Kids rule in Minneapolis, where engaging museums, thrilling amusement parks and action-packed shows keep them easily entertained.
DID YOU KNOW?
Minneapolis was named one of the “Best Cities for Families” by MSN and Parenting, in part because there are so many things to do. The area boasts 55 museums, a multitude of golf courses (there are more golfers per capita here than in any other city) and more theater seats per capita than anywhere outside New York. And that’s not all: Nearby and in the city, there are amusement parks, race tracks, casinos and the country’s largest shopping mall. Should we go on?
PLAY ALL DAY
Mall of America, the largest shopping and entertainment complex in the country, engages little people with oodles of fun eateries and attractions, including Nickelodeon Universe indoor amusement park, LEGO Imagination Center and Minnesota Sea Life Aquarium, a stunning walk-through aquarium swimming with sea creatures. The Minnesota Zoo features exotic animals and a six-story IMAX Theatre showing 3-D adventures.
LEARN THE FUN WAY
Bustling with exhibits and events that cater to kids, the Minnesota Children’s Museum in Saint Paul is always a hit. Saint Paul’s Science Museum of Minnesota, known for its popular experiment gallery and awesome dinosaur display, excites the mind and the senses, while the ruins of a flour mill and other milling artifacts at Mill City Museum excite the imagination about Minneapolis history along the Mississippi Riverfront. Explore a grain elevator and see Prince memorabilia inside the Minnesota History Center in Saint Paul, or converse with costumed guides at several living history sites.
MAKE YOUR MOVE
A swirling vortex of summer fun, Valleyfair! Amusement Park boasts speeding roller coasters, dizzying thrill rides and decidedly cool water attractions. Como Town offers kiddy rides and games within a lion’s roar of neighboring Como Zoo and Conservatory. Life moves more slowly on the Mississippi River, where paddlewheelers like the Minneapolis Queen cruise through history and the waterway’s northernmost lock and dam.
ON STAGE, IN ACTION
Imagination takes center stage during productions by renowned children’s theater companies, including In the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre, Stages Theatre Company and the Tony Award-winning Children’s Theatre Company. The Minnesota Orchestra encourages active listening with a family music program, while the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts (Saint Paul) hosts concerts, musicals and events that immerse kids in culture. On the field and on the court, Minnesota Twins baseball and Timberwolves and Lynx basketball excite fans of all ages.
Kids are valued customers at many Minneapolis restaurants, from playful theme eateries to old-fashioned malt shops. Busy families only boost the energy inside Minneapolis-born Buca di Beppo, where guests enjoy platters of family-style Italian fare and a bustling, happy atmosphere. Mall of America feeds kids at the Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. Old Spaghetti Factory’s family friendly pricing and arcade ensure a good time for mom and dad.