Six great places to #OptOutside this Friday

November 22, 2016 by Janette Law

If you’re thinking about getting in on the #OptOutside campaign, brought to you by outdoor retail cooperative REI, we have some ideas for you. Close to home and doable for a range of abilities, these six Minneapolis parks locations all make a great-outdoors alternative to standing in line this “Black Friday.” Enjoy!

FARVIEW PARK
Recommended by Tom E., Executive Director

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In North Minneapolis, the view from Farview Park is worth the walk.  Located in the Hawthorne neighborhood of North Minneapolis, Farview park is aptly named.  A grassy hill rises in the center of this four-city-block park and offers a rare and astounding view of the Minneapolis skyline and the Mississippi River.  The park is a gem for any city – with a recreation center, football and soccer fields, and a wading pool surrounded by stately two-story homes on all four sides.

LONGFELLOW GARDENS
Recommended by Tom E., Executive Director

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The Longfellow Gardens offer a unique perspective on how nature is always being reimagined in a city.  Located on a landbridge originally designed to protect the seamless connection between the Ericsson Neighborhood to Minnehaha Park, the Garden sits above the Blue Line Lightrail and Hiawatha Avenue and creates a special space for a pleasant stroll.  Trails lead down a grassy hill to Minnehaha Creek where kids (and adults) can hide in the tall grass surrounding the weathered Longfellow statue which stands sentinel over the Minnehaha Creek above the Minnehaha Falls.

MINNEHAHA PARKWAY TRAIL
Recommended by Jennifer D., Chief Operating Officer

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We’re going to get bundled up with our cousins and hit the bike trails. Probably stop to see what The Bunny (sculpture at Portland Ave and the Minnehaha Parkway) is wearing for the holiday.

NORTH MISSISSIPPI REGIONAL PARK
Recommended by Janette L., Director of Communications & Strategic Partnerships

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North Mississippi Regional Park has room to run and roam. Plus, if you do get chilly, the Kroenig Interpretive Center is an inviting place to warm up.

LYNDALE PARK PEACE GARDEN
Recommended by Christine M., Annual Fund & Events Manager

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The Lyndale Park Peace Garden is reflective and calming with lots of running room for a 2-year-old.

WINCHELL TRAIL
Recommended by Matt K., Business & Administration Manager

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For most of the trail’s length, hikers will find themselves in the Mississippi River gorge, below the level of the parkway and paved trails. The Giggly Hills, near 36th Street and West River Parkway, have lots of varied terrain to explore. Now that the leaves are down, there are great views of the river!

All photos, except Winchell Trail, ®MPRB
“#OptOutside” and “Will you go out with us” monikers are ®REI

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