A Cultural Meander in Minneapolis
City Tour, 17 miles, 3-7 hours
Minneapolis is home to so many culinary, cultural, and scenic marvels, it's seems that around every corner you'll find another, oh, I've gotta go there sometime! So how about it? This route is perfect for a weekend meander, or a day you didn't know what to do with. Enjoy a day of exploring some of the best that the city has to offer. Hop off your bike to explore a great restaurant, shop one of the city's many fantastic boutiques, see a show, or take in a view. And when you're all done, raise a glass and toast a great day in a cozy Scandinavian speakeasy. You deserve it.
- Nice Ride - bike share stations noted in route map. $6 daily
- Calhoun Cycles - $45 daily for a Brompton folding bike includes lights, fenders, bag (optional), lock (optional), and 1 helmet
- Minneapolis by Bike - $40 daily for hybrids, kids, trail-a-bikes and trailers
What to Bring?
Camera; pannier, bag or basket for shopping; walking shoes
A. Stone Arch Bridge 1758 West River Rd N, Minneapolis | www.minneapolisparks.org | (612) 230-6400
This historic bridge dates back to 1882-83. With beautiful views of the Minneapolis skyline, the mighty Mississippi River, and St. Anthony Falls, the Stone Arch Bridge is recognized as a National Civil Engineering Landmark, and one of my favorite spots to be at for sunrise or sunset.
B. Guthrie Theater 818 S 2nd St, Minneapolis | www.guthrietheater.org (612) 377-2224
The Guthrie Theater led the Regional Theatre movement of the 1960's, and in 2006, moved into a new three-stage theatre complex on the river, boasting beautiful architecture by Pritzker Prize winner Jean Nouvel and glorious views from the 4th floor's "Endless Bridge." The Guthrie is also home to the Mill City Farmer's market during the summer and early fall. Grab a few things and call it a picnic on the grass of Gold Medal Park just to the East, and end your nosh with an ice cream from Izzy's.
C. Minneapolis Institute of Arts 2400 3rd Ave S, Minneapolis | www.artsmia.org | (612) 870-3000
I love to spend a day getting lost in the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. It's also a wonderful spot to grab the best latté in town from the mod-bar at Dogwood Coffee just inside! Children's Theatre Company is one of my favorite treasures in Minneapolis, with exciting and thoughtful work for the young (and young at heart) being done on both of the company's stages. While on the campus, poke around the art gallery on the first floor of the Minneapolis College of Art and Design. Every year, the week before Thanksgiving, the school hosts an art sale--so snag up your favorite pieces before that artist you love becomes the next Van Gogh!
D. TRUCE 1428 W 32nd St, Minneapolis | drinktruce.com | (612) 825-1684
You'll have a hard time choosing which of TRUCE's delicious juices you'll want for that perfect mid-adventure pick-me-up! Whether you need a Vaycay (carrot, lime, coconut), or something harder like the Hardcore Greens (kale, spinach, cucumber, chard, celery, parsley, lemon), the folks at TRUCE have got you covered with juices and nut milks made fresh each morning! I love how great I feel after spoiling myself with one of these, and they're right down the street from Calhoun Cycle, my favorite bike shop!
E. Lyndale Rose Garden 4124 Roseway Rd, Minneapolis | www.minneapolisparks.org | (612) 230-6400
The Lyndale Park Rose Garden is a lovely stop during peak display times (mid-June until late-October). Also in Lyndale Park, you enjoy the meditative calm of The Peace Garden, or do a bit of bird watching at the Roberts Bird Sanctuary.
F. Clancey's Meats & Fish 4307 Upton Ave S, Minneapolis | www.clanceysmeats.com | (612) 926-0222
I had to lump this whole neighborhood into one category because there's so much to love! Honeyshine boutique, Tilia, The Wild Rumpus (what I am convinced is the greatest Children's Bookstore in the world)...but perhaps my favorite spot in the neighborhood is Clancey's Meats and Fish. It may look like just another deli to you...but just try the Roast Beef sandwich, standard dress. Life. Changed.
G. Walker Art Center 1750 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis | www.walkerart.org | (612) 375-7600
This is the spot to see contemporary art in the Twin Cities. First Saturdays are free, and be sure to check out the Sculpture Garden. I always have a blast roaming the garden's tree-lined paths in any season, and the "Spoonbridge and Cherry" fountain by Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen is a cheery Minneapolis landmark not to be missed!
H. First Avenue & 7th St Entry 701 N 1st Ave, Minneapolis | first-avenue.com | (612) 338-8388
I love a concert at First Ave. This club was originally a Greyhound bus station, was Prince's main stage in the 80's, and has played host to more stars than you can count...although you CAN count the 537 stars on the exterior of the building commemorating some of the greats that have played there. It's an awesome room with all the energy of a large venue, while somehow maintaining a great sense of intimacy that makes seeing a concert here a treat.
I. Moose & Sadie's 212 3rd Ave, Minneapolis | www.mooseandsadies.com | (612) 371-0464
Two words: Ginger. Limeade. Boom! While you're in the neighborhood, Don't forget to also peek into next door neighbors, Martin Patrick 3, a beautiful store dedicated to furnishings, apparel, and apothecary perfect for the debonair man in your life. I love their selection of colognes, and have found many of my favorite fragrances to wear here! I also love the work of Interact Theatre (neighbor on the other side), whose mission "to create art that challenges perceptions of disability" never leaves me without feeling inspired.
J. Marvel Bar 50 N 2nd Ave, Minneapolis | www.marvelbar.com | (612) 206-3929
If I could only have one cocktail in this town (what a terrible thing THAT would be), I'd head straight to Marvel. I love sidling up to the bar on quieter Sunday or Thursday evenings, and putting the menu down in favor of saying, "I trust you. Surprise me! Play." These folks love their job and are endlessly knowledgeable, so go ahead--ask your bartender all the questions you've ever wanted to ask. While the cocktails may look intimidating, and the speakeasy entrance may seem pretentious...rest assured, you could not be in friendlier hands. Oh--and about that entrance...walk to the unmarked back patio door of The Bachelor Farmer, and then head straight to the purple door. You don't need a password. You're in.