Fun Things to Do in North Dakota

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You will find many fun things to do in North Dakota that will interest both you and your kids, if you know where to look.

Free Fun

Only in North Dakota can you see the world’s largest buffalo and explore a re-created prairie town. Frontier Village in Jamestown (http://www.tourjamestown.com/) offers free admission and gives kids a look at what life was like for the earliest European inhabitants of the state. Grazing beneath the statue are real buffalo, including several rare white buffalo. The Japanese Gardens in Grand Fork are also free, and your kids will appreciate the beautiful flowers and rolling waters of the ponds and waterfalls.

Educational Fun

The Children’s Museum at Yunker Farm (http://www.childrensmuseum-yunker.org/) in Fargo has both hands-on exhibits common to children’s museums and the distinction of being housed in a historic building. Built in 1876, the building was the first brick house built in the Dakota Territory. It currently houses over 50 hands on exhibits. Gateway to Science (http://gatewaytoscience.org/) in Bismarck is another educational opportunity. Admission is not too steep at just $2 per kid and $5 per adult, and the museum houses science exhibits that encourage kids to touch and experiment on their own. Grand Forks houses the Dakota Science Center (http://www.dakota-science.org/), which appeals to all age ranges and offers classes and exhibits that encourage scientific thinking.

Environmental Fun

If your kids love to go to the zoo, then plan a trip to Bismarck, which has the Dakota Zoo (www.dakotazoo.org), voted the Best Outdoor Family Fun Place in the state. Fargo also has a zoo, the Red River Zoo (http://www.redriverzoo.org/), which offers programs throughout the year to help kids and adults alike get to know its animals better. You can also take your kids to Theodore Roosevelt National Park (http://www.nps.gov/) to explore the badlands and the Great Plains ecosystems. Keep your eyes peeled while you are there to spot bison in their natural habitats.

Seasonal Fun

When fall rolls around, head to Bismarck to visit Papa’s Pumpkin Patch (http://www.papaspumpkinpatch.com/). Your kids can pick their own pumpkin, explore a hay bale maze, and even ride a zip line. The attractions are family friendly without the ghouls and spooks common to the season, making it perfect for the littlest people in your family. For Christmas fun that celebrates the western heritage of the state, head to Medora (http://www.medorand.com/) for the Old Fashioned Cowboy Christmas that happens in early December each year.

Just for Mom Fun

Sometimes mom just needs some time alone, and The Spa of Bismarck (http://www.thespaofbismarck.com/) is the perfect place to indulge in this luxury. If you love to shop, consider a visit to the Dakota Square Mall in Minot (www.shopdakotasquare.com).

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