Written by Bridgette Outten
There are plenty of ways to combine fun and a bit of education into the holiday season. Some of the trips below are historical places in or around Minneapolis that you can visit anytime, but may have a bit of extra merriment right around now. So pack up the kiddies and prepare to take your trip—back in time. The best part? You can get to all these destinations on one tank of gas (or less).
36 Reservation Ave.
Why Go? A great way to explore history and nature, the monument is a throwback to the days when Native Americans would quarry the red pipestone found at the site. The grounds are sacred, as the people used the pipestone to carve in pipes used for prayer and many believed the pipe’s smoke carries prayers to the Great Spirit.
Insider Tip: Stop by the historic downtown Pipestone and take a picture in front of the largest pipe in the world at the Keeper's Gift Shop & Gallery.
Must Do: There are several outdoor tours to view different scenes of the quarry.
The Fine Print: The park grounds are open year round and are accessible with an entrance pass, which are $3 for ages 16 and up.
265 S. Exchange St.
Why Go? Experience the sights, sounds and tastes of what a Victorian Christmas was like in 1875.
Insider Tip: Enjoy free parking on-site. And while there is no dining facility at the house, candy and other sweets can be purchased inside the gift shop or you can pack a lunch.
Must Do: Sample homemade cookies fresh from the wood-burning stove and take a look at original family ornaments.
The Fine Print: Reservations are required for this tour through Dec. 31. The tours are held 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays and noon to 3:30 p.m. on Sundays. Fees are $11 for adults, $9 for seniors and college students; $7 for ages 6-17 and a $3 discount for Minnesota Historical Society (MNHS) member.
1620 Lindbergh Dr. S.
Why Go? Check out boyhood home of the aviator Charles A. Lindbergh, famous for his non-stop, solo, trans-Atlantic flight between New York and Paris in 1927. Built in 1906, the house is furnished with Lindbergh artifacts.
Insider Tip: You can bring your pets, as long as you keep them on a leash. (They’ll have to wait outside when you visit public buildings.)
Must Do: Don't miss the "Spirit of St. Louis" flight simulator.
The Fine Print: Open year round, but after Labor Day, reservations are required. General admission is $8 for adults; $7 for seniors and college students; $6 for ages 6-17 and free for children ages 5 and under and Minnesota Historical Society (MNHS) members.