Welcome!

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Thanks for coming to FreeFamilyFun.org.  We have moved to FamilyFunTwinCities.Com.  If you are with an organization that provides free entertainment to families and would like to get listed, please email us at freefamilyfunsite@gmail.com.  We still check our e-mail.

The Free Family Fun Calendar is still maintained, but come over to our new site where we host two calendars — one with free events and one with other fun family events.

 Also, we are still maintaining our Facebook page.  Come on over and chat with us and get links to new content.

Sometimes we pin new content, too.  Follow Me on Pinterest

Free List for April 12-14, 2013

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If you would like a list of Free Family Events happening this weekend, you can find us at FamilyFunTwinCities.com.

Scarletta Press at the Red Balloon Bookshop.

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Get all the details at
FamilyFunTwinCities.Com →

I ART Families at Minnesota Museum of American Art

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I ART Families
Minnesota Museum of American Art
Saturday, April 13, 2013 1 – 3 p.m. 
FREE!  
During the month of March three St. Paul libraries played host to families looking to celebrate their uniqueness through art. Professional artists from Rage 2 Order were…
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Free Family Fun Day: Natural Toys

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featured image Free Family Fun Day: Natural ToysFree Family Fun Day: Natural Toys
Carl Kroening Interpretive Center
4900 Mississippi Court Minneapolis, MN 55430
Sunday, April 14th 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
This week at Carl Kroening Interpretive Center’s Free Family Fun Day, you can challenge your family and friends to whistle an…
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Help build the puppets for the In the Heart of the Beast MayDay Parade!

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mayday workshop kids

In the Heart of the Beast Puppet Theatre
1500 East Lake Street
Minneapolis, MN 55407
Saturdays 9-11am April 6, 13, 20, 27
Saturdays 1-3pm April 6, 13, 20, 27
Tuesdays 7-9pm April 9, 16, 23, 30
Thursdays 7-9pm April 11, 18, 25, May

Do you and your family want to participate in the creation of the MayDay Parade?  During the month of April, the In the Heart of the Beast Puppet Theatre is transformed into a giant studio where staff artists and volunteers create the MayDay Parade. Workshops are free and open to the public.  What a fun way to be creative together and give back to the community.

MayDay Workshop HOBT

  • An artist will introduce you to the parade theme by showing you the giant storyboard (a visual script).
  • You select a section of the parade to work on, find the artist in charge of that section, and set to work!
  • Artists will guide you.
  • You can either make your own creation which you can keep after the parade, or help with the larger parade floats.
  • Typically, you’ll need 3 or 4 sessions to complete a project, but you can come to as many or as few as your schedule allows.

Other Details

  • Workshops are free, although donations are graciously accepted, always welcome, and much needed.
  • Children under 10 must be accompanied by an adult.
  • Wear “painting” clothes.
  • Bring recycled items (if you can): small plastic tubs with lids, brown paper bags, newspapers, fabric, sheets, latex paint, bamboo, scissors.
  • No reservations required. Just Come! Except, if you are coming with a large group, come! But please let call 612-721-2535, or e-mail llarue@hobt.org.

Something for Your Little Hot Wheels Fan: Be The World’s Best Driver – Hot Wheels Roadshow

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Sunday, 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Kmart
245 E Maryland Ave., St. Paul, MN
Event Price: free

Hot Wheels latest advertising campaign is “Be The World’s Best Driver”.  Honestly, we watched a lot more toy commercials than usual this weekend, and this was one of the least annoying.  Most of the girl toys are downright objectionable or just seem like something they’ll tire of in a day.  If you read my blog much at all, you probably know I hate all but a few toys.  Hot Wheels are on my short list of acceptable toys (This just applies to the cars themselves and the orange tracks we had 30 years ago.  The accessories still fall under my “makes-kids-dumber” conclusion).

Anyhoo, The Hot Wheels Roadshow is coming to Minnesota this weekend.  If you happen to be near the Maryland Avenue Kmart in St. Paul on Sunday, you can have some Hot Wheels fun, including:

  • Check in and get a free “Pit Pass” Souvenir limited Edition Lanyard
  • See the life size 2013 Hot Wheels Camaro
  • Race your favorite Hot Wheels Car on the 20 foot long Downhill 5-Lane Track
  • Show off your Precision Skills by shooting the latest Innovation in Hot Wheels, “Spinshotz”, along Tracks and Targets
  • Compete to beat the Hot Wheels Long Jump World Record!
  • Enter the “Be The Worlds Best Driver” Sweepstakes for a Chance to win a Trip to Indianapolis 500

I have two little little boys and one big boy who would really enjoy this outing.  Actually, the girls will, too.

