Guide to Moving to Rochester MN


The Guide to Moving to Rochester MN is brought to you by Olmsted Medical Center and the businesses listed below.

Olmsted Medical Center - Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester Mom

Rochester, MN is an ever-evolving city and we regularly receive inquiries from moms that are looking to make the Med-City their new home! Researching information about a new city can stressful, time-consuming and overwhelming. We hope that this guide will alleviate that for new Rochester residents by providing them as much comprehensive information as possible.

We understand that moving (especially with kids) can seem like an insurmountable task! We hope that this guide eases any worries, helps you with the transition and introduces you to life in Rochester, MN with kids! We love our city and we are committed to helping make this transition easier for you. 

Olmsted Medical Center

Family Medicine Services at OMC
Depend on the family medicine providers at Olmsted Medical Center (OMC) for comprehensive and compassionate care for all ages, from babies and children to adults and seniors. Every member of your family can have the same providers at OMC. With same day or next day appointment availability at many locations, OMC’s family medicine services are available at clinics throughout southeastern Minnesota. To find a family medicine caregiver near you or to make an appointment, call 507.292.7183.

Safeway Storage & U-Haul

Safeway Storage & U-Haul | Rochester Mom

Safeway Storage & Uhaul is a locally owned and operated storage facility where you can securely store your belongings. We offer both traditional and temperature controlled storage units in a variety of sizes and our friendly and knowledgeable staff can help you determine what size unit will best fit your needs. We also have moving trucks and trailers available to rent and moving supplies available for purchase to help you with all things needed related to your move.

We are currently offering 1 month free with a 6 month lease and 2 months free with a 12 month lease if you mention Rochester Mom when calling, emailing or stopping in to reserve your unit. In addition, we provide a free Uhaul truck to help you move your belongings into your new storage unit!

Call Safeway Storage & U-Haul for any additional information you may need at 507-281-4318. We look forward to meeting you and helping you with your move!

Dickson Builders

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN - Dickison Builders | Rochester Mom

Dickison Builders is owned by Troy Dickison, a local residential home builder and remodeler who has proudly served the Rochester Market for over 11 years. Troy specializes in new home design and construction, basement finishes, additions, decks and remodeling/renovations of existing homes. Troy would love to connect with you and discuss building your dream home or remodeling your existing home.

Rochester YMCA

Rochester YMCA | Rochester Mom

For over 160 years, the Y has brought families together – nurturing the potential of children, promoting healthy living, and fostering a sense of social responsibility. The Y is your partner for healthy, happy, and strong families – at whatever stage your family is in.

With programs for all ages, you will find ways for you and your family to thrive. Build your child’s confidence with swim lessons, youth sports or through play in Kids Stuff. Reduce stress and create healthy habits with free group exercise classes, personal training, massage and programs to help improve your health. Whatever your interest, there’s something for your whole family at the Y.
Financial assistance is available.

Penz Dental Care

Penz 405

Welcome to Rochester! Dr. Matt Penz invites you to check out Penz Dental Care for your family’s dental care.We enjoy seeing patients of all ages to address a full range of dental concerns including: cleanings, restorative dentistry, cosmetic dentistry, Invisalign®, implant placement, and more. As a former college athlete, Dr. Penz has a special interest in sports dentistry and working with local sports teams to create custom mouth guards.

Penz Dental Care staff delivers care in a clean, modern setting. From our patient-focused approach to our massaging dental chairs—our aim is to make you feel at ease. We invite you to make an appointment today!

Great Harvest Bread

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At Great Harvest we still believe in baking bread the way it was done in the beginning – from scratch; using pure and simple ingredients. The same care goes into our sandwiches and goodies.

Come introduce yourself and try a free slice of fresh bread.  We love seeing new faces.  Great Harvest bread is truly one-of-a-kind.  It’s simple. Handmade. Wholesome. Tasty. Bread. The way it ought to be.

