Tag Archives: Holidays

5 Winter Activities to do in Minnesota

Skiing, ice-skating, and snowboarding are all famous activities to do in the winter. But, what else is there to do? Minnesota can be really cold during the winter, (understatement of the year?) and it’s normal to think that there’s not much to do other than sit around and read books. So, for those eager to go out and explore snowy Minnesota here’s a compiled list of 5 Winter Activities to do In Minnesota.

1. Visit the Holidazzle Village

Located in Downtown Minneapolis the Holidazzle starts off on November 28th with a parade, fireworks, lights, and a whole lot of singing. Although the parade only happens, to open up the festivities, the celebration continues. Take a stroll down Nicolette Avenue with family and friends, and you will come across the Holidazzle Village. It’s free of charge, and takes place from November 28th to December 21st. We bet we’ll be “dazzled”!

2. Go to Bentleyville,”Tour of Lights”

A successful and annual event in Duluth, MN. Be ready to be really cold!! Due to the Lake Effect Duluth is always a bit chillier than the Twin Cities.

If you decide to go to Bentleyville (which we totally recommend you do), put on extra layers and be ready to have fun! It takes about an hour to go through all the tour. But, people usually take up more time to stop for hot cocoa and cookies served throughout the tour. There is also the option of getting marshmallows, which you can enjoy over a fire with some hot cider. However, don’t take our word for it! Go, and let us know what you think!

3. Snowmobiling

After doing some research on where to do this, we came up that Ely, MN was one of the best places to go snowmobiling in. The trails seem to be famous, and one of them cross over three state forests! There are several options as to how long you can decide to go. For example, the 170 mile Taconite Trail, or the 80 mile Tomahawk Trail, both of them providing amazing scenic routes. There are other several options to choose from, of course, but those two seem to be the most famous ones.

4. Skijoring and Dog Sledding

What is Skijoring you ask? Well, if you’ve ski or dog sled before, you probably already have a good idea. Basically, Skijoring is skiing while you have a dog pull on you. Almost like a mix of dog sledding and skiing, if you will. There are six different parks at which you can do this at. All of them are under the link provided by the Three Rivers Park District. All six of them have different trails, and distances you can choose from.

5. Participate in the Saint Paul Winter Carnaval

This Carnival takes on a little later in the year. Starting off on January 22nd and resuming on February 1st, the Carnival is filled with family-fun, day-to-day activities. Mostly all taking place in Rice Park, you can expect a day with up to 23 different events all going on throughout the day. So, you can pick and choose whichever you want to go to!

The story behind the St. Paul Winter Carnival stars with a New York journalist describing St.Paul as “another Siberia, unfit for human habitation” during winter. Offended by the journalist’s remark, the Saint Paul Chamber of Commerce decided to prove otherwise, thus the Saint Paul Winter Carnival.

So, dear reader that’s where we end our post. Have you done or are thinking about doing any of these activities? Let us know, and until next time!

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

125 Fun Things to Do in Minnesota this June

Festival, State Fair, Large Crowd

Festivals, concerts, and fairs – oh my! From ArtSoup to the Zumbrota Covered Bridge Music & Arts Festival, there’s an event for everyone happening this month. Offering tons of food, music, and good old-fashioned fun, here are some of June’s must-do events in Minnesota (and one in Wisconsin that’s definitely worth the trip).

The events are listed in chronological order. Click the links for more info.

