Free Things To Do in Minneapolis

There are a ton of free or next to free things to do in Minneapolis and the Twin Cities area. Come with us as we report on what we find in Minneapolis.


Major League Baseball’s 85th All-Star Game and T-Mobile All-Star FanFest


Wine Tasting

Want to taste some wine..for FREE?! Awesome, right? Head on down to The Cellars Wine and Spirits of Roseville on December 27th and 7pm for a wonderful night of wine tasting all for free.


Intermedia Arts

With winter well underway, there is still no reason to be stuck indoors, get your creative juices flowing! Intermedia Arts, located on Lyndale Ave South, Minneapolis, has endless activities for kids/adults of all ages. Whether you are in to ping pong, painting or acting and dancing, etc. they have a program for you. Best part of Intermedia Arts is that they offer you this all for FREE!



Winter Skate

If you’re looking to scratch your skating itch, (especially with the NHL season lockout) head to Wells Fargo Winter Skate in downtown St. Paul. Located just steps away for the Xcel Energy Center, nestled in quaint Rice Park among the historic St. Paul skyscrapers, the rink is a perfect spot for a date. Gaze at the holiday lights and the beautiful Christmas tree while sipping hot cocoa.


Macy’s 8th Floor

“Nothing will put you more in the Christmas spirit than a trip to Santaland! In this enchanted holiday wonderland, you can tell Santa what you would like for Christmas and get your picture taken with him. Plus, enjoy homemade gingerbread cookies, sweets and beverages at Mrs. Claus’ Bakery and then visit the Toy Shop to watch the annual animated display “A Day in the Life of an Elf,” a charming story about Santa’s elves preparing for Christmas. Don’t forget to get your free holiday download, courtesy of Mannheim Steamroller, after your visit.” ~Macys

Admission is FREE!
Macy’s Downtown Minneapolis
Saturday, November 17 – Monday, December 24
8th Floor Auditorium



Climb for free

Cold weather keeping you inside? Are you not able to do your normal outdoor exercise? Well, Midwest Mountaineering is the place for you.
Climb anytime in Midwest Mountaineerings fantastic and FREE bouldering cave!  “It’s huge, contains lots of challenging bouldering problems, and is built over a padded floor.”
I will definitely be checking this out, will you?




No Coast Craft-O-Rama

“The No Coast Craft-o-Rama is a craft event that began in December 2005 as a way to feature a variety of designers, artists, crafters and other talented creators of unique handmade goods. It’s coming up in 2012 on Friday, December 7 (3 p.m. to 8 p.m.) and Saturday, December 8 (9 a.m. to 5 p.m.) at the Midtown Global Exchange building. Be sure to come by and see some of the finest artisans and crafters around.”



Art Shanty Projects

Looking for something unique and FREE to do this winter? We have just the thing for you! The “Art Shanty Project is an artist driven temporary community exploring the ways in which relatively unregulated public spaces can be used as new and challenging artistic environments to expand notions of what art can be.”

This cool experience allows you to walk around on a frozen lake and check out a different version of art. Art can be anything that you want it to be and the Art Shanty Projects proves just that! Bundle up for this one, it might get cold.



Go to The Christian Community Fair!

It is on November 10th from 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. at the Minneapolis Convention Center. It is a free, family-friendly event which has live music, over one dozen inflatables, an enormous petting zoo, 200+ vendors and more! Check out our website at


La Danse Fatale

La Danse Fatale is a great show filled with talented dancers that you will be able to watch for hours on end. This FREE show starts at 5:30 on August 19th. The show is held at Lake Harriet Bandshell in Minneapolis.

“Live performance is always a thrill. It’s hard to know which is more fun – being a child and seeing it all for the first time or being the adult who gets to show and explain everything to a child. Join us in February to experience our new work –Journey of a Pure Soul and a La Danse Fatale favorite,-A Woman’s Right. Bring the whole family and begin your exploration of the world of ballet.”


