So you’re being dragged to the Mall of America by your significant other. The thought of going is making your palms sweaty, and you see visions of a million boring shops that continue for miles. Yes, there are a plethora of shops, but it’s honestly not as bad as you’re imagining.
Cigars & Leisure recently put sanity on the line to check out the Mall of America and found that there are lots of fun ways to spend your time while the others in your party are shopping till they drop. Here are five activities that we think you’ll enjoy and will help you survive your trip to the biggest mall in America.
Sure, you may think Nickelodeon is a kid’s thing, but this park certainly isn’t. It’s one of the largest indoor theme parks in the U.S., with 27 rides including the SpongeBob SquarePants Rock Bottom Plunge, Pepsi Orange Streak, and Shredder’s Mutant Masher, just to name a few of the most thrilling. nickelodeonuniverse.com
SEA LIFE AQUARIUM
Who doesn’t love seeing sharks, 350-pound turtles, 4-foot alligator gar, and stingrays swimming over your head as you stroll through a tunnel? There’s also touch tanks, exhibits of freshwater river fish, Southern swamps, and a replica of Minnesota’s north woods. You can go for an outdoor hike without even leaving the mall! visitsealife.com/minnesota
Even adults love Legos. This store features gigantic Lego brick creations, such as a 34-foot robot, a helicopter, and a life-size caveman taking on a saber-toothed tiger. There’s a wall of over 180 assorted colors and styles of Legos, as well as tables where you can sit, take a break, and build. We dare you not to feel like a kid again and have the time of your life. mallofamerica.com/attractions/view/lego
HOUSE OF COMEDY
What better way to turn that frown upside down than by seeing live comedy at Rick Bronson’s House of Comedy? This stage has featured such legends as Jimmy Fallon, Jay Leno, and Jimmy Kimmel. Plus, you can feast on a state fair-themed appetizer plate (mini donuts and cheese curds) and have what they call their “famous comedy concoctions and levity libations to quench your thirst for laughs.” moa.houseofcomedy.net
A.C.E.S. FLIGHT SIMULATION CENTER
This flight simulator apparently offers an identical experience to simulators used by the military, and I believe it. In the Surround View simulator, you are completely immersed with real-world imagery. It feels, sounds, and looks completely real. You can also try a WWII Warbird Flight, which features large domed projection screens where you can fly combat missions against your friends. flyaces.com
There you have it! Five fun ways to spend your day at the Mall of America. Or, you can just shop … yeah, we didn’t think so.
Mall of America Fun Facts:
43 Boeing 747s could fit inside the mall.
100-plus pounds of food are fed daily to the animals at Sea Life aquarium, plus 90 extra pounds on the days the sharks are fed.
347 Statues of Liberty could fit inside the mall.
520-plus stores are in the mall.
8,700 weddings have been performed at the mall.
170,000-plus Legos have been lost in the Lego play area.
5.6 million square feet make up the gross area of the mall.
40 million shoppers visit the mall every year.
$650 million total cost to build the Mall of America.