Photo from Minneapolis Parks Facebook page
Much to the delight of local parents everywhere, who have compared parenting in a sub-zero climate to "preparing chimps for a space shuttle mission that only lasts 40 seconds," warmer weather is cruising into the Twin Cities this holiday weekend. Here are seven ways to get outside (or at least out of the house) with your brood.
Winter Snowshoe Hike and Bonfire @ Minnehaha Falls Pavilion
Friday 5 – 7 p.m.
Snowshoe along a moonlit Minnehaha Creek trail to the Mississippi River, and then return for marshmallow toasting. Snowshoes are provided – just remember to BYOB (bring your own boots). This one’s for kids 5 years and older. It’s $7 per person.
Hockey Day Minnesota @ Holman Field
Friday 6-10 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.
It’s our quintessential sport played on a sheet of ice on the airfield. We’re especially looking forward to the St. Paul Police Department duking it out with the St. Paul Fire Department on Friday night. Admission is $5 to $25, and free for kids ages 10 and younger.
Arctic Fever @ Excelsior, Shorewood, and Tonka Bay
Saturday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
There will be horse-drawn wagon rides, ice skating, geocaching, dog sled rides, s’mores, hot cocoa, and of course, llamas. Check the schedule to see what’s happening where. Free.
Lake Harriet Winter Kite Festival @ Lake Harriet Bandshell
Saturday noon – 4 p.m.
Come for the kite flying (pictured above) and stay for the ice fishing, wagon rides, snowshoeing, and marshmallow toasting. Bring your own kite or buy an inexpensive one at the lake. Admission is free.
Weekend Family Fun @ Minnesota Landscape Arboretum
Saturday and Sunday, noon – 4 p.m.
You guys: Arboretum admission is free every day in January! On the weekends, take your family for a nature walk along the still-gorgeous trails, walk over to the Learning Center for some kid-focused fun, and then head to the Great Hall to check out a colossal tropical tree made entirely of orchids.
Target Free Third Sunday @ Minnesota Children’s Museum
Sunday 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
If you’re ready for an indoor adventure, send the children gallivanting around the galleries for free. Bonus: It’s also opening weekend for the museum’s multisensory Creativity Jam exhibit, which means your kids will be among the first to touch everything in there. (From one germ-averse parent to another: Post-exhibit hand washing is still recommended.)
Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration @ Central Gym
Monday 3 – 4:30 p.m.
Celebrate MLK Day with a series of choral, music, and dance performances, a guest speaker, and a traditional soul food dinner. It’s free.