When I was younger my family would almost always fly through the Twin Cities of Minnesota whenever we were going somewhere. We would never really leave the airport and if we did, we would never explore the area and the suburbs of the Cities. Now that I am on my own free to wander and explore, I still find myself sticking to familiar areas, the airport (the MSP airport is like my second home at times), the Mall of America, and the interstates when driving through.
This is my last year in the area (yes, I consider four hours away “in the area,” it’s a North Dakota thing) so I want to explore as much as possible. So, on one of my free weekends, a rarity these days, I drove down to check out the “Great Minnesota Get Together” (the State Fair, for those of you wondering what that might be) and explore one of the suburbs ideally situated between Minneapolis and Saint Paul.
Travel is expensive and Roseville is affordable. There is a shopping center that just might rival the Mall of America. And just about anything you might want to do in the Twin Cities is within a reasonable driving distance from Roseville.
Where to Stay
I stayed at the Residence Inn by Marriott. It was perfect for just me, but it also would have been perfect if three of my friends came along too. The room I stayed in had a queen bed and a sleeper sofa. If for some reason I ever have to live out of a hotel, this one would be my first choice! In fact, I wouldn’t mind if school suddenly decided to clone this room and replace my apartment with it.
What to Do
Be sure to check out the Bent Brewstillery. I stopped by when they opened at noon on a Sunday and they were already starting to fill up with customers. When I came back a couple hours later, there were more people filling the space enjoying day drinking on Sunday. It must be good.
I am not a fan of beer, never have been and my guess is probably never will be. Like coffee, I dislike coffee too. Both beer and coffee are too bitter for me. So, I bought a growler home for Dad, the beer connoisseur. He said it was really good and definitely wanted some more when it was gone.
The Rosedale Center has just about everything you want from the Mall of America without all the crazy crowds and parking miles away. There is even a train on the second floor for children (or your inner child) to ride around on. If you can’t find the shop you are looking for within the central mall building, be sure to check the surrounding area. The Rosedale Center is much more than what you might think of as a typical mall.
Roseville has a variety of options for foodies. I wish I would have had more time to check out some more of the options. Most of my food and drink came from the State Fair, which was probably the worst plan ever, but it was delicious! Deep fried cheese curds and all you can drink milk for $2, yes, please!
Outside the fairgrounds, I picked up some more unhealthy food at the Rosedale center. The chili cheese curly fries I got at Potato Corner were amazing. However, I learned after the fact that Potato Corner is not unique to Roseville.
Patti’s Ice Cream was a fun stop right along one of the main roads through the town. The ice cream parlor boasts 40 flavors including the midwest classic Superman Ice Cream. The last time I saw Superman Ice Cream was when I lived in Michigan in middle school. Connected to Patti’s is a cute little shop with knick-knacks, clothes, and food products from Minnesota.
In the Cities
The Twin Cities offers a variety of options for just about anything you might want to do. There’re theaters with broadway productions, the zoo, and countless parks, just to name a few things to do.
If you are planning on visiting toward the end of August/beginning of September look into the State Fair. The Fairgrounds are a quick and easy drive from Roseville. Or if you don’t feel like driving your car, paying for parking, finding a place to park, and then hiking to the grounds, look into the Park & Ride options. Not even a mile down the road from the Residence Inn was a Park and Ride garage. The bus ride takes a whopping ten minutes and saves you all kinds of hassle. It was my favorite part (after the food) of checking out the State Fair.