Let’s face it: Black Friday can be overwhelming. Your family and friends want to race through malls snatching Amazon Echos and 4K TVs. Meanwhile, you are still digesting that turkey and extra slice of pie and trying not to get run over by a shopping cart. Maybe this year, take a break from the Black Friday chaos and do something that doesn’t require you to wait in line in a parking lot at 2 a.m. Afraid you’ll miss the sales? Don’t worry; there’s still Cyber Monday.
Your alternative Black Friday plans:
Sociable Turns 4
Sociable Cider Werks
1500 Fillmore St. NE, Minneapolis
Sociable Cider Werks is throwing itself a birthday party, and you’re invited. Local food will accompany new specialty casks tapped for the celebration. The Minneapolis Craft Market, a promoter of small businesses in the city, will also post up at Sociable so you can get some holiday shopping in if you’re feeling guilty for skipping the sales. Or, if you feel lucky, just try to win the door prizes. (Sociable claims they “put Santa’s gifts to shame.”) Learn more.
Kiwanis Holiday Lights Opening Night
1255 Range St., Mankato
If you wish that the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade was longer, Christmas themed, and had more lights, just check out the festivities going on this Friday in Sibley Park. Almost everything is covered in LED lights, from trucks to floats. After the parade and lighting ceremony, the ice rink and warming house will open, and kids can visit Santa. Learn more.
Clothing Swap Party
Robbinsdale United Church of Christ
4200 Lake Road, Robbinsdale
What’s better than getting great deals on clothes? Getting clothes for free. Anyone and everyone who wears women’s clothing is invited to clear out the closet and fill it with new (to you) clothes. The process is simple: bring any clothing, accessories, or shoes that you don’t want but that are in good enough condition to give to a friend. Then, once the swap begins, grab what you want. Anything that is not taken will be donated to ARC’s Value Village and PRISM Thrift Shop. Note: The organizers of the swap ask that the kiddos stay home. Learn more.
Rockin Tattoos Black Friday
3390 Coachman Road, Eagan
Is it technically shopping if you’re buying a tattoo? Either way, Rockin Tattoos is offering designs up to half off on Black Friday. The catch? You have to get a tattoo that the artists have already designed. So no, you can’t get a portrait of your dog inked on for half-price. However, Rockin Tattoos offers some cool and fairly unique designs, such as Minnesota sports team logos, crosses, Celtic knots, a dragon’s head, and zodiac symbols. You can’t schedule an appointment to get one of these tattoos, but the deal runs through Small Business Saturday, so don’t worry if the tryptophan makes you sleep through Friday. Learn more.
Fibers! Free Art Workshop
Can Can Wonderland
755 Prior Ave N., St. Paul
11 a.m.–3 p.m.
Learn from Minnesota’s yarn-bomber, Knitteapolis, how to make yarn art. You can take your newfound skills and make gifts for everyone on your list. Do you have a Monica Geller-like friend or family member? Make them colorful coasters. Is someone having a baby? Make a yarn doll. You can even learn from the best about how to cheer up your neighborhood with a little yarn art. Did I mention that the event is free? Learn more.
Free Entrance to Minnesota State Parks
All state parks
Feeling a little groggy after a big dinner and watching three football games? Wake yourself up with some fresh air in one (or more) of Minnesota’s 67 state parks. If you are planning a shopping spree for Small Business Saturday, get your muscles warmed up by walking, running, biking, kayaking, or skiing/swimming—whichever the weather is most conducive to. Or, if you still need to take that family photo for the holiday greeting card, you can snap it with a state park as the background. Learn more.