Tag Archives: twin cities

RNR’s Rock Star of the Month: Lasha Raddatz

It’s no coincidence that RNR also stands for “Rock ‘N Roll” … because we think all of our agents are rock stars! Each month we will feature one of our team members to find out more about them and why they joined the biz. Next up is Lasha Raddatz, a 16-year veteran agent who loves working with first time homebuyers!

Lasha

Q: How long have you been in the business?

A: 16 years

Q: What’s your specialization?

A: First time buyers are my favorite demographic to work with. It’s such an exciting time for these families – we always have a blast!

Q: What is your dream home or favorite house style?

A: Lofts. Think exposed brick, concrete, floor-to-ceiling windows. Preferably on a beach.

Q: What is your favorite thing about living in the Twin Cities?

A: The music scene. I love all the live music here!

Q: What would you say is the Twin Cities’ best kept secret?

A: The band, MPLS. However, Jesse Larson from that band is now on The Voice and she is killing it!

Q: What are your hobbies/interests?

A: Traveling! It’s my oxygen.

Q: What is your favorite travel destination?

A: Jekkyl Island in Georgia.

Q: Do you have any hidden talents?

A: I am a great dancer and used to dance for a local hip hop group, The School of Thought.

Q: What is your favorite quote?

A: Home is where the heart is.

Q: Is there anything else we should know about you?

A: Real estate is my passion! It’s where I’ve met the most amazing people and had the most freedom to do what I love!

Fun Facts about the Minnesota State Fair

As soon as August arrives, all Minnesotans have just one thing on their mind: the Minnesota State Fair. It’s a time for folks statewide (and even from across the nation) to flock to the Twin Cities and enjoy the best days of summer. What began as an event in the early 1850’s to showcase crops, livestock, produce, and handiwork of Minnesota residents, has since become a cultural phenomenon beloved by all Minnesotans, regardless of their involvement with agriculture or farming.

In anticipation of August 25th (the event’s first of 12 days), we put together a list of some of the most interesting facts about “The Great Minnesota Get-Together.” Take a look:

1.It is the largest state fair in the U.S. by average daily attendance.

2. It is the 2nd largest state fair in the U.S. by total annual attendance (the largest is Texas, which runs about twice as long).

3. The highest annual attendance occurred in 2014, with 1,824,830 fairgoers.

4. The single day record was set on August 30, 2014, with 252,092 attendants.

5. It was named the best state fair in the nation by USA Today readers.

6. Theodore Roosevelt first uttered his famous line “Speak softly and carry a big stick” at the state fair in 1901.

7. Since it began more than 150 years ago, the state fair has only not been held five times (see the reasons why here).

8. The current site is not the fair’s original home. Before 1885 when it settled permanently in Falcon Heights (adjacent to St. Paul neighborhoods Como & St. Anthony Park), the fair jumped from city to city, including Minneapolis, St. Paul, Rochester, Red Wing, Owatonna, and Winona.

image

Photo Credit: “PrincessKay” by Jonathunder © 2010 (CC BY-SA 3.0)

9. Each year, the newly crowned Princess Kay of the Milky Way and her royal court have their likenesses carved out of a 90 lb. block of butter. Each sculpture takes about 6-8 hours to complete.

10. For several decades, the soon-to-be-renovated Machinery Hill housed the largest annual display of farm equipment in the world.

11. Before moving to the Walker Art Center and eventually to CHS Field (its current venue), the Cat Video Festival was held at the State Fair Grandstand.

12. Owatonna native Lillian Colton created Crop Art for the fair for over 40 years, winning nine purple ribbons in all. Her work included portraits of celebrities ranging from Prince to Princess Diana.

13. The oldest amusement ride at the fair is Ye Old Mill, which just celebrated its 100th birthday last year. 

14. Meanwhile, the Hamline Church Dining Hall is the longest running concession stand, having been open since 1897.

15. Pronto Pups, a highlight of the fair for many, were first introduced to fairgoers in 1947.

16. New food offerings this year include spam sushi and macaroni & cheese curds. Talk about decadent!

17. Perennial favorite Sweet Martha’s Cookies (soon to have a third location in the north end), serves over 1 million warm chocolate chip cookies per day.

18. What goes better with cookies than milk? Nothing! To satisfy your dairy craving, head on over to the All-You-Can Drink milk booth, where approximately 26,000 gallons of the creamy stuff is served per year (in both white and chocolate varieties). If that sounds like a bit too much lactose for you, consider participating in the Milk Run instead – all participants receive a Milk Run T-shirt, fair admission, and a malt coupon.

