Some consider Labor Day weekend to be the last party of the summer. In Minnesota, many locals are busy closing up their cabins for the winter or putting their boats into storage. Before the fun stops and the fall begins, Labor Day weekend comes along to help us celebrate the American worker and enjoy spending time with family and friends. Parties and road trips are popular activities for Minnesotans during Labor Day weekend, but other options can be just as fun.

(credit: Minnesota State Fair)

(credit: Minnesota State Fair)

Minnesota State Fair
1265 Snelling Ave. N.
St. Paul, MN 55108
(651) 288-4400

The Minnesota State Fair is probably the most popular destination the week before and through Labor Day weekend. Each year, the fair is the same as the last yet a little different. Spend the day enjoying foods you can only get once a year and visiting your favorite booths and animals from the year before. This year, enjoy some new foods include bison dogs, pretzel curds and chocolate dessert salami. The fair is also a great place to spend time with your family or see a show. Catch the Amateur talent show finals at the grandstand Sunday night or watch Joan Jett on Labor Day.

Island View Resort
249 Scenic Drive
Knife River, MN 55609
(218) 834-5886

Although there are tons of great places to rent a cabin, Island View Resort overlooks Lake Superior and offers an entire weekend of nature and fun. The resort is located adjacent to Two Rivers and allows access to the Knife River Marina as well as the Lakewalk. The cabins are reasonably priced, even for peak season (which includes Labor Day weekend). Each cabin has a heated and enclosed porch for visitors to enjoy the outdoors even if the weather is bad. There are also fire pits for gathering around and spending time with family. Enjoy boating, fishing, biking or whatever outdoor activity you enjoy. Take your last three-day weekend until Thanksgiving up north for Labor Day.

(credit: Brenda Score)

(credit: Brenda Score)

Minnesota Zoo
13000 Zoo Blvd.
Apple Valley, MN 55124
(952) 431-9200

Labor Day weekend is your last chance to visit the “Big Bugs” exhibit at the Minnesota Zoo. Animatronic giant bugs have been constructed and are placed along the North Trail area for visitors to see what our insect friends look like up close. These bugs leave the zoo on Labor Day and are not scheduled to return anytime soon. While you’re there, enjoy the day outdoors visiting the farm animals and wild animals in their beautiful habitats. Have a picnic lunch by the primates and play on the large play structure located at the entrance to the trail. The zoo is always a fun outing for you to spend time with your family and friends.

 Best Weekend Getaways In The Minnesota Area

Picnic By The Lake
DNR Lake Finder
500 Lafayette Road
St. Paul, MN 55155

In the land of 10,000 lakes, there is always an option to head to a lake for a picnic. The DNR can find a lake near you that has a picnic area and other accommodations for a great weekend. Lake Finder also records the types of fish that live in each lake for those interested in doing some weekend fishing. Pack up the car and go to a favorite lake spot or venture out to a new lake for your weekend. Many lakes also have walking trails, grilling areas, playgrounds or bike paths for the active family.

(credit: Padelford Riverboats via Facebook)

(credit: Padelford Riverboats via Facebook)

Padelford Riverboats
Harriet Island
St. Paul, MN 55107
(651) 227-1100

Take an old-fashioned paddle boat down the Mississippi and enjoy being on the water. Padelford Riverboats offers a special brunch cruise for Labor Day. The boats leave Harriet Island and travel along the river and through St. Paul’s downtown harbor. A brunch of eggs, pancakes, sausages and pastries is served as you relax on the cruise. Reservations are taken ahead of time and other tours are available throughout the rest of the weekend.

Best Places To Go On A Luxurious Weekend In Minnesota

Andrea Wodele is a freelance writer who has lived in the Twin Cities for eight years. She loves covering all things Minnesota and her work can be found on