Safety and excitement go hand-in-hand at Minneapolis Skydive, where experienced instructors guide thrill-seekers on adrenaline-filled leaps through the sky. First-timers are paired with one of these professionals for a tandem jump. After an instructional video and a Q&A session, guests board the plane, get strapped to their instructor's four-point harness, and leap into the sky. They'll move at speeds of up to 120 miles per hour during a 40?60-second free fall; then, once the parachute hatches from its cocoon, skydivers enjoy a 5?7-minute float to the ground. Videographers are available to capture the entire flight on camera, and the video can be delivered digitally. Minneapolis Skydiving Adventures also offers programs for advanced skydivers to become licensed and participate in solo jumps.
Visitors to the annual Twin Cities Beer Fest step through the gate, tasting glass in hand, and face an army of beer vendors, each ready to supply what could be a new favorite IPA, lager, or cider. The event brings together more than 100 craft beers, domestics, and imports from throughout the Midwest and the United States as well as Canada, Mexico, South American, Europe, and Asia.
Chefs sling an array of multicultural snacks in local food trucks such as Chef Shack, Smack Shack, Natedogs, Turkey To Go, and Barrio. As live music plays and the stomachs of competitive eaters let out their most intimidating growls, guests can sip and sample with a sense of pride, since a portion of the event's proceeds support the Emergency Food Shelf Network.
Reptiles aren't hard to love once you get to know them, and Cold Blooded Expos' events are an ideal way to do just that. At shows throughout the year and around the country, you'll find snakes, turtles, lizards, and maybe even some furry exotic friends such as hedgehogs and sugar gliders. (You'll also find food for them?live, frozen, or manufactured.) Vendors sell a variety of fun, creative toys, tanks, and bedding to keep them cozy.
Game Day Experiences whisks sports fans from their living rooms and into the stands of some of the most legendary football stadiums. They also arm fans with packages that include round-trip transportation, hotel rooms, and tickets to games, all led by a tour guide who is on hand to answer questions or draw up secret plays on an Etch A Sketch.
Laura Monahan comes from an artistic family, and spent her youth practicing sculpture, oil painting, pottery, and what turned out to be her ultimate passion: photography. Her ability to preserve candid moments has left an indelible impression?she has a published portfolio on three continents and product lines appearing at national retailers such as Hallmark and JCPenney. Laura?s photo shoots always take place outdoors, capturing newborns, older kids, and families in soft, natural lighting and poses that never appear unnatural. Her settings span the country from San Diego?s foamy beaches to Denver?s red-rock sunsets and into the Midwest?s autumn leaves, and she holds mom's night out events all over the country, including in Honolulu, San Diego, Minneapolis, Chicago, and Denver.
When the amusement value of people-watching starts to wear off, shoppers at the Mall of America can ascend to the fourth floor to Rick Bronson's House of Comedy for professionally dispensed laughs. In front of walls painted with off-kilter murals of the city skyline, nationally renowned comedians riff and banter on a thrust stage that makes it easy for audience members to offer hearty handshakes after each good joke. Meanwhile, guests munch pizza, burgers, and northern treats such as poutine and cheese curds. Past standup superstars include Norm MacDonald, Steve-O, Tom Green, and a who's-who of comics seen on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and The Late Show with David Letterman.