19. If walking is more your speed, there is a year-round Fair Walking & Cell Phone Tour, which was created in partnership with the Minnesota Historical Society to provide a more detailed guide of the fairgrounds.

image

Photo Credit: “Fairchild” by Jonathunder © 2009 (CC BY-SA 3.0)

20. You know those gopher mascots you immediately identify with the fair? Believe it or not, they actually have names (Fairchild and his nephew Fairborne) and backstories.

Were you surprised by any of these facts? What are your favorite State Fair traditions? What are you most looking forward to at this year’s Get Together? Let us know in the comments!

Featured Image Photo Credit: “2010 MN State Fair crowd” by Anndelion © 2010 (CC BY 3.0)

Plymouth Neighborhood

Plymouth, Minnesota

Plymouth, Minnesota is a beautiful city located about 15 miles west of Minneapolis. It is the fourth largest suburb in the Twin Cities metro area, with a population of more than 70,000. With a rich history, wonderful schools, popular restaurants, and many beautiful parks, Plymouth sure does have plenty to offer everyone!

Plymouth015

This land was originally inhabited by the Dakota Indians, who called the area Medicine Lake (derived from the word “Mdewakanton,” meaning “Lake of the Spirit.” Once settlers began to arrive in the mid 1850’s, the city was reorganized and renamed Plymouth. Since then, the vibrant suburb has continued to grow and develop into the community we know and love today. In fact, a recent study showed that 97% of the current residents rated their quality of life as “Excellent” or “Good”. We’d say that’s pretty impressive!

Plymouth037

One of the main reasons Plymouth has been able to enjoy continued growth and high levels of satisfaction is the exceptional public school system. The city is currently served by four highly regarded school districts: Wayzata School District 284, Osseo School District 279, Robbinsdale School District 281, and Hopkins School District 270. Education is certainly important when it comes to determining a community’s quality of life, and Plymouth makes sure to provide great learning opportunities for all of its residents – young and old! Make sure to keep an eye out for upcoming adult community education classes taught by our very own broker, Nene Matey-Keke.

Plymouth Transportation

Worried that living in a suburb might put you too far from the center of the big city? Not a problem! Plymouth is well-connected to Downtown Minneapolis, by the freeway system as well as Plymouth Metrolink (made up of 11 different bus routes!).

Plymouth022

Plymouth’s convenient location and accessibility make this suburb a budding destination for business, and many companies, such as Smiths Medical and Polaris, have recently expanded here. Currently, the city provides over 50,000 jobs for residents and commuters. Some of the top employers include Abbott Northwestern Hospital, the Twin Cities’ largest non-profit hospital, and Christopher & Banks Corporation, a retailer of women’s specialty apparel.

Plymouth030

One of the perks of living in a ‘burb like Plymouth? Residents have access to a ton of green space! Not only does Plymouth have 56 city parks and 145 miles of walking/biking trails, but it is also a part of the Greenway system, which provides space for recreation while also preserving natural resources and wildlife. Anyone who visits Plymouth must check out Medicine Lake and the adjacent French River Park. Other fun family destinations include Plymouth Creek Center and the Millennium Garden. Plymouth is also home to a water park, ice rink and dog park. With so many wonderful outdoor options, Plymouth is definitely the place for summer family fun!

Plymouth010

Plymouth003   Plymouth039

Plymouth is perfect for every stage of life. There are housing options for large families, small families, couples seeking starter homes, apartments, elderly living – whatever you’re looking for, Plymouth has it! Some areas of the city have more mature neighborhoods, while other areas are brand new and growing developments. But there is no denying that this suburb has something to fit everyone’s lifestyle needs.

Restaurants

1. Latuff’s Pizzeria
2. Creekside Cafe
3. Truffles and Tortes
4. Sakana Sushi and Asian Bistro
5. Sunshine Factory Bar & Grill
6. Ketsana’s Thai
7. Jake’s City Grille

Jake's City Grille - Plymouth, MN


Attractions

1. Plymouth Playhouse
2. French Regional Park
3. Millennium Garden
4. Sky Zone Indoor Trampoline Park

Sky Zone Indoor Trampoline Park - Plymouth, MN

Do you live in Plymouth, MN? Let us know your favorite things about living in the sensational suburb in the comment section below!

Roseville, MN

Nestled between the Mississippi and the Minnesota Rivers, Roseville was first home to the Dakota and Ojibway.  Because of its prime location between two rivers, the Dakota believed “it was immediately over the center of the earth and beneath the center of heaven.” Today, it still remains a central location as it is one of two Twin Cities suburbs that is adjacent to both Saint Paul and Minneapolis. With a ten-minute commute to either downtown area, it offers residents a mix of suburban and urban lifestyles.

