Whether you are vacationing, visiting family, or looking for something new to do, you will find a ton of great things to do in Otsego, Minnesota. Have you ever tried curling, which is a traditional winter sport on ice? Or played on such a realistic golf simulator you will think you are outside on the links? These are just some of the more unique things to do in Otsego. Come along and explore the beautiful natural parks, wonderful dining, and water activities as well.
1. Clear Waters Outfitting Company
The first stop on our list of great things to do in Otsego is a trip to Clear Waters Outfitting Company, a paddle, and sport specialty store. Take your adventurous spirit and rent a kayak. Don’t worry if you have never paddled, you can sign up for some classes that will make sure you are skilled before heading off onto the water. If you are feeling slightly more adventurous, you can camp overnight and spend some time fishing on the lake.
2. Taste of Terror
As Halloween approaches, the Taste of Terror emerges. This annual event is staged at the end of September and gives a harrowing welcome to October, the month of scares. Take a trip through the Haunted House and you will have a thrilling time, with the smells, sounds, and visual effects. The scare actors give everything a greater sense of reality. This Haunted House has the reputation for being one of the best in Minnesota.
3. Crowe Hassan Park Reserve
This is a wilderness of restored prairie on the Crow River. Go walking or hiking along the miles of trails in winter, or cross country skiing in winter. Keep an eye out for wildlife along the way. You can expect to see deer, foxes, coyotes, and even a hawk or bald eagles, if you are lucky. Dogs are welcome, both off and on leash.
This reserve is unique because it offers campsites with places for horses, so you can hit the trails on horseback, camp overnight, and explore further the next day.
4. Wild Woods Water Park
If you are in Otsego during summer, the Wild Woods Water Park is a must. Stand at the top of the four-story water slides before you take the plunge. Literally. This is the best water park in the North West. Modeled on an old river town, there are plenty of rides for you to choose from. The tubes are a must and then you can play basketball in the activity pool. For the little ones, there is a zero-depth entry pod. Everyone is catered for; everyone will have some fun.
5. New Life Outdoors Farmers Market
If you enjoy fresh produce direct from the farm, then the New Life Outdoors Farmers Market is the place to shop. Look out for a variety of fruit and vegetables to add some flavor to your cooking, alongside nuts and baked goods. To satisfy your more creative side, you can wander through the craft stalls as well.
6. Bittersweet Ski Resort
Bittersweet Ski Resort offers a great family experience on the snow. Enjoy day and night skiing. If you are experienced, then you can take to the slopes. If you are a beginner, take some lessons, no matter what age.
You will find long runs for beginners, intermediate and advanced skiers. With the variety and excellent service, Bittersweet is one of the best ski resorts you will find.
7. Oliver Kelley Farm
Oliver Kelley Farm takes you into life in the 19th century. You can explore the 1860 working farm, experience the chicken house, visit the root cellar, and experience what it was like to fill a bucket from the water pump. You can take part in household chores and help to stock the root cellar. This museum recreates the past for you to experience.
8. Mystery Chambers
Mystery Chambers is the best escape room experience. It is the perfect place for the family, a team of friends, or a team-building exercise. When you are locked in a room, you need to evaluate the environment and then find the clues that will help to escape. In this team-based puzzle event, you will have to solve a series of interconnected puzzles by working together.
9. Otsego Regional Park
In the Otsego Regional Park, you will find two miles of trails for all occasions and activities. Go for a hike or a bike ride in summer and cross country skiing in winter. If the trails are not your scene, then head for the sand volleyball area or the horseshoe pits to have some fun.
10. Peabody Players
Next on our list of great things to do in Otsego is to spend some time at Peabody Players. Peabody is a company of players that gives the audience a night of laughter for all ages. Their specialty is improvisation and they turn the Banquet Space at the Holiday Inn into a theater of fun for the duration of the performance. Peabody Players is developing their work into a project to take into schools.
11. Lynx Golf Course
Of course, if you are a golf enthusiast, then playing on a local golf course is a must. Lynx Golf Course has an interesting layout with good-sized hills to add to the challenge.
12. HD Golf Simulator
Golf doesn’t always take place outside. Visit the HD Golf Simulator and play a real game of golf inside. The simulator uses real images, not computer-generated animation. The pictures are taken of real-life and you will see real animals and even people to have a game of golf like no other.
13. Boondox Bar and Grille
Boondox Bar and Grille doesn’t only offer great food, it is also the place to play a range of interesting sport. Take the chance to participate in volleyball, outdoor curling, broomball, or boot hockey. The menu offers specials such as the chicken strip dinner, Jambalaya, chicken stir-fry, and a shrimp basket dinner. Sports and a great meal are what Boondox Bar and Grille is about.
14. Drake O’Neill’s Irish American Pub
The experience and atmosphere of the pubs in Ireland were the inspiration for Drake O’Neill’s Irish American Pub. The aim is to offer the audience the complete experience of traditional Ireland in a recreation of the true Irish pub. The staff is friendly and caters to children with mini-meals and for adults, with familiar meals like chicken pot pie and fish and chips. Everyone is invited to enjoy the people and the friendly environment. Drake O’Neill’s specifically honors all public servants, to whom special treatment and special rates are offered.
15. Henry’s Woods Park
45 acres of natural beauty. That’s what you’ll find at Henry’s Woods Park. There are beautiful gardens, in which you can have a picnic in the designated area. Follow the trails to explore the natural wooded areas. Take a look at the traditional wooden barn as you go by.
16. River’s Edge Commons Park
Along the Elk River is the River’s Edge Commons Park, which is the ideal picnic site, either in the open or under the gazebo. Regular concerts and other music performances take place in the rough amphitheater-style area. If you would rather take in the river and countryside around you, the views are spectacular.
17. Pour Wine and Bistro
Pour Wine and Bistro is, quite simply, home to the finest wines and great dining. The menu uses smaller, shared dishes, so you will be able to try many of the original recipes in one sitting. The bistro hosts special events, each of which has an original feel.
Last, but not least on the list of great things to do in Otsego is to fuel up at Rockwoods. For a good meal, Rockwoods offers a scratch kitchen, where everything on the menu is made from all fresh ingredients. The meals are complemented by craft cocktails. Alongside the restaurant is an events center, where special events are hosted, such as Thanksgiving dinner.
Some Extra Flavor
The many fun things to do in Otsego include fine dining, special events, a realistic golf simulator, beautiful parks, and just a little taste of terror for some extra flavor. If you are visiting or spending a while there, you should take advantage of some of these unique things to do in Otsego that will give you something to talk about long after you have left.
Did we miss one? If you know of another one of the great things to do in Otsego that we didn’t mention, please let us know by leaving a comment.
- About the Author
- Latest Posts
Born in Madelia, MN, to a now 5-generation Minnesota family, Ryan’s MN roots go deep.
A painter by day, Ryan founded Life in Minnesota in 2013 with his wife Kelly to chronicle their musings on everything Minnesota. Ryan and Kelly are raising their 7 kiddos in Maple Grove, MN.
When he’s not shuttling his kids around to hockey practice, you might find him in the shop working on his leatherwork. Undoubtedly, there will be a family trip to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area every summer, and of course weekends at Grandpa’s cabin up north in the summer.