Itinerary: Friends Summer Weekend in Shakopee

This summer, gather your friends for a weekend getaway in Shakopee!  From relaxing over local beers to thrilling roller coasters, you’ll have a chance to catch up and make memories.


Kick off your friends’ weekend with an afternoon in Downtown Shakopee.  Located along the Minnesota River, the historic downtown is home to unique local shops and restaurants.  You’ll find stylish women’s clothing at Bluff Creek Boutique and menswear at Bill’s Toggery, and the Farmhemian stocks an eclectic selection of home decor and accessories.  Browse new and used vinyl at Ramble On Records, and discover antique furniture at Re-Claim Studios.

Savor tasty beverages at Shakopee Brewhall, which serves both craft beer and coffee in a vintage-inspired taproom.   For dinner, order in delivery from a nearby restaurant, like Pablo’s Mexican Restaurant or O’Brien’s Public House.

Next, try your luck at Mystic Lake, Minnesota’s largest casino.  There’s a huge array of slot machines as well as blackjack, bingo, and electronic table games.  On Friday and Saturday nights, check out Cosmic Bingo for a party atmosphere with black lights and loud music, and Cosmic Blackjack, which has fun beats and prizes.  Stop by the casino’s Drinx Bar for free live music every weekend.


Whether you want a thrilling day of rides or downtime by the wave pool at Soak City, your whole group will have a great time at Valleyfair.  The Upper Midwest’s largest theme park boasts over 75 rides and attractions—visitor favorites include the Corkscrew and Wild Thing roller coasters and the Power Tower, which gives you views of the entire park and surroundings from 275 feet.  

For specially-themed food and entertainment, visit Valleyfair during Grand Carnivale (through July 9, 2023) and Latin Days (August 5-6, 2023).

Spend the evening cheering on the live horse racing at Canterbury Park.  Reserve a table in the clubhouse for great views of the track and tableside food and cocktail service.  Combine watching the races with delicious eats and drinks at upcoming events including Uncorked Wine Festival (July 8, 2023),  Wings & Whiskey (August 5, 2023), and Beer Fest (August 12, 2023).


Sleep in and then enjoy a delicious brunch.  Wampach’s and Ruby’s Family Restaurant are local favorites for breakfast classics like omelets, french toast, and pancakes.  Mallards specializes in Cajun fare and seafood, with dishes like biscuits and gravy, shrimp and grits, and lobster quiche.

Wrap up your friends’ weekend at the Minnesota Renaissance Festival, which is held weekends August 19-October 1, 2023.  Each weekend features a different theme, with special entertainment and contests.  You’ll also enjoy live jousting, wandering entertainers, comedians, musicians, dancers, jugglers, and more.  Love shopping?  You’re sure to find something unique at the marketplace, with over 250 artisans selling everything from jewelry and pottery to hand-blown glass and apparel, and you can see how the items are made at daily artisan demos.  Be sure to sample some of the tasty eats—the turkey legs and mead are classic festival favorites, and you can also try Instagram-worthy desserts, local beers, and gluten-free and vegetarian options.

Shakopee is a perfect destination for a friends’ summer getaway, with attractions including   Valleyfair, Canterbury Park, and the Minnesota Renaissance Festival.  It’s also conveniently located to area attractions like Mystic Lake Casino and Chanhassen Dinner Theatres.

Book your stay in Shakopee today!