Going to a museum for a date is not a bizarre idea. Here are six of the best museums in the metro area for anyone wanting to go on a date and many more reasons for why it can be fun.
Alexander Ramsey House
265 S. Exchange St.
Saint Paul, MN 55102
Explore this Victorian era mansion home where each month a new topic brings out the “steamy” side of history. History Happy Hour, held on the last Thursday of each month, is when regular admission includes two drinks and a snack for adults only in an intimate setting for discussing popular Victorian art and culture topics such as Victorian magic and men’s facial hair. Another great monthly event, Ramsey After Dark, is held on the second Friday of each month. Learn adult-themed secrets of Victorian life from politics to romantic encounters.
Mill City Museum
704 S. 2nd St.
Minneapolis, MN 55401
Bring your date to the Minneapolis Riverfront for a unique evening. Start with a visit to Mill City Museum, built into the ruins of what was once the world’s largest flour mill, and learn about the intertwined histories of the flour industry, the river and the city of Minneapolis. Sneak a kiss on the 8th floor observation deck where you and your date can take in sweeping views of the Minneapolis Riverfront. Then stroll down the street to choose a romantic dinner at one of the Riverfront’s top dining establishments including Sea Change and Spoonriver.
Split Rock Lighthouse
3713 Split Rock Lighthouse Road
Two Harbors, MN 55616
Take your loved one on a weekend getaway to the North Shore. Stop at the New Scenic Cafe for lunch, go for a romantic hike to Gooseberry Falls and take in spectacular views of Lake Superior from the grounds of the Split Rock Lighthouse. The lighthouse, which was completed in 1910, gives visitors a glimpse of what it was like to work and live in this remote and beautiful setting so many years ago. Completed in 1910, Split Rock Lighthouse is one of Minnesota’s best-known landmarks. Restored to its 1920s glory, the lighthouse is now a registered National Historic Landmark.
Minnesota History Center
345 W. Kellogg Blvd.
St. Paul, MN 55102
An interactive museum with both permanent and changing exhibits, the Minnesota History Center hosts concerts, lectures and other special events throughout the year. Couples looking for a unique outing should consider the popular History Pub Crawls for tales of how some of St. Paul’s most noteworthy neighborhoods built a Capital city; History of Hip programs that explore the mysterious factors that confer hipness on an artist or a fad; and RetroRama, where couples can dress to impress at an annual fashion cocktail party.
James J. Hill House
240 Summit Avenue
St. Paul, MN 55102
Explore the home of James J. Hill, founder of the Great Northern Railway, with a guided tour that helps you imagine family and servant life in the Gilded Age mansion. In the summer, explore the back staircases, dust chutes and silver vault during a 90-minute “Nooks and Crannies” tour offered Tuesday evenings. Throughout the year, couples can join in unique evening programming including Victorian Ghost Stories, Victorian Poetry Slam and intimate concerts offered by the Hill House Chamber Players.
Science Museum of Minnesota
120 W. Kellogg Blvd.
St. Paul, MN 55102
There a three reasons the Science Museum of Minnesota is a great museum for a date, according to Public Relations Coordinator Sarah Imholte. “First, quite simply, is a matter of logistics,” says Sarah. “On Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights, the Science Museum is open until 9 p.m. (with the last Omnitheater show starting at 9, as well). I think this is one of the best-kept secrets about the museum: those evening hours are great for a lower-key, less-crowded visit. Also, we’re located within blocks of some really fun restaurants and bars, so you could start your date with dinner and drinks nearby, and then walk over to the museum for after-dinner science date.”
“Second, the museum is so hands-on. There’s a ton of stuff to keep you busy, making it easier to avoid awkward silences,” says Sarah slyly. And finally, the Science Museum has a semi-monthly event called Social Science, during which it is open only to the 21-plus crowd. Each Social Science event is themed and features food sampling, cash bars and live music from time to time, in addition to volunteer-led activities and a kid-free museum to explore.” See more information at www.smm.org/socialscience.
Robin Johnson was born in Annandale, Minn. and graduated from Richfield High School and then the University of Minnesota where he studied Political Science, Business and Industrial Relations. A writer for Examiner.com, he also consults with a variety of organizations and individuals helping them develop and grow. His work can be found at Examiner.com.