5/30 – 6/7 Lake Fest Forest Lake
5/31 – 6/7 Hawley Rodeo Fest Hawley
5/31 – 6/7 I Love Burnsville Week Burnsville
6/1 Grand Old Day 2014 St. Paul
6/5 – 6/8 Tower Days Spring Lake Park
6/6 – 6/8 Bullhead Days Waterville
6/6 – 6/8 Cyrus Days Cyrus
6/6 Dairy Day Celebration Hutchinson
6/6 – 6/8 Edina Art Fair Edina
6/6 – 6/8 Father Hennepin Festival Champlin
6/6 – 6/7 Nisswa-Stamman Scandinavian Folk Festival Nisswa
6/6 – 6/8 Pine Island Cheese Festival Pine Island
6/6 – 6/20 Spring Art Expo Cook
6/6 Twin Cities Electric Run St. Paul
6/7 – 6/8 Annual Fountain Trail Days Fountain
6/7 Art in the Hollow Swede Hollow Park, St. Paul
6/7 St. Paul Summer Beerfest St. Paul
6/7 Explore your Parks Day Lake Elmo
6/7 Frazee Crazy Daze Frazee
6/7 Greyfest 2014 Shoreview
6/7 – 6/8 June Bloom Wine Event Great River Road
6/7 OtterJam 2014 Ottertail
6/7 Rhubarb Festival Lanesboro
6/7 St. Anthony Park Arts Festival St. Paul
6/8 – 6/15 Buffalo Days Buffalo
6/8 Lyn Lake Street Festival Minneapolis
6/9 – 6/15 Hutchinson Jaycee Water Carnival Hutchinson
6/10 – 6/15 2014 Wizard of Oz Festival Grand Rapids
6/11 – 6/15 Albertville Friendly City Days Albertville
6/11 Friends of Ramsey Park Jamboree Redwood Falls
6/11 – 6/14 Kick’n Up Kountry Music Festival Karlstad
6/11 – 6/16 Steamboat Days Winona Winona
6/12 – 8/3 2014 Minnesota Biennial St. Paul
6/12 – 6/15 50th Annual Tater Daze Brooklyn Park
6/12 – 6/15 Barnum Spring Fever Days Barnum
6/12 – 6/15 Mapleton Town & Country Days Mapleton
6/12 – 6/15 Parktacular Celebration St. Louis Park
6/13 – 6/15 Cuyuna Lakes Mountain Bike Festival Crosby
6/13 – 6/18 Foley Fun Days Foley
6/13 – 6/15 Gammel Dag Fest Peterson
6/13 – 6/14 Interlaken Heritage Days Fairmont
6/13 – 6/14 Lake Crystal Duck Days Celebration Lake Crystal
6/13 – 6/15 Onamia Days Onamia
6/13 – 6/14 Fergus Falls Summer Fest Fergus Falls
6/13 – 6/14 Wannigan Days Taylor Falls
6/13 – 6/14 Winstock Festival Winsted
6/14 3rd Annual Northeast Ride Northeast Minneapolis
6/14 – 6/15 Art on the Lake Excelsior
6/14 Bigfork Wilderness Days Bigfork
6/14 Finnish-American Summer Festival Embarrass
6/14 Japanese Garden Festival Bloomington
6/14 Juneteenth Minneapolis
6/14 Midsommar Celebration Minneapolis
6/14 National Get Outdoors Day Multiple locations
6/14 Northern Spark Minneapolis
6/14 – 6/22 Perham Turtle Fest Perham
6/14 – 6/15 Solstice Outdoor Music Festival Mankato
6/14 – 6/15 Stone Arch Bridge Festival Minneapolis
6/14 Twin Cities World Refugee Day St. Paul
6/15 Chocolate, Shakespeare, & Champagne Winona
6/15 Falls Festival on Foot Little Falls
6/15 Lanesboro Art in the Park Lanesboro
6/17 – 6/21 Farmington Dew Days Farmington
6/17 Fourth Summer Food Fest Blaine
6/17 – 6/22 Willmar Fest Willmar
6/18 – 6/19 Faribault Heritage Celebration Faribault
6/18 – 6/22 Rockin’ Rogers Days Rogers
6/19 – 6/22 Cottage Grove Strawberry Fest Cottage Grove
6/19 – 6/22 Dan Patch Days Savage
6/19 – 6/22 Howard Lake Good Neighbor Days Howard Lake
6/19 – 6/22 Hennepin County Fair Corcoran
6/19 – 6/21 June Jubilee Family Fun Day Wadena
6/19 – 7/4 Manitou Days White Bear Lake
6/19 – 6/22 Zumbrota Covered Bridge Music & Arts Festival Zumbrota
6/20 – 6/22 150th Sesquicentennial Celebration of Redwood Falls Redwood Falls
6/20 – 6/22 Prairie Fest Long Prairie
6/20 Redwood Falls Community Parade Redwood Falls
6/20 – 6/29 Rochesterfest Rochester
6/20 – 6/21 Roseau Scandinavian Festival Roseau
6/20 – 6/22 Sherburn Holiday Festival Sherburn
6/21 3rd Annual Summer Party in New Ulm New Ulm
6/21 50th & Bryant Street Fest Minneapolis
6/21 – 6/22 Afton Strawberry Fest Afton
6/21 Freedom Days of Becker Becker
6/21 – 6/22 GermanFest St. Paul
6/21 – 6/22 Rock the Garden Minneapolis
6/21 Solstice Music and Arts Fair Clearwater
6/21 Walk Around the World International Festival Rochester
6/23 – 6/28 Plein Air Art and Music Festival Red Wing
6/25 – 6/29 58th Annual Columbia Heights Jamboree Columbia Heights
6/25 – 6/28 Norman County Fair Ada
6/25 – 6/29 Summerfest Milwaukee, WI
6/26 – 6/29 Cass County Fair Pine River
6/26 Walker Crazy Days Walker
6/26 – 6/29 Dawson Riverfest Dawson
6/26 – 6/28 Earle Brown Days Brooklyn Center
6/26 – 6/29 Fridley ’49er Days Festival Fridley
6/26 – 6/28 Jazz Festival St. Paul
6/26 – 6/29 Riverside Days Springfield
6/26 – 6/30 Rosefest Roseville
6/26 – 6/28 Watertower Festival Pipestone
6/27 – 6/29 Blaine Festival Blaine
6/27 – 6/29 Browerville Heritage Days Browerville
6/27 – 6/28 Ethnic Dance Theatre: 40th Anniversary Minneapolis
6/27 – 6/29 Kaposia Days St. Paul
6/27 – 6/29 Meadowfest 2014 Grand Meadow
6/27 – 6/28 Melrose Riverfest Melrose
6/27 – 6/28 Midwest Viking Festival and Scandinavian Hjemkomst Festival Moorhead
6/27 – 6/29 Pine River Summerfest Pine River
6/27 – 6/29 Red Lake County Fair Oklee
6/27 Special Olympics Minnesota Summer Games 5k Oak Park Heights
6/28 ArtSoup in Elk River Elk River
6/28 Burwell Art Fair Minnetonka
6/28 Burwell House Festival Minnetonka
6/28 – 6/29 Eagan Art Festival Eagan
6/28 – 7/4 Freedom Days in Apple Valley Apple Valley
6/28 – 6/30 Paul Bunyan Days Akeley
6/28 Pet-A-Palooza St. Paul
6/28 St. Boni Spass-Tagen Fun Days St. Bonifacius
6/28 – 6/29 Twin Cities Pride Festival Loring Park, Minneapolis
6/28 – 6/29 Wayzata Art Experience Wayzata
6/29 MN Food Truck Fair Uptown Minneapolis
6/29 Svenskarnas Dag Minnehaha Park
6/29 Vikingland Band Festival Alexandria
6/30 – 7/6 Military Family Week at the Minnesota Zoo Apple Valley