Though they've only been leading paddling tours for a few years, the certified guides of Stand Up MN have already helped thousands of people explore the Twin Cities' local waterways up close. After equipping their guests with standup paddleboards, personal flotation devices, and ample training, they embark on trips along the quiet stretch of the Mississippi River that cuts through their urban landscape.
From St. Paul, groups glide under bridges and pass idyllic natural areas—and from Minneapolis, they can take a break from paddling to high-five low-flying birds from a rope swing over the water. Stand Up MN also leads extended paddling tours to Taylors Falls, where state parks and tumbling waterfalls abound. These excursions are complemented by the company's special events, which include speed-dating events at which participants spend most of the time hanging out while paddleboarding.
In the olden days, racetracks employed ladies on roller skates to deliver axle grease to steam-powered racecars so that they could maintain their blistering pace of 9 miles per hour. When a scuffle between two such ladies proved more entertaining than the race itself, roller derby was born. Today’s Groupon gets the Twin Cities its daily recommended dosage of kinetic estrogen. For $6, you get a general-admission ticket (a $12 value on the day of the game) to see the North Star Roller Girls battle it out in a flat-track roller-derby bout. During the Wild Wild Midwest double-header on Saturday, March 20, at 7:30 p.m., the Banger Sisters take on Delta Delta Di, while the Violent Femmes face off against the Kilmore Girls. This will be the final grudge match before the championship bout on April 10. Customers may purchase up to four Groupons. General admission tickets are good for chair and bleacher seating or standing, but not trackside seating.
Taste of Stillwater's annual festival, established in 2011, directs the spotlight toward the palate-popular offerings of local wineries, breweries, restaurants, and food trucks. Throughout the daylong celebration, empty tummies shuffle from station to station filling up on samples of refreshing beverages and foods, fueling bodies to explore the festival grounds' shopping opportunities and to tour Saint Croix Vineyards. Families stake their claim on the lawn area with blankets, foldable chairs, and giant bronze statues of their great-grandfathers before they feast their ears on live music. Taste of Stillwater dedicates a portion of its proceeds to charities including Valley Outreach, a community-based nonprofit organization that supports low-income people with donations of food, clothing, and other necessities.
A pool table has six pockets, but the pool sharks at Two Stooges Sports Bar & Grill can sink 8-balls into 258 of them. That's because 43 tables inhabit the bar’s top 10(In North America) rated billiard room, open until 2 a.m. nightly. But the fun at Two Stooges spills out of the pool hall and on to the karaoke stage on Tuesdays and Sundays, and on weekends extends to the dance floor when live bands and Djs spin groove –worthy tunes.
After taking in all the live entertainment at Two Stooges—not to mention games and fights shown on flat-screens throughout the bar—guests can dig into snacks of boneless wings and juicy burgers. More substantial entrees include pasta dishes and a 10-ounce ribeye topped with butter compound, not to be confused with a secret building in which to hoard butter.
Everyone has different ways to gear up for their meal on Thanksgiving Day: some eat a huge breakfast to rev up their stomachs, others abstain from food all day to preserve their appetite. But at Lake Calhoun Park on Thanksgiving morning, some people won't be thinking about food at all; instead, they'll be running. Racers of all ages will congregate around the Beast 2 Feast start line on Lake Calhoun Parkway, where they'll depart on a timed run/walk around a scenic 3.1-mile course that encircles the lake.
The race isn't just for the sake of holiday celebration, though. It was inspired for more charitable reasons: the majority of the proceeds go to the Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota, with additional funding given to the Minnesota Heat youth basketball association. Those interested in registering can do so as individuals or get a team together, and friends and family are encouraged to come out as spectators and cheer the racers on.