Looking to save money, but still need to get outdoors and enjoy a summer vacation? This 4th of July weekend is the perfect time for a “staycation” — no travel necessary! Here are some ideas for your perfect local vacation that will get you off the couch and enjoying all that Minnesota has to offer.
1. Play frisbee at your local park
Pack up a picnic lunch and head to the park for a game of frisbee in the grass. Spend time with your family or friends while experiencing Minneapolis’ renowned park system. The Wabun Picnic Area at Minnehaha Park even has a frisbee golf course for anyone to try! Bonus: bring a hammock to rest in the shade afterwards.
2. Take a free fitness class
The School Yard outside of the McNamara Alumni Center is partnering with the University of Minnesota’s Recreation and Wellness Center to offer free outdoor classes on Thursday’s at noon, including Yoga, Zumba and Bootcamp! And if you are an early riser, the Lake Harriet Yoga Project offers free yoga classes starting at 6:30 am every day during the summer.
3. Canoe or kayak along the Mississippi
The Minneapolis Outdoor Center has canoe equipment available for checkout all summer. Just head to the nearest public boat launch and paddle your way along the beautiful Mississippi River, or any of the nearby lakes.
4. Go rock climbing
The University Recreation and Wellness Center Climbing Gym is only $15 for a day pass and boasts “a climbing wall spanning up to 33 feet in height with over 3,200 square feet of climbing surface”. Use your staycation to show off your mountaineering skills!
5. Enjoy a beach getaway
Make your staycation official by heading to one of the many beaches in or around Minneapolis. Check out the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board website or the St. Paul Parks & Recreation website for all the details on water activities, including water parks and fishing too!
6. Go mall walking at MOA
Feel like a tourist again and get exercise by walking at the Mall of America! Get there earlier or later to avoid heavy traffic, or go during the day and enjoy the people watching. For the serious mall walker there is even the MOA Mall Stars program, which offers store discounts, community walks and health events.
7. Discover the best biking city in the U.S.
Rent a Nice Ride for the weekend or check out a bike from the Minneapolis Outdoor Center, and explore the city on two wheels. If you’re feeling extra adventurous, bike part of the Grand Rounds Scenic Byway encircling Minneapolis, and experience beautiful natural scenery along the way.
And at the end of your busy staycation weekend, don’t forget to watch the Fourth of July fireworks! View them from the Stone Arch Bridge, the Gold Medal Park, Lake Calhoun, or numerous other places around the city. Have a great staycation!