Roseville002     Golf Carts at Midland Hills Country Club

Additionally, Roseville offers an abundance of recreational activities including shopping, skating and a variety of outdoor activities. For example, playing a round of Golf at Cedarholm Golf Course or Midland Hills Country Club is a popular activity for a sunny afternoon.

Rosedale Center Mall in Roseville, MN

Or, with the mega mall Rosedale Center as well as six other shopping centers it’s easy to shop ’til you drop! Fun Fact: the first Target was built in Roseville in 1962. How awesome is that?! But if shopping isn’t your thing, lucky for you the AMC Rosedale 14 is adjacent to the Rosedale Center. There, it’s easy to sit back and relax with an icy cold drink and hot buttery popcorn while you check out the latest Hollywood flicks.

On the other hand, bibliophiles – aka book lovers – will delight in the Ramsey County Library- Roseville. Impressively, it is the largest library in Ramsey County and busiest library in Minnesota. With more than 340,000 volumes in its collection, nearly three times that of any other branch in the county, it is no wonder why!

Roseville Skating Center and John Rose Oval

Another popular attraction is The Roseville Skating Center, which is sure to accommodate all your skating needs both on and off the ice. It features an indoor arena, banquet center as well as an outdoor skate park for skateboarding and inline skating. The Roseville Ice Arena is a year-round ice arena used for hockey, figure skating, skating lessons and general public skating. Included in the Roseville Skating Center is the John Rose Minnesota Oval. The Oval, an outdoor ice rink features a 400 meter speed skating track that surrounds an infield ice area used for hockey or bandy.

Roseville030

Roseville offers nature lovers the beautiful Harriet Alexander Nature Center, a beautiful place for your next reception or special event as well as 34 other spectacular parks.

Children playing soccer in Roseville, MN

With a staggering 19 K-12 public schools and 7 private schools there certainly no shortage of options for parents when it comes to finding a nearby school. While Roseville is divided between two school districts, Mounds View School District 621 and Roseville Area School District 623, they are both consistently ranked among the best in the state.

Interior of La Casita Mexican Restaurant in Roseville, MN.

In terms of restaurants, Roseville certainly isn’t lacking. Two of our favorites are La Casita and Grumpy’s Bar and Grill. La Casita serves authentic Mexican food made with only the freshest ingredients. Be sure to check out the Twin Cities’ best frozen margarita or the happy hour appetizer bar with free chili con Queso, bean dip and salsa (with a minimum $4.95 purchase).

Sign outside of Grumpys in Roseville Grumpy's Bar and Grill Patio

Grumpy’s Bar & Grill is another spot not to pass up. It features a dining room, patio and separate bar. Plus they offer everything from bingo to karaoke so it is sure to please your entire crew.

Roseville Home

Moving on, more than half the homes in Roseville are single family homes at moderate prices, making this an ideal spot for younger families. Additionally, Roseville boasts that their taxes are consistently among the lowest in the Twin Cities area.

Overall, Roseville provides a unique blend of suburban and urban lifestyles to its residents. It encompasses both vibrant residential and retail areas, making it an ideal place to raise a family or start a business. Additionally, the safe neighborhoods, spectacular parks, friendly business environment and prime location make this Ramsey County suburb hard not to love.

 

Neighborhood Schools

Faith Communities

Concordia Academy (Private HS) Advent Lutheran Church
King of Kings Lutheran School (K-8) Bethany Baptist Church
North Heights Christian Academy (K-8) Calvary Baptist Church
St. Rose of Lima Catholic School (pre-K-8) Christ Temple Apostolic Church
Mounds View School District 621 Centennial United Methodist Church
Roseville Area School District 623 Church of Christ Roseville
Corpus Christi Catholic Church

Public Parks

enCompassChurch
Acorn Park Galilee Lutheran Church
Central Park Dale East Grace Church of Roseville
Lexington Park King of Kings Lutheran Church
Reservoir Woods Off Leash Dog Park Lutheran Church of the Resurrection
Tamarack Park North Como Presbyterian Church
Villa Park North Heights Lutheran Church
Prince of Peace Lutheran Church

Local Restaurants

Rose Hill Alliance
The Good Earth Real Life Church
Grumpy’s Bar & Grill Roseville Baptist Church
Maverick’s Real Roast Beef Restaurant Roseville Covenant Church
Snuffy’s Malt Shop Roseville Lutheran Church
Aurelio’s Pizza St. Christopher’s Episcopal Church
Digby’s St. Michael’s Lutheran Church
J. Arthur’s Coffee Saint Rose of Lima
D’Amico and Sons Vietnamese Buddhist Association

 

 

 

10 Reasons Why You Should Hire a Real Estate Agent

It’s not easy buying or selling a house. You’re full-time job is work enough. Imagine putting the pressure, stress, and extra work that comes with selling or buying a house. Cue real estate agent. Not only do they advise you on what’s best to their knowledge, but the best are experienced, and can help you get the best for your budget. Don’t stress and call a real estate agent. You won’t regret it! The top 10 Reasons To Hire a Real Estate Agent can be found on this infographic:

info02

 

Source: Keeping Current Matters. Find their website here. 

