What it’s like to zip line over the Mississippi River

I’m glad Twin Cities Live reporter Kelli Hanson had the guts to zip line across the Mississippi River. Together, we took on the Bold North Zip Line, which has you hanging about 100 feet in the air as you glide nearly 800 feet across the Mississippi. The views — and the adrenaline rush — are something special.

About to start the trek up the stairs!

Check out Kelli’s story to get a glimpse of what it’s like.

The Bold North Zip Line, which was in town as part of Super Bowl LII festivities, was a popular experience, taking less than 36 hours for tickets to sell out.

Zip Line


The 5 things you don’t want to miss at Super Bowl LIVE

My co-worker Brittany described Super Bowl LIVE as a winter version of the Minnesota State Fair. That’s extremely accurate. There’s plenty of food to eat, live music to enjoy and you can watch a local or national television newscast.

What is Super Bowl LIVE?

Super Bowl Live
Super Bowl LIVE spans six blocks down Nicollet Mall in downtown Minneapolis. Photo courtesy: Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee

Super Bowl LIVE a six-block, free event on Nicollet Mall in downtown Minneapolis. There’s plenty to do indoors and outside (my picks are below). It’s open daily through Sunday, February 4. Hours are at the bottom of this page.

Wait, this is different than the Super Bowl Experience?

Yes. Super Bowl Experience is inside the Minneapolis Convention Center. That’s where you can (try to) kick a field goal, run a 40-yard dash and score autographs from NFL alumni. Tickets to that cost $35 for adults and $25 for kids.

How do I get to Super Bowl LIVE without pulling my hair out?

If you are going January 27-28 or February 3, use Metro Transit’s Park and Ride from five suburbs. Learn more here. You can also take the light rail or hop in an Uber or Lyft.

If you want to drive downtown, read my guide on where to park. Ramp parking on January 27 went all the way up to $50. Please don’t pay more than $20…it’s not worth it.

How long should I plan to be there?

Unless you’re going to listen to an entire concert, I would plan to be there for two to three hours once you enter.

Is it family-friendly?

Absolutely. I saw plenty of kiddos enjoying the scene. I should mention there are plenty of bathrooms along the way. Ask a Crew 52 volunteer (in the blue jackets) for the one nearest you. Strollers and wagons would fare just fine.

What do I need to check out?

  1. Target Bullseye Lodge

The creative geniuses at Target turned their employee common space (aka the student union) at 10th and Nicollet into an extremely fun, free exhibit. You can sip on hot cocoa and pick up free samples of pop and candy.

There are two gems at the Lodge you can’t miss. First, you can get your face printed on a marshmallow! They take your photo, and in just a couple minutes, you mugshot is good enough to eat. Grab a plastic baggie at the end of the line so you can take it home. I haven’t eaten mine yet…it feels a bit weird. But it’s super cool.

Get your photo printed on a marshmallow at the Target Bullseye Lodge at 10th Street and Nicollet Mall.
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Look! It’s me holding a marshmallow of me!

The other gem is outside in their courtyard. Their Dance exhibit has you show off your touchdown dance and you appear a silhouette on top of the Target Corporate tower! Really cool.

You will need to register when you enter the Bullseye Lodge; they’ll ask for your name and email. I had to wait a few minutes to get inside, but it’s definitely worth it. The Bullseye Lodge also had a mini-Target shop featuring items from their new apparel and accessories collaboration with Minneapolis-based Askov Finlayson.

2. Made in the North Market

The Made in the North Market inside City Center features 25 Minnesota-based businesses.

It’s easy to overlook, but City Center, located between 6th and 7th Streets, is home to 25 Minnesota-based businesses selling goods. Excelsior Candle Co. is selling candles inside drink glasses, Hagen and Oats has images of U.S. Bank Stadium made of wood, and Smile Network International features apparel and home goods made by artists from around the world.

Plenty of 52 inspired artwork from Hagen and Oats.

3. Dayton’s Project

The first floor of the Macy’s — no, I mean Marshall Fields — how about Dayton’s — on Nicollet Mall is a multi-purpose space with a few big companies. There’s a large NFL Shop with plenty of Minnesota-centric gear and CNN will broadcast live inside as we get closer to the big game.

The Hallmark Channel is showcasing their 5th annual Kitten Bowl, which will air on the network on February 4. (Note: the broadcast you’ll see February 4 was already recorded). You can wait in line to see a stadium of kittens pounce and hiss at one another. The exhibit also features furry friends from rescues looking for forever homes.

If you don’t want to fork over the money to go inside the Super Bowl Experience, Bridgestone has a mini version inside the Dayton’s Project. You can fly through the air to  catch a football and land in a foam pit, toss a football through tires (fitting) and look like a true player with a paper helmet that has an authenticity sticker from the NFL.

Also while you’re inside the Dayton’s Project, it’s worth checking out the outfits, shoes and memorabilia on display from Minnesota music icon, Prince.

The Dayton’s building looks no different than it did before Macy’s closed.

4. American Birkebeiner International Bridge

A couple feet of snow pack Nicollet Mall for cross country skiing and snow tubing.

The American Birkebeiner is an annual cross country ski race in Wisconsin. The race has competitors cross over a road, so organizers built a bridge which can support a couple feet of snowpack, allowing skiiers to go over cars. The bridge was delivered to Minneapolis and now crosses over 9th Street, allowing you to give cross country skiing a try or glide down the large hill in an inner tube. Even if you don’t strap on skis, it’s cool to see a usually busy Minneapolis street packed with snow from curb to curb.

5. ‘Sota Pop

Make your own star at Explore Minnesota’s ‘Sota Pop at 5th Street and Nicollet Mall. Don’t even think about grabbing the ‘n’ from Prince.

