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Best Places To Have A Kid’s Birthday Party

May 2, 2011 1:08 PM

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Today’s birthday party options are no longer limited to cake in the backyard and pin the tail on the donkey. In fact, here in the Twin Cities there seems to be a party theme for just about any passion or interest the birthday boy or girl may have. Whether your child is a sports enthusiast, artist, future chef or is still fond of dolls and trains, you’re sure to find a way to celebrate another candle on the cake. Here are some of the best in no particular order.

Foursquare Favorite: Eagles Nest Indoor Playground
400 10th St NW
New Brighton, MN 55112
(651) 638-2130
Read all the tips on Foursquare

It’s loud, it’s crazy, but there are few places in Minneapolis where kids run free with abandon like the Eagles Nest, where kids under 12 can celebrate a fun birthday. Be sure to have plenty of supervision, however. According to Foursquare user Kale, “This place is a zoo on the weekends.” After playtime, check out some of the top family-friendly dining spots in Minneapolis.


Head to Foursquare to sort reviews by these tastes:



7520 32nd Street North
Oakdale, MN 55128

PINZ in Oakdale offers classic birthday parties in an updated, upscale environment. Mix and match your party by choosing between state of the art bowling or laser tag in a glow-in-the-dark multi-level arena with arcade game time in-between. Birthday parties include invitations and thank you cards, 45 minutes in a private party room, two (one-topping) pizzas, unlimited soft drinks, tableware, $5 Z Card for arcade play for each party guest and a balloon bouquet with a souvenir bowling pin. You don’t have to lift a finger at this one. A personal host will coordinate all of the details.

Kitchen In The Market

920 East Lake Street
Minneapolis, MN 55407
612-568-5486 ‎

Your budding chef will enjoy creating their own culinary delights alongside their friends at Kitchen in the Market’s kid cooking classes (ages 5-15). Ideal for tweens and teens, the “Just Roll with It” session teaches the kids how to make sushi rolls, spring rolls and egg rolls. Or, choose “Fun with Pasta” which shows attendees how to make and roll their own pasta and whip up a homemade sauce. Younger chefs can opt for other creations including pizza and cookies or you can work with Kitchen in the Market to create a class that’s just right for your child’s birthday celebration.

Pump It Up

1182 E. Cliff Rd.
Burnsville, MN 55337

Pump it Up has always been a favorite in our household. It’s the ideal location for “letting the kids run wild” while not having to worry they’ll get lost in the chaos. The enclosed private indoor arenas are filled with gigantic inflatable slides, bounce houses and obstacle courses. Adults can partake in the fun, too. Afterward, head to the private party room and continue the festivities. Choose from various party options which can include pizza, drinks, balloons and goodie bags.

Sky Zone Minneapolis

13310 Industrial Park Blvd
Plymouth, MN 55441
If your kids still love the thrill of jumping but are beyond the bouncy castle stage you can’t go wrong with a bash at Sky Zone. The indoor all-trampoline walled playing fields provide a fun environment for jumping, games and dodgeball. Custom party packages fit within a variety of budgets.

American Girl

Mall of America
5160 Center Court
Bloomington, MN 55425

Any girly-girl who has a beloved American Girl doll will be in heaven celebrating their special day at American Girl store. The Mall of America location has a few birthday package selections which can include the brand’s signature pink-and-white cake and ice cream, goody bags, doll tiaras for each girl, table activity and a craft, Doll Hair Salon and Spa services and a party photo.

Gamin Ride And Glamour Ride

Chanhassen, MN

Gamin Ride and Glamour Ride brings the party to your house or anywhere else you desire. Gamin Ride is a high-tech mobile video game theater featuring sixteen ultimate game chairs and four jumbo HDTV’s. The XBOX 360, PS3 and Wii games can accommodate up to twenty-four players at one time. Outside, two jumbo LCD TV’s are displayed under an awning equipped with Wii, satellite TV and live feeds of the action going on inside the theater. Party goers can expect an interactive experience with vibrating seats, Smell-a-Vision (game appropriate scents) and special effect lightning. Coming soon is the girl-geared Glamour Ride, another mobile unit. Up to fourteen young ladies can get their hair and nails done, make crafts and sing karaoke. At the end of the diva-themed party, the trailer converts into a stage and the girls can put on a performance.

Jackson Street Roundhouse

193 Pennsylvania Ave E
St Paul, MN 55130

Children fascinated with train adventures will enjoy the Great Northern Railway’s historic Jackson Street Roundhouse, a former steam engine maintenance facility. Birthday children and their pals can experience the magic of railroading by celebrating in a private rail car. If the party is held on a Saturday guests are invited to take a ride on the historic train. Refreshments are not provided but decorations and tableware are included.

Vertical Endeavors

855 Phalen Boulevard
St. Paul, MN 55106-3981

Vertical Endeavors is a rock climber’s dream. Newbies can practice in the beginner’s area while the more experienced climbers can tackle the A.R.T. Wall (Advanced Rock Technology Wall) which emulates a real outdoor rock surfaces. Birthday parties include invitations, stickers, two hours of climbing with an instructor, a Happy Birthday sign, balloons and a Vertical Endeavors t-shirt for the birthday climber. A rental room is available for the after-climbing celebration but you’re on your own for cake and decorations.

Grand Slam Sports & Entertainment

12425 River Ridge Boulevard
Burnsville, MN 55337-4871

Grand Slam is the place to go if the birthday guest of honor enjoys an action-packed day. Four birthday packages range from the basic which includes one round of mini-golf or unlimited PlayZone up to the Super Deluxe level which includes the whole shebang: mini golf, Krazy Kars, lazer tag, PlayZone, arcade tokens, a batting token, pizza and soda.

Manic Ceramic

17685 Kenwood Trail
Lakeville, MN 55044

Your little artist can indulge their creative side at Manic Ceramic. Party attendees select a piece of pottery then paint and decorate it as they desire. Staff glaze and fire the pottery then in seven days the party parents can pick up the order. There are several birthday packages to choose from. A fun perk is the birthday guest of honor receives a commemorative birthday plate with their guest’s signatures.

– Beth Blair has turned a decade of travel industry experience into an action-packed travel writing career. She writes for various print and online publications and is co-founder of and Learn more about her at and find her on Twitter: @BethBlair.

View Comments
  • Jen Westpfahl

    Great list. I didn’t know about some of these. Another popular train-themed place for littler ones is Choo Choo Bob’s in St. Paul.

  • Jen Westpfahl

    JUST saw this one on a Living Social deal. I’d never hear of it before. Mad Science in St. Paul.

    • paula lipinski

      too funny, i was on here looking for riley’s b-day and saw you!! :)

  • Max

    My daughter had a Mad Science birthday party – she was turning 7. She and all her guests loved it.

  • D'Napier

    These helped so much ! My little sister is so excited about her upcoming birthday party, and I think PINZ is the place to go.. :)

  • Joe

    Games2u is another great birthday party idea. They have a mobile video game vehicle, laser tag, big hamster balls, foam parties and a bunch of other activities. We used them for our daughter and our son’s birthdays. Having them out for a big company picnic this year too.

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