Nene Matey-Keke Wins MAAR 2014 Realtor of the Year Award

Nene Matey-Keke, MAAR, Realtor of the Year

Most companies share a common goal of ending the year better than where they started it. RNR Realty International can certainly say they have accomplished that in 2014. The company’s principal broker and owner, Nene Matey-Keke, was recently named the Minneapolis Area Association of REALTORS® (MAAR) 2014 REALTOR® of the Year. Matey-Keke beat out more than 7,500 Twin Cities competitors to receive this prestigious award for his dedication to his clients, involvement in local and national associations, and volunteerism throughout the community.

“I was humbled and appreciative that all of my efforts to gain a better understanding of and to improve both this industry and my business have culminated in this achievement,” said Matey-Keke. “I’ve spent the better half of my lifetime trying to set forth to be the best at what I do, so to be recognized by my peers for something that I’m so passionate about is the greatest honor that I could have received.”

For those who know Matey-Keke, it’s easy to see why MAAR decided to present him with this award. Driven, determined, and dedicated are just a few words that family, friends, colleagues, and affiliates use to describe the hardworking realtor. As proof, Matey-Keke holds a total of 14 different residential and commercial real estate certifications and designations, and more than 25 additional certifications, which cover financial investment, community development, and construction.

Having been in the real estate industry for almost fifteen years, Matey-Keke has been diligent in continually building not only his multiple businesses, but also his personal knowledge as well as his ever-growing professional network, which he does partly by maintaining membership in numerous associations and committees.

At MAAR, Matey-Keke recently completed his appointment to serve on the Board of Directors and has previously been on the Finance Committee, Nominating Committee and the Young Professionals Network. He will continue his involvement with the Global Business Council and Public Affairs Committee.

At the state level, working with the Minnesota Association of REALTORS® (MNAR), Matey-Keke is on the Board of Directors, Executive Committee, Commercial Forms Sub Committee, Governmental Affairs Committee, Minnesota RPAC Board of Trustees, Professional Standards Committee, and is an active participant of the Strategic Planning session. He also was a founding member of the Diversity Committee and served as the 2014 Chairman. During his tenure, he spearheaded a joint partnership between MNAR and Junior Achievement of the Upper Midwest as one way to address the current homeownership disparity. Junior Achievement now incorporates the value of homeownership for all in its curriculum. Matey-Keke’s commitment to improving diversity within the real estate industry has led to his appointment as treasurer of the recently created local chapter of the Asian Real Estate Association of America – Twin Cities (AREAA).

At the national level (National Association of REALTORS®), Matey-Keke is the Federal Political Coordinator assigned to the 5th District under Congressman Keith Ellison. He is also a member of the Global Business and Alliances Committee, Research Committee, and previously served on the Federal Financing and Housing Policy Committee, Diversity Committee, and Housing Opportunity Committee.

In addition to his extensive REALTOR® association involvement, Matey-Keke also dedicates time to developing the commercial and investment aspects of his business, by actively participating in the Minnesota Commercial Association of Realtors (MNCAR) and the Minnesota Real Estate Investment Association (MnREIA), respectively.

One of Matey-Keke’s many areas of focus is the international community. His attention to this particular market contributed greatly to his REALTOR® of the Year victory, as well as to his overall personal success. It was because of his background and interest in travelling and learning more about other cultures that he created RNR Realty to be an international business. He would like to use his recent accomplishment to push the business even farther globally, in order to help increase clients’ opportunities for relocation, purchasing resort or second properties, investment (Commercial and Residential) as well as to help make homeownership accessible to all worldwide.

In fact, it was his own personal struggle to overcome past adversity and a lack of access to information that motivates him to work with underprivileged communities today. Despite his extensive association involvement – not to mention running multiple businesses – Matey-Keke still finds time to teach first time homebuyer classes for various local organizations, including Model Cities, the African Development Center, and Community Action Partnership of Suburban Hennepin (CAPSH). He has also spoken for the Minneapolis Urban League’s “Realizing the American Dream” class, which hits close to home.

