Monday, July 16
Hello, Regal Guardians! Looks like it might hit 100 degrees again today. Since our bodies are supposed to run 98.6, does that mean we start cooking when it's over that temperature? Whatever the answer, a body of water would feel real nice. The Como Regional Park Pool opened this year to loads of pomp and circumstance. Well, to lots of jumping and splashing, anyway. If you can wait until this Friday, you can get in for $2 each. If not, a family of up to five people costs $16. But, in exchange for your hard-earned Jackson, you'll have access to a lap pool, basketball hoops, a slide, diving boards, and an aquatic climbing wall. There's also a zip line and a lazy river. Now that sounds like my kind of river.
Tuesday, July 17
The Caponi Art Park in Eagan continues its Family Fun Tuesdays program this summer with an eclectic mix of performers every Tuesday at 10 am. It is technically free, but they do suggest a donation of $4 per person. Today the O'Shea Irish Dance troupe demonstrates and teaches some fancy steppin' to the assembled masses. They will also perform as part of the Summer Performance Series at Caponi's Theater in the Woods on Sunday evening at 6:30 pm. If you can't make it today, the next two Tuesdays feature percussion groups. Who doesn't like to bang on stuff? After the program, take a stroll around the grounds and check out the sculptures. There's also a great tree swing to ride on your way out.
Wednesday, July 18
Here is a second opportunity to go back to school for the Summer Music Festival at Northrop! The Premiums will be performing for free from noon to 1 pm. If you only catch one Northrop concert this summer, this might be the don't-miss. After all, the Premiums tour in an RV called the "Groove Thang." They'll be handing out free Vitamin Water again, and Cialis will have their infamous bathtubs on hand and full of ice if you want to take a dip to cool off. I made up the bathtub part.
Don't forget the Minneapolis Aquatennial is going on all week as well. Tonight there is a pre-parade party at Loring Park from 5-7:30 pm with the Torchlight Parade following at 8:30 pm.
Thursday, July 19
The Minnesota Landscape Arboretum is always free for kids 12 and under, but it's only free for adults after 4:30 pm on the third Thursday of summer months . . . and that's today! Once you get there, consider taking the Bug O' Orienteering Challenge to sample the highlights of the arboretum while testing your map-reading skills. I trust the chances of Bug O' turning into the Blair Witch Project are pretty slim. After mastering that challenge settle in Under the Oak for a little free creative play or check out the clay house that is taking shape as part of DIRT-O-RAMA. Dirt and Rama in the same place? I'm there.
Friday, July 20
We all have those items in our garages or basements, right? The equipment we bought because we were going to start snowboarding on a regular basis so, "Why not buy one? It'll pay for itself after four times," then using the chiropractor way more than the snowboard? It is for us that Minnesota State Parks created the free "I Can" program to give people a chance to try new things without investing in a lot of equipment. Fridays from 3-5 pm at Fort Snelling State Park You Can Fish and all you have to do is show up! The park provides the poles, the bait, and the tips so you can concentrate on fishing. They'll even bait the hook for you! You'll have to release what you catch, but that's OK. Too much city fish might effect your mind and body and lead to bad decisions. Like buying a snowboard when you're over 30.
Saturday, July 21
If you're willing to travel 45 minutes northeast to Interstate State Park you can try your hands and feet at climbing the cliffs along the St. Croix River. This free experience is designed for first-time climbers over the age of four and, like I Can Fish, I Can Climb provides everything you need to get started. You'll want to register for a climb time by calling 866-857-2757. I jumped off those cliffs back when I was young and foolish. Now that I'm old(er) and foolish, maybe I'll climb up them.
If cliff climbing is more excitement than you're looking for, there is another Kidical Mass bike ride planned for today as well. Meet at Brackett Park at 9 am for the ride to Minnehaha Park, stopping to tour the Dowling Gardens on the way.
There's one more option that a buddy just sent my way. If you're a Hip-Hop dance fan (I kind of am, thanks to TV's So You Think You Can Dance) you might want to check out the 4th Annual Groundbreaker Battle Festival put on by the Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts. The Cities' best B-Boys & Girls will be competing outdoors in downtown Minneapolis for the title of "Minneapolis' Best Dance Crew." My friend assures me the music will be appropriate for little B-Boys & Girls and it's free to attend. The festival begins at 11:30 am with workshops on Hip-Hop and spoken word. It looks like the dancing starts at 2 o'clock and runs until 8 pm when the best crew is crowned.
Have fun and, hey! Be careful out there.