Wreck-It Ralph Tomorrow at Central Green Gym — April Indoor Movies

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Tuesday evenings
Central Green Gym,
3400 4th Ave. S Minneapolis.
7:00 p.m.
 

The Minneapolis Parks Board invites you to Stop in and enjoy a free movie on the big screen. The indoor movies series is an extension of the Movies in the Parks series. The indoor series is free for the whole family and will be every Tuesday evening throughout April beginning at 7:00 pm. Two of the five April films are family friendly.  Tomorrow is one of the two with Wreck-It Ralph.  The line up is as follows:

 April Films

April 2: Wreck-it Ralph

April 9: Twilight Breaking Dawn Part 2

April 16: Life of Pi

April 23: Alex Cross

April 30: Bully

For more information please visit www.minneapolisparks.org or call 612-230-6479.

THE BIG NEWS WE’VE ALL BEEN ALLUDING TO:

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Starting in early April Free Family Fun, Twin Cities Family and Tour Moms will be joining together to create a one-stop shop for family fun in the Twin Cities.  I will still be covering mostly Free activities, but there will be so much more, too. 

We are all so very excited about this merger.  We are three moms with 11 kids between us.  We all believe in the power and importance of family and want to make as much of our kid’s short childhoods as possible.  We know you do too and we can’t wait to share this next phase with all of you.

Stay tuned for all the details and the big reveal coming in early April!!!

RSVP Now for Free Bakken Event

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 Here is an invitation I received in my e-mail: 

In support of the current art exhibit, Electrified Drawings, The Bakken Museum will be hosting a special lecture by artist David Goldes titled “Electricity and Water.” 

Mr Goldes, who is trained as both an artist and a scientist, will share how science has influenced his art. Many of his past projects stem from an investigation of physical phenomena such as water properties, air pressure and electricity. He will describe how early 19th century science experiments inspired him to send high voltage electricity through his drawings, documented in the current exhibition. 

This electrifying event is free and open to the public!

Please send an RSVP to Suzy Piper at piper@thebakken.org if you plan on attending.

Easter at the Zoo, Music Under Glass and a Traditional Family Meal

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Music Under Glass – Dustin Lee Band
Marjorie McNeely Conservatory
3/31/2013
4:30 pm to 6:30 pm

A few years ago, we went to the zoo on Easter.  It was a surprisingly busy day.  It wasn’t so busy that I wouldn’t do it again, though.  This year, since Easter falls on March 31st, it is the last day of the winter hours.  The zoo will close at 4:00.  This gives you just enough time to head over to the conservatory to watch the Dustin Lee Band.

We won’t be visiting or having visitors this year for Easter but we would still enjoy the traditional sit down meal.  We probably won’t try to do it all, but if we did, a family afternoon at the zoo, followed by slowcooker Easter dinner is still a pretty laid back way to celebrate Easter. A Year of Slow Cooking has several traditional recipes.

Free Family Fun Day: Herons and Egrets of Minnesota

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What kinds of herons live in our parks? What is the difference between a heron and a crane? Learn about these long-legged birds using toys, decoys and an active quiz! Drop in to Carl Kroening Interpretive Center anytime between 1:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. Sunday, March 24th for Free Family Fun Day.

If you want to come to this thing armed with facts or to study a little more when you get home, the Minnesota DNR’s Young Naturalists publication had this article in 1996.

Weekend with the Weisguides: Hand-Made Ceramics

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Sunday, Mar 24 2013 1:00 pm – 3:00 p.m.
Weisman Art Museum
333 East River Road, Minneapolis
Light refreshments will be served.

This month, the Weekend with the Weisguides features Hand-Made Ceramics. Visitors can learn more about the history of ceramics and about modern ceramists through free tours of WAM’s ceramics collection.

I believe that museum visits are more engaging for kids if they have some knowledge before the visit.  WAM will be showing the PBS episode of Craft in America: Crossroads, but I would prefer to watch it at home before the visit.  If you would too, you can click on the link to watch it.

There will be a hands-on ceramic project at the museum, and if you find the project fun, you can do more at home.  Deep Space Sparkle has directions for these beautiful flower dishes (made by 5-6 year old kids).  I would be proud to display these dishes.

