Living in Minneapolis · Neighborhood Tours

Four things to love about the Tangletown neighborhood!

I’m staying closer to home this week and highlighting another great neighborhood in south Minneapolis. I like to drive through here and let my jaw hang open looking at all of the beautiful homes.

#1 The homes…

This neighborhood is just chock full of very well cared for old homes. If you like the character and quality of homes built in the 1920’s, Tangletown is the place. Watch the video for a peek at the homes there, or just take a gander at the photo for this post which I took on a walk a few days ago.

Tangletown also has a row of Lustron homes along Nicollet Ave. One came up for sale last year and I was able to view it. It was like walking into a museum show piece – the owner had kept everything original and used period furnishings as well, but added a private outdoor patio / entertaining space that was ogle-worthy. If you’ve never seen a Lustron home read this article written about that particular home. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but I love that there is still room for different home styles and tastes.

Photo credit to Creator: Benjamin Clasen 
Copyright 2019

If you are looking for history and charm this neighborhood should be at the top of your list. And it’s positively bucolic – the winding streets, well landscaped yards, terraced gardens, and mature trees give you the very best of what a city neighborhood can offer.

#2 I love a walkable neighborhood!

This is definitely a residential area, but as is typical in Minneapolis you’ll see little corners within neighborhoods that have a coffee shop, cafe or little boutique of some sort. On the larger streets – Nicollet, Lyndale or 50th there are little shopping centers and more to offer.

Tangletown has within its borders: Kowalski’s grocery, Starbucks and Caribou coffee, one of the best stocked liquor stores in the city – South Lyndale Liquors. If you need some obscure liquor to make your special cocktail they likely have it, along with a large selection of local craft beers. The Washburn library is a friendly place with a wide selection of books and activities and they are happy to help you get a copy of whatever you’re looking for brought to this branch. On Nicollet you can get your bagels or other fresh breads and sandwiches at Sunstreet Bread or St. Louis Bagelry. I like to throw a little love toward the local Ace hardware stores here too – Tangletown has one, and I have found them to be the most helpful places to buy whatever you need for your home. If you want some farm to table food and an outdoor patio – head to Wise Acre Eatery. And one of the best garden shops in the city – Tangletown Gardens – is located right next door.

And schools are walkable too! Washburn High School and Justice Page Middle School are located within Tangletown.

#3 Bike paths!

Ok – this isn’t unique to Tangletown, but they are right on one of the BEST bike paths in the city. The one that follows along Minnehaha Creek and connects the chain of lakes to Minnehaha Falls.

I should probably change the heading to “Minnehaha Creek” because it’s not just the path, but the creek itself. We often walk along the path and my dog loves to jump in for a swim. People also kayak or float on inner tubes down the creek in the summer. Just make sure you get off the creek before you hit the falls!

Last year I saw some kids fishing there and they pulled out an ENORMOUS fish. And it wasn’t the largest caught in the creek – check out this story from MPR on a monster sturgeon caught in the creek last year:

Photo from Owen Sanderson

#4 Easy Access to Downtown

If you live in Tangletown you can be in the heart of Minneapolis in literally 10 minutes via the freeway (35W). Your commute can’t get much better than that.

So you get that neighborhood feel, walkable amenities, outdoor fun AND easy access to the more urban parts of Minneapolis.

Where it’s at!
Median home prices for Tangletown over 3 years as compared to TC Metro
Neighborhood Tours

Ahhhh… Victoria. Seriously one of my very favorite towns!

I don’t live there, but I think it would be way better than a sharp stick to the eye. (My mom says that… sorry if you’re grossed out).

I do, however, spend time in Victoria whenever I get the chance.

My favorite things to do there are camp in the Carver Park Reserve – it’s not crowded, it’s clean, there is a really nice little beach, and a LOT of walking/hiking trails.

I also like camping there because it’s short trip into this adorable town for a civilized lunch, a glass of beer and / or an ice cream cone. I like my camping with a side of delicious food that I don’t have to cook. Haters… save it.

Victoria is located near the Landscape Arboretum and the UMN Apple House so you can get first dibs on the apple crop. Minnesotans are very in tune with apple varieties and that may be because the U breeds apples (is that the right term?) – they experiment and develop new varieties. Love your Honey Crisp? Thank the UMN. Into SweeTango’s … UMN.

Anyway – I’ve been out there a lot lately and not minding a bit. Check out what Victoria has to offer. Let me know if you have questions or ideas about another place you’d like to see. 🙂

Living in Minneapolis

Moving to Minneapolis?

Little joke for you – How do you get a Minnesotan to apologize? Step on their foot! ha ha! OPE!

