Renowned theater, music and art centers make the Minneapolis-St. Paul area home to one of the most vibrant arts scenes in the country. Museums throughout the metro area feature science and history collections worth exploring. The Minnesota State Capitol and Minnesota History Center in St. Paul capture the essence of the state's beginnings. Get your ticket to a good time in the metro, where you’ll find theater, dance and musical performances, and art exhibits galore.
The metro area’s famed theater scene is diverse, featuring shows by many different age groups and performance levels. The Hennepin Theatre Trust is comprised of the Orpheum Theatre, State Theatre, Pantages Theatre and New Century Theatre bringing shows like “Wicked,” “Rent” and “Mamma Mia!” to life. The Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis is well-known for not only theater performances, but production, education and professional training. The building’s architecture will amaze you, too!
The Ordway Center for Performing Arts in St. Paul is recognized as one of the country’s leading not-for-profit performing arts centers, and is home to a wide variety of performances throughout the year that encompass the finest in American musical theater, world music, dance, jazz and vocal artists on its Main Hall and McKnight Theatre stages.
The Children’s Theatre Company in Minneapolis offers unique and unforgettable theater experiences. CTC has become the leading professional theater company for young people in North America, and among the three largest in the world.
For the best in one-stop entertainment value, visit Chanhassen Dinner Theatres, the nation’s largest professional dinner theater. Chanhassen has multiple theaters under one roof, and has served more than 10 million guests over the past four decades.
Museums & Places to See
As the saying “History repeats itself” goes, once you visit the Minneapolis-St. Paul area’s historic sites and museums, you’ll definitely become a repeat visitor. Experience a full living history program at Historic Fort Snelling in St. Paul, depicting Minnesota life in the 1820s with costumed guides presented daily during the summer and on weekends in May, September and October. In addition, on Mondays and Tuesdays in the summer, enjoy a variety of tours guided by the fort’s expert staff.
The 370,000-square-foot Science Museum of Minnesota in downtown St. Paul is built into the bluffs overlooking the Mississippi River and includes a temporary exhibit gallery and five permanent exhibition halls covering the topics of paleontology, physical sciences and technology, the human body, peoples and cultures, and the Mississippi River. The Science Museum constantly explores and implements new technologies to educate people about science; they are known worldwide for their interactive exhibits, dynamic traveling exhibitions and internationally distributed large-format films.
Founded in 1929 by Swedish immigrant newspaper publisher Swan J. Turnblad, the American Swedish Institute in Minneapolis is a historic house, museum and cultural center offering a variety of programs designed to celebrate Swedish culture. The Institute is housed in the former Turnblad mansion, which was built between 1904 and 1908 and is on the National Register of Historic Places.
Also in Minneapolis, discover the newly remodeled Walker Art Center & Sculpture Garden, which houses touring and permanent collections. The sculpture garden is one of the largest urban sculpture gardens in the country, and includes the famous Spoonbridge and Cherry sculpture.
Caponi Art Park in Eagan is another outdoor sculpture garden designed within the natural setting. This unique park welcomes more than 18,000 annual visitors and features one of the largest outdoor amphitheaters in the region. In Bloomington, Artistry is home to seven independent arts nonprofits, showcasing visual arts, education, placemaking and more.
The Ames Center in Burnsville has two theaters, a 1,014-seat proscenium stage and an intimate 150-seat Black Box Theatre. In addition to the theaters, the center has a spectacular 2,000-square-foot art gallery.