Holly Trolley

Hope on the Holly Trolley with Santa.  The historic streetcar is decked out for the holidays and located in south Minneapolis.  Rides are about 20 minutes long and no tickets or advance registration required. You can find more information about the dates and times on the website here.  The Fare is $4 per person. 

Saturday & Sunday
November 25 & 26
December 2 & 3
12:30 to 3:30 PM
$4 per passenger

Please share in the joy of the season. Bring a new, unwrapped toy for Toys for Tots

Gingerbread Wonderland Twin Cities

Gingerbread Wonderland Twin Cities

The Gingerbread Wonderland is a wonderful holiday tradition that’s not to be missed.  It starts November 21st and goes through January 7th so plenty of time to get it on your calendar.  I don’t know of anywhere else where you can find Twin City buildings and landmarks made out of Gingerbread!  The event takes place at the Norway House, and more information can be found on their website. Admission is very reasonable, at only $5 for age 12 and up.

Enjoy holiday treats at ‘Also Ingebretsen’s’ and surround yourself with all things gingerbread. Starting on November 21 (through January 7), Gingerbread Wonderland at Norway House is open to visitors!

There’s something special baking at Norway House! For the third year in a row, Norway House is building the Twin Cities out of Gingerbread in our Galleri!

Gingerbread (or in Norwegian, pepperkake) is a quintessential feature of the Norwegian holiday season. You will find gingerbread cookies, ornaments, and houses everywhere — in offices, stores, homes, and schools. Some towns and cities in Norway even go so far as to build replicas of their city out of gingerbread!

Together with families, friends, and neighbors, young and old, Norway House will be creating Gingerbread Wonderland – Twin Cities in our Galleri. You will find familiar buildings and landmarks — both contemporary and historical — created by everyone from professional bakers to first-time gingerbread enthusiasts.

Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and New Years.

Two Upcoming Special Event Movies at Riverview Theater – Minneapolis

We’ve mentioned the Riverview Movie Theatre in Minneapolis before, a great place for inexpensive movies.  Occasionally they also have some special event movies.

We spotted two great events coming up soon.  The first is the Sing-a-long-a Sound of Music, a great film that the whole family can enjoy.  Showing November 24-26, advance tickets can be purchased here on their website.

The second special event show, although not for the whole family, should be quite popular – the Lord of the Rings Trilogy!  The Lord of the Rings event takes place December 17th and you can purchase advance tickets here on their website.



Snapology Discovery Center Grand Opening

With the weather getting colder, it’s even more important to find indoor activities for the kids.  The Snapology Discovery Center Grand Opening is next weekend.  Taking place over the course of three days, November 17-19.  Snapology is geared towards kids ages 1-14 and is located in the uptown area of Minneapolis.  You can find more specifics about the grand opening event here on the FB event page.

Snapology of Minneapolis offers fun programs for a wide variety of ages and interests. With an emphasis on play, children acheive academic enrichment and social development objectives. At Snapology there is something for everyone with everything from LEGO-themed programs, robotics, engineering, animation, and more!

Tons of activities all weekend long!  Free and open to the public!

Friday, 11/17 – 5-8pm
Open House & Reception
Cupcake bites provided by A Cupcake Social
6-8pm Art project lead by Articulture

Saturday, 11/18 – 9am-6pm
10am – Family Fun Twin Cities curated dance party
3pm – Music by Jack and Kitty
2-4pm – S’mores provided by North Mallow

Sunday, 11/19 – 9am-6pm
Coffee from 9-11am provided by Bob’s Java Hut
12:30pm – FREE yoga class for parents upstairs from Snapology at Your Yoga
1pm – Magic by Alan Smola



ASI Family Day: Fest! Merry Mansion-Nordic Holidays

The American Swedish Institute is hosting their family day this Saturday, November 11th.  The theme will be Fest! Merry Mansion-Nordic Holidays. It’s the kickoff to the holiday season, with the mansion decorated for the Nordic Holidays from November 11th-January 8th.  There’s an admission fee to get into the event, or if you have a membership to ASI, it’s free.

Family Day Opens Fest! Merry Mansion Holiday Exhibitions and Programming

ASI opens the 2017 holiday season with a day of fun for the entire family. Explore Nordic and Romanian traditions throughout the Holiday Rooms in the Turnblad Mansion, which will be decorated for the 2017 theme: Fest – Merry Mansion.

Have the whole family make a craft together, stop in the Ballroom for performances by various community groups, or wander through the Skål! Scandinavian Spirits exhibit and meet an expert on Norwegian aquavit.

Performance Schedule

  • 10:00 Nordic Bees
  • 11:00 Plai de Dor Dancers
  • 11:30  Vasa Jr. Folk Dancers
  • 1:00 Impossible Salt Theatre Performance
  • 2:00 Cloudberries


First Free Saturday: Around the World

On the first Saturday of each month, The Walker Art Center hosts a free, family friendly event.  This months event is an Around the World theme and it takes place this Saturday, November 4th.  The gallery hours are 10-6, however the event activities are 10-3.  The activities for the Around the World event will be geared towards kids 6-12, but everyone is welcome to attend.


