For Families

The American Swedish Institute offers families a fun and welcoming place to explore traditions, immigration, handcraft and art. Be sure to visit the Youth & Family page for information about special programs and resources tailored for children, youth, and families.


Strollers are welcome in the NCC and on ASI grounds though space is often tight in the historic Turnblad Mansion, The use of strollers may be restricted in special exhibition galleries due to loan restrictions and high visitor volume.

Family Restrooms

Family changing stations are available in our public and family restrooms located on the 1st and 2nd floors of the NCC and the Lower Level of the Turnblad Mansion.


FIKA, ASI's café, offers family friendly meals. Dine outside and kids can explore the ASI Outdoor Playcart, one of the reasons FIKA was named "Best Place to Eat With Your Kids in Minneapolis" in 2014.  Food and drink are not permitted in the historic Turnblad Mansion or the Osher Gallery. 

Family Gallery and Guides

The ASI Family Gallery encourages our youngest visitors to play, touch, read and learn! Family gallery locations and topics change with major ASI exhibits.

Write to Tomte

Not every house has a Tomte but the Turnblad Mansion does! Write Tomte a note or ask him a question. His mailbox is located in the Turnblad Mansion's third floor turret.

Outdoor Play

Find something new and surprising while exploring and playing in the outdoor spaces at ASI. Our outdoor play cart gives ASI's youngest visitors the tools to encourage a sense of wonder and enrich their visit. Explore the “high up places” using binoculars or the beauty of the flowers using a magnifying glass; dance with scarves, ribbons or hula hoops; build with tree blocks; or play a game of kubb on the lawn. The outdoor play cart changes every week—you might be surprised at what you find! Outdoor Playcart Season runs May-September (weather permitting)!  


Tips for a Great Family Visit

  • Encourage your child to help prepare for your visit to ASI. Check out the calendar of exhibits, classes and programs and discover what there is to see and do at ASI.
  • Share with your child how they can help protect the 100 year old Turnblad Mansion.  Explain how touching the historic surfaces and art may leave harmful (yet invisible) finger prints.   
  • You don't need to be quiet in the mansion and exhibits! We encourage talking, questions, and even singing!
  • Have fun looking at and talking about the mansion and exhibits—you'll be amazed at how sharing what you see with your children can enrich your family's experience.
  • Keep young kids engaged by counting, identifying shapes and colors, or naming animals, people, or objects.
  • Make a game out of looking at artworks: What going on in this artwork? What do you see that makes you say that? Communicate opinions and thoughts. There are no wrong answers!