Free Open House Day at Split Rock Lighthouse – Saturday, May 11th

This upcoming Saturday, May 11th is Free Open House Day at Split Rock Lighthouse in Two Harbors. You’ll be able to tour the light station and fog signal building and stop by the visitor center to see exhibits on the North Shore’s tourism and commercial fishing industries as well as view a film about the early shipping industry on Lake Superior.

If you can’t make it this weekend, admission is pretty reasonable throughout the year at $5/adult or child (ages 5-17) with a maximum of $20 per family. Don’t forget that 6th graders get a free Minnesota Historical Society pass, too.

Crayola Experience: Free Admission for Nurses and Military All May Long

Nurses and certified medical assistants as well as veterans, active, and retired military get FREE admission to Crayola Experience all month long – just show your ID/certification at the admissions counter.

Not a nurse or member of the military? No big deal – you can get discount tickets for $14.99 with coupon code thrifty1 online to save for the rest of you, too! (Code is case-sensitive.)

You can also find any current Crayola Experience Groupon deals HERE.

Other current savings opportunities and special offers:

  • Mothers: Moms get in free on Mother’s Day (5/12/19) with purchase of one general admission ticket.
  • Teachers: Free Annual Pass which includes pass perks (20% off tickets for friends and family, 20% off purchases at the Crayola Store and Cafe Crayola)
    Bring valid teacher ID (school badge or recent pay stub + photo ID)
  • First Responders: Free admission daily; 25% off admission for immediate family on Sundays
    Bring valid ID
  • Birthday Freebies: Free admission within 7 days of your birthday
    Valid with proof of birthdate (driver’s license or birth certificate)

Free National Park Service Annual Pass for All 4th Grade Students

Do you have a child in fourth grade this school year? (I do!) If so, you’ll want to know about the Every Kid in a Park program that offers a FREE annual pass to all National Park Service Federal Lands and Waters for 4th graders and their families. You can explore dozens of places across the country with no entry cost to you!

Voyageurs National Park (Minnesota)

You’ll need to sign up your fourth grader HERE to get the free pass. It will get your fourth grader and accompanying family free entrance fees to National Parks across the nation, including the five we have in Minnesota:

Visit the Every Kid in a Park website for more details and information.

STORY at Macy’s Ridgedale Activities

Over the past couple of years, we’ve heard about a lot of closings of Macy’s stores, but the Macy’s store at Ridgedale Center in Minnetonka is still open! It’s one of over 35 Macy’s locations across the country that are participating in the new STORY concept.

About STORY at Macy’s:

STORY is a new store to explore – an ever-changing retail concept that brings a new theme to life every 6-8 weeks through fresh and fun products from hundreds of small businesses and dynamic event programming. They got their start in Chelsea NYC where they debuted the idea of a store that acted like a magazine. Their friends at Macy’s invited them to move uptown and across the country to over 35 locations. STORY at Macy’s is changing things up and inviting you to discover something new every few months. Stay tuned for what’s in-store – there will be oh-so much to explore!

Right now the upcoming STORY at Macy’s events are all about color and include:

  • V-eye-P: Festival Beauty with MAC Cosmetics – Friday, April 19th from 3 – 7 pm
  • Picking Patch: Jean Jacket Customization with Crayola X Levis – Saturday, April 27th from 11 am – 5 pm
  • Melt Hearts: DIY Crayon Mother’s Day Cards – Saturday, May 11th from 11 am – 5 pm
  • Palette Play: Smokey eye perfection with MAC Cosmetics – Friday, May 17th from 3 – 7 pm
  • Stroke of Genius: Egg Painting Eggs-travaganza – Saturday, May 18th from 11 am – 5 pm
  • Melting Magic: DIY Melted Crayon MANDALAs with Crayola – Wednesday, May 22nd from 6 – 8 pm

As far as I can tell, these events are all free, but there is an option to RSVP and save your place. Obviously some of these are intended more for kids than others. Check the Macy’s website for more details and to RSVP.

Gopher Football Spring Game – Free Admission and Activities

Football in spring? Yes, indeed! Join the Golden Gopher Football team this Saturday, 4/13 at TCF Bank Stadium for the 2019 Spring Game starting at 11 am. All events are free.

You’ll be able to see the University of Minnesota marching band as well as Goldy Gopher. Goldy’s Locker Room will be having a spring sale, and you’ll want to show up early as Abbott hosts a pre-game fan fest outside TCF Bank Stadium with food, music, and plenty of activities for children.

Student-athletes and head coach P.J. Fleck will remain on the field for 30 minutes after the game for an autograph session with fans.

Nothing Bundt Cakes: Free Bundtlets Today (4/9) at 3 PM

Nothing Bundt Cakes locations across the country are celebrating the opening of their 300th birthday today by giving out free Confetti Bundtlets nationwide for 300 seconds!

Stop by your local bakery today (Tuesday, 4/9) at 3 pm to celebrate and get your free Bundtlet. There will be a maximum of 300 Bundtlets giving out from 3:00 – 3:05 pm ONLY. Limit 1 Bundtlet per guest.

There are eight Nothing Bundt Cakes locations in Minnesota including Blaine, Eagan, Eden Prairie, Maple Grove, Minnetonka, Rochester, St. Paul, and Woodbury.

