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Wisconsin Parent

Family Fun in St. Croix Falls, WI and Taylors Falls, MN

Jul 30, 2014 03:00AM ● By Julie Henning
While Interstate State Park kept us fully entertained for several days (read this story), we ventured out into the towns of St. Croix Falls, Wisconsin and Taylor's Falls, Minnesota in search of some kid-friendly activities. If you stop by the Polk County Tourism building during visitor's hours, you'll find plenty of activities to choose from (from canoe trips to golfing, local artists, and the good ol' Wisconsin supper club). We randomly selected places from both states; here's where we ended up:


A "Wildlife Educational Park," we had been to Fawn-Doe-Rosa when the kids were little (at that time we lived in the Twin Cities and this made for a nice Sunday drive). A combination deer yard, farm yard, and petting area, you'll mostly see animals indigenous to the region (mountain lion, porcupine, badger) with the occasional peacock and highland cow.

IMG_8017We were thrilled to meet fawn and the occasional deer who came close for a treat (print a 50¢ off coupon at home). While we arrived too late in the day to purchase pony rides, the kids seemed to spend the most time in the farm yard.

IMG_8030Closing time came before we had a chance to check out the Educational Center, but we were lucky enough to help feed the fawns their bottles.

IMG_8014Wild Mountain

Offering "year round" outdoor fun, Wild Mountain (located just outside of Taylor's Falls) has a variety of summertime options ranging from an outdoor waterpark to boat tours and an RV park and campground.

IMG_8052Arriving for some after-dinner entertainment, we focused on the Alpine Slide and Go-Karts. You can purchase both discount packages and individual admission tickets for the various attractions; note that kids under 46-inches ride free on the lap of an adult.

IMG_8060The Alpine Slide is our new favorite thing to do when we vacation somewhere hilly enough for a ski slope—the ride on the chair lift gives you a panoramic view of the region and this is "exciting" but not as extreme as a roller coaster. We also enjoyed the go-karts; I'm foreshadowing some "white knuckle" drivers' training days ahead of us!

RacecarsWith a smaller-scale waterpark and kiddie area, Wild Mountain would make for a special treat if you need something more exciting than a dip in the lake (there's also a lazy river if you just want to float).

IMG_8057St. Croix Falls Public Library

Always a good option for a rainy day and anyone on a budget, the St. Croix Falls Public Library has an adorable Children's area.

IMG_8007During my visit, several outdoor activities (crafts, a portable sandbox, and what looked like an obstacle course) were set up in the outdoor courtyard/garden. Check the library website for various story times and family-friendly activities.

IMG_8008The Drive-In

A nostalgic place for a burger and a malt, The Drive-In Restaurant in Taylor's Falls will bring you back in time. This was a nice alternative to camp cooking and we decided to sit off to the side under one of the umbrella's.

IMG_8048Orders are taken as dine-in (outside seating only) or from your car by waitresses in poodle skirts. If your kids order from the children's menu, they receive a "2-for-1 discount" on miniature golf at the course just behind the restaurant. Our favorite menu item was the homemade root beer!