A few days ago I took my husband and three-year-old to the Ice Castle currently gracing Eden Prairie’s Miller Park. We explored ice tunnels and mazes, peered through the blue icicle-walls, and generally got our Frozen on. Here’s what to know before you go.
Prepay online. Within the time we arrived (12 p.m.) and the time our friends arrived 15 minutes later, the cash and credit card lines had doubled, while people in the prepaid line had a jaunty wait time of five minutes or less. Our friends waited half an hour in line before their kid decided it was time to call it quits and threw a fit. Buy in advance and everyone’s happier.
Get the hand stamp. Just like Valleyfair, you can ask the ticket salesperson to stamp your hand if you want to come back later on the same day. At night, the castle is lit from the inside with LED lights. Take the kids for an after-dinner outing, or take yourselves for a pretty date night excursion.
Leave the stroller at home. There were a lot of strollers, and most of them seemed to be accompanied by frustrated parents, because those things just aren’t designed to navigate snowy trails with ease. It’s technically possible, but unless you have one of those all-terrain models, it’s probably best to leave it in the car.
It’s only kind of like Frozen. It’s tall but not soaring. And as my daughter pointed out, there are no snowflake designs on the floor. But a real-life Anna and Elsa were on hand to pose for pictures (they appear on weekends), and the Frozen soundtrack was playing in the background. It’s pretty big, too, with several areas, a running waterfall, a maze, tunnels, and walkways. Good for at least an hour of gallivanting, and quite possibly more.
There are kid-sized tunnels and slides that lead through the icy walls to other parts of the castle. Adults can’t really fit through them, so scope out where they end before you turn the children loose.
Bring your camera. Because you are from Minnesota and when it is January, you and the children play inside castles made of ice and have the awesome photos to prove it.
Eden Prairie Ice Castle, Miller Park, 17970 East Miller Pkwy., Eden Prairie, icecastles.com/ep