We moved to MPLS several years ago for my husband’s job and before that happened I had given Minnesota approximately ZERO thought and had no idea what to expect.  We came from Chicago and even though it’s also an upper-midwestern city, something about MINNESOTA seemed like a whole different animal – a COLD animal that lives in the middle of “fly-over” country.  Well, I was pleasantly surprised and today I’m going to share a little about why. And, yes, it gets cold, but honestly, I love having 4 really distinct and wonderful seasons to fully enjoy and it seems that Minnesotans feel the same.

Minneapolis and the Twin Cities metro area are pretty big! There are about 3.4Million people living here.  It’s not Podunk.

All of those people support a pretty thriving economy with low unemployment, the HQ of many large companies like Target, Best Buy, United Healthcare, 3M, Cargill etc… and thriving mid and small sized businesses as well.

While the Twin Cities aren’t on the same scale as Chicago, we enjoy a lot of the same benefits – an international airport, fine dining – if you’re a foodie you’ll be glad to know that we have James Beard award winning restaurants. If you’re a beer lover – there are 56 breweries here.

There are Lots of theaters from smaller local theater companies to larger venues that host traveling companies and Broadway productions.

There are 55 museums in the Twin Cities! The Walker hosts contemporary art, the Minneapolis Institute of Art has art spanning 5,000 years and 6 continents and it’s FREE! Some other highlights that we enjoyed a lot when my kid was younger were the Children’s Theater (located inside the MIA), the Children’s Museum and the most amazing hands on museum – the Science Museum of Minnesota, that one shouldn’t be missed!

Bicycling is HUGE in the Twin Cities – year ’round!- and there are 4,000 miles of bike trails in the metro area – from designated lanes on city streets, converted rail lines like the Midtown Greenway and Luce Line Trails, and the 40 miles of paved bike/ walk paths called the Grand Rounds that wind around the many lakes residing within the city of Minneapolis.

Speaking of the lakes (and parks!) the Minneapolis Park District wins strings of awards every year and are an integral part of living here.  Most people live within 10 minutes of a park, and have access to community centers, park programming, tennis and pickleball courts, wading pools, beaches and restaurants.  If you visit Lake Harriet or Bde Mka Ska you can rent sail boats, kayaks, or paddle boards and have a great day on the lake while taking in the skyline.

If you are a sports fan – we have you covered! We have professional football, baseball, men’s and women’s basketball, soccer and hockey teams. No matter what the season, there is no reason not watch your favorite sport.  And if that’s not enough we are neck deep in college sports as well!

There are 34 colleges and universities in the TC area, including the main campus’ of the University of Minnesota – of the best public research universities in the US. The U has many famous alum – including Bob Dylan, Chief Justice Warren Burger and if that’s not enough to convince you – Ric Flair! Minneapolis has a very educated population – 70% of all adults have at least some college education!

Ric Flair – Photo Credit WWE.com

Minneapolitans and Minnesotans are “outsiders” all year long – winter doesn’t keep anyone inside.  From the Art Shanties on Lake Harriet, to Holidazzle and Winter Carnival, and the Luminary Loppet – people here don’t let winter stand in the way of having a good time.  Of course, summer is outside all the time either at the lakes and parks or festivals like block parties, the Aquatennial, Minnesota Fringe Fest, or get something fried on a stick at the Minnesota State Fair.

The Housing market in Minneapolis is currently very “hot”, the average home price is nearly $280,000 in the Twin Cities, but that varies drastically by neighborhood.  If you like being in the heart of the city there are a lot of brand new buildings or repurposed industrial buildings and flour mills downtown on Mississippi River for condo living in the middle of everything.

As you move outward to the north – there are more affordable neighborhoods, and Northeast is somewhat hip and artsy.  To the south and west of downtown are well established neighborhoods with large gracious homes and as you move further south you gradually get into fairly solidly single family neighborhoods, with a lot of home built in the early & mid 20th century. 

Rentals in MPLS are generally between $1400 and $2500/mo.  St. Paul is less expensive for rentals and homes than Minneapolis as a general rule.

The first is that there is great access to good healthcare in the Twin Cities – from the University of Minnesota Medical center, to Abbott Northwestern, to the renowned Mayo Clinic to our south in Rochester MN.

If you love shopping – you’ll be happy to know that MN does not tax clothing purchases, so you can go to the Mall of America and shop yourself silly without paying a dime to the government. There is also no tax on groceries in MN – not the case everywhere, so it’s nice to not have regressive taxes.

If you have questions about any aspect of life in the TC or have a topic you’d be interested in seeing a video on, I’d love to hear from you!

Neighborhood Tours

Neighborhood tour – Eagan MN

Go for a walk – in Eagan!

