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Wander Minnesota: Breaking For Spring

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Amy Rea Amy Rea
Amy Rea is a freelance writer and author of Minnesota, Land of 10,000...
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But first—my latest book is now available for sale! More details here.

Schools around the metro are taking that week-long (more or less) holiday known as spring break, now through mid April. Whether going out of town isn’t in your financial picture right now, or you’d just rather stay home, here are some ideas to keep your family from going stir-crazy.

The classic kid-venture spots never fail to entertain: the Science Museum of Minnesota (especially with the Pirates exhibit going on right now), The Works, the Minnesota Children’s Museum, and the Bakken Museum are all popular with families, and for good reason.

The Minnesota Zoo will have its Farm Babies event in the Wells Fargo Family Farm area from 3/31-4/30. On 4/7, Peter Rabbit will make an appearance, and there will be kids’ activities. Over in St. Paul, the Como Zoo is open daily year-round, but will start having later hours on April 1.

Longing for swimsuit weather? It can’t be guaranteed this time of year, but you can visit an indoor waterpark without having to drive all the way to the Dells. The Waterpark at the Depot in Minneapolis is open only Friday-Sunday in March and April. The Waterpark of America, by the Mall of America, will be open daily from now through 4/15. Note: this waterpark is attached to a hotel, so you might want to go early in the day, or call ahead—the Waterpark of America can restrict access to hotel guests only during busy periods.

The Firefighter’s Hall and Museum is open only on Saturdays, but if you’ve got a budding firefighter in your family, this is the place to go. They’ll even have a chance to slide down a fireman’s pole. Starting in April, visitors can get a ride on a fire truck too. Note: if you have a group of 10 or more, you can make an appointment to visit during the week.

If you’ve got a train enthusiast in your family, this one’s for you. The Jackson Street Roundhouse, part of the Minnesota Transportation Museum system, is open Wednesdays and Saturdays gives kids a hands-on view of the golden days of railroad, including caboose rides on Saturdays.

Get a different perspective on the city of Minneapolis by visiting the Foshay Museum and Observation Deck, open daily at noon. Call ahead if weather is bad to see if they’re open (612-215-3783).

What else is happening in our state? Be sure to check out the 10 p.m. Sunday night WCCO newscasts, where you can learn more in the weekly segment, Finding Minnesota.

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