Now Booking: Key Attractions

By Explore Minnesota Tourism

Keepers of the Sacred Tradition of Pipemakers Culture Camp

PipemakersExperience Early American Indian culture & wilderness survival skills at the Keepers' cultural emursion camp on the prairie near Pipestone. Particpants set up and live in tipis, the traditonal Plains Indian portable shelter. Workshops on tribal life and crafts are taught. Evenings are spent around camp fires listening to Native American music and origin and creation tales. Camps are tailor-made to meet the time limitations and dates of the participants. For details of this annual event go to www.pipekeepers.org/culturecamp.htm.

Tall Ships®

Tall ShipsThe biggest Tall Ships Duluth event in the city's history is scheduled for July 24-30, 2013. It will encompass the Duluth's Waterfront, Bayfront Festival Park and Harbor Drive. Visitors will be able to participate in dockside tours, onboard tours, and day-sails. A full complement of vendors, artisans, musicians, reenactments and entertainment will be featured. For updates go to www.visitduluth.com/tallships2013. Bookings begin February 1, 2013.

Extreme Sandbox

Extreme SandboxLocated just one hour south of the MSP International Airport, the Midwest's only heavy equipment adventure, Extreme Sandbox, offers individuals and groups the thrill of operating excavators, bulldozers and skid steers in a safe, controlled environment. Expert instructors provide hands-on guidance through precision obstacle courses and activities. Absolutely no experience is required. For further information or to book contact www.extremesandbox.com or check them out on Facebook www.facebook.com/extremesandbox.

Vintage Band Festival: Northfield

Vintage BandA special event for the brass band and classic music lover, Northfield's Vintage Band Festival, will again be held August 1-4, 2013. Northfield, Minnesota is a historic, charming college community along the banks of the Cannon River and home to both Carleton College and St. Olaf College. It was also the scene of a famous shoot-out involving the legendary outlaw, Jesse James and his gang. The music festival uses performance venues throughout the town, featuring regional, national and international vintage bands. It's a great low-cost venue for groups; period costumes are welcome! www.vintagebandfestival.org

Country's Best at WE Fest

WE FestFor 30 years Detroit Lakes, Minnesota has been home to WE Fest, one of the nation's leading country music festivals. This year's mega-event takes place August 1-3, 2013, featuring Eric Church, Carrie Underwood and Keith Urban. WE Fest is held each year on the grounds of Soo Pass Ranch, a huge outdoor concert bowl surrounded by meadows and woods. In addition to over 9,000 campsites, lodging can be found in Detroit Lakes and nearby Minnesota communities, including Park Rapids, Alexandria, Moorhead and other resort communities in the state's northwest region. www.wefest.com

American Swedish Institute Expansion

American Swedish InstituteThe Nelson Cultural Center opened in 2012 at the American Swedish Institute (ASI) in Minneapolis. Swedish King Carl Gustaf and Queen Silvia officially opened the new center during a royal visit in October 2012. Long a destination for exhibits and celebrations of Nordic traditions and culture, through the addition of the new center, ASI will now include a mix of traditional and contemporary Scandinavian influences. The first exhibit will present trompe-l'oeil tapestries woven in a unique process. For information on the American Swedish Institute, go to www.asimn.org.

Ride a Bike in Minnesota

Bike MNMinnesota is rapidly gaining a national reputation as a great state for bicycling. The League of American Bicyclists ranked Minnesota the second most bike-friendly state in the U.S. And Minneapolis was named the top bike-friendly city in America by Bicycling Magazine. Recreational cyclists can ride one of the largest and best-developed collections of paved rail-to-trail bikeways in the country. There are about 1,000 miles (1,500 km) of paved trail in Minnesota so far, with many more miles planned. Cyclists who enjoy road touring can plan a wide array of routes along country roads. And mountain bikers will find plenty of terrain to explore in parks and forests across the state. A new bicycle-focused website offers information about trails, bike rentals and scheduled rides at www.pedalmn.org.

Mississippi River Cruises

American Queen Sails Again - September-October 2013

The largest steamboat ever built, the grand American Queen will once again sail between Saint Paul, Minnesota and St. Louis, Missouri in autumn 2013. A special three-night Saint Paul round-trip will also be offered for the first time. Fall color vacations salute nature's rich palette of reds, oranges and golds found on the Upper Mississippi. Pre- and post-tour overnights allow passengers to learn how the Mighty Mississippi has influenced the development of Minneapolis and Saint Paul.

American Cruise Lines Launches Mississippi River Cruise - October 2013

CruiseAmerican Cruise Lines is expanding to the Mississippi River system with a brand new authentic paddlewheeler, the Queen of the Mississippi, currently under construction in Salisbury, MD. The Queen of the Mississippi will recreate the grandeur of past riverboats while possessing the latest safety, environmental and construction technologies. The authentic paddlewheeler will feature the largest staterooms on the Mississippi, along with sliding glass doors to access private balconies on all third and fourth deck staterooms and suites. 85% of the Queen of the Mississippi's staterooms will feature private balconies. The Queen of the Mississippi will maintain the look of traditional Mississippi riverboats, and will offer an unmatched level of comfort. Features include six unique lounges, a library, an elegant dining salon, elevator service to all decks, and the exceptionally large staterooms found on all American Cruise Lines ships.

Minnesota Marine Art Museum, Winona

Throughout the year

Marine ArtPhoto exhibits by international renowned Minnesota photographers: Edward Curtis, Annie Griffiths, Les Blacklock and Jim Brandenburg. The Museum opened in 2006 features three major art collections, the Burrichter/Kierlin Marine Art Collection features oil paintings, watercolors and three-dimensional objects from a variety of countries and periods which were created by many of the world's most important marine artists. The Leo Smith Folk Art Collection consists of distinctive wood carved and hand painted sculptures that capture the spirit of small town river life. Finally, the Museum's permanent collection features historic marine art, artifacts and objects ranging from items such as personal letters from Lord Admiral Horatio Nelson to his wife to large stained glass windows displayed in the Museum's atrium. The museum recently opened a new expansion gallery and educational room. The new gallery features Impressionism and Hudson River school works from Renoir, Monet, Pissarro, Homer, Sisley, Cole, Bierstadt, Buttersworth, Silva, and includes one of Vincent van Gogh's first oil paintings.