The Super Bowl Bucket List
While we love having the angular gem of U.S. Bank Stadium on our skyline, there is so much more to do in Minneapolis and St. Paul than going to the Big Game. Our chefs are James Beard Award winners, our music clubs are shaped by Prince and our arts scene is diversity come to life across dozens of venues. Still, to really get the taste of the Twin Cities, you have to have a mix of the world renowned and the locally loved. That could mean sitting front row at the Orpheum Theatre for a touring Broadway show or grabbing a bar stool at Mickey’s Diner, our iconic 24/7 streetcar. It could be going all-out on a shopping spree at Mall of America or lacing up a pair of skates and enjoying our 10,000 frozen lakes. Super Bowl LII may have brought you here, but once you go through our bucket list, you might just find you want to stay a little longer … or come back again.
#1 - Prince's Home
Don purple and visit Chanhassen’s Paisley Park, once Prince’s Minneapolis residence and recording studio, now a museum devoted to his legacy.
#2 - Shop Our Enormous Mall (And Pay No Sales Tax on Clothes and Shoes!)
Redefine your idea of a mall at the largest retail and entertainment destination in North America. Bloomington’s Mall of America is home to the largest indoor amusement park in the world, an aquarium and four floors of entertainment; dining; and more than 520 boutiques, international brands and specialty stores.
#3 - Visit Our (Free!) Art Museum
Span millennia, continents and cultures at the Minneapolis Institute of Art—all for free. Some of our favorite longstanding pieces are the 18th-century carved jade mountain, olive trees by Vincent van Gogh and the 2002 sculpture “Your Dog” by Nara Yoshitomo.
#4 - Track Down All the Snoopy Statues
Spot as many Charles Schulz-inspired “Peanuts” statues as you can around the metro. Here’s a start: The first one many out-of-state folks might see is in MSP International Airport.
#5 - Catch a Live Theater Show
Take your family to see the musical “The Wiz,” put on by our award-winning Children’s Theatre Co. in collaboration with Penumbra Theatre, one of three full-season, African American professional theaters in the nation. Catch “Sister Act” at Chanhassen Dinner Theatres or stick around a few more days after the Super Bowl for more shows from the Orpheum Theatre and the Guthrie Theater.
#6 - Spend Some Time at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum
Go to Chaska’s Minnesota Landscape Arboretum for snowshoeing and cross country skiing outdoors plus art galleries and a tropical conservatory indoors.
#7 - Giant Spoon and Cherry
Snap the ultimate selfie by Walker Art Center’s Spoonbridge and Cherry.
#8 - Explore the Cities' Winter Wonderlands
Walk under the lights of St. Paul’s Rice Park and catch The Great Northern festival activities all around the metro. Venture back to southeast Minneapolis for the frozen 53-foot waterfall in Minnehaha Regional Park, a much different sort of ice sculpture.
#9 - Go Ice Skating
You aren’t a true Minnesotan until you strap on skates and go outside. Edina’s Centennial Lakes is 10 acres of picturesque urban lake skating inside a 24-acre park complete with warming hut and hot cocoa. Too warm to be on the lake? Try the free rink by the historic Landmark Center in St. Paul.
#10 - Hang Out on Lake Harriett
#11 - Hell’s Kitchen & Angel Food
Who knew hell had a 35-foot Bloody Mary Bar? If the red and black digs of Minneapolis’ Hell’s Kitchen don’t hit your fancy several flights of stairs below Ninth Street in Minneapolis, visit their neighboring Angel Food Bakery for some divine doughnuts, cupcakes, scones and more.
#12 - A Cocktail in the Sky
Make your way up to the 30th floor of the historic Foshay Tower, one of the tallest buildings in Minneapolis, for a museum and a 360-degree view of the city skyline. On your way down, stop by the 27th floor for an amazing craft cocktail at the Prohibition Bar.
#13 - Check out a Show at First Avenue
See the stars of Prince, R.E.M., Metallica and others on the outside of Minneapolis’ First Avenue before you head in for a concert in their main room.
#14 - Cheese-stuffed Hamburgers
Compare Juicy Lucy burgers at Matt’s Bar and the 5-8 Club—even if you can’t decide which one invented the double-patty meets molten cheesy goodness, it’s worth the investigation.
#15 - Stop in for a Bite at Mickey’s Dining Car
It may be frosty outside, but Mickey’s Dining Car in St. Paul will warm you up with a cup o’ joe and some hearty American food. You’ll be sure to recognize its Art Deco booths from about a dozen blockbuster movies, including “The Mighty Ducks.”
#16 - Tour Historical Architecture
#17 - Carriage Ride along the Mississippi
Bundle up in a horse-drawn carriage with The Hitching Co. and go down the Minneapolis riverfront for a tour perfect for romantics, history lovers, first-time visitors and more.
#18 - Stroll along the River
Cross the mighty Mississippi on the pedestrian Stone Arch Bridge and learn more about Minneapolis’ flour milling heritage from the Mill City Museum.
#19 - Warm Up with Some Zoo Animals
If you’re worried the Minnesota Zoo’s wolves and sea otters are laughing at your puffy coat as they play in the snow, head inside to the 80-degree Tropics Trail where the toucans, red pandas, lemurs and flamingos are more sympathetic to the weather in Apple Valley.
#20 - Cheer on a Minnesota Team
Switch up sports and attend a Minnesota Timberwolves in the newly remodeled Target Center or see why we’re the “State of Hockey” at a Minnesota Wild game.
#21 - Pop Over to Hudson, Wisconsin
Hot air balloons dot the horizon at the Hudson Hot Air Affair Jan. 26-28, just across the St. Croix River in Hudson, Wisconsin. Parades, fireworks, and a craft fair and marketplace help round out the weekend. Insider tip—make sure to catch the Moon Glow event to see the night sky lit up with glowing balloons.
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