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Minnesota Museums Month: Northeast Minnesota Offers a Wide Variety


I’m a big fan of museums and historical sites. For this blog, I’ve already had the chance to write about my visits to the Minnesota History Center’s 1968 Exhibit, the Science Museum of Minnesota’s Real Pirates exhibit (still open) and Minneapolis Institute of Arts’ Art in Bloom, as well as places I want to go, like Mayowood in Rochester. Minnesota is chock full of interesting destinations to visit, no matter your area of interest or where you are in the state. Hence, Minnesota Museums Month, to let people know about the many choices available (historical, art, science, military, zoo, and more). Yesterday, Joel kicked off our coverage by sharing what's happening this weekend at the Walker Art Center and some fun facts about Minnesota museums (there are around 600 in the state!).

Minnesota Museums Month
To show you an example of the amazing variety of museums and historical sites you can find here in Minnesota, I decided to turn my attention to the northeast corner of the state and share a few places you might visit (check out this museum search for more ideas).

3M Museum, Two Harbors
You use their products, but maybe you don’t know the company’s local connection. This musem is dedicated to the story of Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing (3M) and its roots in the Dwan Building of Two Harbors. Take a guided tour of the property and learn their story (video of tour). Open Fri. noon-5 p.m., Sat. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sun. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. starting today (open seven days a week after Memorial Day). Admission: $1-3.

Duluth Art Institute, Duluth
This art center displays an ever-revolving series of exhibitions. Take the kids to see Arts Illustrated and look at how these children’s book illustrations help create the worlds of stories, featuring the works of some regional artists. The retrospective exhibit Brian Barber focuses on the gently twisted work of another children’s book illustrator (Henry, You’re Late Again, Alphabet Soup). Open Mon.-Sat. 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Sun. 1-5 p.m. Admission: Free for most galleries.

Split Rock Lighthouse

split rock lighthouse
photo courtesy of Minnesota historical society

Split Rock Lighthouse, Two Harbors
Learn about the history of the light station, the North Shore, and more in the exhibit area before taking a guided tour of the station. A quarter-mile hike will get you in the perfect position to get a great photo of the lighthouse. Winter hours: Thurs.-Mon. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. (Visitor Center, museum and grounds only). Summer hours start May 15: open daily 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Admission: $6-9.

International Wolf Center, Ely
I’ve always wanted to check out the wolf station. This Ely destination advances the survival of wolves and educates about these animals. Explore the exhibits or sit in on sessions like “Pup 101” and “Wolves of the World.” The wolf enclosure features Great Plains and Arctic wolves. Through May 14: Open Fri. and Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Starting May 15: Open daily 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Admission: $4.50-$8.50.

We'll be showcasing more museums throughout this month. Feel free to share some of your favorites or places you've always wanted to visit in the comments. Join in the celebration of Minnesota Museums Month!

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About This Blog

Whether you are a seasoned Twin Cities traveler or planning your first trip to Minnesota, this blog will introduce you to many new adventures to add to your itinerary. From day trips and scenic discoveries to luxurious girls weekends, travel tips, and insider scoops, our editors will give you all the information you need to enjoy your stay Up North.

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