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Discovering Indoor Fun for the Whole Family in Minneapolis Northwest

In the winter, visitors to Minnesota embrace our winter activities, but if you’re craving a little indoor time, there’s no shortage of activities and performances to keep you entertained in Minneapolis Northwest, even on winter days. You can win prizes at the arcade, make a splash at an indoor water park, catch a modern version of “The Wizard of Oz” and so much more—you just have to know where to look. There are good times waiting for you and your family all around town, so shed those coats and scarves and get ready to have some fun!

Active Adventures

Dave & Buster’s

Time disappears when you are having fun at Dave & Buster’s, a 30,000-sq.-ft. entertainment complex in the heart of Arbor Lakes Shopping & Dining District. With more than 200 games in its Million Dollar Midway, you can be Batman chasing the bad guys, race cars against your friends or shoot some hoops against the clock. For an adrenaline rush, try the Typhoon, a complete sensory experience simulating a roller coaster ride. After winning big on the games, turn in your tickets to get great prizes from the Winner’s Circle. Once you’re done playing games, take advantage of the happy hour specials with half-price appetizers and drinks. The location is also perfect for group events.

11780 Fountains Way North, Maple Grove



You’ll have endless hours of fun with WhirlyBall, an activity that combines bumper cars with basketball, lacrosse and hockey. That’s right; you race around in specially designed bumper cars, called WhirlyBugs, and use scoops to toss a whiffle ball at backboards at opposite ends of the court. Each team needs five players, so gather your family and friends and venture out to WhirlyBall Twin Cities in Maple Grove. The location also has a bar and grill, so you will not go hungry. If you still have energy left, play laser tag in its urban adventure with your teammates for only $5.

13644 80th Circle North, Maple Grove


Venetian Water Park at the Holiday Inn & Suites Arbor Lakes

Rain or snow, the Venetian Indoor Water Park offers a Mediterranean-style retreat so you and your family can enjoy quality time together. Located in the Holiday Inn & Suites in Maple Grove, the water park is 25,000-square feet and has two four-story waterslides, a floating obstacle course, basketball hoops and plenty more. At the Bambini Piscina, toddlers and young children can enjoy the pool in this area designated just for them. Kids can enjoy games at the arcade whenever they need a break from the water.

11801 Fountains Way North, Maple Grove


Minneapolis Bouldering Project

Get your climbing fix at Minneapolis Bouldering Project in the Twin Cities, which features 20,108-square feet of climbing terrain and offers complimentary introductory bouldering lessons. At this state-of-the-art facility, which opened in 2017, there are no ropes or harnesses—only a 16-inch foam floor to cushion the fall. The facility has dedicated youth and family climbing areas, a treadwall, a yoga studio and a fitness studio with weight lifting and cardio equipment, so you can keep up with your fitness regimen while traveling. MBP comes with full-service locker rooms, showers and saunas. Purchase a day pass if you’re in town for a short visit and don’t miss out on the climbing fun.

1433 West River Road North, Minneapolis


Play Mini Golf at Can Can Wonderland

Can Can Wonderland is a whimsical wonderland of entertainment for the whole family! Enjoy this 18-hole family friendly mini golf course, along with its vintage arcade games, delicious eats, art, live performances and more. With holes featuring themes like natural disasters (try the tornado or volcano), Hot Tub Time Machine, and a Wonderwall that challenges you to shoot the ball through a waterfall, there’s a different experience at every turn. Can Can Wonderland is also home to Boardwalk Arcade, where you can get lost in time playing one of its 20 vintage games. The venue offers free events Thursday through Sunday, including “Tappy Hour,” group tap dancing lessons on Fridays as well as karaoke, comedy improv shows and crafting classes.

 755 Prior Avenue North, Suite #004, Saint Paul


Indoor Events

Leo Lionni’s Frederick at Stages Theatre Company in Hopkins

At Stages Theatre Company, your kids will delight in the story of Frederick, the mouse who proves that everyone has something special to offer. When all the other mice are gathering food for winter, Frederick daydreams about warm, sunny days. When the cold weather rolls in, it’s Frederick that has something stored up to survive the blustery months. In this heartwarming tale, adapted from the Caldecott-winning book by beloved author Leo Lionni, the adorable characters will captivate your kids and so will the country and folk-infused musical score. This show runs Jan. 19 through Feb.19.