“Being the child of two parents who have had tremendous fights to claim and acknowledge their identities, in addition to overcoming lack of access and exposure to mainstream resources, has always driven me to be the best and to take advantage of all the resources that are available to me now,” said Matey-Keke. “Rising from [my upbringing] and charting my own path with little to no guidance within the real estate industry has been difficult, to say the least. That is, until I became involved with the association. Getting more involved with the association has led me to be a better businessman and has increased my opportunities overall. Starting where I did, it’s that much more rewarding to be the first African-American to receive this honor and be recognized for having achieved a certain level of success in this industry to which I have given myself.”

Recently, Matey-Keke has also begun teaching community education classes in neighborhoods around the Twin Cities, on topics ranging from purchasing investment properties to finding the best resort and second property opportunities, locally, nationally and globally.

REALTOR® of the Year award winners are allowed to select a charitable organization to receive a $1,000 donation in their name. Matey-Keke chose MCASA Homes, a Model Cities program that provides affordable homeownership opportunities to low and moderate income families. He selected this program because he has previously worked with Model Cities, and he strongly believes in MCASA’s mission to put homeownership within everyone’s reach.

Emily Green, the 2014 MAAR President and past REALTOR® of the Year award recipient, helped name Matey-Keke as this year’s winner and presented him with the trophy.

“Nene is a REALTOR® who contributes to the community and advocates at a local, state and national level for homeownership opportunities for all,” Green explained. “His service to our industry has been invaluable and we are proud to honor him with the distinguished designation of REALTOR® of the year.”

Read more here: http://www.startribune.com/nene-matey-keke-named-realtor-of-the-year/286252901/

 

House Cleaning Facts: Men vs. Women

As homeowners, couples often get into arguments about who does the most cleaning? Often times people want to divide it 50/50 but it’s not always the case. Here are some numbers that finally tell us the truth. Take a look.

house-cleaning-facts_50290cdcd0213_w1500So dear reader, after looking at these numbers, would you say you agree? Do you do most of the cleaning or the least? Let us know!

 

Luxury House

Bloomington, MN

Of course you already know that Bloomington, MN is home to the largest indoor shopping center in the country – ahem, Mall of America – but did you know that the city is also a true winter wonderland? With plenty of cold weather activities to keep you entertained through the loooong Minnesota winters, you might even begin wishing that spring would hold off just a little bit longer…then again, maybe not.

Winter Fete is an annual weeklong celebration held at the end of January, which features a bevy of everyone’s favorite frosty activities, including ice skating, sledding, and an International Ski Jumping Competition. Prefer to just wrap yourself in a warm blanket and relax? Then we recommend taking a horse-drawn sleigh ride at the Pond-Dakota Winter History Festival.

Hyland Park Ski & Snowboard

Hyland Park Ski and Snowboard Area is one of Minnesota’s premier winter sports destinations. The park includes both designated snowboarding slopes and Nordic ski jumps, the latter of which are maintained by the Minneapolis Ski Club. The Club has produced several U.S. Olympic ski jumpers and it even hosted the 2013 Junior National competition. The Hyland Lake Park Reserve grounds are also occupied by the Richardson Nature Center, and the Hyland Greens Golf and Learning Center is located just down the street.

Normandale Community College’s Japanese Garden is a beautiful oasis located in the heart of Bloomington, open to the public year-round. Although the garden reaches its peak of loveliness and full blooming glory in the spring and summer, it is still absolutely stunning during the winter. A Twin Cities favorite location for weddings and photo sessions, it’s a can’t-miss snow-covered haven!

Who knew gardens were the place to be during the winter? The Bloomington Ice Garden (known affectionately by locals as BIG) holds three skating/hockey rinks, one of which is Olympic-sized. This fact made it a clear choice to act as one of the hosts for the 2016 U.S. Figure Skating Championships. If you’re a fan of ice skating, this will be a must-see, once in a lifetime opportunity!

Mall of America

Speaking of “big,” Bloomington is probably most well-known for its largest travel destination – the Mall of America. If you’re not a fan of outdoor activities, then this is the place for you. You could spend a day (probably a week, in actuality) exploring all that the world-famous shopping center has to offer. With nearly 5 million square feet to cover, remember to bring your comfortable shoes to check out the hundreds of stores, vendors, and restaurants. If you visit anytime from Black Friday through New Year’s, make sure you take the time to listen to some carols and other festive jingles, during the Holiday Music Festival. It’s the perfect place to get in the holiday spirit and tick off all the items on your holiday shopping list!

Mall of America Sea Life Aquarium Mall of America Nickelodeon Universe

Before the MOA opened in 1992, the land was the site of Metropolitan Stadium, home to all of Minnesota’s major sports teams until the Metrodome and Target Field were built in the 1980s. Twenty-two years later, the Mall of America is now home to a different form of recreation: shopping ’til you drop. If whipping out your credit card in one of the 500+ stores sounds less than ideal, the mall is also home to the SEA LIFE Minnesota Aquarium, Nickelodeon Universe – at seven acres and with more than thirty rides it’s the country’s largest indoor amusement park – and the nearby Water Park of America, the ninth largest indoor water park in the country.

