Finding fun activities to do while the children are out of school can be a challenge for many parents. While you want to show them a good time, you also want to ensure a safe environment that won’t cost a lot of money and dip into your savings. Cooling off on the hotter days of the year with some water play can help ensure your child gets a healthy dose of sunlight while burning off some extra energy.

Luckily, there are many options for families in the area to get wet and have fun. Here is our list of the best pools, splash pads, and bodies of water in and around Maple Grove, Minnesota.

Central Park of Maple Grove

A child playing in a splash pool in Maple Grove, MN

Water Play by Ms. Phoenix is licensed with CC BY 2.0

Central Park of Maple Grove is a community favorite for many reasons. The 44-acre park has a large playground, pickleball courts, and a seasonal ice-skating loop. But one of the best features is the LED illuminated splash pad. With interactive fountains that burst from the ground, the 2,100-square-foot plaza has 49 jet sprays and 18 arching sprays. Kids, both big and small, can cool off and play for hours on end.

The park recycles and filters the fountain water, reusing it just like swimming pools do, to reduce water consumption. Best of all, the splash pad is free to use and welcomes the young and the young at heart.

  • Location: 12000 Central Park Way, Maple Grove.
  • Hours: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily during the season.
  • Contact: 763-494-6474.

Highland Park Aquatic Center

Do you and your kids love swimming laps and enjoying the rush of an aquatic climbing wall? If so, the Highland Park Aquatic Center in nearby Saint Paul is where you want to be. This outdoor water park features a 50-meter eight-lane lap pool for those who wish to practice their stroke. Kids will love the two-story waterslide, and moms and dads can enjoy relaxing in the shade under one of the cabanas when you’re not looking after the little ones.

Toddlers and kids who aren’t comfortable in a pool can still cool off in the splash pads. The center also offers water aerobics equipment if you’d like to get a quick workout while enjoying a sunny day. Concessions are available on-site if the kids get hungry, so you don’t need to go far to satisfy the munchies. Daily admission begins at $7 per person, with discounts available for larger groups.

  • Location: 1840 Edgcumbe Road, St. Paul. 
  • Hours: Noon to 6 p.m. on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, noon to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. The regular season begins June 15 and ends Sept. 4. 
  • Contact: 651-695-3773.

Richfield Outdoor Pool

Head on over to the Richfield Outdoor Pool for some rest, relaxation, and sun. At just under half an hour away, the Richfield Outdoor Pool is a casual drive that’ll give you a chance to bond over some good conversation with the kids before you play in the water. The pool area is well-kept and clean, and there are great showers so you can rinse off that chlorine smell and save your skin from drying out.

At Richfield Outdoor Pool, you’ll find a double waterslide that’s perfect for your adventurous kids. For the younger ones or those who aren’t big swimmers, there’s a zero-depth-entry children’s wading pool to help introduce little ones to the wonders of water. 

Daily general admission begins at only $11 for guests from 1 to 54 years old. You have the option to buy seasonal passes, which is a good investment if you plan to go frequently. Swim classes are also available if you want your guppy to turn into a shark-level swimmer this summer. The pool opens for the season on Friday, June 9, so get your sunblock and swim gear ready.

  • Location: 630 E. 66th St., Richfield.
  • Hours: The main pool is open from noon to 7 p.m. daily, and the wading pool is open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. 
  • Contact: 612-861-9350.

Elm Creek Swim Pond

The Elm Creek Swim Pond is a pond with filtered, chlorinated water and a swimming beach. It traditionally opens on Memorial Day weekend and comes with a little peace of mind for parents, as lifeguards are on duty at this swim spot. It is a great place to wade by the water, soak in the sun, and let the kids enjoy some easy swimming.

Since the pond has a protective liner, little ones who might like to dig holes in the sand must keep their pits to 1 foot deep or less. While you can take flotation equipment that’s less than 3 feet long, you have to stay on the shallow side.

This is a great and economical pastime for families, but everyone over the age of 1 must have an armband. You can buy a daily band for $6 per person or a seasonal one for $20 per person. As an extra benefit, an Elm Creek seasonal pass is also good for the Lake Minnetonka Swim Pond.

  • Location: 12420 James Deane Parkway, Maple Grove.
  • Hours: To be announced.
  • Contact: 763-694-7894.

So there you have it. Crème de la Crème of Maple Grove has enjoyed sharing with you our suggestions for the best pools, splash pads, and other aquatic activities for families in and around Maple Grove. Even if your little one can’t swim yet, water play is still a fun option to cool off while you spend the afternoon in the sun.

After you’re done planning your next water adventure, consider Crème de la Crème of Maple Grove for your child care needs. We offer an enriching learning environment in which we teach Spanish and American Sign Language. We have a culinary kitchen where children can learn about nutrition, an outdoor garden to teach them about nature, and a STEM lab to develop an early interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Our on-site amenities include a kickball field, a tennis court, age-appropriate playgrounds, and even a bowling alley.

Call our friendly staff at 763-325-1903 to schedule a tour of our state-of-the-art facility and learn all the ways we’re right for your family’s needs.