Bugs on the Prairie

What better way to end the summer than a fun family outdoor activity? Bugs on the Prairie is a free even that teaches the best ways to  discover insects that live on the prairie. Kids will just love this unique excursion!

It is being held at Carl Kroening Interpretive Center from 1-3 on August 19th.


Summer on the Plaza

This Friday, August 17th at 12 pm, Transitive Nightfall will be playing a FREE hour-long outdoor concert (weather permitting) on the north plaza of the Hennepin County Government Center, by the fountain.

Transitive Nightfall is “A band of middle-aged ex-hippies who make music for fun.” Its a good time and the band covers tons of different bands and songs.


Yoga in the Park

Father Hennepin Bluffs Park  offers direct access to footpaths and bridges that display a unique view of the Mississippi River Gorge, the downtown skyline and the Stone Arch Bridge. The eight acre park is located at the corner of Main St. SE and 6th Ave. SE.” It is a beautiful, relaxing park so what better place to go do FREE yoga offered by CorePower Yoga instructors! Come out on Sunday, August 19th & 26th at 10 am and get your yoga on.

Lake Calhoun Event

If you are looking for something different than the same old weekend activities, head on over to Lake Calhoun this weekend, August 18th from 9-4 for the Key Log Rolling Open.

“Log rolling is an exciting sparring sport that is growing in popularity in urban and suburban areas. The 2012 Key Log Rolling open at Lake Calhoun is an opportunity for city dwellers to see this thrilling sport, ‘close up’…with the Minneapolis skyline in the  background.”


Guerilla by Design

If you love furniture and design, Guerrilla by Design is the place that you will want to be this Friday (August 10th).This is a free event and open to the public.

I am so excited to go and check out all the unique and versatile pieces that this show is going to offer. Whether you are in search for new furniture or not, attend and get ideas or just enjoy the artistic, beautiful design of these pieces made from Minneapolis designers!

“The Guerilla Designers’ goal is to highlight the rich design culture present in Minneapolis/St. Paul, and prove great design doesn’t just happen in London, New York, and Milan. Guerilla Designers’ mission: Take furniture design out of the gallery and put it into the context of a living public space making it less intimidating, and accessible to everyone.”


Alamo Flea Market

“The Alamo Flea market has become well known for being a fabulous neighborhood gathering where you can find just about anything. Here vendors will have a multitude of different kinds of jewelry, vintage bikes, postcards, antiques, vintage clothes, tools, golf, vintage toys, cosmetics, ephemera, furniture, CD’s, videos, vintage framed art …you name it!  Don’t forget to stop in and see what’s new at Antiquified! Enjoy treasure hunting at the Alamo Flea Market and Antiquified August 18th.”
Hours: 10:00 – 5:00
1519 Central Ave NE, Mpls 55413
Call 612-789-1989


Twin Cities Polish Festival

The Twin Cities Polish Festival is a huge, FREE celebration of Polish culture and heritage in the Twin Cities. You will be immersed in everything Polish, from the food to the entertainment and activities! “Bring a blanket, take a seat on the lawn along the Old Main Street in Minneapolis, visit with friends, watch outstanding musical and dance entertainment, enjoy traditional foods and beverages, and just simply have fun!”

The Festival is held on August 11-12 at St Anthony Main Partnership in Minneapolis.


Irish Fair of Minnesota

The Irish Fair of Minnesota is the nation’s largest free celebration of Irish culture! The fair is held from Friday, August 10 to Sunday, August 12 in Saint Paul, MN at beautiful Harriet Island. The fair is held once a year and offers attendees an opportunity to celebrate authentic Irish Heritage through a multitude of activities. “Headline events include the music of Gaelic Storm and The Young Dubliners; dance performances by the Atlantic Steps.”

“Jump start your Irish Fair Weekend Thursday night August 9th, from 7p to 10p inside the Pub Tent!!!”



Music in Mears

Music in Mears was started in 2004 with only 4 shows but continues to grow and offer great shows featuring local bands. “Music in Mears also features various food truck vendors on rotations and Chow Hound is back with his hot dog magic!”
Join the fun every Thursday night from 6-9pm for a free outdoor concert.


