It’s February and here in MN, patience is starting to wear thin as we look out the window at snow that shows little sign of leaving and the sled hills and skating rinks may be starting to lose their charm.
I thought I’d make some suggestions for some indoor activities that kids (of various ages) will enjoy if you’re visiting, or even if you live here, and you’re looking for an idea (or five).
Mill City Museum
This is a fun way to learn about the city’s history and why this city ended up parked on the side of the Mississippi River.
The museum sits right downtown on the river front and lives in what was once the worlds largest flour mill. There are hands on activities for kids in the water lab and the baking lab, and the Flour Tower exhibit shouldn’t be missed. I was really surprised by the things I learned!
Mill City Museum : 704 S 2nd St, Minneapolis, MN 55401. It is open every day except Monday. Hours are 10am-5pm with the exception of Sunday when it's 12-5. https://www.mnhs.org/millcity
Kids under 4 get in free and under 18 is $6. There are discounts for veterans, college students and seniors off the regular adult price of $12.
If you go on a nice day – go outside and walk along the river front. The lock and dam on the river is right in front of the museum, and that’s an interesting thing to see. And then head south past the Guthrie Theater & Gold Medal Park and hit Izzy’s Ice Cream shop! Give your mouth a treat after feeding your brain.
Izzy’s 1100 Second Street South, Minneapolis, MN 55415.
Bryant Lake Bowl
810 West Lake Street – Minneapolis, MN 55408 https://www.bryantlakebowl.com/
This little bowling alley is so much more!
It has a decent menu (even breakfast!) and a full bar. And they have theater there nearly every night as well.
But if you’re just coming to knock down some pins (and/or some pints?), it’s a fun place to be and on the less expensive side! $4.50/person per game, $2 shoe rental. No reservations for bowling or food.
It’s open from 8am – 2am every day and the crowd is varied.
We actually spent Thanksgiving there a couple of years ago as a fun alternative when we weren’t traveling and didn’t have family in town.
Tag line “Where it’s sunny and 70 degrees all year long!”. Yes.
Edinborough Park is an indoor playground and it is an AWESOME way to drain your kid of some of their energy on a cold winter day when you just. can’t. deal. anymore.
Check the website for prices and hours: https://www.edinamn.gov/158/Edinborough-Park
7700 York Avenue South
Edina, MN 55435
So much climbing. So much running. So many other kids!
There is a free play area called The Great Hall that has balls and tricycles and just space to RUN.
We’ve had birthday parties here, and there is a HEATED pool that you can pay as you go or get a pass to if you or your kid like to swim recreationally in the winter.
There is a little cafe & coffee kiosk called The Peak Cafe near the front desk and they have pizza, hot dogs, PBJ and other kid accepted foods as well as sodas, milk, juice boxes. I mean, it’s like it was designed by a kid.
The Riverview Theater
3800 42nd Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55406 http://www.riverviewtheater.com/
I LOVE this neighborhood theater! It’s amazing – like stepping into a 1950’s neighborhood theater. The decor is still mid-mod. The prices are RIGHT. Films are $2- 2.50 unless you’re having a big night out – evening films for adults are $3. The movies are sometimes classics that you get to see on the big screen again, or recent movies from the major theaters, not quite new releases, but not old!
They also do film festivals and special events at the theater. It’s really a great place.
Besides the inexpensive price and the sweet decor – the Riverview has a strict “No butter flavored oil” policy – they put REAL BUTTER on their popcorn and it’s heaven! People actually stop in to buy popcorn to go!
If you want a meal before or after the film, there are restaurants a couple of blocks away up and down Minnehaha Ave.
Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theater
This one requires a little planning because you can’t just drop in, but this puppet theater often has shows and right now is staging a series of SIX FREE shows at the Midtown Global Market on Lake Street (another fun place to visit!) and some have “make and take” activities for the kids.
This puppet theater is a driving force behind the May Day Celebration and, to me, it’s just a really unique thing that can capture the imagination of children and adults.
I hope these help you find some things to entertain yourself and your kids in Minneapolis! Spring is coming… 🙂
If you have questions, comments or suggestions I’d love to hear them. Send me an email, leave a comment or tap one of the links below.