ST. CROIX INSIGHTS

9 Must-Do Activities in Minnesota this Fall

BY BRETT ANDERSON/ST.CROIX ADVISORS, LLC

1. Sever’s Fall Festival

Get out and enjoy the fall festivities – from September 7th through October 28th – Fridays through Sundays. You can pick your own pumpkins, gourds, squash, apples and honey. There’s an obstacle course, corn maze, corn pit, petting zoo, live music, climbing features, photo opportunities, and shows included in your admission fee. There are also activities that can be purchased at an additional charge including pony rides, giant slide, pumpkin blasters, camel rides, food & beverages, hay rides, arcade, facepainting, and more!

2. Pine Tree Apple Orchard

If you’re looking for fun for the whole family, look no further. Starting with the first apple trees planted in 1904, this has become a much larger operation with expanded apple varieties and additional fall activities. Pine Tree Apple Orchard offers locally grown apples, pick your own pumpkins, a corn maze, wagon rides, pony rides, homemade bakery products, caramel apples, and more! Whether you want to pick your own apples or grab some that have already been picked for you, this is your one stop shop for all things fall.

3. Halloween in Anoka

Anoka, Minnesota is believed to be the first city in the United States to put on a Halloween celebration to divert its youngsters from Halloween pranks. By the 1930s, the festivities had expanded, and in 1937, a 12-year-old proclaimed Anoka Halloween Capital of the World while in Washington, D.C. Activities have included fireworks displays, royalty coronations, concerts, dances, house decorating contests, celebrity appearances, storytelling, and much more. To this day, large parades and costumed children are traditions that live on. There is an events calendar on the website with complete details.

4. Valleyfair – Fun & Fright

Saturdays and Sundays from September 22 – October 28, enjoy fall the way you do best. During the day, enjoy your favorite rides, live entertainment, trick or treating, maze, and other not-so-scary Halloween activities. At night, ValleySCARE offers more than 75 rides, haunted mazes, scare zones, and monsters prowling in the park. Beware: this intended for ages 13+ (PG-13 if you will). Purchase tickets online in advance to save some money!

5. Take a Hike

The fall colors in Minnesota are absolutely breathtaking. Get outside and take them in. Whether you visit Minnehaha Falls, make a trip to Duluth, or venture into your own backyard, there is something for everyone. Take a picture of your favorite tree each season and watch as the colors change and the leaves fall off. Attend a class to learn about tapping into maple trees, or hike until your feet hurt. Get outside. It becomes a lot harder when winter rolls around, so do it this fall.

6. Go to a Vikings Game

What better way to spend a fall Sunday than at a Vikings game? With the new stadium and a sea of purple, the crowds are electric at each and every game. If you’re looking for a deal, check out some of the Facebook groups that buy/sell tickets or wait until the day of to find a great deal. This is also the perfect gift if you have a loved one with a fall birthday! Make sure to practice your SKOL chant before heading out.

7. Celebrate Oktoberfest

On October 17, 1810, Crown Prince Ludwig of Bavaria celebrated his marriage to Princess Therese with one of the grandest festivals Munich has ever known. Twin Cities Oktoberfest brings together food, fun and beer on the Minnesota State Fairgrounds in the Historic Progress Center Building. This two-day event (October 5-6, 2018) features Summit Brewing Company’s Oktoberfest brew and a selection of other Summit beers, wines and cider, traditional German food, live music and entertainment, great people watching, festival games, shopping, and more. Each ticket includes admission, a beer stein, and your first beer!

8. Zombie Pub Crawl

Certified by the Guiness Book of World Records as the “World’s Largest Gathering of Zombies,” the ZPC gathers thousands upon thousands of undead souls into the streets, bars, and taprooms of Minneapolis for a night of pub crawling, dancing, world-class live entertainment, and all sorts of other fiendish fun. Costumes encouraged-the gorier, the better! Featuring three outdoor stages, dozens of food trucks, tons of great live music, the World Brain-Eating Championships, carnival rides and games, and so much more. Check it out before you die.

9. The Dead End Hayride

“Making your way through the woods you will likely encounter countless characters who have taken refuge within the woods and are taking advantage of the seemingly endless supply of bodies produced by the asylum … you may even come to find that your own sense of reality is slipping away as some of your greatest fears play out in front of you and perhaps even grab, and pull you in to join them.” If you don’t like to be spooked, this hayride is not for you. However, if you’re up for the challenge, buy your tickets online to save money and choose a date in advance before it’s sold out.

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