June Tours

More tours:  July Tours  |  August Tours  |  September Tours

Cost: $8 per person unless otherwise noted
Please note that space is limited and many events will 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 tours@preserveminneapolis.org 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.


Lowry & Walker Legacies (biking tour)

When: Saturday, June 7 at 12 p.m.
Cost: $8
Buy tickets on Eventbrite

Thomas Lowry and T. B. Walker stand out in Minneapolis history as representatives of “an era of constructive civic optimism.” From sculptor Karl Bitter’s 1915 Lowry Memorial to the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, we will trace their contributions in shaping the Minneapolis neighborhoods, parks, and institutions we know today. In addition to the former site of the Lowry-Walker home (now the Walker Art Center), our tour will visit the Groveland Gallery in the 1894 home of architect F.B. Long, and view artwork donated by Walker in the Hennepin Avenue United Methodist Church.

This tour will bike about 3 miles, and will follow gradual uphill slopes. The tour guide is Peter Sussman.

Fort Snelling Upper Post

When: Tuesday, June 10 at 6:30 p.m.
Cost: $8
Buy tickets on Eventbrite

Fort Snelling is often called the “Birthplace of Minnesota.” Originally built between 1820 and 1825, the fort stood empty from 1858-1861, but was pressed back into service during the Civil War and then served continuously through World War II. After the war, the Fort was decommissioned and turned over to the Veterans Administration, and gradually abandoned between 1970 and 1998. 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. The tour guides will be Chuck Liddy and Kelly Mastin.

Old Highland

When: Saturday, June 14 at 10 a.m.
Cost: $8

Encompassing 30 blocks of north Minneapolis, this Victorian-era enclave was largely developed at the turn of the century, when architects designed residences for upper-class merchants operating businesses along its main thoroughfares. This neighborhood is impressive for its number of restored Queen Annes in excellent condition. Most of the restoration has been done by hand by local residents and homeowners, using traditional methods, making Old Highland one of Minneapolis’ true preservation success stories.

This tour walks about 1 mile. The tour guides are Brian Bushay and Alissa Luepke Pier.

East Hennepin: Behind the Scenes

When: Sunday, June 15 at 10 a.m. (also offered on Sunday, September 14 at 10 a.m.; click here to purchase tickets for the September tour)
Cost: $8
Buy tickets (for the June 15th tour) 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 Our Lady of 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 guides are Scott Parkin and Michael Rainville.

Lakewood Cemetery: A Memorial Landscape

When: Wednesday, June 18 at 6:30 p.m.
Cost: $8
Buy tickets on Eventbrite

Nestled between Lakes Calhoun and Harriet, from its 1872 dedication Lakewood Cemetery has preserved in carved stone monuments the memory of early Minneapolis residents. Sweeping landscape transformations have included a lake and reflecting pool. Two outstanding buildings designed by Minneapolis architects, the 1910 Byzantine Revival Chapel and 2012 Garden Mausoleum, will be visited on the tour.

Please wear shoes suitable for walking across grass. The tour will walk about one mile and is not ADA accessible. The tour guide is Peter Sussman.

Milwaukee Avenue Historic District (SOLD OUT!)

When: Saturday, June 21 at 10 a.m.
Cost: $8

Milwaukee Avenue is the earliest example of a planned workers’ community in Minneapolis. Built between 1883-1895, the area attracted immigrants who worked for the nearby Milwaukee Railroad and other industries. In the early 1970s, the City of Minneapolis housing authority planned to raze 70 percent of the houses in a 35-block area for urban renewal. To fight this effort, neighbors formed the Seward West Project Committee and created a development plan that emphasized historic preservation.

This tour will walk 2 city blocks. The tour guide is Bob Roscoe.

Queer History: A Tour of Gender and Sexuality in Minneapolis (SOLD OUT!)

When: Sunday, June 22, 10 a.m.
Cost: $8
This tour is sold out, but click here to get on the waitlist 

A spot where Oscar Wilde stepped off a train to visit Minneapolis, the place where Josephine Baker danced, the original name of the Gay 90s (now housed in the building shown here, being constructed in 1921), the first known gay and lesbian bars in the city…this tour focuses on secrets and important sites of significance to the local LGBTQ community. Some sites are well-remembered, while others have been demolished and are largely forgotten. Please be aware that sexuality is a focus of this tour; parental discretion is strongly recommended.

This tour walks about a mile; the tour guide is Stewart Van Cleve.


An Architect’s Stories from the Mill City Museum Construction

When: Saturday, June 28 at 10 a.m.
Cost: $8
Buy tickets on Eventbrite 

The Washburn Crosby Mill was the largest flour mill in the world when it was built. Shut down in 1964, it was ravaged by a fire in 1989 and left in ruins. The Minnesota Historical Society (MHS) was able to stop the fire fighters from using their hoses to knock down the remainder of the building walls. The City of Minneapolis stabilized the building, and for almost 10 years it sat empty awaiting redevelopment.

In 1998, a visionary developer teamed up with MHS and began architectural designs. Numerous discoveries and stories took place as history was uncovered, and the museum and tenant spaces above took shape. Stories of these discoveries and how the building affected the design will be told as you walk the public spaces in what is now Mill City Museum. Following the tour, discount tickets will be made available to see the Museum.

This tour walks the equivalent of about 1 city block, and goes up and down four stories (an elevator is available). The tour guide is John Stark, the project architect for the museum.

More tours:  July Tours  |  August Tours  |  September Tours