People's Food Co-op

People's Food Co-op Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester Mom

People’s Food Co-op is a locally owned natural foods grocery store in Rochester, MN. PFC features local farmers and producers, fresh and organic produce, made-from-scratch deli, vegetarian and gluten free options, in-house bakery, full-service meat and seafood, coffee and tea bar, wine, beer and spirits, fair trade products, and a health, beauty and supplement department. Our aisles are full of pantry staples and unique flavors for every palette. Need something healthy and delicious in a pinch? Our house-made Co-op’s Own™ items in our deli and bakery are created using the best fresh, whole ingredients sourced with the health of our shoppers and environment in mind. Anyone can shop. Everyone is welcome!

Custom Alarm

Custom Alarm - Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester Mn Moms Blog

Local, reliable and protecting homes and business’ for over 50 years, Custom Alarm can provide you with a solution for your specific needs. Custom Alarm is a locally owned and operated, security-minded company with its own Monitoring Response Center. Specializing in fire alarm systems, intrusion, video surveillance, access control for both residential commercial owners and home automation. Stay connected with access remotely from anywhere at any time. Be protected, stay connected.

Rochester Chiropractic & Wellness

Rochester Chiropractic & Wellness - Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester Mom

Even though OMC’s family practice caregivers often serve multiple generations of entire families, their personal approach to care ensures each patient is given individualized care at the most personal level.

Regularly seeing a primary care provider helps patients identify risk factors and disease processes early; and prevents complications or the severity of complications. Our participation in chronic disease registries using health information technology improves patient care, chronic disease management, and outcomes.

Family medicine services are provided by two outpatient clinics in Rochester; and 11 branch clinics throughout southeastern Minnesota.

Nicole Pierson Design

Nicole Pierson Design - Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester Mom

Whether you’re looking to build a new home or just found the perfect fixer-upper, Rochester native Nicole Pierson is your go-to for all things design! Nicole holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in architecture and has over 15 years of local and regional experience in residential and commercial architectural design and interiors. From full plan design to interior remodeling and color consulting, Nicole provides a range of services for a truly customized space that reflects you and the life you live, delivered on time and within budget!

Rochester Mom Community + Conversation

Rochester Mom Community and Conversation

Our goal at Rochester Mom is to create community on AND offline. We created  Community + Conversation to connect mamas to one another right here in Rochester. This has become a great way to build community and be there for one another as we navigate motherhood.

Schools in Rochester MN

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

There are an abundance of education options in Rochester MN.  This guide is helpful in getting you started in the right direction: from public, private, charter, choice and even homeschooling, we have all the details you need to get going with schooling in Rochester, MN!

Early Education in Rochester MN

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

Picking a preschool, nursery school or childcare center that fits your child’s and your family’s needs can be an overwhelming task.  As parents, we are clearly aware of the importance of our decision. Our guide will provide you with options for preschool, nursery school and child care centers!

Fitness, Health & Wellness in Rochester, MN

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

For many of us, there are barriers to fitness, health & wellness.  Among those are not knowing where to start in choosing a fitness facility or business for your needs. It can be time consuming to do all the research!    This comprehensive guide is a one-stop shop for you as you choose how to begin (or continue!) your wellness journey. 

Rochester MN Photographers

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

New babies, family milestones, special achievements, momentous occasions: we love the opportunity to beautifully capture these memories.  Rochester Mom is pleased to provide you with a guide to Rochester area photographers. It is our hope that this resource will make it easier to find *just* the right photographer to capture the memories you make!

Rochester MN Coffee Shops

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

There is just something about that first sip of coffee in the day.  Looking for a local spot?  Why not try out one of our many Rochester MN coffee shops! We’ve included our favorite drinks at each spot for some easy inspiration for the next time (next hour) you’re in need of that caffeine fix.

Day Trips from Rochester MN

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

Looking to take a little Day Trip?  The southeast MN area offers an abundance of things to see and do all within a perfectly manageable drive from Rochester!  Why not take a journey to a place you have yet to visit…and some you might not have thought about! Our contributors have put together ideas for day trips just a short drive from Rochester MN.

Mexican Restaurants

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

We are so lucky to have some super delicious, authentic Mexican dining options in Rochester, MN!  From hole in the wall, to food trucks, to traditional dining…we’ve listed out our very favorite locations to grab some fabulous cuisine!

