12 Attractions in Maple Grove, Minnesota

Maple Grove is one of the larger and more popular suburbs of Minneapolis. Located in Hennepin County, it covers over 34 square miles of land area. Maple Grove has experienced rapid growth over the past few decades, more than doubling its population since 1990.

The city offers a high quality of life for residents and visitors. Maple Grove ranked third in Money magazine’s “Best Places to Live” list in 2008. It continues to rank highly on lists of best places to live in Minnesota.

Maple Grove has a strong economic base anchored by the Arbor Lakes business area. Here you’ll find office buildings for major companies like Cargill and Pepsi. Retail establishments also thrive in the city, especially in areas like The Shoppes at Arbor Lakes lifestyle center.

When it comes to attractions, Maple Grove offers both natural areas for outdoor exploration along with manmade venues for shopping and entertainment. The city has taken care to develop its park system and promote its ecological sites. At the same time, venues like the Maple Grove Community Center provide spaces for sports, arts, and community events.

This article explores 12 of the top attractions you’ll want to experience when visiting Maple Grove, Minnesota:

1. The Arboretum

The Arboretum in Maple Grove encompasses 65 acres of ecologically diverse landscape. Visitors can walk over 2 miles of paved trails that wind through prairie, wetland, and woodland environments.

This park is an excellent spot for bird watching. Over 100 bird species from songbirds to birds of prey can be spotted at The Arboretum. Some of the highlighted species include scarlet tanagers, eastern bluebirds, and barred owls.

In addition to birds, a variety of mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and native plants can be observed along the trails. Interpretive signs provide details about the different ecological communities in The Arboretum. Visitors will learn about conservation efforts while surrounded by natural beauty.

2. Weaver Lake Park

Weaver Lake Park is one of Maple Grove’s designated Great Parks. The park encompasses 137 acres surrounding Weaver Lake, one of several lakes within Maple Grove’s boundaries.

Visitors to Weaver Lake Park can enjoy fishing along its shoreline or take to the water by kayak, canoe, stand up paddleboard or rowboat. Rentals are available during warmer months. The lake is stocked for fishing and home to a variety of species including bluegill, crappie, largemouth bass, northern pike and walleye.

In addition to the lake recreation, Weaver Lake Park features hiking/biking trails, a performance pavilion, picnic areas and children’s playgrounds. The west side of the lake has an off-leash dog park as well.

With its combination of water activities plus land-based attractions, Weaver Lake Park offers year-round recreation in Maple Grove.

3. Central Park

For recreation closer to downtown Maple Grove, Central Park is a prime destination. As one of several Great Parks in Maple Grove, Central Park encompasses 118 acres packed with amenities.

Inside Central Park, you’ll find one of Maple Grove’s premier athletic complexes. Baseball and softball enthusiasts have access to eight fields set up for youth and adult leagues. For soccer players, there are nine full-sized fields along with a number of smaller fields for young players.

In addition, Central Park contains six tennis courts, two outdoor rinks, a skate park, hiking trails, picnic grounds and playgrounds. The Maple Grove Community Center is also located on these grounds, so you’re close to indoor recreation as well.

With this wealth of athletic facilities plus mixed-use trails and green spaces, Central Park is a hub for physical activity, community events and passive recreation in Maple Grove.

4. Elm Creek Park Reserve

For those looking to immerse themselves in nature, Elm Creek Park Reserve delivers. At over 5,000 acres, Elm Creek Park Reserve represents one of the largest urban park reserves in the nation.

Located in Maple Grove and neighboring Dayton, this park offers an extensive trail system that allows visitors to traverse prairie, wetland and woodland environments. Hiking/biking trails span over 25 miles in length. An equestrian trail adds almost 7 more miles for horseback riding as well.

In addition to its trails, Elm Creek Park Reserve provides opportunities for camping, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and kayaking. Anglers can cast lines for a variety of fish species in Rice Lake, Rush Lake, and Goose Lake.

With its combination of year-round recreation and educational programming, Elm Creek Park Reserve showcases the diverse ecosystems in Maple Grove’s natural areas.

5. Maple Grove Community Center

The Maple Grove Community Center is the hub for indoor recreation and programming in the city. The 170,000 square foot complex contains amenities like an indoor walking/running track, gymnasium, fitness center, 25-yard pool and splash area.

Beyond its health and wellness facilities, the Community Center offers spaces for specialized programming. There is a senior center, teen lounge area, arts and crafts rooms plus gathering rooms for events. Preschool programming takes places here as well.

Whether you’re focused on personal fitness, creative arts or community gatherings, the Maple Grove Community Center has the recreational and programming spaces covered. It serves recreation seekers across age groups and interests year-round.

6. The Shoppes at Arbor Lakes

The Shoppes at Arbor Lakes encompasses 300,000 square feet of premier shopping in an outdoor lifestyle center setting. With its mix of high-end retail stores, restaurants and entertainment options, The Shoppes draws visitors from around the Twin Cities metro.

Flagship retail locations include Crate & Barrel, Pottery Barn, Williams Sonoma, REI and a flagship Apple Store. Clothing boutiques like Anthropologie, lululemon and Evereve round out the upper scale apparel options.

There’s no shortage of specialty stores like Paper Source, Aveda Concept Salon or Wine Country Gift Baskets. When it comes to dining, choose from Barrel & Beam, Pinstripes Bowling Bistro or Crave American Kitchen. Then grab dessert at Nothing Bundt Cakes or Creamistry.

Beyond stores and eateries, The Shoppes at Arbor Lakes incorporates green spaces, fire pits and fountains around which visitors can gather and relax. Seasonal events like live outdoor music, holiday celebrations and a farmers’ market add to the amenities.