Join us for a day of international festivals presented in collaboration with Concordia Language Villages and Ragamala Dance Company. Gallery admission is free for everyone on the first Saturday of each month from 10 am to 6 pm, with a variety of family activities scheduled from 10 am to 3 pm.

Concordia Language Villages’ expert educators engage families with cultural traditions from around the world. Learn about France’s Fête des Lumières, the Nordic Summer Solstice, the Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival (中秋節 or 中秋节) … and maybe even pick up some new vocabulary words. Create masks, dance around a maypole, listen to moon-viewing stories, and much more.

Ragamala presents its 3rd annual Ode to Navarathri festival. In Southern India, Navarathri is commemorated with a Navarathri Kolu, a time when families welcome neighbors into their homes for a celebration rooted in the sharing of art. Ragamala’s gathering includes a traditional south Indian kolu, curated performances by local artists and community members, and a kolam rice flour design workshop.


Kids at the Castle-Movin’ and Groovin Event – American Swedish Institute

Are you looking for something to do with the kids tomorrow or Saturday?  Bring them to the Kids at the Castle event, taking place at the American Swedish Institute.  Admission is only $8 for the entire family, a nice price break from the typical $9 for an adult admission.

Kids at the Castle – Movin’ and Groovin’

Friday, October 20, 2017 – 9:00am to 10:00am (and Saturday October 21 + Mini Transmission!)

During this morning playdate at the Castle, it’s primetime fun time for kids and their grown-ups.  For an hour before the general public can enter the museum, ASI throws opens its doors and its grounds (weather permitting) to the younger crowd for creative activities including visual games, storytelling, music and movement inspired by ASI exhibitions, the Turnbald Mansion or special times of the year to encourage adventurous and curious young minds. Suggested for ages 2-5. Adults must attend with their children.Cost:  $8 per Family, Registration not required

Mini Transmission: Movin’ and Groovin’ at the Castle

Saturday, October 21st 10-1pm

It’s a boogie morning for the young and young at heart, hosted by popular, local DJ Jake Rudh.

Known as a popular host on MPR’s The Current 89.3 and for his grown-up Transmission music nights, Rudh has been inspired by fatherhood to host ASI’s Mini-Transmission dance party.

Families can stay after ASI’s Kids at the Castle morning program to wiggle, do a make n’ take craft activity, enjoy balloon art and photo stations, and drink kiddie and adult beverages.

Presented by Whole Foods Market, which will be providing healthy snacks for kids during Mini-Transmission! We appreciate your support!

Pumpkin Derby at Sunnyside Gardens

I have to admit, I had not heard of Pumpkin Derby until this week.  However, with that being said, it sounds like a fun event, who’s in?  Pumpkin Derby takes place at Sunnyside Gardens in Minneapolis on Saturday the 14th.   You can choose to participate, although important to read the rules posted below first, or be a spectator of the event.  Either way, should be an interesting time, with lots of laughter and cheering.

Come one, come all!

The 9th Annual Sunnyside Gardens Pumpkin Derby is sure to be a blast! Anyone can watch, but here’s how to participate…

1. Get a pumpkin (any size) and make it mobile by attaching wheels to it or IT to wheels.

Note: The derby car cannot be motorized or electrically charged to move in a forward or backward direction. The derby car cannot be messy beyond the confines of it’s frame. Carnage is inevitable on the race track, so keep that in mind when adding squishy or sloppy decorations.

2. Arrive before the race and register your Pumpkin Derby car. Your entrant is eligible to win in three categories, Most Creative & Furthest Distance & Shortest Distance (Lamest Attempt). A judge will be overseeing the derby runs down the ramp and will be selecting the winner. All spectators present will have an opportunity to vote for Most Creative Derby Pumpkin, so bring a handful of your peers for support.

**A one-of-a-kind trophy will be awarded to the winners in each category.

Celebratory candy and food will be around the store as you decorate pie pumpkins and hang out with us.

Balloonacy Is Back At The Children’s Theatre Company

Balloonacy, can simply be described as, the best first play for kids that I’ve seen.  Balloonacy is full of surprises, joy, innocence, laughter and fun.  We’ve been to many plays over the years, so I’m often asked what age should kids first see a play, and what that play should be.  I can now say that Balloonacy is my choice as the perfect first play.  With a simple non-verbal story, one actor, and a balloon it’s a perfect play for the younger age group.  It’s in the small Cargill Stage area, which provides a closer more intimate feel, plus some up close, and personal seating is offered to the kids.  Try to arrive a little early, about 15 minutes or so as they offer some fun activities for the kids, and the adults prior to the show.

Robert Dorfman in Balloonacy Photo Credit Dan Norman


CCT Staff interacting with a younger audience member before the show.

