Grand Avenue, St. Paul
In the Twin Cities, the start of summer is kinda-sorta marked by our first 80-degree scorcher, but it's definitely official by Grand Old Day, which brings everyone together the weekend after Memorial Day at a block party with a parade, music, food, and fun. This year’s event on June 3 already has six festival gardens and more than 150 vendors planned, so there’s truly something for everyone from a bounce house for your niece to beer gardens for your bro.
Get lost at the Mall of America -- still the largest in the country
Make fun of it all you want (and we do,) but the MOA has more than 500 stores that attract tourists and locals alike. Where else can you find five roller coasters, four Caribous, a giant LEGO robot, and a Chapel of Love all under one roof? The people-watching alone is reason enough to go, and the more people you bring with you, the more likely it is someone will remember where the car is parked.