The Comedy Corner Underground

Each week (at The Comedy Corner) three or four dozen comics fight for one of the 20 spots on the roster for “open mic night”, which usually means audiences can expect lots of variety in a show featuring some of the top acts and emerging talent in the Twin Cities. Best part…it’s FREE!

“The show typically runs 90-100 minutes and features 15-20 local and national performers doing short 3-5 minute sets. The show is frequently PACKED, so get here early to get a table! We do have food and alcohol service in the comedy room, and bottomless bowls of peanuts/popcorn!”


Bark at Art

Galleries and museums are rarely welcoming to pets, but during the opening party for “Bark at Art,” pups and their owners will be invited to take in a little culture in an animal-friendly environment. The show will feature limited-edition posters from local and national artists who are inspired by their canine friends. Posters will be for sale, and unopened bags of pet food and kitty litter, as well as cash donations, will also be collected at the event, which serves as a benefit party for Pet Project of MN. The organization helps provide food, services, and care for pets when their owners are struggling financially. There will be an opening reception from 7 to 10 p.m. Friday, August 3. (Artwork by Sid Tincher)


Free Art Gallery

Altered Esthetics is a non-profit community-based art gallery located in the Northeast Minneapolis Arts District.”We believe artists represent a voice of society and our mission is to support and expand a vibrant arts community.” It is a great, free art gallery to check out whether you are just getting into the arts or if you are an art enthusiast that loves to see unique pieces.

For the past six years, Altered Esthetics have stayed true to their mission by hosting over 50 compelling group exhibitions, showing the work of over 1,000 local and international artists. Altered Esthetics is also an active part of Art-A-Whirl, which helps to draw over 20,000 people into the Northeast Minneapolis Arts District every year.

“In 2007, Altered Esthetics began a curatorial internship program, giving artists, students and community members hands on experience in the arts. In 2008 a Gallery Director internship program was added, providing hands-on experience in grantsmanship, fundraising as well as the other components of running a nonprofit organization.”

Minnesota Adventure Pass

The Museum Adventure Pass is a free pass from public libraries in Minneapolis, St. Paul and the Metro Area. Each pass gives the holder up to two free admissions to a museum or attraction.

Around twenty museums, galleries, zoos and historic sites in Minneapolis and St. Paul are offer free admissions every year. The organizations in the scheme change every September.

Library card holders can visit one of the hundreds of libraries in the Twin Cities, and check out a free Museum Adventure Pass.

Each Museum Adventure Pass is valid for one week. Only one pass can be checked out at a time, but there’s no overall limit to how many can be checked out – you can go to all twenty – or how many times a pass for a location can be checked out. So, you can visit destinations several times.

Each library has a limited number of passes for each museum, and the most popular ones go quickly, especially during the summer. Visit the library mid-week for the best chance of getting a popular pass, like for the Minnesota Zoo.

It’s really, truly free, and there’s no catch. The free admissions are donated by the museums and attractions.”


Acme Comedy Club

If it’s laughs that you’re looking for, the Acme Comedy Club is the place where you’ll find them!

The Acme Comedy Club was the very first comedy club I had ever been to and I loved it! I had never laughed so hard in such a short period of time, it was great.

The theater seats around 290 but has a small intimate feel which just enhances the experience. There are shows six nights a week, with a national headliner performing from Tuesday to Saturday and open mic night on Monday. Acme also has a full kitchen and bar; food and drink are available throughout each show.

You are probably wondering why this is listed under “free things to do in Minneapolis” well, on Monday nights for the “open mic night”, it is FREE to get in, how exciting! It doesn’t stop there either. If you sign up for “birthday blast” you and 5 other guest will get free tickets to any show Tuesday-Thursday during your birthday month. I know I can’t wait for my birthday month so I can go have a great time with friends, hear some great comedy and do it all for FREE!



