12 Things to Do in Maple Grove, Minnesota

Last Updated on February 11, 2024 by Emily Johnson

Maple Grove, Minnesota is a charming suburb located just northwest of Minneapolis. With a population of around 70,000 people, Maple Grove offers a small-town vibe while still being close to the amenities of a major city.

Whether you’re a local resident or just visiting, Maple Grove has something fun for everyone. From outdoor activities like hiking and boating to cultural attractions like museums and historical sites, Maple Grove truly has it all. The city also has a lively restaurant and shopping scene, ensuring you’ll never get bored.

If you’re looking for things to do in Maple Grove, this article outlines 12 of the best activities and attractions that should be on your radar. From family-friendly options like pumpkin patches and theme parks to date ideas like comedy clubs and escape rooms, Maple Grove offers diverse entertainment. And thanks to the variety of parks and natural areas, you’ll always be able to appreciate the great outdoors.

So get ready for a jam-packed itinerary covering the ultimate things to do in Maple Grove, Minnesota!

1. Explore Elm Creek Park Reserve

For outdoor enthusiasts visiting Maple Grove, Elm Creek Park Reserve is a must-see attraction. Spanning over 2,800 acres, this massive park has endless opportunities for recreation and adventure.

Miles of scenic hiking and biking trails wind through prairie grasslands and thick forests. The park’s bountiful lakes and rivers provide the chance for boating, canoeing, kayaking and fishing. Other activities include geocaching, cross country skiing in winter and horseback riding on designated trails.

Elm Creek also has facilities for picnics, camping, archery ranges and off-road cycling. With so much natural beauty and ways to stay active, you’ll never get tired of discovering new corners of Elm Creek Park Reserve.

2. Pick Your Own Apples at Deardorff Orchards

For a quintessential fall activity, head to Deardorff Orchards to go apple picking. This family-owned farm has been around for over 50 years, giving visitors an authentic picking experience.

The apple orchard has over 2,500 trees with many delicious varieties to choose from, including Honeycrisp, Zestar, Haralson and SweeTango. You’ll be captivated by the sea of red apples nestled among green leaves. And you can fill up baskets and bags with only the freshest, crunchiest apples to take home.

Don’t miss Deardorf Orchards other picking opportunities too. Depending on the season, you can select pumpkins, raspberries, tart cherries and many other fruits straight from the vine.

3. Catch a Show at Maple Grove Community Theatre

For some performing arts entertainment, watch a stellar production at the Maple Grove Community Theatre. This all-volunteer organization puts on several shows every year like popular musicals, riveting dramas, hilarious comedies and engaging Minnesota-based plays.

Founded in 1984, the Maple Grove Community Theatre features Broadway-quality sets, costumes, sounds and lighting. Talented local actors make up the casts and crews for every lively show. Fan-favorite past productions include Mamma Mia!, Peter Pan, Steel Magnolias and Once Upon a Mattress.

Whether you buy tickets for a family play or date night musical, you’ll be beyond impressed by the theater’s phenomenal productions. Make it an evening to remember in Maple Grove.

4. Tour Historic Sites

History buffs visiting Maple Grove will love exploring its various historic sites. One popular attraction is the Hildebrand Farm, a picturesque homestead settled in the mid-1800s by German immigrants. Tour the old farmhouse, barn, granary and outbuildings while learning what pioneer life was like.

The Maple Grove Historical Preservation Society also offers tours of its History Museum, showcasing artifacts of the city’s early times. And located downtown in the 1907 Maple Grove Town Hall building, this museum details the area’s agricultural beginnings.

Lastly, wander through the Maple Grove Cemetery to view aged gravestones of some of the city’s founding residents. By touring these historic sites, you’ll discover Maple Grove’s roots and appreciate how the city has evolved.

5. Shop and Dine Uptown

You can’t visit Maple Grove without spending time in its charming Uptown district. Historic Main Street and adjacent neighborhoods comprise a lively mixed-use village with quaint shops, top-notch eateries and craft breweries.

Browse home decor at Patina or treat yourself to artisan olive oils at The Olive Vine. Fill your closet with stylish threads from locally owned boutiques like TurnSTYLE Consignment. And for one-of-a-kind gift finds like pottery, artwork and jewelry, pop into Uptown Art.

When hunger strikes, eat at popular restaurants like Prairie Kitchen + Bar dishing farm-to-table comfort food in a rustic chic setting. Or grab a table creekside at Maynards offering craft beer and elevated bar bites. With such superb shopping and dining right downtown, Uptown Maple Grove truly delights.

6. Ride Roller Coasters at Valleyfair

For families visiting Maple Grove, an absolute must-do activity is spending a day at Valleyfair amusement park. This beloved Minnesota theme park has been thrilling crowds since 1976.

Adrenaline junkies will flip for Valleyfair’s awesome roller coasters like the twisting Corkscrew, floorless Steel Venom and 125-foot-high Power Tower. When you need a break from heart-racing rides, hit up gentler attractions like the antique carousel, log chute and tot-sized rides in Planet Snoopy.

