1 See Fish, Up Close Minnesota State Fair, Through Sept. 2 The DNR's outdoor fish pond is one of the most popular sites at the State Fair. And this year, the DNR has renovated its indoor fish exhibit, replacing the almost-ancient small aquariums with five large ones representing different habitats. www.startribune.com/a2448.
2 Monarch Tagging
Richardson Nature Center, Aug. 24, 2–3:30 p.m. Just like bird banding, monarch tagging helps researchers track the creatures' annual migration to Mexico. This is a family-friendly affair, designed to help researchers with this fascinating work. $5. 763-694-7676
3 Archery in the Park
Wild River State Park, Aug. 24, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Want to learn archery? This drop-in session is as hassle-free as it gets. Simply stop by the park's picnic grounds anytime for introductory tips provided by a certified archery instructor. No experience or equipment needed. Free. 651-583-2125 or www.mndnr.gov.
4 Historic Quarry Hike
Banning State Park, Aug. 24, 1-2:30 p.m. Take a guided hike through the ruins of the 120-year-old Banning Sandstone Quarry, which ceased operations way back in 1905. All that remains are some beautifully overgrown ruins along the Kettle River, plus a few heaps of climber-friendly rocks that were left behind by quarry workers. 1-320-384-6615 or www.mndnr.gov.
5 Parent-Child Fishing Fort Snelling State Park, Aug. 25, 1-3 p.m.
This bonding opportunity doubles as a fishing primer for parents and kids. Learn about common Minnesota fish, the basics of tackle and gear, plus state regulations. Equipment and bait provided. Preregistration required. 612-725-2724 or www.mndnr.gov.