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.

Restaurant Week in the Twin Cities – 7/14 to 7/19

It’s time for Restaurant Week in the Twin Cities! From July 14th to 19th, you can enjoy specially priced meals at participating restaurants. This is a great time to try some of the best restaurants in Minneapolis, St. Paul and the surrounding area without having to spend a fortune.

Lunch prices start at $10 and dinner prices start at $15. See the full list of participating restaurants and menus for Minneapolis/St. Paul Restaurant Week.

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.


WE Fest Country Music Festival (Detroit Lakes) – Discount Admission

Has WE Fest Country Music Festival been on your bucket list for this summer? Get your tickets now through Goldstar and save BIG!

WE Fest is held at Soo Pass Ranch in Detroit Lakes, MN. This year’s dates are August 1st through 3rd. Options include:

  • $112 for general admission (reg. $160) – currently cheaper via Groupon: just $99!
  • $182.50 for reserved seating – reserved blue (reg. $365)
  • $215 for reserved seating – reserved blue + camp access (reg. $430)

Each of these options also includes a small service fee of $3-$5, but this is much smaller than the service fee you’ll pay if you go directly through the WE Fest website. (Seriously…the fee for general admission through their website is $21.65!!!!!!)

*NEW* If you’re only interested in attending one day of the festival, your best bet is to go through Groupon where they currently have discount admission for just $49 per day, all fees included). Main stage performances each day include:

  • Thursday: Tyler Rich, Walker Hayes, LeAnn Rimes, Billy Currington, Keith Urban
  • Friday: Kelleigh Bannen, Jimmie Allen, LANCO, Jake Owen, Brooks & Dunn
  • Saturday: Adam Doleac, Dylan Scott, Big & Rich, Jamey Johnson, Chris Stapleton

WE Fest has been at the pinnacle of country music festivals for nearly four decades. The festival hosts tens of thousands of fans every August at Soo Pass Ranch in Detroit Lakes, where countless country legends have performed. This year’s line up includes Chris Stapleton, Keith Urban, Brooks & Dunn, Billy Currington, Jake Owen, Jamey Johnson, Big & Rich, LeAnn Rimes & so many more. Fans from all over the region come to WE Fest for the ultimate summer weekend, immersing themselves in the massive camping and country music party.

Get your discount tickets HERE or HERE and get ready to party!

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

Minnesota Vintage Canvas Prints Just $3.77!

Share your love of your home state with this beautiful Minnesota Vintage Canvas Print! Choose from three different sizes of prints, all at the same price – just $3.77!

You’ll receive an actual print shipped to your home – this is not a digital download. All you need to provide is the frame! Choose from three different sizes (6×8, 8×10, or 11×14) and Vintage Aqua, Vintage Grey, Vintage Indigo, or Vintage Mint to match your home’s decor.

These charming and fun prints are vintage hand drawn and colored. They depict the topography of the state, a bit of its history, major cities, icons unique to that state, and agricultural and industrial pursuits.

And if you have a friend or family member across state lines (or across the country!), be sure to browse the selection as they have all 50 states available to order!

Shipping is $3.67 for the first item and just $0.47 for each additional item, so consider ordering ahead for wedding gifts, anniversary presents – even Christmas! Head to Jane.com to get started with yours.

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

The Cafe Meow – Minneapolis’ Own Cat Cafe!

Disclosure AffiliateCat in The Cafe Meow - Minneapolis

If being surrounded by a whole bunch of sweet and adorable cats is your kind of fun, make a trip to Minneapolis’ first cat cafe – The Cafe Meow.

The cat lounge at The Cafe Meow is filled with a clowder of cats (fun fact: a clowder is the technical name for a group of domestic cats), who are all being fostered until they are adopted through local rescue organizations.

The Cafe Meow Minneapolis

I have been wanting to visit The Cafe Meow since it opened and finally did last week with a Groupon deal. I have my own cats at home that I love to play with, so I wasn’t sure if it was silly to want to drive 20 blocks to go play with OTHER cats, but we had a blast!

Cafe Meow Mpls

The cats in the lounge have lots of fun play spaces from cat trees and hammocks to climbing shelves that go all the way to the ceiling. Plus there are lots of cat toys, which let you interact and play with the cats.

In a separate area of The Cafe Meow you’ll find a coffee shop serving organic and Fair Trade Certified coffee and tea, as well as baked goods from other local businesses. You’re free to bring your beverage or treats into the cat lounge.

Minneapolis Cat Cafe

There is a $10 cover fee for an hour in the cat lounge, with sessions starting at the top of each hour. Reservations are recommended as only a limited number of people can visit the cats at once.

If you don’t want to spend a whole hour with the kitties, try Cat Lounge Happy Hour where you can stop in for 15 minutes for $3 Every Tuesday – Thursday from 2pm – 6pm! (Walk-in only)

The Cafe Meow Cat Trees and Toys

The Cafe Meow also hosts special events like Catgo (aka Bingo), yoga with cats, a “Paint Your Cat on Cavas” class and more.

There is currently Groupon deal for The Cafe Meow where you can save 20% off an hour in the cat lounge or 25% off yoga with cats! Get it HERE.

The Cafe Meow Cat Cafe Minneapolis