I’ve been talking to several people interested in the suburbs of Minneapolis so this week I decided to poke around Eagan MN. I live in Minneapolis, so of course I’ve been to Eagan before, but what is fun about these tours is that it makes me dig a little deeper and look a little closer at the details of a community and really think about living there and what would be a plus or a minus.

Deciding on suburbs of Minneapolis?

Housing in Eagan

Eagan has very diverse housing options. Lots of apartments (rents around $1800/mo), condos, townhouses/twin homes, typical suburban homes from the late ’80’s and through the ’90’s, and even a couple of incredible mansions.

On the low end of the price points in Eagan are condos that run about $100k for 2 bedrooms. They are midrise, shared laundry, well maintained and a great option if you live alone, don’t want maintenance, want an apartment near the city as a second home etc.

Townhouses similar to those in the video are in the high $200 – mid $300K range, and some of the larger and newer town homes in Eagan are $450-500K.

Single family homes run the gamut from 1970’s ramblers to an outright castle, but homes in the subdivisions of Eagan tend to be set on .3 – about 1 acre lots and are larger, lots of them with 3 car garages and minimum of 4 beds, 3,000 SF. Prices sit in the mid $500’s as a median.

Things you may like about living in Eagan

Location

Eagan is ideally situated. It is close to the airport & an easy commute to both downtown Minneapolis and St. Paul via 35 E or W.

Parks

Eagan also has easy access to a large park system. On the north side is Fort Snelling which is part of the National Parks. There are also two off leash dog parks in that area – one close to the airport and another a little further north at Minnehaha Falls.

To the south is Lebanon Hills Park – this place is amazing. The visitor’s center is quite new and clean, the park itself is very well maintained. There are many many hiking trails to take and it is a great place to go with kids. I took my daughter there last fall and we selected a 3 mile hike and were given a map that told us which trail markers to follow. The trails are really well marked! I love that! We saw so many animals and birds on our walk and while we weren’t completely alone the park is large enough that even when there are a lot of people visiting you are still able to achieve that feeling of having spent time in the quiet of nature. If you have horses, there are trails marked for that as well.

Eagan has 27 soccer fields and 56 parks – 14 of which have outdoor skating rinks in winter.

Shopping

“The Mall” as people here call it. The Mall of America is not actually located IN Eagan but it is right next door. I confess to having not been there until last weekend and I was surprised at how much I actually liked it! It’s not mobbed with people. The variety of stores is really nice and there are things there that are harder to come by in other places. The amusement park and roller coasters were larger than I expected and look like a lot of fun – we did Flyover America and loved it!

There is a brand new Costco on the north side of the city, and unlike the one in St. Louis Park, the parking lot doesn’t make you want to tear your hair out (or that other person that can’t park’s hair out… it’s occurred to me and I am a peaceful person… ). It’s a joy to shop there. A zen experience compared to SLP.

If you like Walmart – there is a shopping center with Walmart on the north side of the city and for the True Minnesotans™ who want to shop their hometown retailer, there is a large shopping area with Target in the triangle between 77 and 35E.

Finally – Eagan is home to Twin Cities Premium Outlet Mall on the NE side of the city.

Family fun

In summer, Eagan has an outdoor pool and water park called Cascade Bay. Summer in MN we just soak up as much outside time as we can, and this place looks like a lot of fun if you have kids.

Eagan Civic Arena has 2 indoor ice skating rinks that are open year round – if you live in MN, this might be one of your concerns! Hockey. It’s a thing here.

Schools and libraries

Speaking of kids – the schools in Eagan are rated fairly highly by Great Schools, so if you are looking for quality public education, this may be a good place to look. There are also quite a few private schools in the area.

Last, but for me not least, they have a large library (Westcott) that is open 7 days a week. The library is something that my family has made great use of over the years – children’s programming in the early years and now just feeding the voracious readers in my house without spending ALL the money.

Top employers in Eagan

Eagan is home to Thomson Reuters, Blue Cross Blue Shield of MN, UPS, Ecolab, and while maybe not a “top employer”, it is also home to the Minnesota Vikings training facility – and that place is hard to miss as you drive down 494. 😉

Demographics

Eagan is home to 67,509 people.

More than half of the population has a bachelors degree or higher.

The median income in Eagan is $82,265.

If you don’t like driving to downtown you can commute on the MVTA busses. They are clean! I always mention this after living in Chicago and spending a lot of time on busses and trains that had suspicious odors and stains. I loved the transit system there, but not everyone behaves well, so I appreciate it here.

I hope this helps if you’re considering Eagan as your next place to live!

Questions? leave a comment or tap one of the links below.

  1. you live there? 🙂 thanks for reading. Love the comment – glad I didn’t miss anything. lol!