August Tours

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UPDATE (8/4): All August tours are sold out EXCEPT the Fort Snelling Upper Post (buy tickets) and East Hennepin: Behind the Scenes (buy tickets).

Cost: $8 per person unless otherwise noted  please note that tours will likely sell out in advance, with no room for walk-ups.
Please note that space is limited and some events may sell out before the day of the event.
If you lack internet access, or have any questions or concerns about the tour program, please contact our Tour Coordinater, Katy Epler, at or 612-695-7572.
Time: Tours typically last 90 minutes to 2 hours. Exact times are contingent on factors such as weather and group size. Please contact us if you have any questions about lengths of specific tours, or ask your guide at the beginning of the tour.
Distance/terrain: Please see details listed for each tour. Some tours are short and flat, others are longer and hilly.
Kids (and strollers) are welcome, but no dogs or other pets, please. 

SOLD OUT! Church Week: Wesley United Methodist

When: Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 6:30 PM
Guide: Robert C. Mack

Starting point: Wesley United Church at 101 E Grant St Church Week: Wesley United Methodist (NEW TOUR)
Cost: $8

Located adjacent to the Minneapolis Convention Center in downtown Minneapolis, Wesley United Methodist Church was built in 1891. Designed by Warren Howard Hayes and recognized as one of the finest and best-preserved buildings by this prominent ecclesiastical architect, Wesley was nevertheless added to the Preservation Alliance of Minnesota’s annual list of “Most Endangered Historic Places” in 2010. Bob Mack, who has been working on the building for over 25 years, will take you on a rare excursion inside the building, including the attic area and its outstanding examples of late 19th-century building technology—both structural systems and heating/cooling systems.

SOLD OUT! South Lake Harriet Parks and Homes

When: Monday, August 5, 2013 at 6:30 PM
Guide: Peter Sussman 

Starting point: Lake Harriet Parkway and Morgan Avenue South (south side of the Lake Harriet)South Lake Harriet Parks and Homes Walking Tour
Cost: $8

Early Lake Harriet-area resident Peter Sutherland watched as the Park Board encircled the lake with a public boulevard in 1885-86. The grand park he had envisioned for his property would give way instead, decades later, to a busy and dense neighborhood. Hear about this fascinating history and view an eclectic assortment of lakeside and inland houses between Penn and Knox Avenues built from the early to late 20th century. Co-sponsored by the Linden Hills History Study Group and the Lynnhurst Neighborhood Association.

This tour will walk about 1 mile and is not ADA-accessible.

SOLD OUT! Uptown: The Lakes District

When: Wednesday, August 7, 2013 at 6:30 PM
Uptown: The Lakes DistrictGuide: Cara Letofsky and Thatcher Imboden

Starting point: Humboldt Avenue & West Lake Street (Wells Fargo parking lot)
Cost: $8
This tour is sold out!

As the City of Minneapolis grew, the lakes began to attract people seeking relief from the central city—from day-tripping fishermen to visitors of the area’s posh resorts on the shores of Lake Calhoun. You’ll learn about the crucial role rail travel played in enhancing Minneapolitans’ access to the lakes, with the laying of the Minneapolis, Lyndale, and Lake Calhoun railway from downtown to Calhoun in 1879.

This tour will walk about 25 city blocks.


SOLD OUT! The Architectural Necklace: Homes Along Lake of the Isles

When: Saturday, August 10, 2013 at 1:00 PM
Guide: Bob Roscoe 

Starting point: West 25th Street and East Lake of the Isles Parkway (east side of the lake)
Cost: $8
This tour is sold out!

The winding eastern shoreline of Lake of the Isles displays some of Minneapolis’ most splendid residential architecture, exemplifying design talents of several of the region’s influential architects and influencing both Minneapolis’ social patterns and its architectural patterns. Early 20th-century residences by Edwin Lundie, William Kenyon, and Purcell and Elmslie rest alongside the later-to-come Liebenberg and Kaplan. Join preservationist Bob Roscoe as he guides us along this architectural necklace.

