Surviving the Cold: Tips and Tricks All Parents Should Know

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Adorable young girl having fun in beautiful winter park during snowfall. Cute child playing in a snow. Winter activities for family with kids.

Minnesota is notable for its winters. Winter events in the Twin Cities should be just as famous if you ask residents. Don’t let the low temperatures scare you away; there is plenty of family fun to be had in Minneapolis-St. Paul!

Minneapolis is lucky to get all four seasons, and Twin Cities residents know how to make the most of them. The city boasts 197 parks, which Park Score frequently rates as among the best park systems in the nation. The Theodore Wirth Park – the largest in Minneapolis – has lots of options for winter sports fans.

The city’s vibrant festival and fair scene doesn’t slow down in the fall and winter. You’ll find plenty of cultural options for your crew! If you need a break from snow and ice, your family may enjoy one of the Twin Cities’ many museums. 

You don’t merely have to survive the cold in the Twin Cities. You and your kids can do more than get through the chilly weather – you can enjoy it and even thrive! With plenty of inexpensive and free activities and events in the area, you can kiss the winter blues goodbye. 

Kids walk in the park with first snow

Indoor Opportunities to Beat the Cold

We’ll get to the Twin Cities many unique options for outdoor winter fun. First, we’re going to explore the array of indoor activities your family can enjoy.

Indoor Playgrounds

There are a variety of indoor playgrounds for kids 12 and under. Pre-teens and up can take advantage of numerous trampoline parks. The Tropical Adventure Playground is available for kids 12 and under and features every kid’s favorite: water play. 

Get Creative

Your family will love getting in touch with their artistic side at family-friendly local businesses like Paint Your Plate. Spend time together and make lasting memories – all while keeping the cold at bay!

A Trip to the Museum: Learn Something New 

Take your kids to the Minnesota Children’s Museum for an interactive experience they won’t forget. The museum offers many opportunities for kids from ages 1 to 10 to play and learn at the same time. 

“Inside” doesn’t have to mean sedentary, and the Minneapolis Children’s Museum proves it. Older kids can navigate the laser maze, or play on climbing towers, a 17-foot slide, and a netted catwalk. Younger littles will enjoy the water tables and toddler area.

After a 2017 expansion, the Minnesota Children’s Museum features ten new exhibits and is dedicated to facilitating open, child-directed play.

Get Warm and Get Some Culture at the Same Time

Minneapolis is home to the Children’s Theatre Company. In addition to kid-friendly productions, the Children’s Theatre Company also offers classes and camps for kids. The Children’s Theatre Company offers matinee performances for school, community, and homeschool groups.

This nationally-recognized children’s theatre group offers a diverse array of performances and shows.

Sweet siblings, children having winter party in snowy forest. Kids friends rest outdoor at nature. Young brothers, boys, drinking tea from thermos. Hot drinks and beverage in cold weather

Outdoor Winter Events in the Twin Cities

When your family is ready, head outside for more chill winter fun!

St. Paul Winter Carnival

For many people, the timeframe from January to February is a difficult one. The holidays are over, and all the festive glow of the season seems to have left. St. Paul keeps the party going with its annual Winter Carnival, a tradition that dates back to 1886.

Activities at the Winter Carnival go all day into the night at Rice Park, offering every kind of winter fun. 

Theodore Wirth Regional Park

In the winter months, visitors to Theodore Wirth regional park can cross-country ski, or bring their dogs to go skijoring. If you’re not familiar with skijoring, it’s dog-assisted cross-country skiing! This world-class park also offers tubing, sledding, tobogganing, skiing, and snowboarding.

Don’t worry if you don’t have the right equipment; the park has rentals available!

Minnesota Zoo

Most people think of the zoo as a summer activity, and that’s understandable. The warm weather is a perfect time for a leisurely stroll looking at animals from places like Africa and Australia. But don’t forget the Minnesota Zoo in the winter months!

Despite shorter hours due to the colder, darker season, the Minnesota Zoo still offers an array of all-ages activities.

Child in knitted hat playing in snow on Christmas vacation. Winter outdoor fun. Knitting and outerwear for family. Kids play in snowy park. Little girl in knit scarf and mittens catching snowflakes.

Grab a Bite!

The Twin Cities offer many family-friendly local dining options. Come in from the cold and treat your family to a fun breakfast, lunch or dinner. Check out our list of places where kids eat free.

The New Hope Cinema Grill

This entertainment complex is a full-service restaurant with three different movie theaters. Cinema Grill offers kids’ meals and family favorites like pizza and popcorn. They even have a bar!

Grand Ole Creamery & Grand Pizza

Winter may not seem like the best time to stop for ice cream, but Grand Ole Creamery is different. At this St. Paul restaurant, ice cream cones can be a yummy treat after sharing a pizza together! A local and national favorite for thirty years, your family will love Grand Ole Creamery & Grand Pizza.

Sign Your Child Up for a Class

Make the most of all the time your child spends indoors! Less time outside doesn’t have to mean only video games and screen time. Sign them up for an educational experience (they’ll thank you later). Some places even offer parent-child classes that you can take together!

Music lessons, tutoring, or art class are all enriching opportunities you and your kids can take advantage of this winter. 

happy family mother and children daughter and son having fun on winter walk

Twin Cities Kids Club for Discount Fun This Winter

For affordable family fun this season, get a Twin Cities Kids Club membership. TCKC was created by parents for parents, to make the most of all the Twin Cities has to offer families.

Membership is free and provides discounts at restaurants, museums, and extracurricular activities in the Twin Cities area.

Whether you have small children, teenagers, or both, a TCKC membership will come in handy. From help with childcare to lessons to entertainment to restaurants, TCKC has deals for every kind of family. 

Make the winter (and every other season) one to remember for you and your family. Sign up for a free TCKC membership card now and start taking advantage of discounts and deals for your family. 

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