Civic Center

Still suffering from Black Friday shopping fatigue? (Happy Cyber Monday, by the way!) Skip the Mall and show out-of-town visitors the more cultured side of town by bringing them to the Bloomington Historical Museum, the Bloomington Theater and Art Center, Northwest Airlines History Centre, or The Works museum – a favorite for the kiddos.

Dog Park

Winter is not the only time that Bloomington really shines; there are tons of things to do for warm-weather lovers, throughout the spring and summer. The city offers more than eight thousand acres of parks and open space, including the Pond-Dakota Mission Park and Gideon Pond House. Located on the southeastern edge of the city, the Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge caters to nature lovers, offering fishing, hunting, birdwatching and more recreational activities. This upcoming July, the city will host the 10th Annual Bloomington CVB Foundation Golf Tournament, which draws more than 150 yearly participants. Additionally, the Dwan Golf Club is one of the most popular courses in Minnesota and it’s home to the new FootGolf course as well. Also a summertime favorite among locals and visitors alike is the Bloomington Family Aquatic Center, open mid-June through Labor Day. Lastly, across town is Bush Lake Beach, one of the state’s most popular beaches, with more than 100,000 annual visitors.

Light Rail Blue Line

One of the largest suburbs in the Twin Cities metro area, Bloomington is fully accessible from both Minneapolis and St. Paul via large highways and public transportation. Light rail’s Blue Line brings passengers directly to the Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport and Mall of America stations, so you never even need to set foot outside during the most frigid months of the year.

Because of its proximity to both of the Twin Cities, many companies chose Bloomington to house their headquarters, including Ceridian, Donaldson Company, HealthPartners, Holiday Stationstores, Thermo King, and Toro. The Mall of America itself employees more than 11,000 locals, and 13,000 during the peak of holiday season. Residents of Bloomington also love giving back to their community, with one of the largest volunteer fire departments in the country. The city also holds multiple annual charity events, including the Thanksgiving Walk to End Hunger at the Mall of America and February’s upcoming Charity Wedding Gown Sale & Bridal Expo.

Single Family Home Townhomes

Boasting award-winning schools and lots of local amenities, Bloomington attracts families with small children and adolescents, while also providing enough recreational opportunities for young, active couples. With a variety of single-family homes, small apartment complexes, and gated communities, the city has a median home value of around $200,000 which is higher than Minnesota’s average. Bloomington truly has something to offer everyone!

Neighborhood Resources

Bloomington Schools Faith Communities
ABC International Montessori Academy Bloomington Covenant Church
Beacon Preparatory School Bread of Life Church
Bethany Academy Calvary United Pentecostal Church
Bloomington Lutheran School Cedar Valley Church
Bloomington Public Schools Crosspoint Church
Life Academy Divine Unity Church
Nativity of Mary School Emmaus Free Lutheran Church
Ramalynn Montessori Academy Evergreen Church
Seven Hills Classical Academy Eden Baptist Church
Public Parks Family Fest Ministries
Bloomington Family Aquatic Center Grace Lutheran Church
Bloomington Ice Garden Hillside Church
Bush Lake Beach Jesus is Lord Church
Dwan Golf Club Muslim Community Center
Hyland Greens Golf and Learning Center Normandale Baptist Church
Off-Leash Recreation Area for Dogs Normandale Hylands United Methodist Church
Pond-Dakota Mission Park and Gideon Pond House Oak Grove Presbyterian Church
Smith Park Oxboro Evangelical Free Church
Valley View Skate Park Redemption Lutheran Church
Local Restaurants Southcross Community Church
5210 Restaurant and Onyx Bar St. Bonaventure Church
Blue Point Restaurant Riverside Reformed Church
Bubba Gump St. Edwards Catholic Church
Ciao Bella The Gate Church
Chick-Fil-A Unity South Church
Crave Others
Dick’s Last Resort Hyland Ski & Snowboard Area
Johnny Rockets Ikea
Lucky’s 13 Pub Mall of America
Osaka REI
Parma 8200
Rainforest Cafe
RedRossa Italian Grille

Twin Cities Halloween Haunted House Guide 2014

Here’s our rundown of the premier Twin Cities haunted attractions: The Soap Factory Haunted Basement, Fright Farm, The Butcher Shop House of Gore and much, much more. Expect the unexpected. Keep watching, and find what terrors await you in the dark.. Boo!

