Amy Rea is a freelance writer and author of Minnesota, Land of 10,000 Lakes: an Explorer’s Guide (Countryman Press, 2008), as well as the upcoming Backroads & Byways of Minnesota (Countryman Press, spring 2011).
She grew up in northern Minnesota, attended the University of Minnesota, and bounced around various careers including managing a maternity store and working as a travel agent before settling into her writing career.
She’s married with two teenage boys and two rather poorly trained dogs.
The month of December is an exceptionally busy one for this festival-fond state. To try and get as much coverage as possible without creating a blog post that’s a mile long, I’m going to report weekly this month. Today’s installment will include events through Sunday, Dec. 7.
You’ve slept off the turkey, you’re not interested in battling crowds on Black Friday, but you have free time and possibly family and friends to entertain. What is there to do this weekend? Plenty.
Over the last couple of weeks, I took a look at Halloween events around the Twin Cities. This week, let’s take a look at another type of celebration occurring this weekend. Dia de los Muertos, […]
Halloween is almost here. Last week I took a look at not-so-scary Halloween events around the Twin Cities. This week, let’s take a look at a sampling of Halloween events around the state.
Halloween is almost here. There are tons of scary things to do for older Halloween fans. But where you can take the little, more easily scared ones? The Minnesota Zoo offers HallZooween throughout October, with daily events like a Halloween Mythbusters scavenger hunt.
We’re in the prime days of autumn now, with apple picking is in full swing, as are many harvest festivals. Best of all, the leaves are approaching full autumn colors now. If you’re looking for an easy day trip from the Cities, with beautiful views and shops to browse through, one suggestion would be the historic downtown area of Jordan, near the Minnesota River Valley.
It sounds like this coming weekend is going to have some amazing, beautiful weather—perfect for getting outside. Given that it’s prime apple harvest time, it would be a great weekend to find a pick-your-own apple orchard.
If it’s nearly mid-September, then it’s nearly time for Oktoberfests to start popping up. Part homage to the Germanic immigrants in Minnesota’s past and part homage to autumn, it’s not hard to get behind such a jolly event.
It arrives all too quickly, but alas, it’s here: Labor Day weekend, the official end of summer. If you’ve already made your pilgrimages to the Minnesota State Fair and the Renaissance Festival, what else can you do on this glorious long weekend? Plenty.
It’s that time of year again—time for the Minnesota State Fair. And this year, not only are there several new foods to try, there’s a completely updated space on the fairgrounds.
The Mississippi River is a big part of life in Minnesota, from its roots in Itasca State Park to its exit out of the state at the very southeastern corner. There are some parts of it that are well known and frequently visited. But it’s a big river. What else is there to see?
The summer weather of late has been spectacular—and we so deserve it—and it’s time to get outdoors, people, and enjoy views like these. An especially fine way to do that is to take a trip […]
One of the most iconic figures in Minnesota has to be Paul Bunyan and his Blue Ox, Babe. How exactly Bunyan came into popularity isn’t clear, although some think that the stories originated in the early 1900s at a Wisconsin logging camp, while others point to early 1800s Canada. It’s not clear if there was an actual person who later became the mythic version of Bunyan, or if this was campfire lore turned into advertising. But variations exist in many parts of the country, and each tale seems taller than the next:
Just outside of Little Falls is a historic site open only in the summertime, so you still have several weeks to plan a visit. The Charles A. Lindbergh Historic Site has the preserved childhood home of the famed aviator, as well as the Charles A. Lindbergh State Park across the street (and which is named after the aviator’s father).
There’s a new addition to the varied scenery at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum: the Harrison Sculpture Collection at the Arboretum’s highest physical point, with sculptures donated by Wayzata philanthropists Alfred and Ingrid Harrison, sculptures they’d collected from all over the world.
Have you heard of Dorset, Minnesota, the Restaurant Capital of the World? No? Well. Let’s take a visit. Dorset is a village Park Rapids and Akeley in northern Minnesota, with a population of about 22 people.
It’s so tucked away into the woods that you could easily drive right by it and never know it’s there—perhaps a good reason for the name: Lost Lake Lodge.
Yes, it seems like just yesterday we were all being beaten down by the long winter and polar vortex. Believe it or not, Independence Day is only three weeks away, and it falls on a Friday this year, making for a nice long weekend.
As the 2013-14 school year wraps up, there are plenty of elated kids cheering the thought of weeks of free time. Until they actually have that free time…then summer boredom rears its ugly head a lot sooner than Mom and Dad would like. Here are three suggestions for day trips to keep everyone happy. Check the linked websites for hours and special events.
You have to give it to John Cal. He’s a guy who can make things happen. The Twin Cities resident and long-time musician/composer would make Judy Garland and Andy Rooney happy, as he prepares to launch the premiere of the stage musical Philly.The show is rooted in Yonkers, NY, where Cal grew up. Passionate about music from the get-go, Cal had a garage band by age 16 and a lot of ambition to go with it.
The fun factor is pretty high at the exhibit that just opened at the Minnesota History Center: Toys of the 50s, 60s and 70s (or as a History Center staffer put it, “From the Cold War to Star Wars”).
Friday marks the opening of the 19th annual Art-A-Whirl. This hugely popular art tradition sprawls out over several venues across NE Minneapolis. It’s a great opportunity to meet the artists themselves in their work spaces, see (and purchase!) original artworks, and support the arts community. For some practical tips on planning a visit to Art-A-Whirl, see How to Whirl, and for tips on visiting with kids, see Savvy Mom’s story on how to survive and thrive at Art-A-Whirl with kids in tow.
Maybe you heard about the following art exhibits when they first opened with big splashes and a great deal of publicity. But they were scheduled to be here for weeks or months, so plenty of time. And then other things came along, and they slowly disappeared from front of mind.
Minnesota’s fishing opener is only two weeks away. Are you ready? Many lake resorts have specials for the early months of the season, and some have packages specifically for opening weekend (or, as it’s also called, Mother’s Day weekend). Book now for the best prices.
This is one of the quieter months for festivals in Minnesota. But never fear–as spring fully arrives with the promise of summer ahead, the busiest festival time of the year is not far away.