7. Rush Creek Golf Club

For golf enthusiasts, Rush Creek Golf Club offers a premier playing experience. This 18-hole, par-72 course was designed by renowned golf course architect Tom Lehman. Rush Creek showcases Lehman’s penchant for creating challenging risk/reward scenarios along with incorporating natural landscapes.

Abundant lakes, wetlands and stands of mature trees come into play on 14 of the 18 holes at Rush Creek. In addition to its scenery, the course features plush playing conditions. The medium-to-large greens have a reputation for smooth putting surfaces.

Before or after a round, golfers can relax in the nearly 25,000 square foot clubhouse. Grab a bite to eat at the Grille Room Restaurant while enjoying panoramic views of the golf course. Reserve a massage to ease tight muscles. Rush Creek has the amenities to complement a world-class round of golf.

8. Maple Grove Raceway

If motorsports are more your speed, catch all the action at Maple Grove Raceway. This nationally renowned drag racing complex hosts events throughout the warmer months. It’s earned the title of home to the fastest track in the nation.

Maple Grove Raceway contains a drag strip that spans 4,000 feet from starting line to finish. The strip has 30 degrees of banking that allows dragsters to reach speeds over 330 mph in under four seconds. The grandstand wraps around the strip so spectators get thrills from every run.

In addition to drag racing, Maple Grove Raceway holds autocross competitions on its expansive paved paddock area. Motocross and other racing events also take place occasionally at the venue. From street legal vehicles to highly tuned specialized racecars, Maple Grove Raceway attracts top-tier racers from around the country.

9. Alderwood Park

Situated in a quiet residential neighborhood, Alderwood Park delivers a peaceful escape amid Maple Grove’s busy suburban environment. The 25-acre park contains an extensive trail network that wraps around wetlands, meadows and a red pine forest.

These trails come alive with vivid wildflowers in spring and summer. Visitors can observe numerous species like Columbine, Ox-eye Sunflower, Boneset and more. Alderwood Park has been designated an official monarch butterfly habitat as well. Other wildlife sightings may include white-tailed deer, red fox and migratory songbirds.

In addition to natural scenery, Alderwood Park incorporates playground equipment, a basketball court and backstops for baseball/softball practice. Residents come here to walk dogs, have picnics, play casual sports games and connect with nature without leaving their neighborhood.

10. Main Street

Downtown Maple Grove may be small, but it exudes hometown charm. Known as The Main Street Area, downtown Maple Grove has undergone extensive renovation and beautification. Visitors can stroll brick sidewalks and cross quaint pedestrian bridges while popping into shops and restaurants.

Boutiques like Sparrow Collective, MGN Fine Furnishings and Maple Grove Yarn offer specialized shopping in downtown Maple Grove. Those looking for a meal will find options like Bruno’s Pasta Bar, Over the Moon Creamery, The Tavern Grill and more.

Many storefronts and restaurants line Weaver Lake, allowing visitors to dine or drink with a waterfront view. Other downtown landmarks include Legacy Plaza park, the Hennepin County Library and Maple Grove City Hall. With this blend of shopping, dining, recreation and municipal sites all accessed on foot, Main Street provides a quintessential small town experience.

11. Deer Hill Preserve

For some of the most rugged scenery in Maple Grove, head over to Deer Hill Preserve in the southwest area. Spanning nearly 400 acres, Deer Hill Preserve has a trail network encompassing prairie, woodland and wetland environments.

These trails traverse hilly terrain unlike most parts of the very flat Twin Cities region. As a result, Deer Hill Preserve offers a workout for hikers and mountain bikers. Off-road cyclists in particular appreciate the short punchy climbs and small granite rock formations that nature built trails here.

In addition to recreation, Deer Hill Preserve serves as an outdoor classroom. Interpretive signs describe the ecological communities and plant/animal species found here. Visitors may spot orchids, woodland flowers, songbirds and mammals native to the habitat during their explorations.

12. Terrace Oak Golf Club

For a second premier golfing experience in Maple Grove, schedule a round at Terrace Oak Golf Club. This 18-hole, par-72 course incorporates elevation changes and abundant lakes into its layout. Terrace Oak strikes a balance between playability for average golfers and challenge for low handicappers.

Mature oak trees frame many holes, bolstering the woodlands-meet-lakeside ambience of the course. Strategically placed bunkers and water hazards demand accuracy off the tee and on approach shots. Large undulating greens encourage creativity in short games as well.

Before or after golf, relax in the clubhouse complete with a full-service golf shop, casual grill restaurant and enclosed patio. With its blend of natural beauty and well-designed playing challenge, Terrace Oak Golf Club delivers a bit of golfing paradise in Maple Grove.


From vibrant parks to unique shopping centers to recreational spaces, Maple Grove offers visitors plenty of attractions to fill any vacation. Families will appreciate the city’s park system with options like Weaver Lake Park and Central Park tailored specifically for kids. Nature lovers lose themselves along the extensive trail networks in sites like The Arboretum and Elm Creek Park Reserve.

Maple Grove also caters to shoppers with major retail centers like The Shoppes at Arbor Lakes. Special events and downtown charm make The Main Street area a quaint destination as well. For sports enthusiasts, recreational options abound from the Maple Grove Community Center to the nationally ranked Rush Creek Golf Club. And auto racing fans get their thrills at Maple Grove Raceway’s drag strip.

Whether you seek recreation, retail therapy, ecological excursions or small town vibes, Maple Grove delivers attractions to delight. With such diversity among its sites, Maple Grove makes for an ideal weekend trip that offers engaging experiences for all travelers.

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