Minneapolis' Public Art and Public Parks
City Tour, 9 and 20 mile loops
Bike along some of Minneapolis' most popular scenic routes with plenty of stops for public art of all kinds along the way.
Map & Logistics
Nice Ride - $6 daily
- Minneapolis by Bike - $40 daily for hybrids, kids, trail-a-bikes and trailers
- Freewheels - $38+ daily for hybrid, road and tandem bikes and trailers
- Calhoun Cycle - $45 daily for a Brompton folding bike includes lights, fenders, bag (optional), lock (optional), and 1 helmet.
- Start / End of route - take Red, Green or Blue lines to the Nicollet Mall station and bike 10 minutes to Walker Art Center.
What to bring?
Cash for a couple food / drink rest stops and peeled eyes to spot public art along the way.
A. Minneapolis Sculpture Garden 725 Vineland Pl | www.walkerart.org | 612-375-7600
There's so much more to the sculpture garden than "Spoon Bridge and Cherry," but that's here too. Plan to spend some time - there's a lot to see!
B. Rockman by Tom Otterness and Martha Schwartz S 4th St and 3rd Ave S
Tom Otterness's cartoonish characters are often a candy-coating for pointed political depictions of our society. In "Rockman," the internationally-known sculpture collaborated with landscape designer Martha Schwartz. The miniature trees and round mounds brilliantly play with one's sense of scale, while the characters and log benches allude to Minnesota's timber and taconite mining industries.
C. Gold Medal Park Second Street and 11th Avenue South | www.nps.gov | 612-904-5607
The top of the spiral has benches and shade, and a nice view. It's a popular spot for group rides to meet up. If you don't mind the hill, ride on up, take a seat, and enjoy the view.
D. Martin Olav Sabo Bridge Hiawatha Trail and Midtown Greenway
After climbing up the hill that is the Martin Olav Sabo memorial bridge, reward yourself with a nice view of the Minneapolis skyline. You haven't really biked in Minneapolis until you've stood on top of the bridge and taken a photo of your bike in front of that skyline to prove it.
E. Taoyateduta/Little Crow Mask by Ed Archie Noisecat Minnehaha Falls
While you enjoy the beautiful view that is Minnehaha Falls, don't miss the sculptural mask of Dakota chief Little Crow. Fun fact: Minnehaha Falls is a redundant name, because Minnehaha is derived from the Dakota word for waterfall.
1. Untitled by Jim Hodges
aka the shiny boulders
2. Sky Pesher by James Turrell
The sculpture garden is great, but don't miss out on the sculptures across the street on the Walker's lawn! Sky Pesher (2005) is a gem hiding in plain sight. It looks like HVAC from the outside, but inside is a lovely sky space by California Light and Space artist James Turrell.
3. Izzy's Ice Cream 1100 S 2nd St | izzysicecream.com | 612-206-3356
Tucked into a quiet corner in the Mill City area, just across from Gold Medal Park, you will find Izy’s Ice Cream kitchen and scoop shop. Every single and double scoop comes with an “Izzy Scoop” perched on top of your cone or a cup-a trademarked 3/4 size scoop of another ice-cream of your choice. Yum! Su-Th 12-10pm / Fr-Sa 12-10:30pm
4. Serval Mural by Broken Crow Hiawatha Bike Trail
Servals race the light rail trains in this mural by local group Broken Crow.
5. AIOIC Mural Hiawatha Bike Trail
Buffalo and traditional patterns merge in this mural that adorns the back of the AIOIC building was a collaboration between AIOIC, the Native American Community Development Institute, the University of Minnesota, and the Center for Urban and Regional Affairs.
5. UTILITY BOX by Megan Moore Midtown Greenway
Many neighborhoods in Minneapolis are beautifying their surroundings by hiring artists to re-decorate the standard green utility boxes that dot the city. The ones by local artist Megan Moore along the east end of the Greenway are the prettiest in the city. Keep your eyes peeled, because there are several!
6. Shoes & Benches by Greg Ingraham and Teri Kwant Midtown Greenway
The benches along the Greenway were designed by artists Greg Ingraham and Teri Kwant, as were the bronze shoes that rest on top of them.
7. Sea Salt Eatery 4825 Minnehaha Ave | www.seasalteatery.com | 612-721-8990
Sea Salt is open April through October. It's a local favorite and South Minneapolis tradition. 7 days 11am-8pm
8. Cottontail on the Trail (Minnehaha Bunny) by Jeff Barber Minnehaha Creek Trail
This larger-than-life bunny is both a landmarker and an icon along the Minnehaha Parkway.
9. Blue Ox Coffee 3740 Chicago Ave S | www.blueoxcoffeecompany.com | 612-825-6650
Blue Ox makes serious pour over, and if you get there early enough, they might still have some Donuts from The Baker's Wife, the best bakery in Minneapolis. M-F 7am-7pm / Sa-Su 8am-5pm
10. Wish Well by Mike Hoyt3501 Chicago Ave S | ArtsonChicago.org | 612-825-0459
Powderhorn and surrounding neighborhoods in South Minneapolis are a hot-bed of socially engaged art. "Wish Well" exemplifies that work. Read neighbors wishes for the area while you enjoy some shade outside of Pillsbury House + Theatre.
11. Freewheel Midtown Bike Center Midtown Greenway at Chicago | www.freewheelbikecenter.com | 612-238-4447
Bathroom, water bottle filling, cafe and full service bike shop! M-F 7am-7pm / Sa-Su 9am-5pm