This tour walks approximately 10 blocks.

SOLD OUT! North Side Synagogues and Neighborhood Walking Tour

When: Sunday, August 18, 2013 at 10:00 AM
Guides: Iric Nathanson and Bob Roscoe

Starting point: Mikro Kodesh Synagogue, at 1000 North Oliver Avenue North Side Synagogues and Neighborhood Walking Tour
Cost: $8
This tour is sold out!

By 1936, there were more than 16,000 Jews in Minneapolis, and 70 percent of them lived on the North Side. Community members lived, learned, prayed, and shopped together. We will highlight the history and architecture of the gathering places of north Minneapolis’ Jewish community in the early- and mid-20th century, including a neighborhood with three synagogues, the Emmanuel Cohen Community Center, and the Jewish Shelter Home for Children.

Fort Snelling Upper Post

When: Tuesday, August 20, 2013 at 6:30 PM
Fort Snelling Upper Post Walking TourGuide: Chuck Liddy

Starting point: Fort Snelling Clock Tower Building on Colville Avenue (see map on Eventbrite ticket page)
Cost: $8
Buy tickets on Eventbrite

Fort Snelling is often called the “Birthplace of Minnesota.” Built between 1820 and 1825, the fort stood empty from 1858-1861 but was pressed back into service during the Civil War and also served as a staging point for military campaigns against Indian tribes. After World War II, the Fort was decommissioned and turned over to the Veterans Administration. Historic architect Chuck Liddy, FAIA, has been involved in the efforts to save and reuse the buildings at the Upper Post for 20 years.

This tour walks the equivalent of about 4-5 city blocks.

East Hennepin: Behind the Scenes

When: Sunday, August 25, 2013 at 10:00 AM
Guide: Scott Parkin

Starting Point: Intersection of Main Street and East Hennepin Avenue
Cost: $8 per person

Buy tickets on Eventbrite.

The bustling commercial district surrounding East Hennepin Avenue has hosted many names throughout the years, but everyone knows its unforgettable landmarks . . . Surdyk’s, Nye’s, Kramarczuk’s, Historic Main Street, and Lourdes Church. Located across the Hennepin Bridge from Downtown, this neighborhood was originally established in 1855 as the Town of St. Anthony Falls and later merged with The City of Minneapolis in 1872. Its proximity to the Mississippi River, Downtown, the University, and Northeast Minneapolis have made it an influential hub for transit, industry, and commerce. The last decade has brought dramatic change and the area around East Hennepin is now considered one of the trendiest and most exciting places in Minneapolis to eat, shop, and live. Fortunately, the area has managed to maintain its old-world flavor to this day. Join us for a “behind-the-scenes” history of the busy streets, unique businesses, and colorful people that have shaped this popular walking neighborhood. Hear amazing stories told from the perspective of individuals who have lived and worked here, through good times and bad. Come away with perspective on what life and work here might have actually felt like throughout this neighborhood’s most defining eras. This tour will walk approximately 10-12 city blocks. The tour guide is Scott Parkin.

SOLD OUT! Historic Park Avenue Part I: The Mansion District
Age of Opulence Along the Minneapolis Golden Mile

When: Tuesday, August 27, 2013 at 6:00 PM
Guide: Ryan Knoke Historic Park Ave Part I: Age of Opulence Along the...

Starting point: Building Lobby at 2615 Park Avenue South
Cost: $8

At the turn of the last century Park Avenue ranked as one of Minneapolis’s most prestigious residential streets. The city’s elite commissioned top architects to design 35 of the city’s most opulent mansions along the 10-block“Golden Mile” between 18th and 28th Streets. By the end of the 1960s, “urban renewal” in the form of demolition had claimed 27 of them. Experience the remaining eight mansions up close—including some interiors—and discover those that were lost through photographs and information about their famous first occupants.

This tour will walk about 6 city blocks.

More tours: May Tours  |  June Tours  |  July Tours  |  September Tours