Santaland and Puppet Theater at Macy's

"A Day in the Life of an Elf," a perennial favorite in the downtown Minneapolis Macy's eighth-floor auditorium, returns. Witness the toiling of Santa's helpers as they prepare for the holidays. While there, visit with jolly ol' St. Nick and tell him what's on your list this year. Macy's also has weekly Santa breakfasts. (Store hours. Free. Macy's Minneapolis, 700 Nicollet Mall, Mpls. 612-375-2200. For Santa breakfast reservations, call 1-877-556-2297. $13.95-$17.95.)

Past, Present, Future

Plenty of wows await at a two-day program highlighting the "Then Now Wow" exhibit. Learn about Minnesota's distinctive places, from prairies and forests to cities, through interactive activities. Performances by Charlie Parr and the History Players. Try Thai cuisine and take a picture with Paul Bunyan. Also trivia games with prizes and History HiJinx art activities. (Noon-4 p.m. Fri.-Sat. $6-$11. Minnesota History Center, 345 W. Kellogg Blvd., St. Paul. 651-259-3000.