Beyond rides, Valleyfair hosts exciting street entertainment like musicians, dancers and cosplayers. And don’t miss the nighttime dance parties and summer fireworks displays. Just 10 miles from Maple Grove, Valleyfair promises an incredible summer adventure.

7. See Wildlife at Minnesota Zoo

The renowned Minnesota Zoo located in nearby Apple Valley provides close-up encounters with exotic creatures. As one of Minnesota’s most popular attractions, this impressive zoo houses over 4,700 animals representing 488 species.

Get to know endangered wildlife from tropical regions like rare Amur tigers and mischievous Bornean orangutans in innovative habitats. The zoo’s prairie animals exhibit showcases bison, wolves and eagles native to Minnesota. And the Tropics Trail rainforest dome immerses you alongside free-roaming monkeys, two-toed sloths and colorful toucans.

With engaging animal shows and feeding demonstrations plus rides like a carousel and zip line, the Minnesota Zoo offers fun for all ages. It’s an especially memorable outing for families visiting the Maple Grove area.

8. Paddle on the Rush Creek Water Trail

For picturesque scenery and an active outdoor adventure, head out on the Rush Creek Water Trail. Located just south of Maple Grove, this designated canoe and kayak route follows Rush Creek through lush park reserves and lakes.

You can launch your own vessel from various access points or rent gear from an outfitter like Three Rivers Park District. As you paddle downstream, you’ll drift by peaceful wetland prairies full of wildlife along with limestone bluffs cloaked in oak savannas. The 11-mile trail finishes at the confluence of the Crow River near Delano, Minnesota.

Offering flowing waters suitable for beginners yet scenic enough for experienced paddlers, Rush Creek makes for a splendid water trail escape near Maple Grove.

9. See a Comedy Show

For nights filled with laughs, catch a comedy show at Maple Grove’s own Dietz Comedy Club located downtown. This intimate theater books talented stand-up comedians from across the nation on weekends. Previous headliners include performers from Comedy Central, Dry Bar Comedy and the late-night talk show circuit.

Before the shows, indulge in Dietz’s full bar and menu of elevated pub grub like walleye cakes and bison burgers. Then enjoy 75 minutes of hilarious PG-13 comedy routines in the theater’s sleek, modern space. Dietz Comedy Club offers incredible entertainment that’s sure to leave your sides aching.

10. Solve Puzzles at Escape Room MPLS

For offbeat entertainment during your Maple Grove visit, gather a group for a real-life escape game at Escape Room MPLS’ new location. Using only your wits, work together to solve intricate puzzles in order to break out of an elaborately themed room within 60 minutes.

With four exciting games to choose from, you’ll get locked inside rooms resembling a vintage library, mad scientist’s lab, old speakeasy or an adventurer’s cursed tomb. Adding to the fun atmosphere, the game guides stay in character and offer clues when needed. Expect nonstop fun, challenges and laughs with this one-of-a-kind experience.

11. Tour Arboretum and Gardens

Nature lovers will adore touring Maple Grove’s lovely public gardens and arboretum. Formed from an old nursery and tree farm, the Maple Grove Arboretum features winding trails through 25 acres of scenic woods and gardens.

Stroll through vibrant perennial beds and charming annual displays bursting with color spring through fall. Or meander down curvy paths shaded by towering oak trees and fragrant pine groves. Made for peaceful walks, the arboretum showcases Minnesota’s natural splendor at its finest.

Next visit the Community Garden complete with whimsical art installations, inspiring quotes and blooming rainbow flowerbeds. And saved from demolition, the Laura Ingalls Wilder Historic Site preserves prairie land and a few original structures from Laura’s family farmstead. At Maple Grove’s pastoral public gardens, sweet surprises await around every corner.

12. Cheer at a Minnesota United Match

For thrilling live entertainment, snag tickets to a Minnesota United soccer match at the exceptional Allianz Field in nearby St. Paul. Since 2019, Minnesota’s professional soccer team has played home games at this breathtaking stadium with 19,400 seats.

Designed for an electric game-day environment with excellent views, Allianz Field will give you chills thanks to its famously loud and proud fans. Watch talented Minnesota United players compete against top MLS rivals while supporters chant fight songs and wave colorful scarves. With an electrifying atmosphere backed by superb soccer, attending a Minnesota United match makes for an unforgettable event.

Conclusion

Offering both small-town charm and big-city amenities, Maple Grove makes an idyllic Minnesota getaway full of diverse attractions. From the great outdoors at Elm Creek Park Reserve to historic sites and vibrant Uptown, you’ll never run out of things to do in Maple Grove.

Families can create special memories apple picking at an orchard, riding rollercoasters at Valleyfair and getting close to zoo animals. For date nights and adult fun, check out plays at the community theater, stand-up comedy shows or challenging escape rooms. And Maple Grove’s beautiful public gardens, arboretum and lively Minnesota United soccer matches guarantee more delight.

With this guide outlining 12 ultimate activities, you’re fully prepared to have an amazing time exploring Maple Grove, Minnesota!

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