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The Ultimate List For Things to Do (And Not Do) in Minneapolis

I’ve actually only been to Minneapolis once (loved it!) when I was visiting my great aunt and uncle years ago when I was 15 or 16. Although, I did get a chance to visit the Mall of America, and do a tiny bit of sight seeing, my trip was short and focused on family. I’m excited to say though, that because of Shuflix’s magic, we’ve been able to uncover tons and tons and tons of resources for finding fun things to do in Minneapolis, including events, activities, places, restaurants, bars.. etc. In this article, we are going to share with you tons of resources/ideas/things to do in Minneapolis and also share some  additional events that Shuflix uncovered for this week!

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Ok, let’s do this!

The Best Ultimate List for Fun Things To Do (& Not Do) in Minneapolis (Version 1)


1. Things to Do in Minneapolis (Resources)

2. Things to Not Do

3. Shuflix Minneapolis This Week

4. Additional Resources

1. Things to Do in Minneapolis (Resources)

So these are websites that will help you find local things to do in Minneapolis. The list is in no particular order and showcases activities, things to do in Minneapolis and events.

1. Secrets of the City

They are a daily digest for all things Twin Cities. You’ll find a curated list of events for the day and tons of cool info and articles. They’ve been around since 2008!

2. Minneapolis.org

This has to be one of the best. It has tons and tons of information from family-friendly events/things to do, to spots for nature and adventure, to educational activities and places… this has it all. I would use the other resources listed in this article as well to get  a better sense of the communities. They also have a page with a calendar of events. Oh, and they have a list of 150 Fun Things to Do in Minneapolis. So, check it out!

3. Up & Down Lyndale

Love the layout of their site– it’s super intuitive. You have four categories to choose from: Food and Drink, Shopping, Services, and Entertainment. They’ll show you a list of venues that they curated based on the street they are in. Click on an item to learn more about it. (#TravelHack: they have a mini-guide to the transportation system of the city!)

4. Things To Do with Kids

This is a great section of the site with tons of links to attractions in Minneapolis. The site was written by the author 365 Things To Do in Minneapolis — find her other books here.

5. 365 Twin Cities  

Did I mention that there is also a website that’s rooted under the same principle? That’s right… they have a comprehensive list of things to do in Minneapolis. I’ve hyperlinked their event calendar which is full of juicy items. If you follow them on facebook, you’ll be up to speed with them.

6. Family Fun Twin Cities 

Another great resource. I’ve hyperlinked their family calendar because it’s almost always to the brim with events and activities and fun things to do in Minneapolis / Twin Cities. The website is accessible, so be sure to navigate to their things to do, and outings ideas pages.

7. Thrifty Hipster  

They’ve got a nice little map with venues (bars, restaurants) and also have a ‘when are you going’ feature where you can mark on a calendar your availability. And, if you explore the site a little more, you’ll find additional info and resources! (happy hours/events for certain places and more).

8. Minneapolis 81

Inspired after stumbling into a neighborhood she had never heard of in Minneapolis, and intrigued when she found out that according to the City of Minneapolis, there are 81 official neighborhoods, Janelle Nivens decided, “right then and there” to tour every single one. What was an individual project became a mission. You can now get ‘virtual’ tours of the neighborhoods from her website and learn about tons of cool stuff.

2. Things Not To Do / (Gettaways?)

Okay, so although we do think these might be places you don’t want to visit (and they may not exactly be Minneapolis places), we do think that they could serve as great gettaways. I mean, roadsnacks.net in their article (These are the 10 most boring places in Minnesota) did call some of these places boring. However, when we hear “boring” we think invisible opportunity. Yeah, they may be boring because their population is low, and there may not be many young peeps (see roadsnacks article), we still wanna list them out–because you know–isolated places tend to be great gettaways. “Why?”—you ask me again. I’ll tell you: most of these places have parks, and recreational outdoors places where you can engage in archery, skiing, fishing, camping and more!

  1. . Lake Elmo
    • You can do tons and tons of stuff from archery, skiing, fishing to camping! Learn more info here
  2.  Mendota Heights
  3.  Ham Lake
  4. Shorewood
  5. Orono
  6. Grand Rapids

3. Additional Resources

  1. All Things Biking
    • Things having to do with biking in Minneapolis.
  2. Minneapolis TV
    • From their website: “MPLS.TV features both original and curated/submitted video content that highlights and champions the unique cultures that makes Minneapolis thrive.”
    • It’s actually awesome. I wish every city had one of these.
  3. Paper Darts
    • Minnesota Public Radio characterized this art+lit online magazine as “a breezy mix of short stories, poetry, reviews, and eye-popping graphics“. What’s great about them is that they also host events, every once in a while—so be sure to be on the lookout for those.