Ice Cream Shops in Rochester MN

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

Some people are real ice cream experts, while others are just happy with any old frozen, sugary treat. In an effort to be inclusive, soft serve, gelato, frozen custard, and frozen yogurt are all included in the Rochester ice cream guide.

Indoor Play

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

Rainy day?   Too hot?  Too cold?  Just need a boredom buster?  Check out all the places in Rochester MN for indoor play!

Birthday Parties

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

Looking for businesses and resources to make your next birthday celebration special?  Look no further than our Rochester MN Guide to Birthday Parties!  

Hiking in RochMN

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

Whatever your experience level, the Midwest has fantastic hiking with unique characteristics and loads of natural beauty. Even better? There are some great trailsand hikes just out your back door and there are some great ones for families!

Biking in RochMN

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

We are so lucky to have an amazing trail system in Rochester MN.  Did you know there are over 85 miles of interconnected trails that are available for pedestrian, bike, in-line skate, wheelchair, and stroller use? 

Kids Eat Free

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

While there are several places that come to mind for a great date night, where are your go-to dining options for a night out with the whole family? Did you know that there are many options where kids eat free in Rochester MN? Read on for all the great details!

Local Sports Teams

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

Whether it’s hockey, baseball, soccer, curling, football, roller derby or a visiting tournament Rochester MN is home to a competition that’s right for you. The wide array of sports options is sure to provide pure, family-friendly entertainment for all ages. Check out the details below and start making plans to attend games, matches, or bouts to cheer on our local Rochester MN athletes!

RochMN Breweries

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

What’s brewing in #rochmn? Use our guide to check out all of the breweries in our area!

RochMN Wineries

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

From reds to whites to bubbles and rose, our Guide to Wineries Near Rochester MN will lead you to all the delicious wines in the region.

Happy Hours in RochMN

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

Rochester MN is home to many budget-friendly happy hours. So grab your favorite people and head downtown to one of these spots!

Free Time in RochMN

Guide to Moving to Rochester MN | Rochester MN Moms Blog

Whether you’re between appointments, tournament games, or concert times, Rochester is home to a plethora of activities for the whole family.

Ultimate Summer Bucket List | Although this is our summer bucket list, there are so many things to do in the off-season!

Day Trips | Great places to see and fun things to do just a short drive from Rochester MN!

Guide to Ice Skating | All you need to know about ice skating in Rochester MN!

Winter Fun Guide | We love making the most of winter here, and if you’re not from Minnesota and this is your first winter…we’ll help you grow to love it too!

Parenting Support Groups | Looking for other parents who “get” what you’re facing or going through?  Our list of parenting support groups is a great place to start in looking for support on your parenting journey!

Little Libraries | Ever heard of Little Libraries?  These are small lending libraries that take various shapes and live in people’s front yards in neighborhoods all over the city!

Story-Time Round Up | All the great places to catch stories for your little people in Rochester MN!

Apple Orchards and Pumpkin Patches | One of our favorite times of year…so many wonderful places for Harvest fun!

Farmer’s Market Finds Scavenger Hunt + Free Printable! | Our beloved Farmer’s Market is located at 4th Street and 3rd Avenue downtown Rochester from May-October and at the Olmsted County Fairgrounds November – April. This fun printable scavenger hunt makes the farmer’s market exciting for your little people!

Spring Nature Scavenger Hunt | Another fun outdoor scavenger hunt you can do in your neighborhood!

Family Fun Autumn Scavenger Hunt + Free Printable!

Olmsted County Fair Scavenger Hunt + Free Printable!

Bird Watching with Kids | A beginner’s guide to watching birds with your kids!

5 Fall Family Fun Hikes | Area hikes that are fun and manageable with children!

The Rochester MN Dining Scene is growing and offers a great variety of really creative options.  Below are some of our favorites but is certainly not an exhaustive list!

Victoria’s Ristorante & Wine Bar | Classic Italian in a really fun setting.  Generous portions, scratch pastas, fabulous menu selection, great wine, and kids 12 and under eat free with an adult entree purchase!