Lake Hiawatha Neighborhood Festival

Lake Hiawatha Neighborhood Festival is a free event held on Wednesday, August 1st at Hiawatha Park in Minneapolis. There will be lots of games and activities for all ages! Activities include:  canoe and pony rides, sandcastle building contest, inflatable water slide, talent contest and more! The festival starts at 5:00 pm and goes till 8:00 pm.




Uptown Art Fair

Uptown Art Fair is one of the top ten art fairs in the country, and the largest of three happening on this weekend.” The fair features many professional works of art ranging from limited editions to one-of-a-kind gems in each of 12 media including sculpture, painting, ceramics, jewelry, mixed media, and more.   This year there will be over 350 artists from around the world selling unique and limited edition items at venues near Lake Street and Hennepin Avenue intersection in Uptown Minneapolis.


Minnehaha Falls

“Overlooking the Mississippi River, Minnehaha Falls is one of Minneapolis’ oldest and most popular parks, attracting over 850,000 thousand visitors annually.

Located at the intersection of Hiawatha Avenue and Minnehaha Parkway, the 193-acre park features a 53-foot waterfall, limestone bluffs and river overlooks. The park contains oak, elm, silver maple, basswood, hackberry and cottonwood trees, as well as native and prairie woodland wild flowers.”

Free Fun for Kids in Minneapolis

Love the summer but not the 24/7 time with the kiddos? Well, we have some super fun things to do with your kids to get you all out of the house and experiencing the great city of Minneapolis. Another plus, the kids will be so tired by the end of the day, they will sleep all night long!

Quaking Bog is a pretty cool place to go. A rare habitat located in Theodore Wirth Park, has almost 200 tamaracks that shade the brush moss of the five-acre acid bog. If you are looking for a unique place to hike where you can see and hear dragonflies,frogs and songbirds, you will love Quaking Bog.

A 15- acre garden that is the oldest public wildflower garden in the nation that dates
back to 1907,The Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden is another “must see”. With over 500 plant species and 130 bird species, it is a beautiful place for kids to roam, understand and interact with nature!

Wabasha Street Caves is a very unique place that offers several
different types of historical tours that your children will just love and children under the age of 5 are free! “As seen on the History Channel, Down In History Tours offers a unique alternative to the typical tour. Our theme tours are narrated by knowledgeable and talented guides who make history fascinating and thrilling. Our historically dressed character guides
converse and interact with the group members.Choose us and enjoy our unusual, fun-filled blast from the past tours!”

Mill Ruins Park is located on the west bank of the Mississippi River in downtown Minneapolis and is adjacent to St. Anthony Falls and the Stone Arch Bridge. As the centerpiece of the revitalization of Minneapolis’ historic West Side Milling District, Mill Ruins Park combines an exploration of the history of Minneapolis with present day activities for all ages.” Your kids will love to explore these historical ruins and they will keep them entertained for hours!

Lake Harriet, one of the most beautiful lakes in Minneapolis is home to 67 acres of land and 344 acres of water. This is an amazing place for kids and family!

Lake Harriet offers almost 3 miles of shoreline for bikers, skaters, runners and walkers as well as 2 beaches! There is also a variety of water activities and summer events that will draw you in to this renowed lake.


Minneapolis Sculpture Garden

Always free, the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden features more than 40 works of art and is one of the country’s largest urban sculpture parks! “At the center is a beloved Twin Cities landmark – the playful fountain “Spoonbridge and Cherry.” The Garden is a collaboration between the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board and the Walker Art Center.”




Midtown Greenway Community Bike Festival

Do you like to bike or want to start? Midtown Greenway Community Bike Festival is the place for you!

“Come out and enjoy:
-Free snacks, water bottles, and t-shirts
-Free bike decorations and other fun giveaways
-Children’s Bike Rodeo: a fun and exciting way for kids to learn about bike safety.

One-hour guided bike tour departs at 1 PM.

30-minute guided bike tours leave at 1:15 and 2:30 PM.

Free bike check-up for riders!

No bike? No problem.
Nice Ride MN will provide great green bikes and helmets for riders ages 16 through adult.”