  4. Thrillist’s Minneapolis Bucketlist
    • Thrillist list of 50 things to do before you die in Minneapolis/Saint-paul
  5. 150+ Activity/Things to do
    • Great lay out, tons of options
  6. Explore Minnesota
    • Great info, tons of items.
  7. L’etoile Magazine
    • They used to operate from a blogspot blog, but now, they are packing a punch with their own website and many articles about the culture, music and film in Minneapolis.
  8. Shuflix
    • Although we are still growing our database, we still have tons and tons of events and activities for Minneapolis. If you are feeling spontaneous, using Shuflix for a day or night out with friends could be very fun 🙂 Our update will be rolling out soon, and when that happens, you won’t need to download an app to use Shuflix. That’s right! You’ll only need an internet connection.
  9. Groupon
    • Deals can be fun too!

4. Some Shuflix Items for Minneapolis

All items below were found with Shuflix. Because Shuflix grabs so much info, I’m only going to show you 3 items for events and venues.



“Movement/Resistance” Workshop
Led by Leslie Parker with live percussion by Taji Maalik Hill!

WHEN: Tuesday, January 3, 6:00-8:00 PM
WHERE: Pangea World Theater Studio | 711 West Lake St. #101, Minneapolis, MN 55408
COST: $10-$20 Sliding Scale | Sign up at the door

Join Parker on a dance experiment as she leads participants through a journey of memory, lineage and cross-cultural pollinating.

Dance experience is preferred. All levels welcomed. Please wear comfortable clothing for rigorous movement. POC and allies are strongly recommended and encouraged to attend.

This workshop is presented by Pangea's LSA! Open Ensemble series, opening company rehearsals and bringing performance skill-building trainings to the community. 

Link: https://www.facebook.com/events/1574794689204108/


What: Shorelines (Art Exhibit) 
When: December 3 2016 - January 21 2017
Where: Groveland Gallery

Kit Wilson has always been fascinated with nature. Variations in atmosphere, color and light found in the outdoors has long captured her imagination. In earlier paintings Wilson frequently aimed her focus on trees, broad views of the sky, and the undulating topography of open spaces, depicting them with nearly microscopic realism. In her most recent work, Wilson continues to hone her sharp observational skills as her gaze drops to take in the bodies of water she finds herself surrounded by on a daily basis.

Link: http://grovelandgallery.com/exhibition/


What: Cooking Class
When: THURSDAY, JANUARY 5TH || 6:00 PM - 8:30 PM
Where: COOKING CLASSROOM (Whole Foods),
Cost: $30 PER PERSON

This class will be taught by Chef Ani. Whether you’re trying to slim yourself down or fatten your wallet, the siren song of takeout can be a formidable foe. It’s so convenient, yet often expensive and quite unhealthy. Save yourself some calories, waiting and money by learning to make some of the most popular take out dishes at home. In this class, we’ll learn the basic methods restaurants use to turn out the delicious stir fries, pizzas and curries that you’ve been ordering and adapt them for the home kitchen, and discuss the tips and tricks the market can offer to save time and money. Next time a craving strikes- you’ll be ready. This class has hands on opportunities as desired. Pre-registration is required.
Dakota Jazz Club and Restaurant

Location: Nicollet Mall, 1010 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis

things to do in minneapolis and places to go
from tripadvisor
Acadia Pub 

Location: 329 Cedar Ave S, Minneapolis, MN

things to do in minneapolis and places to go
from acadapub.com
Segue Cafe

Locations: 609 S 10th St, OR  811 11th Ave S, Minneapolis

things to do in minneapolis and places to go
from yelp

And that’s it! That’s the end of The Best Ultimate List of Things to Do (and Not Do) in Minneapolis (Version 1) !

Don’t forget that most of the resources I posted have newsletters, so if you are interested in signing on to them….do it! And don’t forget, we also have an email list. Joinnn usss!! Joinnn usss!! To become one of us you can submit your info here.

Happy Shuflixing!

Startup Behind the Scenes: Making Music for Shuflix with Ableton

This is me and my studio.

Behind the scenes on making jingles for shuflix
Behind the scenes on making jingles for shuflix

JK. This is me and my studio.

This is what my studio actually looks like.
This is what my studio actually looks like.

Much more simplified huh? Trust me, it may not look like much, but the laptop alone can pack a powerful punch.  Many of today’s famous pop artists have been able to pack that punch with this wonderful tool/box that keeps getting flatter and flatter.  We’re talking about artists like Avicii and Martin Garrix  with FL Studio or Opia and Goldwash with Ableton Live.  So… beware of the laptop , and more importantly, who ever wields it.

In this behind the scenes of our startup, Shuflix, I’m going to briefly go through how I made the jingle for this commercial (aka my process for making music with Ableton):

First is first. Where did the video come from? The video was masterfully edited in After Effects by Serg to welcome the visitors to the Shuflix website. The video was then passed on to me with the ultimate quest to find the ultimate jingle.  I started searching for some fun songs because the video looked fun and upbeat. As I was searching, I paused and I thought, “hmmmmm… what if I wrote the jingle?” And thus, I got to work! (Disclaimer: I get a tiny bit technical, but I promise it’ll be digestible!)

The Mood

I am a firm believer in the magic born when music and video are put together. So, trying to pick the right feel for a visual stimulus is hard because what is right?  I mean.. truly right?

