We’ve got a bad case of cabin fever! How about you? Minnesota winters can be cold, dark, and long. We need to warm things up with some winter fun! Here are our favorite Rochester MN winter activities to get you through to spring!
Bundle up and head out to for a day of sledding! There are two designated sledding hills in Rochester and one big fun tubing hill, just outside of Rochester! For all sledding hill information, please check out our Rochester MN Guide to Sledding Hills.
The city is full of great outdoor ice rinks for a true winter experience! Check out our Rochester MN Guide to Ice Skating for all the details on what locations have lights, warming houses and hours of operation.
No experience needed! Just put on your boots and strap on some snowshoes. Head out to a nearby park or trail.
The City of Rochester and the Rochester Active Sports Club work together to maintain the trails at Quarry Hill. Please reference their winter sports map to plan your route!
If you’re up for a true Minnesotan experience try ice fishing! Our Rochester MN Guide to Ice Fishing will help you understand all of the details as ice fishing will take a bit of pre-planning. However, with the proper fishing license and shelter registration, you will be on your way to a winter fish fry! Take a look at the Minnesota DNR’s website for all of the guidelines and some helpful tips on how to make ice fishing fun and safe for kids. Silver Creek Reservoir, Quarry Hill, Chester Woods and Lake Zumbroare just a few local places to test out your winter fishing skills! Find more local and statewide places to fish with the MN DNR’s Lake Finder Tool.MN DNR
Downhill Skiing + Snowboarding
Interested in speed? There is no better way during the winter months to test your speed and agility than downhill skiing. Coffee Mill Ski Area and Welch Village both offer rental options, lessons, and good old-fashioned fresh air! Check out their websites for more details.
Cross Country Skiing
If downhill skiing isn’t quite what you are looking for, how about cross country skiing? Cross-country skiing is a great way to get out and get moving. It will get your heart pumping and your blood flowing! Quarry Hill and Oxbow Park both maintain ski trails. Quarry Hill also rents equipment. Check out their websites for more information.
Good Old Fashioned Snow Fun
- Build a snowman
- Have a snowball fight
- Make snow angels
- Build a snow fort
- Build snow animals
In keeping with the spirit of Social-ICE and taking into consideration COVID-19 circumstances, this year’s event is being adapted to Social Lights, which features the traditional format of Social-ICE and incorporates exciting new elements.
RDA staff is reimagining a visually stunning event with wow-factor lighting and forgoing cold-weather-dependent components like ice to include the following elements:
- Keep individual bars’ themes and specialty drinks
- Colorful, interactive lighting
- Experiential activities
- Photo station
- Fire pits
- Large-scale entrance
March 3rd – 5th, 2022 – Peace PlazaSocial Lights
Don’t forget to check our Events Calendar and our Monthly Event Guides for all the up-to-date winter events in Rochester MN!
Paint the Snow
Bring a little color to a backyard full of clean white snow! Make your own snow paint with this easy recipe:
- Fill a spray bottle with warm water
- add in half a bottle of liquid food color or 1/8 tsp of gel food color. Shake well!
Shivery Snow Paint
Have a little fun indoors with this icy snow paint! When it’s just too cold to go outside create your own snow masterpiece with this fun recipe for Shivery Snow Paint.
Making snowflakes on a wintery day can become a fun family tradition! Try these coffee filter snowflakes that are easy for little fingers to cut and fold. If you are up for a bit a challenge or your kids are older check out this more elaborate paper snowflake video tutorial using paper bags!
Snow Ice Cream
What kid wouldn’t want to turn snow into ice cream! Check out this super simple recipe and dig in!
Hot Cocoa Ice Cream
Crockpot Hot Chocolate
After playing outdoors in the chilly winter air everyone will be ready to warm up with this Crockpot Hot Chocolate! Get it all set to go and let it simmer while everyone is out having fun!