Forager Brewery | Community focused, locally sourced, all around cool spot, Forager will become your go-to.  Small batch craft beers and wood fired beers anchor the menu but it will be their family focused events and cool vibe that will keep you coming back.

Bleu Duck Kitchen | Bleu Duck Kitchen has a classic and welcoming atmosphere where the exhibition kitchen is the focus. Perfect for a celebratory meal or a special date night!  However, their recently added bar menu is fabulous for small bites to share for a quick an informal dining option. (Pro tip: RMMB founder, Becky, is a huge fan of their craft cocktails…particularly the Old Fashioned.)

Terza | Terza was created in the spirit of Dell’ Anima which means “soul of the pasta” and celebrating the bountiful flavors of Italy with friends & family.

Salute Wine Bar |  A perfect downtown Happy Hour location that offers an extensive wine list and small plates for sharing.  We also love it as it in the summer dining al fresco is right on the Peace Plaza (heart of downtown Rochester) and offers great people watching.

Newt’s | A local tradition since 1980, they have been voted best burger since 2003!  Guess you’ll have to see if it ends up being your favorite local burger too…Two locations: downtown and North (off of Hwy 52 near the car dealerships).

Whistlebinkies | A pub in the Old English tradition…offers fab pub fare as well as the BEST popcorn in town (FREE).  Over 30 beers on tap!

Rochester is divided into 4 main “areas:”  NW, NE, SW, SE.  All mailing addresses will also have this identification as well. The fastest growing areas of town are the far NW and SW areas of town and where you will find the majority of new builds in town.  However, there are some older established neighborhoods closer to downtown that are quite desirable due to their proximity to the Mayo Clinic downtown campus.  These neighborhoods include: Kutzky Park, Slatterly Park, Historic SW, Pill Hill, Silver Lake and Eastside Pioneers.

For more information please visit RNeighbors, a resource center for Rochester neighborhoods as well as other neighborhood information.

Feel free to join our Rochester Mom Community + Conversation Facebook Group and ask REAL Rochester, MN moms why the love living where they do in our great city!

Where to Apply for your Driver’s License

You will apply for your new driver’s license or ID card at the Government Center downtown (151 4th St SE, Rochester, MN 55904). There is ample parking in front of the Government Center but it is all metered so be sure to bring change.  Be prepared to wait approximately 15 minutes.

DMV/License Bureaus

Crossroads License Bureau (SW)

Airport View License Bureau (SE)

License Center  (NW)

Oh my, do we ever love the library. It’s no secret that the Rochester Public Library is one of our favorite places to take our little people. They have an extensive children’s section, incredible children’s programming, resources for ALL families, fun events (Stuffed Animal Sleepovers!), and helpful and familiar faces ready to help and point you in the right direction.  They also have a great play space in partnership with the Spark – Place of Play.

A few things to note:

  • If you are registering for a library card, be sure to bring along some sort of verification of your local address.
  • The library is located downtown.  There is some street (metered) parking, but there is a handy ramp attached to the library for a minimal fee.
  • The skyway access to the library is located on the 2nd level of the ramp.  Follow the hallway to the elevator (there is a beautiful mural to look at!) and take that to ground level.  There you will enter the library.  The children’s area is to the right.
  • They have a drive-up book return on the west-side of the library near the entrance to the parking ramp.

There are two main medical care systems in Rochester:  Olmsted Medical Center and Mayo Clinic.  It is good to understand what each offers in terms of care for your family.  There are highly recommended pediatricians at each facility: our Rochester Mom Community + Conversation Facebook Group would be a great place to ask for personal recommendations.

Each clinic has fast care options for things like strep tests, ear infections and cold/flu symptoms:

Olmsted Medical Center Fast Care

Mayo Clinic Express Care

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Rochester Mom is written by and for moms who live in the Rochester MN area. We strive to connect local moms by sharing personal experiences, fun ideas and useful information as well as promoting local businesses and seeking to connect moms both on and offline.


  1. Just wanted to comment that my husband and I used Lori to help find a home when we first moved to Rochester and she was an incredible realtor! She has so much knowledge of the city and was so patient at waiting until the right place came up for sale. Highly recommended!

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