 

Spring Fling – Books, Blooms & Beasts! at Como

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3/23/2013 to 3/24/2013
10:00 am to 4:00 pm

Como  Zoo is celebrating spring this weekend with a Spring Fling. Purples, blues, reds, and magentas will fill the Sunken Garden with the blooms of Tulips, Hyacinth, Asiatic lilies, Calla, Bearded Iris, Allium, Crocus and Grape Hyacinth. The Spring Flower Show will highlight the Hydrangea Arizona which blooms either red or magenta depending on how it is grown.  There will also be gardener talks, story time and crafts.

Rock the Cradle: March 24, 2013

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Last year, I swore off Rock the Cradle.  Don’t get me wrong; I think its awesome.  It’s just grown too large in the last few years.  However,  it looks like The Current has addressed some of the issues I had.

One problem was parking.  Public transportation isn’t really practical with a family of five; nor is it particularly practical for all those Current fans who are driving in from the suburbs.  Last year we drove around for an hour and finally found parking five blocks away.  It was cold.  It was icy.  We had a newborn (not really the Current’s fault).  This year, they’ve moved the event to this week, giving everyone a fighting chance for good weather.  Parking five blocks away, doesn’t seem like such a hardship in late March.  But also, they’ve started charging for parking near the building and offering a free shuttle service for those willing to park further away.  See the details below.

They have also requested (but did not mandate) that families RSVP, so they can have an idea (and therefore manage) what size crowd they will be dealing with.  You can help out with this by registering here.  To help alleviate some of the crowding, strollers are discouraged.  Honestly, I think The Current may need to start charging for this event in the future, so if you haven’t gone, this could be a good year to try it.

Rock the Cradle is a free day of fun for kids and their grown-ups held at two of the state’s premier arts and culture institutions: the Minneapolis Institute of Arts and the Children’s Theatre Company. Our annual kids’ event brings together families and social groups from all over the Twin Cities to enjoy music, art, books, theater and the community for a fun, entertaining and engaging day. We look forward to seeing you on Sunday, March 24!

– via Rock the Cradle: March 24, 2013 | The Current from Minnesota Public Radio.

Details

Sunday, March 24, 2013
11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Children’s Theatre Company/
Minneapolis Institute of Arts

2400 Third Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55404
Parking: Street and ramp parking are available around The Children’s Theatre Company and MIA sites. Event parking is available in the ramp next door to the CTC for a fee of $8. $8 Event Parking applies to all parking lots in the immediate vicinity of MIA/CTC, including surface lots (not just the ramp). Free parking and shuttle service available from the Wells Fargo headquarters parking lot on 28th Street and 4th Avenue. Shuttles will leave the lot at 15 minute intervals beginning at 10:00 a.m.
Parking map

Strollers and Such: In order to make this event as pleasant as possible for all of our guests, we request leaving strollers behind unless necessary. Some activity areas will have designated stroller parking. (See Guidelines for making your RTC visit as enjoyable as possible)

Activities

Note: all times are subject to change.

STORY TIME WITH THE CURRENT DJS
11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Minneapolis Institute of Arts Wing – Pillsbury Auditorium – 2nd floor
Sponsored by Chipotle Mexican Grill and Help Me Grow

Story Time returns with Current DJs reading some of their favorite kids books, complete with overhead projections for everyone to see.

Schedule

11 a.m. – Steve Seel
12 p.m. – Barb Abney
1 p.m. – Jacquie Fuller
2 p.m. – Mark Wheat
3 p.m. – Dave Campbell
4 p.m. – Andrea Swensson

**Strollers cannot go into the Pillsbury Auditorium. Please leave strollers in the designated area before entering.

KIDS’ DISCO AND PLAYATTA
All Day

Children’s Theatre Wing – Cargill Theater – 1st Floor
Sponsored by Pizza Luce

Join hosts from The Current for the biggest dance party in town! While you’re there, stop by the Playatta booth to experience an incredible digital playground!

Schedule
11 a.m. – 12 p.m. – Jacquie Fuller
12 p.m. – 1 p.m. – Mark Wheat
1 p.m. – 2 p.m. – Jake Rudh
2 p.m. – 3 p.m. – Jill Riley
3 p.m. – 4 p.m. – Mary Lucia
4 p.m. – 5 p.m. – David Campbell

**Due to the crowd size, we ask that you leave all strollers in the designated Stroller Zone so that the dance floor is as open as possible.