Free Computer Repair and Support at Fix-It Tech Clinics

We’ve written before about free Fix-It Clinics in Hennepin County (yes, these are still going!), but if you need tech support, you’ll want to stop by one of the free Fix-It Tech events around the metro area.

These free community technology education events are run by volunteers who provide computer repair, educations, and resources. If your computer or laptop is slow, not working, or seems to have a virus, bring it in for free tech support.

Upcoming events include:

Details and what to bring

  • First come, first served. Labor is free. Volunteers can offer advice on purchasing parts online or at local repair stores.
  • Bring your laptop, and/or desktop tower and power cord.
  • Volunteers help with laptops, smartphones and tablets based on capacity.

Free workshops

  • Short sessions are held to explain basic computer maintenance and Internet safety.

2019 NCAA Final Four in Minneapolis – Free and Low-Cost Activities All Weekend (April 5th – 8th)

NCAA Final Four Minneapolis Logo

The 2019 NCAA Final Four is coming to Minneapolis! Even if you’re not a huge basketball fan, there are a lot of low- to no-cost activities available during Final Four weekend (April 5 – 8). Mark your calendars now!

Here’s a sneak peek of what’s going on:

NCAA Final Four Minneapolis Fan Fest


Final Four Fan Fest – Minneapolis Convention Center

Enjoy a sports wonderland of interactive games, special celebrity and athlete appearances, and autograph signings. They’ll have a Home Run Derby, free cheer clinics, a rock wall, and more.


Friday, April 5 from 11 am – 7 pm
Saturday, April 6 from 10 am – 7 pm
Sunday, April 7 from 11 am – 6 pm
Monday, April 8 from 11 am – 6 pm

Ticket prices:

Adults: $8 in advance, $10 at the door
Kids 12 and under: FREE
Military (with valid ID): $4 in advance
Seniors (60+ with valid ID) and College Students (with valid ID): $4 in advance, $5 at the door
Capital One Cardholders: FREE entry (limit two) + Priority Access Lane

NCAA Final Four Minneapolis Activities


Final Four Friday – US Bank Stadium

On Friday, April 5 you’ll be able to check out each of the Final Four teams in their final open practice before Saturday’s national semifinal games. Admission is FREE and open to the public. You can also stick around for the College All-Star Game in the afternoon and catch an All-Star team autograph session.

NCAA Final Four Minneapolis Ready Set Dribble


Ready, Set, Dribble! – Minneapolis Convention Center

Youth ages 18 and under are invited to participate in this unique parade, joining thousands of fans dribbling their way through the heart of downtown Minneapolis. (Hopefully we won’t have an April blizzard!) Date and time is Sunday, April 7 at 2 pm. The first 3000 participants will receive a T-shirt, basketball, and entry into Final Four Fan Fest for participant(s) and accompanying adults.

This event is FREE, but pre-registration is required and must be completed at select local Buick dealerships. **Pre-registration is now closed. If space allows, limited onsite registration will begin at 1:30 pm.

NCAA Final Four Minneapolis March Music Madness Armory


*SOLD OUT* March Madness Music Series – The Armory

This FREE music series takes place Friday, April 5 through Sunday, April 7. Tickets are completely sold out.

  • Friday, April 5 at 7 pm – AT&T Block Party featuring The Chainsmokers
  • Saturday, April 6 at 7 pm – Jonas Brothers presented by Coca-Cola
  • Sunday, April 7 at 7 pm – Capital One Jamfest featuring Katy Perry and Zedd

Tip-Off Tailgate – Nicollet Mall

On your way to or from Final Four Fan Fest or the big games, stop by this FREE event for fun interactives and entertainment.

Check out the full schedule and more details HERE.

Free “Hidden Figures” Screening and Dinner (Brooklyn Park) – Wednesday, 3/27

As part of HTC’s Diversity Book Club, the whole family can come to enjoy a free light dinner and a free showing of Hidden Figures on Wednesday, March 27th from 5:30 – 8 pm at the HTC Brooklyn Park Campus cafeteria. The movie is rated PG.

While the event is free and open to the public, they do ask that you RSVP in advance.



Free “Movies Under the Domes” Movie Nights at the Minneapolis Convention Center

Once a month, enjoy a feature film in the auditorium of the Minneapolis Convention Center for FREE as part of their Movies Under the Domes series! The next free movie night is coming up TONIGHT, so we wanted to give you the heads up as you will need to register in advance for your complimentary tickets.

Upcoming films include:

  • March 21st – Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (PG-13)
  • April 25th – Moana (PG)
  • May 16th – Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (PG)

Date night, family night or a hang-out-with-friends night, each Movies Under the Domes evening is free to the public. Movie-goers must RSVP through Eventbrite for General Admission tickets, as seating is limited. The first 100 people through the door at all movies will receive a free two-pack set of Pepsi stainless steel straws.

In addition to free feature films, guests can relax in the MCC Craft Bar and Lounge, which will have Minnesota craft brews and light snacks available for purchase. Those under age 21 can purchase snacks and beverages outside the Craft Bar and Lounge, including Niki’s ice cream sandwiches. These treats are hand-crafted with fresh-baked cookies, made from scratch at the MCC, and featuring Minnesota’s own Bridgeman’s ice-cream.

Get your tickets HERE!

Need a place to park your car while you’re downtown? Grab this Minneapolis Convention Center parking discount from Groupon!