12 Fun Things to do in Minnesota (Twin Cities)

So I’m launching a new series of blog posts called
“Fun Things to do …[insert city/place] “.

One of my good friends, Nina recently moved to Minnesota for a internship and was asking me what are some the fun things to do in Minnesota?  It got me thinking about starting this series because I’m always looking for fun things to do and plus +10 pts  if it’s free 🙂
The inner college student in me loves free things.

As always please write in the comments if you have further suggestions, link to your fun things to do or well…comments.

This post dedicated to Nina! I sincerely hope you love Minnesota ^_^

Fun Things to Do in Minneosta (Twin Cities + suburbs)

1. Mall of America!
Official Website for MOA

It’s inevitable. It’s the largest indoor shopping mall in the USA and it has it own indoor amusement park! There’s literally shops, food joints, and fun for everyone. In Minnesota, there’s *No Clothing Tax* so buy to your hearts content! It’s a serious savings considering it’s 10% tax where I am now. Plus if you get bored there’s a HUGE Ikea right across the way to fulfill your Swedish meatball needs and bright colored furniture desires.

2. MN Orchestra Hall
Official Website for MN Orchestra Hall
Sommerfest starts July 8th-23rd 2011

The MN Orchestra Hall was where I saw my first concert with my friends Emily and Megan (Peter Cincotti concert). Since then I’ve always had a wonderful time at the concert hall and I’m always dying to go back and catch another. The concert hall is gorgeous and has the most interesting ‘cube’ ceiling. The best part is they have tons of discounted options where you save on the dime. (Rush tickets $15 for students, $25 for public, student concert passes, and U of M offers) Live Orchestra totally kicks ass compared to recordings!

3. Yum! Bakery and Restaurant
Yum! Website
Yelp Link

I found this lovely place courtesy of my friend Emily. It’s great place to catch a bite to eat in the summer. It has delicious cupcakes and ever changing daily menu where everything is made from scratch. Hey it’s affordable, tasty, and I had a great Chicken potpie here!

4. Chanhassen Dinner Theater
Official Website of Chan Dinner Theater
So despite living all my life right next to the dinner theater…I’ve never been to it. Now that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t go. I’ve heard rave reviews about the Chan dinner theater and I’ve heard of people traveling from all over the place to catch a show here. Next time I’m in MN I’m going to make it priority to check it out. I mean a show + dinner …what more could anyone want? ^_^

5. Valley Fair Amusement and Soak City
Official Website of Valley Fair
I have spent many days at this amusement park whether it be for family, friends or school field trips. Needless to say I’ve ridden almost all the rides, eaten the food, and put in many hours at Soak City (water park). I’ve been on the Corkscrew, Steel Venom and the Mighty Excalibur coaster. I love the lazy river floats and the octopus. Only caveat is I haven’t been on the “Wild Thing” because I’m a scaredy cat about it.  Regardless this is the place to be in the summer. It’s also the only one I know of other than the Mall of America park.

6. Zoos
Minnesota Zoo  & Imax Theater approx. $18 per person
Official Website to MN Zoo

Como Zoo & Conservatory (zoo, garden, kiddie attractions) Free Admission
(voluntary donation $2)
Official Website of Como Zoo

7. Muesums (for more check out this website called Art-Collecting)

Walker Art Center -Performing Arts
Official Website

MN museum of American Art – Free admission
Official Website

Minneapolis Sculpture Garden- Free, outdoors, Famous Cherry and Spoon sculpture!!!
Official Website

Minneapolis Institute of Art – Free Admission, Closed Mondays
Official Website

8. Chino Latino Restaurant (Mexican-Asian Fusion)
Official Website of Chino Latino
Yelp link
Awhile ago I went to this place for my friend Christina’s birthday and I still think of it fondly. This place is very quirky atmosphere, interesting fusion entrees, and OMG their buddha desserts! Great place for a night out with the girls!

9. Pho 79 Restaurant
2529 Nicollet Ave
Minneapolis, MN 55404
Neighborhood: Whittier
Yelp Link

Yes in the white, white world of Minnesota, we do have Vietnamese restaurants! This one makes a great bowl of pho and cheese wontons. Oh how I miss it…despite being in Norcal. Ironic. Anyways it a little bit of hole in the wall place but it’s good and cheap.

10. Lakes
This is one thing Minnesota has all the other states beat in. We have 10,000+ lakes. Every where you go there’s a lake. Beware this does mean there are mosquitoes so be prepared with mosquito spray and long pants at night. Though honestly if you’ve been to Asia, then MN mosquitoes will seem like a walk in the park so don’t be put off! Go outside!!! Enjoy the nice weather 🙂  There’s tons of fun summer activities to do by lakes such as picnics, bbqs, beaches, making sand castles, swimming, diving, water skiing, water tubing, canoes, kayaks, paddle boats, and even YOGA! Yep yoga by the lake is a popular event. (Lake Calhoun) If you don’t have your own equipments it’s fairly painless and cheap to rent water equipment $8-12 hr. (Chutes & Ladders Park)

11. Summer Festivals & Fairs

Fairs are glorious times filled with deep fried goodness that you can justify as it’s once a year event. ^^ Yum! They always have show cases innovations, arts, attractions and more.

Highland Fest 2011
Friday, July 15 10:00a
Highland Park, St Paul
Highland Fest is a free, high quality art fair and family friendly festival.

Marketfest – Opening Day
Thursday, July 7 10:00a
City of St Paul MN, St Paul
Marketfest is a free summer festival in beautiful downtown White Bear Lake. In its 21st year it continues to attract locals and visitors who are interested in a lively, family friendly atmosphere.

Irish Fair
Friday, Aug 12 3:00p
Harriet Island Regional Park, St Paul
Join us on the banks of the Mississippi River for a three-day celebration of Irish heritage with music, dance, family activities and good craic.

MN State Fair (one of my most anticipated events of year!)

Click here for My blog post about the MN State Fair 2010
Official Website
Aug 25th – Sept 5th 2011Seriously if you are in Minnesota at this time, you’ve got to go the State Fair. It’s one of the largest in the nation and everyone else will be talking about it! You’ve got to try the green/yellow slide, see marching bands (my brother marched last year), eat the delicious corn on the cob, cheese curd, fresh ice cream, and fried onion blossoms. They have exhibits, showcases, talent shows, concerts, competitions, eco-friendly innovations, and rides…the list goes on. Oh just thinking about it makes me excited!

12. Suburbs
(Things I like to do in my town)
A) Eden Prairie Mall – once again no Sales Tax on clothing,
B) AMC Theaters in EP Mall – It’s only $5 for all movies Monday-Friday! (+$3.5 3D)
Seriously that’s cheap for a new movie! It’s like close to $10 dollars where I live.
C) Brunswick Lanes – $1 Thursday Night Bowling!
D) Purgatory Lake – great place to catch a bit to eat and walk around the lake
E) Go to a public library – read for free…heheh ❤ free things

Hope you enjoyed this post.



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