertainment and to have some free raspberries and cream with the compliments of Hennepin County’s famous raspberry growers and the progressive businessmen of Hopkins.”

By all accounts, the day was a success for everyone, especially the raspberry growers, who were assigned places along the curbs to sell theirs wares. Perhaps sales went so well because the raspberry mixed with the local libations, or so Markham said: “We used to call it the big berry bust in those early days.” The Hopkins Raspberry Festival has become a Twin Cities institution, held in the middle of July.

The raspberry fields are long gone, but the town has cause to celebrate anyway and so it does.

Minneapolis Sister Cities Day

Minneapolis Sister Cities Day

Minneapolis will celebrate over 40 years of participating in the sister city program.  To celebrate they are hosting a free ice cream social and gathering on Nicolett Island Pavilion.  The Sister Cities Day event will take place from 1-5pm on July 21st.  Some of the activities include:

  • Music
  • Speakers
  • Performances
  • Dancers
  • Children’s Activities

You can find more information as well as the full schedule here on the event website.


Second Saturdays at Minnesota Marine Art Museum (MMAM) in Winona

Got some time this weekend? Head to Winona’s Minnesota Marine Art Museum (MMAM) for discount admission and special activities!

The second Saturday of each month from 10 am – 5 pm, MMAM offers $1 admission, guided tours, art-making projects, special themed tours and activities, and live music in the galleries.

Each Second Saturday has a new theme to explore. This Saturday’s theme is Storytelling. Upcoming dates and themes include:

  • August 10th: Mighty Mississippi
  • September 14th: Artful Paws
  • October 12th: Autumn Splendor
  • November 9th: Community
  • December 14th: The Gift of Art

Dragonfly Festival at Eastman Nature Center


I’ve always enjoyed watching dragonflies. Watching them silently move around in the air and land here and there.  The Dragonfly Festival at Eastman Nature Center takes place Saturday July 20th from 10-1.

This event gives us a chance to learn a bit more about these beautiful animals in various ways.  This is a family friendly event with a small admission fee of $5.00.  *20% discount for groups of four or more. All tickets must be purchased at the same time to qualify for the discount, you can purchase tickets here on the website. 

Additional information about the Eastman Nature Center

Eastman Nature Center

Nestled in the sugar maple floodplain forest of Rush Creek, this is a great place to begin an outdoor journey.  Walk across the floating boardwalk, explore the miles of hiking and snowshoeing trails for a bit of exercise or visit the newly reconstructed nature center. Hop on the bike trails of Elm Creek Park Reserve or sit quietly and watch the creek flow by. Visitors may see trumpeter swans, wild turkey, bluebirds, dragonflies and abundant native wildflowers.

Summer Movie Series at TCO Stadium

The Minnesota Vikings are putting on a summer movie series with FREE family-friendly movies each month! Plus, you can enjoy games on the field before the movie begins, as well as meet and greet opportunities.

No chairs are allowed, and blankets are encouraged. No outside food or beverage is permitted. The facility is ADA accessible, and closed captioning is provided. Parking is available in the TCO parking ramp.

Here are the details for the July and August screenings:

Saturday, July 13th – “Coco”
Gates open at 7:30 pm; movie starts at 8:30 pm
Meet and greet: Minnesota Vikings Cheerleaders

Thursday, August 8th – “Smallfoot”
Gates open at 7:30 pm; movie starts at 8:30 pm
Meet and greet: Viktor the Viking