When I was a wee lad I used to play this game called CokeMusic—you had a character and you’d mix loops together and make tracks. You’d then go to a map and play your mix! Thumbs up from peeps around the world would get you points. They had tons of electronic piano loops that always reminded me of summer (because that’s when I played the game). So, I thought to myself… “why not make a jingle that features an upbeat electric piano?” In fact, for nostalgia’s sake, I used one of those loops long ago to create a track with a friend. This time, however, I took out my trusty Akai LPK25 midi keyboard and jammed my heart out. The result: the very simple rift you hear at the very beginning of the jingle. (And no, Akai isn’t paying me… yet)

(Btw, we have some great video content coming your way when we do our official launch. The vids will have amazing backing tracks from some awesome composers including: Nathan Prillaman, Holder, and Joey Pecoraro!)

…Anyways, I started the jingle with two minor chords that progressed into a major chord. The reason for this was that resolving with a major sounds good but also gives this uplifting feeling of resolution and happy that we all love.  I wanted to give that uplifting feel because the video itself is quick (it’s only 25 seconds!) and it’s exciting— I mean, with a single shake of the phone you can explore things to do from the thousands of activities near you! What’s not exciting about that? But, an upbeat rift is not enough to enhance the video’s excitement. I also need an upbeat beat!

The Rhythm

For percussion I put together some shakers panned all the way to the right, some bongos also panned to the right, a hi-hat rhythm panned to the left and a funky house beat  with no pan. The panning widens the aural space and gives you the illusion that the sounds from the instruments are coming from different directions, almost as if you are right there listening LIVE !

The bassline was fun. At the very start of the jingle, we have a step-wise bass rhythm–commonly known as a walking bassline. Imagine each note ‘walking’ from one note to the next at each quarter note. Now this changes at the ‘mini drop’ to a funky less-on-point bassline. Now, imagine that each note is no longer walking from one to the next, but instead is dancing.

Finally, I added a kick drum that would perform as the classic Four-On-The-Floor. This classic kick on every beat of the 4/4 time signature gives it that Disco dancey feel. You feel it right? But wait, that’s not enough. The kick is drowning amongst the other sounds. So, in order to have that kick bounce out to the ears of the audience, there’s this thing called sidechaining. I cheat and instead of sidechaining sounds to the kick, I just manipulate their gain directly (aka I change volume without a compressor) to give the illusion that the kick is ‘ducking’ out the frequencies of the other sounds. This effect is what turns your shy head-nod into a full “I don’t care who sees me, I’m gonna dance because I’m beautiful!!!!!

Jk. This jingle shouldn’t make you dance. It’s meant to keep you staring at the video clip forever. Mwahahah.

Jk again. I restrained myself from adding too much bass. So don’t worry, your head won’t ExPLodE. At most, it will nod aggressively (Remember this?).

This is a pic of the layout and Master Chain.
This is a pic of the layout and Master Chain.

Flourishes And Organization

After the main stuff is set, I added some flourishes and started organizing the jingle. The flourishes were simple, not overly complicated. I added a little bell twinkle at the very beginning because it helps set a happy mood.

I then added an underlying counter melody to the electric piano at a higher octave than the main rift. The counter melody shadows the chords of the main rift, but follows it’s own rhythm.

I then added another electric piano, patched it up with some reverb, some compression and most importantly, overdrive. The overdrive gives it the girthy distortion you hear a little bit after the walking bassline first comes in.

I added claps to act as snares.  I added a beautiful flute sample whose frequencies were stretched to create the tiny anticipation you hear right before the ‘mini drop’. To soften the harshness of this stretch, I added some reverb. I added a tiny trumpet rift to accompany the latin/disco style rhythms. And as a little filler to provide an analog ambiance to the jingle, I added a vinyl scratch sample from Joedeshon available here.

Mix and Master

The last steps involved mixing and mastering the jingle. Ideally, you send the jingle to someone to mix it and then you send it to someone else to master it. At this point you’ve listened to the song so much, it’s hard to hear it as an external observer. However, this jingle isn’t about to hit the BBC’s Radio 1 Charts. It’s just a jingle. So, we can afford to slack off a bit. Heheh.

So, the mixing: To sum it up, I used Ableton’s EQ8 to de-emphasize the frequencies that weren’t essential for each of the tracks in order to make room for the other tracks that required those frequencies. For example, I lowered the gain on the mids of the hi-hats to make room for the electric piano since its the high frequencies of the hi-hats that catch our attention. I also added a bit of distortion to the bass guitar and EQ’d it to stand out a bit (learn why some frequencies appear to be lower in volume than others here: Fletcher Munson Curves)

For the master track, I added a chain composed of EQ8, a compressor, a saturator and a limiter. This was enough to boost and glue the different tracks together! Yay! (Oh, I also added a filter to create the effect right before the ‘mini drop’).

Now listen to it again: https://youtu.be/nhP0iIQGC-s 

And… that’s a wrap!

Hi there! You made it to the bottom of this post. Congrats! As reward, watch this video to see what the pros do everyday in the studio (it’s 1 minute long):