Minneapolis Aquatennial Festival

The Aquatennial is the official civic celebration of the City of Minneapolis. Entering its 73rd year, Minneapolis residents, workers, and tourists have come to love and appreciate all that the City of Minneapolis has to offer during the Aquatennial Festival. We invite you to join in the celebration and enjoy The Best Days of Summer, occurring July 13-21, 2012!”



Twins Cities Veg Fest

Compassionate Action for Animals is hosting the first ever Twin Cities Veg Fest on July 14, 2012. Twin Cities Veg Fest is for anyone and everyone – from vegetarians and vegans to omnivores! If you’ve ever thought about becoming vegetarian or are interested in reducing animal suffering, you’ll love Twin Cities Veg Fest

Learn where your food comes from, how to be a healthy vegetarian or vegan, and why being compassionate benefits everyone. Plus you’ll enjoy tons of free vegan food samples and delicious vegan cuisine.”


Lake harriet Family Pops Concert

For great family fun, head on over to Lake Harriet Bandshell and join the Minnesota Sinfonia. The Minnesota Sinfonia is a professional chamber orchesta playing a light family pops concert in the park. Plan for a perfect summer outing buy bringing a picnic and make it a whole day.

The concert starts at 7:30 pm  on July 13 and addmission is free!

Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Minneapolis Institute of Arts is a great, FREE place to go, especially if you are an art guru. It is home to more than 80,000 works of art that span more than 5,000 years! There is something for everyone to see; whether you are a lover of the ancient Egyptian artifacts or European masterpieces by amazing artists such as Titan and Monet, this museum has
it. “The quality of the collection at the Minneapolis Art Institute rivals any in the country, yet it is small enough to see in a day without getting too overwhelmed”, according to one TripAdvisor user.

Located south of the downtown area, the Minneapolis Institute of Arts is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

(until 9 p.m. on Thursday) and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free.



Best Places for Watching Fireworks

Living in our great city, there are many places to watch fireworks on the 4th and the great part is, its free! If you are looking for the best spots for watching, you’ve come to the right place.

Minneapolis Red White and BOOM offers way more than just fireworks. This two-day festival is loads of fun
including a 5k walk/run, three stages of live music and “Music and a Movie”! The fireworks will begin at 10pm
and offer several veiwing locations.

Powderhorn Park has a big celebration that is put on by the Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board and
like every year will have live music and entertainment starting at 1:00 pm and fireworks
start at 10:00 pm.

Fireworks at Aquila Park is in St. Louis Park, its a great time filled with concessions, vendors and music!
The fesitivities kick off at 7:00 pm and the fireworks start at approximately 10:00 pm.

Don’t forget to bring a sweater or jacket for watching the fireworks, it usually gets a bit chilly when the sun
goes down. We hope you find your perfect 4th of July celebration destination
in the twin cities and enjoy the fun!



