Apr 2, 2022 - Things to Do

9 spring things to do in the Twin Cities

A blooming field of tulips
Tulip season has arrived at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. Photo courtesy of Minnesota Landscape Arboretum

Celebrate the arrival of warm weather in the Twin Cities with the help of our spring guide.

  • Here are a handful of ways to take advantage of the season.
1. Grab dinner and drinks al fresco
A large outdoor patio seen from above
St. Paul Brewing is built on the remains of the historic Hamm's Brewery. Photo courtesy of St. Paul Brewing

Enjoy the warming weather at these local outdoor spots.

πŸ– For the view: Spring Park's Back Channel Brewing offers a beachy, open-air vibe on the shore of Lake Minnetonka.

πŸ’• For date night: Amore Uptown has a romantic rooftop deck just a few blocks from the Chain of Lakes.

🎢 For live music: Aster Cafe hosts a variety of live musicians, like jazz Sunday brunches, on the courtyard patio.

🐢For the whole family: The eclectic Saint Paul Brewing, built in the historic Hamm's Brewery, has a spacious dog-friendly patio and outdoor pizza oven.

🍹 For drinks: Hai Hai's tropical craft cocktails are best served outside.

2. Don't miss these big events
A large vase of pink and red flowers next to a pink and red painting.
"Art in Bloom" at Minneapolis Institute of Arts showcases local florists' art-inspired creations. Photo courtesy of Minneapolis Institute of Arts

πŸ‘  Fashion Week Minnesota is seven days of runways celebrating the best designers, brands and creatives from around the state. April 24-30.

πŸ’ Art in Bloom at Minneapolis Institute of Art showcases 140 fresh floral arrangements inspired by the museum's permanent collection. April 28-May 1.

🎨 Art-A-Whirl, which the Northeast Minneapolis Arts Association says is the largest open studio tour in the country, opens 60 art galleries, studios, and businesses to the public for free. May 20-22.

🌭 GrillFest at CHS Field hosts over 100 vendors offering unlimited samples of grilled food, wine and specialty beers. May 21-22.

🎭 The Flint Hills Family Festival provides $5 tickets to performances at the Ordway and Landmark Center, free outdoor entertainment and art activities for all ages. June 3-4.

🎸 Rock the Garden, the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden's signature music festival, returns after three years, headlined by Sleater-Kinney and Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats. June 11.

3. Cheer for our home teams
The Target Field stadium in Minneapolis.
Photo: Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images

The Twins return to Target Field on Thursday to play the Seattle Mariners in their home opener. But they're not the only sports team you can catch outdoors as the weather warms.

⚽ Minnesota United FC plays all summer at Allianz Field.

⚾ And the St. Paul Saints kicks off its home season at CHS Field on April 12.

4. Skip town for a weekend at a nearby Airbnb
A treehouse home with a spiral staircase.
This treehouse Airbnb is only accessible by spiral staircase. Photo courtesy of Kathryn Wallentine

Go "glamping" β€” a mashup of glam camping β€” in this lakeside treehouse in the Chippewa National Forest.

  • The one-bedroom Airbnb has water, electricity, a half-bath, wifi and peace and quiet.

Of note: No kitchen, heat, AC or shower, hence the camping part.

Three more cool Airbnbs...

5. Get outdoors on foot or wheels
bike against a tree
Photo: Nick Halter/Axios

If you're anything like us, you're ready to stretch those legs after a long winter.

6. Check out these park restaurants
Two seafood burgers on an outdoor picnic table.
Sea Salt Eatery in Minnehaha Park. Photos: Emma Way/Axios

If you're spending your day outdoors, don't forget to stop for a meal at one of these seasonal restaurants. Of note: Dates are weather-dependent.

  • Sea Salt Eatery in Minnehaha Park serves some of the best seafood in the Twin Cities. Opens April 15.
  • Bread and Pickle at Bde Maka Ska sources its ingredients from local farmers and offers a variety of craft beer and wine. Opens May 6.
  • Sandcastle at the Lake Nokomis beach has frequent "tap takeovers" by Twin Cities breweries. Opens April 15.
  • Dock & Paddle at the Como Lakeside Pavilion hosts live music throughout the week. Open now, Friday-Sunday, with extended hours to be announced.
7. Start your spring gardening
Two plants
A crocodile plant and monstera plant from Planty Queens. Photo courtesy of Planty Queens

Whether you're new to plant parenting, adding to your collection or replacing the ones that met a tragic end this winter, you'll find something at these local nurseries.

🌱 Our plant recommendation: If you have a black thumb, a pothos plant requires little sunlight and can go weeks without watering.

8. Try a new activity
edible petals
Black locust flowers. Photo courtesy of Ironwood Foraging

Take a walk on the wild (food) side by learning to spot edible treats in your own backyard.

  • Ironwood Foraging offers weekend workshops on finding fruit, nuts, berries, leafy greens and herbs and more in nature areas within an hour of the Twin Cities.

What they're saying: "There's awe, to realize, like, hey, that dandelion is edible. Or you can find raspberries in an alleyway or hey, this tree provides great salad greens," Ironwood founder Tim Clemens, who leads the classes, tells Axios.

Don't wait: Spring classes, which cost $69 for a 2.5-hour walking tour, are filling up fast.

9. Visit the Arboretum
A large garden of orange, red and yellow tulips.
The 2021 tulip display at the Arboretum. Photo courtesy of Minnesota Landscape Arboretum

Usher in spring at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, where 40,000 (!) tulips are set to bloom in late April and early May.

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