Things To Do
The city of Mankato has a multitude of options for things to do. Whether you’re looking for golf, parks, bars, or restaurants, Mankato has it all. There are also outdoor options, fine arts and music, and many other activities. If you’re looking for something to do in Mankato, you’ll find it!
Sports enthusiasts will be thrilled to find that Mankato has sports going on year round. The Terrace View Golf Course has a 9-hole par 36 regulation course, and a 9-hole par 27 executive course, so that golfers of all proficiency levels will find themselves challenged. If you’re looking for a longer course, the North Links Golf Course is an 18-hole, par 72 course. For a sportier course, the Minneopa Golf Course features a challenging 9-hole, par 33 uphill course.
If baseball is more your speed, you’ll find small town fun at a Mankato Moon Dogs baseball game. The Mankato MoonDogs Baseball Club is a member of the wood-bat Northwoods League. Family friendly, a MoonDogs game features entertainment between innings, and hilarious antics from their mascot, Muttnik.
For the adventurous soul, Mankato’s BMX track will provide hours of hills and ramps, on the most exciting course in the area. Amateur riders are welcome at the track, and bleachers and picnic areas are also available.
When the weather turns cold, Mount Kato turns up the heat with 19 ski trails, 8 chair lifts, a two-level chalet with food and a saloon, and a full-service rental and ski shop featuring a complete line of ski equipment, fashions, and accessories. Winter is also a great time to utilize the town’s two bowling alleys, and the Grand Champions sports complex, which showcases a mini golf course, driving range, and batting cages.
Arts and Entertainment
Mankato boasts a thriving arts scene, and the largest visual arts center in south central Minnesota, the Carnegie Arts Center. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1981, and hosts gallery exhibitions, art education programs, and a gift shop.
Mankato is also home to a multitude of live performing groups. The Mankato Symphony Orchestra has been performing in Mankato since 1950, and features concerts from October through June. The Mankato Valley Chorale features great works of the Renaissance and Baroque eras, along with folk songs, madrigals, and spirituals. The Mankato Ballet is also a popular local group, known for it’s annual performance of Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker.
Live theater is also popular, many choice exist in Mankato. There are the college theaters, Minnesota State University Theater, Bethany Lutheran College Performing Arts, and Gustavus Adolphus performing arts. In addition, Mankato features community theater options, including the Merely Players Theater, and the Highland Summer Theater.
Recreation and Leisure
Mankato has plenty of outdoor activities to keep you busy, including an outstanding system of trails. The paved trails cover more than 50 miles of the Mankato area, and have amazing views of parts of Mankato you might not otherwise see. You’ll be able to view the wildlife in Mankato, along with historic landmarks that can be seen from the trail, including the river, foundry, and quarries.
The city of Mankato is home to a farmer’s market during the spring and summer, where locals and visitors alike can peruse the bounty of the rich farmland surrounding the area. The market takes place every Saturday morning and Tuesday evening throughout the growing season.
If you want to take a short drive outside of Mankato, there are some area attractions that you won’t want to miss. The Morgan Creek Vineyards are a unique attraction, an ecofriendly, underground winery that provides the perfect temperature for wine production. The August Schell Brewing Company is also located in New Ulm, and is the second oldest family-owned brewery in the nation.
For the kids, Pumpkinland is a family friendly market just south of Mankato in Vernon Center. Pumpkinland features more than pumpkins, with a children’s petting zoo, games, and wagon rides.