12 Top Things to Do for Mother's Day in Minneapolis

Minneapolis aerial with Downtown Minneapolis skyline in the background and Loring Park with Loring Pond in the foreground


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Due to remaining closures and precautions in Minneapolis, many of these attractions may be closed and events may be canceled for Mother's Day this year.

May in Minneapolis is full of flowers and you can enjoy the warming weather. So many things to do with Mom on Mother's Day take advantage of this beautiful season. Places to take Mom and the family on Mother's Day in the Minneapolis area include visiting parks, gardens, and even going fishing. Should it rain, there are great things to do inside like visiting museums, taking historic home tours, and shopping.

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Enjoy the Trees and Flowers at the Arboretum

Japanese Garden, U of MN Landscape Arboretum
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The Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, in the South Metro, is not just a place for trees—the Arboretum has acres of gardens, cultivated flowers, trees, and vegetables, as well as large natural areas with wildflowers and prairie grasses.

The Visitors Center has free hands-on activities for children and families and offers guided nature walks. The Arboretum is hosting a sumptuous Mother's Day Brunch with salads, a carving station, omelet station, and Belgian waffle station.

02 of 12

Stroll or Hike in Minnehaha Park

waterfall at Minnehaha Park
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A classic destination and right in the city is South Minneapolis' Minnehaha Park with a beautiful waterfall, kids' play area, gardens, statues, and the excellent ​Sea Salt Eatery.

Take a walk and follow Minnehaha Creek all the way to the Mississippi River. 

03 of 12

Visit the Wildflower Garden and Bird Sanctuary

The sun peeking through the trees on to a dirty path in a garden

TripSavvy / Kaan Avci

It's the peak time for wildflowers and birdsong, and the Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden and Bird Sanctuary, in Theodore Wirth Park, is the best place to appreciate both.

The garden is open daily from 7:30 a.m. until one hour before sunset and admission is free.

04 of 12

Go Shopping in Stillwater

Street view of house building and green tress in Autumn
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Stillwater is often a favorite destination of Moms—the cute shops, with clothes, art, homewares, and jewelry, plus plenty of places for lunch, and lovely views of the St. Croix Valley make it very appealing.

For those Moms who love to shop until they drop, there are many other shopping destinations in and around the Twin Cities many of which have family-friendly restaurants too. 

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05 of 12

Take Mom Fishing

a family fishing
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It's traditionally an activity for Father's Day, but who says that Moms can't enjoy fishing too? If your Mom is one of those moms who love fishing or would love to try, the Fishing Opener is usually before Mother's Day.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources hosts a Take a Mom Fishing Weekend with events at parks and lakes across the state. Moms fishing with their child can fish for free all Mother's Day weekend long.

Get a fishing license, tips on good places to go fishing, and Fishing Opener events, at the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources website.

06 of 12

Go to a Museum

Museum of Russian Art
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A little-known museum, but one of the finest and most unique collections in Minneapolis. TMORA is in South Minneapolis, in a former church, and the grand building is an appropriate backdrop to the works of Russian art, which range from ancient to modern.

Other museums ideal for Mother's Day include the​ Minneapolis Institute of Arts, where there's always something new to discover, and the Weisman Art Museum. Both offer free admission.

07 of 12

Get a Photo With Mom

Outside the Eastman Nature Center
Eastman Nature Center

The Three Rivers Park District has plenty of events all year round and you and Mom may enjoy something special on Mother's Day. There's a special Mother's Day photo booth with nature-themed props at the Eastman Nature Center, and Family Fun Days events at several parks. 

08 of 12

Join in the Pow Wow

2019 Little Earth Mothers Day Powwow
Crazy Crow  

The 2019 Little Earth Mother's Day Powwow is an ideal thing to do with Mom on May 11, 2019, at Cedar Field Park. The free Little Earth Mothers Day Powwow celebrates a spirit of community.

The Little Earth Mother's Day Powwow is a family-friendly event and you'll enjoy sitting on the lawn (or bring a lawn chair) to enjoy the dance, song, and festivities, with the grand entry starting things off at 1 p.m. 

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09 of 12

Build a Robot

Snapology Discovery Center

Mom (or a grandmother or aunt) teams up with a child (ages 5 - 10) in this robotics workshop at the Snapology Discovery Center on Saturday, May 11, 2019, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Once you build and program the robot, you'll add sounds, make them move, and have fun with the other teams. The cost is $20 for the two-person team. 

10 of 12

Do Some Farming

Barn at Oliver Kelly Farm
Oliver Kelly Farm  

On Mother's Day weekend families are invited to bring Mom to the Oliver Kelley Farm, a traditional 1860s farm in Elk River, for free (when accompanied by a child), see the baby animals, tour the farm, and even help with some planting. Hours are Saturday 10 a.m.—5 p.m. and Sunday 12 noon—5 p.m.

11 of 12

Ride the Trolley

Como-Harriet 40th anniversary -
August Schwerdfeger/Flickr    

On Mother's Day Moms ride free on the historic Como-Harriet Streetcar Line from 12:30 to 8:30 p.m. The Minnesota Streetcar Museum is a living history museum where you can ride on an early-1900s historic trolley car. Volunteer crews provide a bit of history of the early Minneapolis streetcar system. After your ride, enjoy the beauty of Lake Harriet, part of Minneapolis’ famed Chain of Lakes.

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Tour the James J. Hill House

James J. Hill House, a national landmark in Saint Paul, MN

On Mother's Day Saturday, tour the James J. Hill House, a 36,000-square-foot Gilded Age mansion, in St. Paul from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (admission fee). The tours focus on Mary Hill who was Mom to 10 children. On Sunday you can still tour but it will be a self-guided tour. 

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