The kickoff of summer for many of us is this weekend.  Explore Minnesota's Alyssa Hayes joined me on WJON.  She suggested the "Kickoff to Summer at the Minnesota State Fair" which goes from May 26-30.  Hayes says this is the 2nd year this event is taking place.  She says it is a smaller version of the state fair with a capped attendance but includes many of the staple state fair foods.

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2022 Summer Tourism Outlook

  • According to a recent Explore Minnesota survey – in partnership with Hospitality Minnesota and Minneapolis Federal Reserve – Minnesota tourism business revealed a positive outlook for the summer season leading into Memorial Day weekend.
    • 82% of survey respondents expect business volume to be similar to, or higher compared to 2021, and 76% expect volume to be similar, or greater than summer 2019.
    • Overall tourism business levels continue to rise, but recovery varies by industry sector and regions throughout Minnesota. 
    • Per AAA, the unofficial start to summer will be a busy one this year around the nation – 39.2 million people are expected to travel 50 miles or more from home this Memorial Day weekend. This is an increase of 8.3% over 2021, bringing travel volumes almost in line with those in 2017.
  • There’s so much to look forward to this summer, including the return of some of our favorite events in every corner of the state, with many celebrating milestone anniversaries like Mall of America’s 30th Birthday, the 50th Annual Twin Cities Pride Festival, the 50th Annual Water Ski Days in Lake City, 100th Birthday of Judy Garland in Grand Rapids, to name a few. We’re also excited to host major summer sporting events like the 2022 MLS All-Star Game and 3M Open. Memorial Day weekend events highlights include:
      • Kickoff to Summer at the Fair, May 26-30: for year two ,this slice-of-the-fair event features favorite fair foods and brews at 30+ vendors, music and entertainment on three stages free with admission, shopping at 20+ specialty Minnesota merchants, Giant Slide rides. It’s a great way to kick back and relax at the iconic State Fairgrounds! Plus, there’s free parking!
        • To make this an extra-special experience, attendance is limited for each timeslot, and some timeslots may sell out. Admission is $12.50 (children 4 and under are free). This event is rain or shine. For more info, visit in new window).
      • Skyline Mini Golf, Walker Art Center, May 26 through Sept.: Tee up on the Walker terraces this summer overlooking the Minneapolis skyline. The one-of-a-kind course features 10 unique, artist-designed holes. Admission: $10; Free for ages 6 and under with paid adult.

Explore Minnesota Travel Planning Resources 

  • offers endless trip planning resources, including weekly event newsletters, fishing reports, an extensive lodging database and more.
  • Visitors can also call 888-VISITMN or live chat with one of our Minnesota travel experts.
  • Share your sights and get real time travel inspiration using the state’s popular travel hashtag #OnlyinMN.

If you'd like to listen to my conversation with Alyssa Hayes it is available below.



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