Nationally Award Winning Balloonacy Inspires the Very Young

Featuring Robert Dorfman

Directed by Peter C. Brosius

October 3 – November 12, 2017

Minneapolis, Minn. – Children’s Theatre Company (CTC) will present Balloonacy, written by Barry Kornhauser and recipient of the American Association of Theatre in Education (AATE) Distinguished Play Award. Kornhauser also wrote the script for CTC’s upcoming, world premiere production of Corduroy. Balloonacy will star Robert Dorfman (Broadway: The Lion King; Touring: The Drowsy Chaperone; TV: Boardwalk Empire) who originated the singular role of the Old Man in 2014. Directed by Peter C. Brosius, this production will be the first show he directs in his 20th year as CTC’s Artistic Director. Scenic Design is by Annie Rollins, Costume Design by Mary Anna Culligan, Lighting Design by Rebecca Fuller Jensen (Pinocchio, The Biggest Little House in the Forest, The Cat in the Hat) and Sound Design by CTC’s resident composer/music director Victor Zupanc.

Imagine a single balloon changing one person’s life forever. It starts so simply: A balloon drifts through the window of a lonely old man’s home on his birthday. Then something surprising happens – then something silly, wonderful and so blissfully fun that you barely notice you’ve learned something special about friendship along the way. Perfectly designed with the preschooler in mind, rediscover play in this back-by-popular-demand production!

Balloonacy is a tender, non-verbal, physical theatre show that reflects on all stages of friendship,” states Director Peter C. Brosius. “It is both a celebration of the complicated nature of friendship, as well as a call to embrace play, laughter and joy. While this production is designed for preschool age children, it is truly one that multiple generations can come to together and find something in it, no matter what age.”

Reflecting back on the early development of this work, Barry Kornhauser said, “Probably my favorite thing about this little play is its welcoming inclusiveness. Some years back Peter [Brosius] and Elissa [Adams] kindly invited me to join a series of CTC convenings funded by the Bush Foundation to explore approaches to early child development and their application to theater. One of many things made abundantly clear in that process was that early learners come into contact with reality more on a bodily-sensory basis than a linguistic one. Without dialogue, this play becomes accessible to all children.”

Dr. Amy Susman-Stillman, Director of Applied Research and Training at the University of Minnesota is particularly thrilled about CTC’s commitment to creating plays for the very young. “CTC, with the incredible vision and foresight of Peter Brosius, is to be commended for its innovative integration of theatre arts and early childhood education. CTC had been impressively thoughtful about using theory and evidence to continually ensure that their work is developmentally appropriate, engaging and effective. Through its now regularly-occurring preschool productions such as Balloonacy, Early Bridges and Theatre Arts Training programs, CTC is on the forefront of using theatre arts to creatively advance school readiness for all preschoolers.”

The production is presented in the Cargill Theatre with an experience configured particularly for the very young. A CTC original production, Balloonacy opens October 3 and runs through November 12 and is best enjoyed by preschoolers. Lap passes are available for ages 18 months and younger. Individual show tickets can be purchased at childrenstheatre.org or by calling the ticket office at 612.874.0400. Allergy note: The balloons used in this show are latex, however they do not touch or go near the audience at any point during the production.


30 minutes with no intermission


The Ticket Office is accessible by phone two hours prior to most performances.

Email: tickets@childrenstheatre.org (inquiries only, no ticket processing)
Phone: 612.874.0400

Website: childrenstheatre.org

ASL/AD Performance: November 1 at 10:30am & November 4 at 2pm

Lap passes are available for ages 18 months and younger

The show runs now through November 12th.



Discount Tickets for Evenings at The Bakken: Space Is the Place

Disclosure Affiliate

Now’s your chance to check out the Bakken Museum, we found a great deal on discount tickets for their upcoming event: Space Is the Place. The Bakken is located in Minneapolis, a hidden gem located in a mostly residential area.  On occasion they offer adult only events, a time to learn about science without the kids.  This means you can also enjoy a beer or cocktail while exploring the museum. We found half-price Goldstar tickets, click here and you can purchase $6 tickets (regular price is $12).

Unlock the secrets of the universe and find out why Space Is the Place during the last Evenings at The Bakken event of the year! This after-hours, adults-only celebration of World Space Week features craft cocktails and cool treats and is perfect for those who are curious about the cosmos. Act like an awe-struck kid again with hands-on fun like tiny comet-making, painting your own Aurora Borealis, building a Super Sound Cone to listen to stellar sounds just like NASA’s big satellites, and crafting a tiny constellation to take home and put up on your ceiling for some indoor stargazing. Then take a virtual tour of the galaxy with Minneapolis-based virtual reality company Visual VR, try space-age treats, get space suit fashion tips from the University of Minnesota’s Wearable Technology Lab, grab a snack from one of the visiting food vendors and sip on a craft beer, wine or a signature cocktail as you explore the museum.