LIVE PERFORMANCES
Minneapolis Institute of Arts Wing – Reception Hall – 3rd Floor
Sponsored by Kinderberry Hill Child Development Centers & SmartMusic

Listen to our favorite kid’s bands singing songs that adults and kids can both enjoy together. Between sets, sing and dance with MacPhail Center for Music’s early childhood specialists! Join us for fun, interactive, hands-on musical activities. Be ready to move, groove and have fun with your little one!

11 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. – Guitar Party
11:30 a.m. – 12 p.m. – Movin’ and Groovin’ with MacPhail Center for Music
12 p.m. – 12:30 p.m. – The Bazillions
12:30 p.m. – 1 p.m. – Movin’ and Groovin’ with MacPhail Center for Music
1 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. – Duke Otherwise
2 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. – Guitar Party
2:30 p.m. – 3 p.m. – Movin’ and Groovin’ with MacPhail Center for Music
3 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. – The Bazillions
3:30 p.m. – 4 p.m. – Movin’ and Groovin’ with MacPhail Center for Music
4 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. – Duke Otherwise

ROVING MUSICIAN: CHRIS KOZA
All Day

Where’s Chris Koza? Listen for the sweet sounds of Chris Koza as he roams the galleries and event spaces throughout the day.

CHILDREN’S HOSPITALS AND CLINICS OF MINNESOTA PRESENT STAR STUDIO LIVE!
Minneapolis Institute of Arts Wing – Wells Fargo Community Room – 1st Floor
11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

“The Dude” from Star Studio, which is Children’s very own TV channel and studio, will be hosting a number of live show segments. These segments, which will include interactive games and educational entertainment, will also be broadcast to Children’s hospitals in Minneapolis and St. Paul so kids in their patient rooms can also join in the fun.

SING, PLAY, LEARN WITH THE MACPHAIL CENTER FOR MUSIC
Minneapolis Institute of Arts Wing – Friends Community Room – 1st Floor
11 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Join MacPhail Center for Music’s early childhood music specialists as we explore the magic of music and play. Through hands-on musical play activities, families will experience music’s impact on learning and reading readiness skills. Together we will sing, play instruments, rhyme, read, move, and create!

PLAY FROM SCRATCH
Minneapolis Institute of Arts Wing – Studio Classrooms 111-113
11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Boxes! Tubes! Tape! The raw materials that fuel kids’ creativity. Join Twin Cities toy company Play from Scratch for piles of hands-on creative play where kids get to invent and build their own toys.

BRAINS ON!
Minneapolis Institute of Arts Wing – Outside Studio Classrooms 111-113
11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Kids are smart, funny, and creative and that’s what powers the new show Brains On! Stop by the Brains On! table to learn more about the show, pick-up a temporary tattoo and get interviewed by the producers to help with future episodes.

It’s time to get your brains on!

ABC DJ WITH FREDDY FRESH
Minneapolis Institute of Arts Wing – Gallery 276 – 2nd Floor
11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Get your hands on some vinyl and learn how to scratch with DJ Freddy Fresh, known around the world as one of the most prolific and active underground dance musicians.

CHILDREN’S HOSPITALS AND CLINICS OF MINNESOTA FAMILY ROOM
Minneapolis Institute of Arts Wing Family Area – 1st Floor
All Day

Need a quiet space? Step into the Family Room to enjoy some downtime. Please help keep this a quiet space for those who need a break.

SNACK BAR
Children’s Theatre Wing – Cargill Theatre – 1st Floor
All Day

Provided by Mississippi Market Natural Foods Co-op

Koo Koo Kanga Roo at MIA Third Thursday

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I keep the Minneapolis Institute of Arts – Third Thursdays on my Family Fun calendar, because I know some of my readers have older children, but I don’t generally promote them.  Although they are open to the public, Thursday nights are generally geared toward adults (single adults really).  I have enough single friends to know they think kids should be left in the car whenever you are in a public place.  Dogs sure, but kids no way!!

But this month, Koo Koo Kanga Roo is the featured music act.  I think that is just asking for young families to descend on the MIA.  Thursday Night’s theme is “More Real? Part 1″ and activities run from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.  I think I would arrive early and clear out by 7:30 — it is a school night.

Concerts are more fun if you know the music.  If your kids don’t already know Koo Koo Kanga Roo, there is still time to study for this date.  You can buy their latest album and download older music HERE.

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