5 Best Places and Things To Do in Northfield, Minnesota

Located in Rice County, Minnesota, Northfield is a charming town known for its rich history, beautiful natural surroundings, and vibrant cultural scene. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, an outdoor adventurer, or a lover of arts and culture, Northfield offers a range of attractions and activities. Here are some of the best places to visit and things to do in Northfield, Minnesota.

1. Northfield Historical Society

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Immerse yourself in Northfield’s history by visiting the Northfield Historical Society. Located in a historic bank building, the museum showcases exhibits that highlight the town’s past, including the infamous Jesse James bank raid of 1876. Learn about Northfield’s role in the Civil War and its transformation over the years.

2. Cowling Arboretum

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Nature lovers will appreciate the serene beauty of the Cowling Arboretum. This 880-acre natural area is part of Carleton College and features walking trails, prairies, wetlands, and woodlands. Take a leisurely hike, go birdwatching, or simply relax and enjoy the tranquility of this scenic retreat.

3. Northfield Arts Guild

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Delve into the thriving arts scene of Northfield by visiting the Northfield Arts Guild. This community arts center hosts a variety of events, including art exhibitions, theater productions, music concerts, and dance performances. Attend a show or workshop to immerse yourself in the local artistic talent.

4. Fireside Orchard and Gardens

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Fireside Orchard and Gardens is a delightful destination located in Northfield, Minnesota. Offering a perfect blend of natural beauty, family-friendly activities, and delicious produce, Fireside Orchard and Gardens is a popular spot for locals and visitors alike. One of the main highlights of Fireside Orchard and Gardens is the opportunity to go apple picking. Depending on the season, you can wander through the orchard, selecting your favorite varieties of apples straight from the trees. It’s a fun and wholesome activity for families, friends, or even a peaceful solo adventure.

5. Northfield Historical Society Museum and Historic Bank Site

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The Northfield Historical Society Museum and Historic Bank Site offer a fascinating glimpse into the history of Northfield, Minnesota, and its pivotal role in the infamous Jesse James bank raid of 1876. The Northfield Historical Society Museum serves as the primary repository of Northfield’s rich history. Located in a historic bank building, the museum showcases a wide range of exhibits, artifacts, and interactive displays that delve into the town’s past. You’ll learn about Northfield’s early settlement, its involvement in the Civil War, and its transformation over the years. The museum also highlights the events surrounding the James-Younger Gang’s attempted bank robbery and the heroic actions of the town’s citizens during the raid.

Northfield is surrounded by picturesque natural landscapes, making it an ideal destination for outdoor enthusiasts. Enjoy activities such as canoeing or kayaking on the Cannon River, biking along the scenic trails, or fishing in nearby lakes. The Carleton College Arboretum, Sechler Park, and Memorial