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Group Tours & Experiences

Be inspired. Discover wonder. Create memories.

Looking for a unique outing? Groups of all types and sizes are invited to visit ASI's awe-inspiring campus, combining the best of old and new. See internationally acclaimed exhibitions travelling from the Nordic region as well as work by talented local and regional artists. Explore Minneapolis’ only castle!

ASI offers tours perfect for groups of 10 or more, including opportunities for friends and family outings, office parties or corporate gatherings and international organizations. 

To book a group tour or request more information, contact Robert Nicholl, Visitor Services and Volunteer Coordinator, or call (612) 870-3344.

Comments From The Media:

“Go back in time at the American Swedish Institute…” – New York Times 36 Hours Travel Section, 2016

“A trip to Minneapolis isn't complete without a visit to the ASI” -CNN, 2015

“…explore the city’s Scandinavian heritage at the American Swedish Institute” -New York Travel Magazine, 2016

“ASI is model of how a small institution can draw visitors with exciting programming" -Wall Street Journal, 2013

Historic House Tours - The Turnblad Mansion Dream

$13 person - 60 minutes

Discover the Turnblad Mansion, the first building in Minneapolis listed on the National Register of Historic Places. This iconic and awe-inspiring achievement was built between 1904 and 1908 as private residence and an ode to the achievements of Swedish-Americans.

Your group tour includes a guided experience through the exquisite 33-room Turnblad Mansion.  Hear the stories behind the detailed woodcarvings, sculpted ceilings, the 11 ornate Swedish ceramic stoves (kakelugnar) and the architectural vision of this castle-like mansion. Learn about life in early Minneapolis and the Turnblad family who lived in the Mansion from 1908-1927 and then launched a Swedish--American cultural center which has been transformed into a gathering place for all people to share experiences around themes of culture, migration, the environment and the arts, informed by enduring links to Sweden.

Exhibition and Gallery Tours

$13 person - 60 minutes

ASI’s exhibition galleries present the best Nordic modern masters, complimented by art installations from Minnesota and regional artists.  From exhibitions featuring world-renowned photographers and textile artists to ceramicists and stunning visual artists, ASI’s schedule rotates frequently. 

Nordic Holiday Rooms: Celebrations of Light

Available November 12, 2016 – January 8, 2017

$13 person – 60 minutes

Experience one of Minneapolis’ most talked about seasonal destinations – ASI’s Nordic Holiday Rooms, an exploration of the Nordic traditions and customs practiced in homes across Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Iceland and Finland, all under one elaborately decorated roof, the Turnblad Mansion.  This year’s theme is "Celebrations of Light" and the ASI will also honor traditions from the Jewish community. 

New Nordic Architecture and Design: Nelson Cultural Center Tour

$3 per person* - 30 minutes. Must be booked with an Historic House Tour

 “…[ASI] it is what you could call a democratic building. We felt that the additional construction bowed to the majesty of the original house.” - American Institute of Architects, Minnesota Honor Award, 2012

ASI’s Nelson Cultural Center, a modern masterpiece completed in 2012, was designed by the award-winning HGA Architects to pay homage to the features of the historic Turnblad Mansion, yet offer a 21st Century museum experience.  The new building has allowed ASI to welcome hundreds of thousands of annual visitors in new ways, to launch the FIKA Café, host signature programming and offer space for meetings and special events. ASI is the first museum in Minnesota to achieve LEED-Gold Certification, a designation that recognizes environmental sustainable design and function. On this tour, discover the HGA's vision for a modern cultural center married to an historic museum, and learn about sustainable building practices being adapted around the world.  

Premium Experiential Tours  -  Swedish Art, Craft and Design

$25 person - 120 minutes

Includes materials for each participant to make their own handcrafted wooden cutting board.

Put the old and the new, the traditional and the contemporary, the classic and the modern together in this extraordinary hands-on, high-energy campus tour of the American Swedish Institute.

Your group will discover the work of artists, craftsmen and architects who dreamed and then later built the ornate Turnblad Mansion and Nelson Cultural Center.  Visit the nooks and crannies of the historic Castle.  Go behind the scenes and visit ASI’s modern collections facilities, and put it all together in a hands-on craft experience in the Berglund Craft Studio, where each participant will make their own handcrafted Swedish-inspired cutting board to take home.

Special Group Programs and Offsite Experiences

Special programs can be booked for your group visit to ASI, or we can bring the fun to you!  Special Group Programs are designed for groups as small as 10 people and as large as 150. Groups can reserve programs onsite, or we will come to you for an offsite program at a location of your choice.

Swedish Immigrant Trunk

$125 - 60 minutes

The past comes to life as we unpack Anna Persson’s 1860 immigrant trunk bound on a steamer headed for the U.S. of Amerika, Minneapolis.  Discover the facts of early Swedish immigrant life by seeing what typical Swedish immigrants brought with them on their journey. Imagine walking in the shoes of a Swedish immigrant in a lively program that’s part show-and tell, part Antiques Roadshow and part walk down memory lane. 

Celebrating the Swedish Way

$125 – 60 minutes

Are you curious about the mythical Midsummer, wondering why Swedes wear flower wreaths on their heads and hop around like frogs around the Maypole each June?  Or how about December 13, when Swedes wake to saffron buns, choral singing and processions led by Lucia with candles in her hair? In this delightful program learn how seasons, pagan traditions, Christianity, immigration and the insatiable curiosity of Swedes formulated holidays and traditional festivities celebrated today. 

Christmastime in Sweden

$125 – 60 minutes

Christmas is the most important time of the year for many Swedes, filled with special smorgåsbord foods, Santa Lucia celebrations and a visit from Tomte, Sweden’s version of Santa Claus. We’ll take you from Advent to the final days of the Christmas tree. 

ASI Private Group Tours

Private group tours of ASI's current exhibititons are available on request. Topics and offerings can be designed to fit your group, yet are subject to change depending on the curatorial schedule.  

Group Tour Catering

Complete your tour or visit with a fika, smörgåsbord or sit-down meal. ASI's in-house catering team, Slate & Stone, offers American and New Nordic breakfast, lunch and dinner options for all occassions. Please inquire when booking or contact Lisa Krueger, Director of Catering, at 612-870-3368 or LKrueger@ciemail.com.

FAQs

  • What days of the week and times of the day do you offer group tours?

We normally offer tours during open Museum hours (Tuesdays-Sundays), but may be able to accommodate special requests. Contact us with questions.

  • How far in advance do I need to book my tour?

Group tours must be scheduled at least two weeks in advance.

  • Do you require a deposit for group tours, and when does the tour operator need to provide payment?

ASI does not require a deposit to book a tour, but does require payment in full before the tour begins, reflecting an accurate group size.

  • Are group leaders and motor coach operators free of charge?

Yes, we love our bus drivers and tour leaders.  Group tour leaders and motor coach operators tour free of charge.

  • Do you offer meal options for our group?

While our award-winning café, FIKA is open for table service during most Museum Hours, we recommend that you make food and beverage arrangements when you book your tour. 

ASI Tour Facilitator

Love the Turnblad Mansion and want to share it with ASI visitors and groups? Become a Tour Facilitator!

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