You’re not going to find this on the official Super Bowl LIVE list of activities, but Explore Minnesota did a phenomenal job putting together a display called ‘Sota Pop. The free, indoor exhibit at 5th and Nicollet Mall guides you through the four seasons in the North Star State. There are so many photo opportunities in this one spot, and they’re all on point. Bravo, Explore Minnesota.

‘Sota Pop: an Instgrammer’s dream.


What else do I need to know before I go?

  • No tickets are necessary for anything at Super Bowl LIVE.
  • There’s a music stage at 8th Street and Nicollet Mall that has 10 days worth of concerts. View the lineup here.
A stage at 8th Street and Nicollet has 10 days of concerts.
  • The stage is in a horrible spot and it’s REALLY HARD to get around the crowd. Pro tip: hop in a building and take the skyway to get past that intersection.
  • There are exhibits behind the music stage on 8th Street. Minnesota-based Schwan’s has a really cool trivia game show stage and Tostitos is giving out free samples.
  • Super Bowl 360 at 11th Street and Nicollet Mall near Orchestra Hall is a planetarium-like experience. Get ready to wait in line before you get to go inside. If you went through it, please let me know what you thought! I didn’t want to wait in that line.
  • There’s plenty of food and drink available for purchase throughout the event. I didn’t notice any lines, either. A flurry of food trucks are parked on 10th Street. I recommend going inside Haskell’s Wine Bar just south of 9th Street if you’re looking to take a break with an adult beverage and warm up a little.
  • The entrance at the south entrance at 12th Street is the most visually impressive.

Super Bowl LIVE hours

Friday, January 26 — 4:00 – 10:00 p.m.
Saturday, January 27 — 10:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Sunday, January 28 — 10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Monday, January 29 — 4:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Tuesday, January 30 — 4:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Wednesday, January 31 — 4:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Thursday, February 1 — 4:00 – 10:00 p.m.
Friday, February 2 — 10:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Saturday, February 3 — 10:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Sunday, February 4 — 12:00 – 3:00 p.m.

What else is happening leading up to the big game? Get a list of 100 events happening over 10 days here.


Twin Cities bars and restaurants hosting viewing parties for the big game (and even Puppy Bowl viewing parties)

Chances are you don’t have a ticket to see the big game inside U.S. Bank Stadium February 4. If you don’t want to sit at home, check out these Twin Cities bars and restaurants hosting viewing parties.

This list is growing! Know of a spot hosting a viewing party? Let me know!

It’s not just football viewing parties

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Puppy Bowl XIII will air on Animal Planet on Sunday, February 4 at 2:00 p.m. central. Don’t watch it at home! Photo credit: Animal Planet
  • Couldn’t care less about football? Head to The Howe Daily Kitchen and Bar in south Minneapolis to watch the Puppy Bowl. Your four-legged friend is welcomed to join you. Email to reserve your seat. The party goes from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
  • The Howe Daily Kitchen isn’t the only Puppy Bowl viewing party spot. Head to Stanley’s Northeast Bar Room in Minneapolis for a celebration with your pooch. The parties are run by the same team, Mutt Hut. Seating at Stanley’s is first come, first served. Get there at 1:00 p.m.


  • Drag queens and football collide at LUSH in Northeast Minneapolis. A $10 ticket gets you complimentary popcorn, nachos and wings during the entire game! Plus, they’ll serve up free Jell-O shots with every touchdown. The party begins at 4:30 p.m. and tickets are $10. They should be purchased in advance.
  • UNION, located on Hennepin Avenue, is hosting a party spanning three levels, including their enclosed rooftop. A $200 ticket gets you access to an open bar and a buffet. The event is 21 plus and starts at 4:30 p.m.
  • It’s also $200 to get into the viewing party at Cowboy Jack’s near Target Field. For this one, you only get one complimentary drink, but organizers say it’ll be chock full of celebrities — their Facebook event says Kevin Hart, Randy Moss, Rick Ross and Busta Rhymes will show up. It’s hosted by former Vikings player Jack Brewer. It starts at 10:00 a.m. and the party goes all the way until midnight.
  • Add a splash of live music to your viewing party. Dueling piano bar, The SHOUT! House, is hosting a party from 12:00 p.m. until 4:00 a.m. with no cover. It sounds like they’ll take a break during the game so you can hear all those commercials.
  • The Norway House on Franklin Avenue (read: not downtown) is hosting a Welcome to the North party. The indoor- and outdoor-event features an ice bar serving traditional Nordic drinks, a market selling wares and crafts along with a real-life Norwegian Vikings costume contest. The celebration goes from 2:00 until 9:00 p.m. This party also happens Saturday, February 3 from 3:00 – 9:00 p.m.
  • Hazelden Betty Ford presents SoberBowl 2018 at Muse Event Center in Minneapolis. The no-alcohol gathering includes a support game and a viewing of the big game. Tickets are $20.
  • The Wells Fargo WinterSkate at Loring Park will have the game on a big screen while you burn off calories from all those appetizers you eat. Ice skating goes until 10:00 p.m. on February 4. Best of all, it’s free.

Saint Paul

  • Half Time Rec in Saint Paul starts things off at 1:00 p.m. A $50 Purple Package gets all-you-can-drink domestic bottles, pints and calls. You’ll also receive an appetizer and your choice of a cheeseburger basket or tacos. The $75 Gold Package (see what they did there) gets you access to top shelf liquor and a burger from their in-house restaurant, Paddy Shack, which is a hidden gem. Half Time Rec is upgrading their space, adding 13 flat screens for your game-viewing pleasure.