So here are our top picks (alphabetical in order):

 

). Fright Farm Rochester Horror – 1195 West Circle Drive SW, Rochester, MN 55902

Overview: “Come visit Southern Minnesota's most horrifying haunted attraction located at the historical George Stopple farmstead at the History Center of Olmsted County. From the street you will already wish you didn't come. It is truly designed to frighten and amuse you. Guided tours will include a look at the original farm house, barn, smokehouse, and caves…”

Cost: $13 at the door

Dates: Oct 9, 10, 11, 16, 17, 18, 19, 24, 25, 26, 29, 30, 31 & Nov

Time: 7 p.m. – 11p.m.

 

). Haunting Experience On Highway 61, 10900 E. Point Douglas Rd., Cottage Grove, MN 55016

Overview: “The Haunting Experience on Highway 61 opens up for its 28th consecutive year. There’s a reason we’ve been around this long. People love coming to see what we are up to each year with our Haunted Hayride, Haunted House, and more. This Halloween season is one that you don’t want to miss with haunts such as The Manor House, Scummo’s 3D Nightmare, and The Hayride, if you dare.We also have a bit of a vermin problem on our property that you can help us get under control with the Big Zombie Hunter Paintball Adventure.”

Cost: $13- $38

Dates: Oct , , 10, 11, 15, 16, 17, 18, 24, 25, 30, 31 & Nov

Time: 7 p.m. – 11 p.m.

 

). Haunted Ship Zombie Outbreak – 350 Harbor Drive, Duluth, Minnesota

Overview: “Are you ready for a real scare? Each year, during October, the William A. Irvin transforms itself into a haunted ship. During the self-guided tour, your worst nightmares will come to life. You’ll see how the historic ore ship’s hauntings are not just a rumor. Mysterious sightings have been recorded through the decades. Walking through the dark, eerie hallways, you’ll get the feeling that you’re never alone, because you won’t be. In this ship, no place is safe. If you think you’re brave enough to visit the Haunted Ship, remember, only the tough ones make it through alive.” –VisitDuluth.com

Cost: $10

Dates: October , , 9. 10, 11, 16, 17, 18, 23, 24, 25, 29, 30, 31

Time: 6:30-10:00 p.m.

 

). Molitor’s Haunted Acres – 425 35th Street NE, Sauk Rapids, MN 56379

Review: “A perilous journey of your deepest fears through the Woods of Darkness, The Sewer, Mutant Mineshaft, The Trail of Blood, Quarry Asylum and The Funhouse Maze. On your treacherous quest, be mindful not to go mad and join the tortured souls who dwell here.”

Cost: $16-$18

Dates: Oct , 4, 10, 11, 15, 16, 17, 18, 23, 24, 25, 26, 30, 31

Time: 6:30 p.m. to 11 p.m.

 

5). Scream Town, 7410 Highway 212, Chaska, MN

Review: “Drove 2 hours to come to Screamtown last night…TOTALLY WORTH THE DRIVE!!!”
-Jeniffer Rothstein

Cost: $35 for regular ticket

When: Oct 3, 4, 10, 11, 16, 17, 18, 19, 24, 25, 26, 31 & Nov 1

Time: 6:30 p.m.- 11 p.m.

 

6). Soap Factory Haunted Basement – 514 Second Street SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414

Review: “This is not a Haunted House, boo-scary or hands in the bowl of grapes tricks, this is a sensory screw job that turns your mind around and lets you scare yourself. –Binary Blogger

Cost: $25; $27 Friday and Saturday

Dates: Wednesdays through Sundays, now through November 2

Time: 6- 11 p.m.

 

7). The Butcher Shop House of Gore – 1444 E. Reaney Ave., St. Paul, MN 55106.

Review: “HOUSE OF GORE is a full-size maze-style haunted house that was constructed in the way haunted houses used to be built… black lights, rats, skulls, cadavers, ghosts, strobe lights, fog machines, rubber masks, and gallons of shocking bloody gore!”

Cost: $5.

Dates: October 4-6, 11-13, 18-20, 25-31, November 1-2.

Time: 5 p.m. -11 p.m.

 

8). Trail of Terror, 3525 145th Street West, Shakopee, MN 55379

Review: “Come early and prepare your self for this scary haunted hayride (keep an eye out as things appear when you least expect it). Follow through a scary, unbelievable spooky maze and don’t be fooled by followers. The maze is the best part! This trail of terror was money worth spent and always be on the lookout, even when you approach your vehicle….I left spooked wanting more!” -Spookedme on Trip Advisor

Cost: Basic tickets $20

Dates: October 10, 11, 12, 17, 18, 19, 24, 25, 26, 31, November 1

Time: 7p.m. – 11p.m.

So there you have it- a rundown of the best haunted houses in and around the Twin Cities. So brave ones, step foot inside Minnesota’s scariest haunted houses- if you dare. The original article from Funtober can be found here.

