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Things to Do This Weekend in Rochester, MN

Things to Do This Weekend in Rochester, MN

Rochester, Minnesota, is a vibrant and growing metropolis. The Mayo Clinic and the IBM Rochester Campus are both located in our neighborhood. There is plenty to do in Rochester, MN, especially on the weekend! This weekend, try something new, from things to do to amazing restaurants; you're sure to find something great. Below is a list of things to do and places to eat in Rochester, Minnesota.



This brewery is a Rochester-based, family-owned craft brewery and taproom that focuses on high-quality craft beer, ranging from approachable, easy-drinking beers to special and unconventional beers. There's a little bit of something for everybody.

Little Thistle Brewing opened in August 2018. They have a game room with tabletop and board games, shuffleboard table, and arcade cabinets. The Scottish ale on the menu is a nod to Owner Steve Finnie's heritage.

 2031 14th St NW, Rochester, MN 55901

a bald eagle flying in the sky

If you're open to something about an hour's drive from Rochester, try visiting the National Eagle Center this week. The National Eagle Center is just a short day trip away from Rochester and is known as the "Eagle Capital of America". The center has several unreleasable Bald Eagles that you can see, and the outside environment welcomes hundreds of other eagles in the winter when they come to nest in the area. This is an amazing trip to get a good chance to see an eagle in the wild, and there are also lots of educational exhibits for people of all ages, including a "build-a-nest" exhibit where you can build a life-size eagle's nest. 

 50 Pembroke Ave. S. Wabasha, MN 55981

The Rochester Art Center was created in 1946 and holds local art and art from around the world. The main gallery is named after Judy Onofrio who is a Rochester-based artist. Judy Onofrio is a multi-talented artist who has created sculptures out of bone.

Located in Downtown, the Rochester Art Center is a 10 minute from our community. The art center is wheelchair and stroller accessible.

 30 Civic Center Dr SE STE 120, Rochester, MN 55904

Rochesterfest is a tradition that started in 1983. It is an annual festival in June with food, concerts, a triathlon, a parade, and a treasure hunt. The summer festival is a wonderful community event.

The festival is a great showcase of the vibrancy of Rochester. Grab your sunscreen and we’ll see you at the next Rochesterfest!

 Rochester, MN

The Douglas State Trail is a paved 12.5-mile track between Rochester and Pine Island. It is great for hikers, cyclists, and in-line skaters. The multi-use trail was built on an abandoned Chicago Great Western Railway track.

Heritage Manor is a mile from the Douglas State Trail, and a trailhead is located on Valleyhigh Drive NW. Dogs are allowed but must be on a leash.

 Trailhead on Valleyhigh Drive NW in Rochester, MN



There are plenty of spicy takes about who has the best food in Rochester. Our city has plenty of great spots to get a burger that aren't national chain restaurants. We aren't going to tell you who makes the best burger in town, but we'll steer you in the right direction. Sometimes, the best way to celebrate the weekend is by finding your new favorite burger. Below, we've got five restaurants that make a delicious burger.


Burger, Restaurant

Newt's is a local favorite, and for good reason. They were voted the best burger by Rochester Magazine every year from 2003-2019. (In 2020, they were unseated by a challenger that we'll talk about later.) Founded in 1980, Newt's has amazing burgers, including a bacon burger and a burger with peanut butter. Check out their menu to see which mouth-watering burger is calling your name. On their website, you can also see their daily specials to see how you can save on your drink orders every day of the week. 


Burger, Bar

Hot Chip Classic Burger is the new kid (burger place) on the block. Opened in 2018 by Justin Schoville and Lindsay Zubay, the 1990’s themed restaurant has a great classic burger. They were named “Best Burger 2020” by Rochester Magazine and dethroning the first restaurant on this list.


Pappy's Place is a neighborhood bar that serves a variety of food, including the ubiquitous cow meat with a bun. Their hamburger meat is a blend of ground chuck and brisket blend of Hereford cow. Altogether, it's not your average burger! Be sure to ask about their specials when you go, for lunch, dinner, drinks, or Pappy hour. With ten different burgers on the menu, you can find something that sounds amazing to you. Pappy's has a burger for you, whether you're feeling fancy and want the lingonberry bacon brie burger or just want a classic and dependable bacon cheeseburger.  


Burger, American

This American restaurant serves all the classics, including burgers. These hamburgers are on the more expensive side compared to the others on this list. But the Barrel Proof Burger will definitely blow your socks off with its Ghost Pepper cheddar and fried Jalapenos. And if you are vegetarian and miss having a juicy burger, they even have The Beyond Burger with all the flavor and none of the guilt. If you're a fan of classic cocktails, you'll love their selection, whether you like a bright and happy Bramble cocktail or a moodier smoked old-fashioned. 


Burger, Drive-Thru

The last burger restaurant on our list is Snappy Stop. This is an independent drive-through that boasts unique Burgers of the Month. When measuring convenience and quality, it's hard to beat Snappy Stop. This is the last burger place on our list. Now get out there and get eating. You have to decide your own burger destiny! This Rochester staple is like fast food, just better. Snappy Stop has the convenience and affordability of fast food but with the charm of a local restaurant, and knowing you can only get it here in Rochester.