1111 Mainstreet, Hopkins


The Wiz at Children’s Theatre Company

Follow the yellow brick road with Dorothy and her friends in this rock and soul musical. The Wiz, based on the adaptation from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum, will take the stage at the Children’s Theatre Company, Jan. 23 through March 25. Embark on a tornado-driven Oz-some adventure through an urban setting, with some new takes on the familiar story. You’ll meet funky monkeys, winkies, Addaperle and Evillene. Get your family together and ease on down the road to this toe-tapping modern classic.

2400 3rd Avenue South, Minneapolis


Sundays at Landmark

Located in downtown Saint Paul, Landmark Center is the place to see music, dance, theater productions, exhibitions and special events. Its Sundays at Landmark offers free cultural and art events, with programs starting at 1 p.m. Produced by Minnesota Landmarks, the programming includes the popular Urban Expeditions, which brings different cultures to Saint Paul’s backyard. On Feb. 11, immerse yourself in Japanese culture and on Feb. 25, learn all about Iceland through music, dance, crafts and traditions. The Center also offers Ballet Tuesdays, when the Saint Paul Ballet performs excerpts from the company repertoire. 

75 West Fifth Street, Saint Paul


Midtown Global Market

The Midtown Global Market is known for its fabulous entertainment, delicious food and shopping. Listen to eclectic music during its Wee Wednesday and Family Friday performances, showcasing award-winning musicians and bands from around the world. On Wednesday, Jan. 31, Papa Siama and Auntie Dallas will delight audiences with a modern take on traditional Congolese music. And the Roe Family Singers will serenade the crowd with its old-time music on Valentine’s Day.

920 East Lake Street, Minneapolis


Local Picks for Indoor Fun

Maple Grove Community Center

Whether you’re planning a birthday party or a reunion, Maple Grove Community Center is the place for it. The center has an indoor playground, a gym, a swimming pool, ice-skating arena and banquet spaces. You can swim all year long at The Grove Cove Aquatic Center, and kids can enjoy its Flotation Fun days on Friday 7-8 p.m., and on Saturday and Sunday 3-4 p.m. The Maple Maze indoor playground is the perfect place for children under 12, offering a rock wall, pogo sticks, a tree house, slides, hoover rings and multiple routes to discover the jungle inside the maze. At the Teen Center, students in grades 6-12 can enjoy pool, air hockey, video games, card games, play Xbox 360, try the karaoke machine or just hang out with friends.

12951 Weaver Lake Road, Maple Grove


Maple Grove Indoor Farmers Market

Located in the community center, the Maple Grove Indoor Farmers Market showcases a wide variety of vendors selling fresh, seasonal produce and specialty goods. Visit the market on Feb. 1, March 8 and 29, April 12 and 26 and May 10 to stock up on gifts and goodies for the Super Bowl parties and spring celebrations, while you enjoy live music.  

12951 Weaver Lake Road, Maple Grove


Brooklyn Park Community Activity Center

 If you’re in Brooklyn Park, take advantage of the popular Community Activity Center that hosts special events and offers tons of recreational and leisure activities. Some of the top attractions include its two ice sheets for skating, racquetball and wallyball courts and a fitness room.

5600 85th Avenue North, Brooklyn Park


Brooklyn Center Community Center  

With all of its amenities and affordable rates, the Brooklyn Center Community Center is a beloved destination for all ages. Recreational amenities include a 50-meter indoor swimming pool, a 150-feet water slide, a wading pool and diving boards. Birthday party packages are also available for children at the center. There’s even a walking track if you want to get your steps indoors.

6301 Shingle Creek Parkway, Brooklyn Center


Looking for more fun winter activities? Check out our blogs, “Best Ways to Capitalize on the Cold in Minneapolis Northwest,” and “Top Museums to Explore Near Minneapolis Northwest.”

About the Author
  • Minneapolis Northwest CVB

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