06 Oct Walker Art Center: Galleries, Sculptures and Mini Golf
The Walker Art Center is located near downtown Minneapolis and includes a museum and sculpture garden. Exhibits consist of contemporary visual arts and design, and in the summer, the outside sculpture garden also includes an artist designed mini golf course.
I always love exploring museums and the Walker Art Center is no exception. We had to get out and play a round on the mini golf course before it closed for the season, and while we were there we also popped on over to the museum and sculpture gardens for a look around. I’m not always a fan of contemporary art, but the two open exhibits at the time of our visit were interesting, and with the purchase of your mini golf ticket you also receive admission to the museum, so we couldn’t resist!
The Mini Golf Course:
Each hole at the artist designed mini golf course is a special treat. Mini golf courses with crazy obstacles always win my heart and with creative holes like gnome foosball, gumball machines, pool, and a tilting maze game, you are sure to stay entertained the whole way through.
One of my favorite holes was set up with footprints throughout the green—this meant that opposing players could stand on the footprints to try and block your ball from the hole.
Another one I really enjoyed was the hole where you could move boards around the green to either block or open a hole. This means that you could give yourself a clear and close shot or block someone else from the hole nearest them. Just be careful, though, because each time you move a board, it costs you a stroke!
You can play either 9 holes or all 18 holes, and as I said above, museum admission is included with your golf game, which is nice because you can see it all and don’t have to pick one or the other!
The Sculpture Garden:
Always free to enter, the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden is part of the city’s park system, and is home to some great sculptures. With 11 acres and more than 40 sculptures to view, you could spend an entire afternoon wandering around the grounds. You are free to wander at your own pace, but there are also free garden tours available throughout the summer if you want to get additional insight about the sculptures.
Claes Oldenburg, who is best known for his oversized pop-art creations of ordinary objects, created the iconic Spoonbridge and Cherry sculpture found in the park. Also, every summer there is a two-day concert series called Rock the Garden—we’ve never been, but it sounds like a great event!
Inside the Walker Art Center, you will find a variety of rotating exhibits and events along with a café and gift shop. When we visited, the two exhibits that were open were the Radical Presence: Black Performance in Contemporary Art and Art Expanded, 1958-1978. There are also a wide range of lectures, performances, screenings, tours and workshops offered at the museum year-round.
Museum admission is $14 for adults and $9 for children but there are also student and senior prices, as well. If you have a flexible schedule and want to skip the admission cost, try to plan your visit to coincide with one of the free days, but note the galleries are closed on Mondays. Every Thursday evening from 5-9, there is free admission for Target Free Thursday Nights, and the Free First Saturdays allows for free admission the first Saturday of each month.
We always enjoy visiting the funky exhibits at the Walker Art Center, and you can’t beat the free nights!
What are your favorite museums?