Eagan

Eagan’s roots trace back to 1860 when the town was first settled by Irish immigrants. This agricultural community was comically dubbed “The Onion Capital of the United States” because 90% of the farmers there grew onions. While Eagan no longer carries that title, this Dakota County suburb has blossomed from a rich farming community to a Twin Cities suburb that is home to over 65,000. With over 1350 acres of parks, a wide assortment of housing and Minnesota’s largest outlet mall it is no wonder that this is an attractive place to live.

Thomson Reuters headquarters, Eagan MN.       Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota sign. outside of headquarters.

The city’s growth boomed in the 1950’s when Northwest Airlines and Thomson Reuters established their headquarters there. While Northwest Airlines is no longer there, it still is home to Thomson Reuters and Blue Cross Blue Shield .

Eagan011

Paragon Outlets Twin Cities at Eagan is the ultimate place for shoppers to get deals for a steal. This 400,000 square foot open air mall offers shoppers over 100 premium stores such as Coach, Michael Kors, Saks 5th Avenue, Nike, Swarvoski, Adidas and more!

Cascade Bay Waterpark in Eagan, MN.

Besides shopping, Eagan offers a variety of attractions such as The Blast, a space themed soft-play area for young children, and Cascade Bay, Minnesota’s largest outdoor municipal water park.

Jensen's Food and Cocktails Supper Club

If hunger strikes, the dining options in this area range far and wide. From family-friendly restaurants, Fitz’s Bar and Grill (adjacent to cedarview lanes), and ethnic choices. Or choose from the ample selection of upscale restaurants and supper clubs like Jensen’s Food and Cocktails or Doolittle’s Woodfire Grill.

Lebanon Hills Regional Park

The city has many inviting parks and nature preserves including Lebanon Hills Regional Park. There visitors can grill out with friends or hike along wooded trails (which were voted by City Pages “Best Hike 2013”). On the other hand, maybe finding a quite spot to unwind and enjoy the clear lake and sandy shores at Schulze Beach are more your speed. Outdoor amphitheater at Caponi Art Park.

Art lovers will appreciate the vibrant art scene Eagan has to offer. One major feature is Caponi Art Park, an outdoor sculpture garden that boasts one of the largest outdoor amphitheaters in the area. Throughout the year, visitors can enjoy performances and events in this natural setting.

Patrick Eagan Park sign

Nestled on the edge of the Patrick Eagan Park lies another blending of art and nature: the Eagan Art House. As part of Eagan’s Parks and Recreation, it is a great resource and learning facility for those who have any sort of interest in art. The center offers classes, workshops and special events for those of all ages and ability levels. The golfers at Lost Spurs Golf course in Eagan, MN.

Golfers will appreciate Eagan’s rolling hills as they are perfectly suited for the Lost Spur golf course. This 9 hole golf course presents golfers with an array of challenging shots while allowing them to marvel at the spectacular views the course offers.

Luxury house in Eagan

Construction in a new housing development in Eagan, MN.

Residents of Eagan can also take pride in the fact that Eagan has been featured five times on Money magazine’s Best Places to Live, edging out nearby Woodbury for the #11 spot this year. Townhomes, condos, residential and commercial properties are booming in development and it’s no surprise why. With Minneapolis just a quick 30-minute drive or bus ride away, the option of a trip to the big city is always there, but with a vast selection of retail, dining, it is no wonder that we are enamored with Eagan, and we bet you will be too.

 Neighborhood Resources

Neighborhood Schools

Faith Communities

Faithful Shepard Catholic School Advent United Methodist Church
Independent School District 191 All Saints Lutheran Church
Independent School District 196 Chapel Hill Baptist Church
Independent School District 197 Church of Christ at Eagan
Living Word Academy Living Word Lutheran Church
Trinity Lone Oak Lutheran School Oak Hills Church
Trinity at River Ridge South Oaks Community Church
St. John Neumann Church
St. Thomas Becket Church
Woodcrest Church

Parks

Restaurants

Blackhawk Park Andiamo
Cedar Pond Park Ansari’s Mediterranean Grill & Lounge
Central Park Bittersweet Gluten Free Bakery
Evergreen Park Casper’s Cherokee
Highview Park The Mason Jar
Lakeside Park Doolittle’s Woodfire Grill
Lebanon Hills Regional Park El Parian Mexican Restaurant
Moonshine Park Fitz’s Bar and Grill
Ridge Cliff Park Hoban Korean Restaurant
Schwanz Lake Park Jensen’s Supper Club
Slater Acres Park Junior’s Cafe & Grill
Kyoto Sushi and Hibachi
Ze’s Diner