30 Things to Do in the Twin Cities Before You Turn 30

Published On 01/13/2016 Published On 01/13/2016

If you should be fortunate enough to still be within the throes of youth, then today is your lucky day. This list was made with the intention of living life wild and free, before Friday nights turn into Netflix marathons and vacuuming the living room. So before the burdens of age shower you with achy knees and a distaste for popular music on the radio, get out there and do these 30 things before it's too late.

Bring a date to a free Thursday at the Walker Art Center

Sure, this is the epitome of a cheap date, but it’s also one that won’t leave you looking like a broke chump because it shows that you’ve got at least some class. Once the sculpture garden reopens in 2017, you should go do that too. There’s nothing like young lovers taking in the deep spiritual complexity of the Spoonbridge & Cherry.

Sign up for the Guthrie’s 30 Below program

Aimed at adults under 30, this program offers expedited day of ticket sales and special offers throughout the year. You're still young, which means new and interesting things are still exciting to you… things like the theatre.

Drink and learn science 

At Social Science at the Science Museum. It's a 21+ event where you can grab drinks and learn science. Coming up on February 4th is the highly anticipated Science of Sex, so you’re not going to want to miss that one.

Flickr/Marcus Metropolis

Eat a Jucy Lucy (or three) from Matt’s Bar

If you live in the Twin Cities and haven’t done this yet, seriously, what are you waiting for? There’s no excuse... unless you’re a vegetarian, in which case, fine.

Enter into a serious debate about who has the better Ju(i)cy Lucy; Matt’s, 5-8, The Nook, etc.

See above for clear winner.

Go do something cool at Target Field

Even if it’s not a Twins' game, there’s plenty going on there all year long, and you should go. They host concerts, trade events like the Food & Wine Experience, and throw the Beer & Bacon Classic. After all, your hard earned tax dollars are paying for it.

Flickr/Pete Markham

Go do something cool in St. Paul

Hit up an event at CHS Field, enjoy the Winter Carnival, or check out Grand Old Days. St. Paul can be fun, people... especially after a couple of drinks.

Host (or go to) a wop party in a small Uptown apartment

It’ll be cramped, but it’ll be fun. The cops will come, but it’ll be cool. It'll likely be themed. You might even get a phone number.

Catch a midnight showing of Rocky Horror at the Uptown Theatre

Sure, they have other midnight movies, too, but you haven't lived until you’ve seen what happens at a showing of The Rocky Horror Picture Show -- and it happens monthly.

Flickr/Bala Sivakumar

Nab a slice of mac & cheese pizza from Mesa Pizza

They have two locations: Dinkytown and Uptown.

Hit up any East Lake taqueria

You know you drive and bike by them all the time, but next time, actually stop in and get you some delicious tacos. You could also hit up any place around Cesar Chavez St in St. Paul

Go to a local karaoke dive and don't leave until the house lights come on

Swing by the Vegas Lounge or Otter's Saloon for karaoke seven nights a week, or handful of other bars on various other nights to sing away those mid/late 20-something blues.

Marvel Bar

Bring a Tinder date to Marvel Bar

It’s dimly lit, there’s comfy furniture, and they have some seriously kick ass alcoholic beverages. Also, there are Cheetos.

Bring an OkCupid date to Uncommon Grounds

It’s dimly lit, there’s comfy furniture, and they've got one seriously kick ass chai.

Go for a late night swim in one of the Twin Cities' many lakes

Swimsuits optional but strongly discouraged.

Coastal Seafoods

Learn how to make your own homemade sushi

At Coastal Seafoods. Check out their fresh fish case and ask them what’s fresh. They’ll gladly tell you, and it’ll be a lot cheaper than most of the other sushi restaurants in town. They’ve got two locations as well: St. Paul and Minneapolis.

Take a trip to SexWorld

It’s like a rite of passage. You know, the kind where you feel like you need to shower afterwards. They also have a giant golden penis. That you can ride. So that's something.

Go to Clancey’s and get your own dry aged steak

Steakhouses are expensive, but there’s nothing stopping you from trying to prepare your own steakhouse quality steak at home. As it just so happens, the folks at Clancey’s can hook you up with everything that you need to accomplish this.

Flickr/Collapse the Light

Go to the Current’s Rock the Garden

Since the sculpture garden is closed this year, they’ve recently announced that it’ll be heading to Boom Island this summer, so keep an eye out for ticket sales and the full concert listing. It’s always a guaranteed good time.

Throw a cookout in the middle of the winter

This is one of those things that you can only truly appreciate in the state of Minnesota, but a successful wintertime cookout is always a lot of fun, just make sure you’ve got your requisite flask of brandy on hand.

Take your pants off (legally) and run around town

Cupid's Undie Run, the Freedom from Pants Ride, and the No Pants Train Ride are just a few of the no-pants-required events that you can take part in because frankly, deep down, doesn’t everybody hate pants?


Eat at a classy restaurant and order a tasting menu

Perhaps do the full tasting menu at Travail (or do the build your own tasting menu at Piccolo). It’s worth the experience, trust us.

Make reservations for after midnight

Check out 112 Eatery in Downtown for a fancy late night eating extravaganza.

Go see a totally random local show

Some weekend stop by the Terminal Bar, the Hexagon, the Turf Club, or Big V’s and don’t check any calendars before going in. Just walk through those doors and experience whatever the hell it is that’s going on (and maybe take down a few PBRs while you're at it).

Flickr/Marcus Metropolis

Do the Zombie Pub Crawl

When as a city, we make the Guinness Book of World Records for the biggest gathering of zombies in one place, you know we’re doing something right. 

Or do some other kind of pub crawl

There are several coordinated events in the Twin Cities, some even come with their own set of transportation, but at the very least, gather some friends and do a crawl of NE breweries. It’s easy, there’s beer, and if you go during the summertime, the weather won’t totally suck.

Spend some time at Hard Times

Just go, sit, and drink copious amounts of coffee. They’re open from 6am-4am, but we suggest going during the ultra-late night hours for the optimal human experience. We’ll just say that they clientele is... interesting, but you'll probably learn something new or hear some kind of great, crazy story.

Flickr/Tony Webster

Try out Nice Ride

Just do it. Rent a bike and take it for a joy ride around the city, especially if you don’t already have a bike of your own.

Watch a presidential election in a local dive bar

The CC Club is a good place to do this. You can even turn it into a drinking game. Take a shot for every state called and take three shots for every state called incorrectly.

Get escorted out of First Avenue for being over served

I mean, these things happen sometimes. You don’t have to be a jerk about it or anything, just let yourself lose, enjoy the evening’s event, and go with the flow. You might regret it in the morning, but that regret will eventually morph itself into another one of life’s timeless lessons -- namely that you're not 22 anymore.

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Keane Amdahl is a veteran Twin Cities writer who, at one point, was under the age of 30 and he may have done some things. Follow his old-man antics on Twitter @FoodStoned.



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