Movies and Music In The Park

Monday – Saturday
June 9 through August 25 at Sunset!movie


Monday, June 11, 2012
The Goonies
Lyndale Farmstead Park
3900 Bryant Ave. S
Tuesday, June 12, 2012
Monster Squad
Father Hennepin Bluffs Park
420 Main St. SE
Wednesday, June 13, 2012
Hiawatha School Park
4305 42nd St. E
Thursday, June 14, 2012
Kung Fu Hustle
Victory Memorial Drive
36th Ave. N and Memorial Parkway N
Friday, June 15, 2012
Top Gun
Lake Harriet Bandshell
4135 West Lake Harriet Parkway
Saturday, June 16, 2012
The Ring
Bohemian Flats
2100 W River Pkwy
Friday, June 29, 2012
Kung Fu Theater
Lake Harriet Bandshell
4135 West Lake Harriet Pkwy
Saturday, June 30, 2012
Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows
Morris Park
5531 39th Ave. S
Monday, July 02, 2012
Letters To Juliet
Creekview Park
5001 Humboldt Ave. N
Tuesday, July 03, 2012
Captain America
Nicollet Island Amphitheater
40 Power St.
Thursday, July 05, 2012
The Sandlot
Powderhorn Park
3400 15th Ave. S
Friday, July 06, 2012
Breakfast at Tiffany’s
Lake Harriet Bandshell
4135 West Lake Harriet Pkwy
Saturday, July 07, 2012
Harrison Park
503 Irving Ave. N
Monday, July 09, 2012
Painter Park
620 34th St. W
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
Summer School
Father Hennepin Bluffs Park
420 Main St. SE
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
The Green Lantern
Phelps Park
701 39th St. E
Thursday, July 12, 2012
The Others
Victory Memorial Drive
4499 Victory Memorial Drive
Friday, July 13, 2012
Lake Harriet Bandshell
4135 West Lake Harriet Pkwy
Saturday, July 14, 2012
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows 2
Corcoran Park
3334 20th Ave. S
Monday, July 16, 2012
Brackett Park
2728 39th Ave. S
Tuesday, July 17, 2012
The 36th Chamber of Shaolin
Father Hennepin Bluffs Park
420 Main St. SE
Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Matthews Park
2318 29th Ave. S
Thursday, July 19, 2012
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
Powderhorn Park
3400 15th Ave. S
Friday, July 20, 2012
The Sound of Music
Lake Harriet Bandshell
4135 West Lake Harriet Pkwy
Saturday, July 21, 2012
1991 World Series Game 6 Twins Baseball
Pearl Park
414 Diamond Lake Rd. E
Monday, July 23, 2012
Cars 2
Windom Park NE
2251 Hayes St. NE
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Say Anything
Father Hennepin Bluffs Park
420 Main St. SE
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
The Karate Kid
Armatage Park
2500 57th St. W
Thursday, July 26, 2012
1991 World Series Game 7 Twins Baseball
Victory Memorial Drive
4499 Victory Memorial Drive
Friday, July 27, 2012
The Sixth Sense
Lake Harriet Bandshell
4135 West Lake Harriet Pkwy
Saturday, July 28, 2012
Sibley Park
1900 40th St. E
Monday, July 30, 2012
Totally 80’s
Kenny Park
1328 58th St. W
Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Don’t Knock the Rock
Father Hennepin Bluffs Park
420 Main St. SE
Wednesday, August 01, 2012
Kung Fu Panda 2
Dickman Park
636 2nd St. NE
Thursday, August 02, 2012
Back to the Future
Powderhorn Park
3400 15th Ave. S
Friday, August 03, 2012
So I Married an Axe Murderer
Lake Harriet Bandshell
4135 West Lake Harriet Pkwy
Saturday, August 04, 2012
You’ve Got Mail
Peavey Park
730 22nd St. E
Monday, August 06, 2012
The Adventures of Tin Tin
McRae Park
906 47th St. E
Tuesday, August 07, 2012
Good Meat
Father Hennepin Bluffs Park
420 Main St. SE
Wednesday, August 08, 2012
The Muppets
Jackson Square Playground
2212 Jackson St. NE
Thursday, August 09, 2012
Victory Memorial Drive
4499 Victory Memorial Drive
Friday, August 10, 2012
Army of Darkness
Lake Harriet Bandshell
4135 West Lake Harriet Pkwy
Saturday, August 11, 2012
The Help
Victory Park
4414 Upton Ave. N
Monday, August 13, 2012
The Wizard
Green Central Gym Park
3416 4th Ave. S
Tuesday, August 14, 2012
On The Ice
Father Hennepin Bluffs Park
420 Main St. SE
Wednesday, August 15, 2012
Bryant Square Park
3101 Bryant Ave. S




Free Summer salad and 3 free coupons for your friends to the first 50 customers at Noodles at Calhoun location Thursday 06/07/2012


Open Blues Jam with Moses Oakland
8:00 p.m. every Sun.
@ Famous Dave’s BBQ & Blues Uptown

3001 Hennepin Ave. S.
Minneapolis, MN 55408


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