A&E’s guide to Super Bowl week

Skiing, celebrities and NFL stars — navigate Super Bowl week like a pro with these tips.

Super Bowl LII comes to US Bank Stadium on Feb. 4.

Alex Tuthill-Preus

Super Bowl LII comes to US Bank Stadium on Feb. 4.

by Kate Drakulic

It’s not every day the Super Bowl comes to town! With concerts, clubs and cover charges exceeding hundreds and hundreds of dollars, Super Bowl week may seem a bit intimidating, if not entirely impossible. Luckily, there are a number of free and low-cost events happening all over Minneapolis for those of us who can’t afford to party with JT and Cardi B.

NFL Honors 

Contrary to popular belief, the giant white tent that has been sitting in the middle of the campus mall, blocking pedestrian traffic and ruining snowy Snapchat videos, is actually going to be put to use! On Feb. 3, or “Super Bowl Eve,” if you will, NFL superstars will strut the outdoor red carpet as they arrive for NFL Honors. With prior registration, you can attend the event for free and maybe even snag a signature from your favorite football star.

When: Saturday, Feb. 3.

Where: Northrop Mall, 84 Church St. SE, Minneapolis

Note: 18+

Free Concerts at Nicollet Mall

In the name of inclusivity, or perhaps pity, the Super Bowl is sponsoring 10 days of free concerts that will occupy six blocks of Nicollet Mall. With names like Twin Cities Community Gospel Choir, Morris Day and the Time, Skylar Grey and Brother Ali, the lineups are sure to provide something for everyone. 

When: Jan. 26 – Feb. 4.

Where: Nicollet Mall 

Cost: Free!

Drake’s CRAVE Ice Lounge

No, it’s not the real Drake. However, the lounge does have a good chance of attracting celebrity-status guests with its icy appeal. Drake’s Organic Spirits is taking over CRAVE’s rooftop to create a wonderland made completely from ice. In addition to an ice fishing house and selfie throne, frozen sculptures, furniture and a bar will be among the main attractions of the Ice Lounge. Bundle up! Registration includes admission and a drink ticket. 

When: Jan. 31 – Feb. 4.

Where: CRAVE American Kitchen & Sushi Bar, 825 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis

Cost: $35

Note: 21+

City of Lakes Loppet

Pack up your skis and escape the city (sort of) at the City of Lakes Loppet Festival. The week-long cross-country ski festival will hold multiple races scheduled each day for all ages, plus snow sculpture competitions, ice biking and a “Luminary Loppet.” On the night of Feb. 3, luminaries will light the course around Lake of the Isles while fire dancers, an ice pyramid, food trucks and other entertainment occupies spectators. 

When: Jan. 27 – Feb. 4.

Where: Loppet Village (near Lake Calhoun Center), 3033 Excelsior Blvd., Minneapolis

Note: Race registration required

Bold North Zip Line 

The rumors are true. For a fee, you can risk your life and your mother’s chance of a heart attack by zip lining over the Mississippi River! At a height of 100 feet, you can ponder whether or not flying across the river was worth the windburn. Online tickets sold out in less than 36 hours, so be sure to register ASAP! 

When: Jan. 26 – Feb. 4.

Where: Nicollet Island, 16 Wilder St., Minneapolis

Note: Registration required

Fan Gallery & Radio Row

Located on the third floor of the Mall of America, the Fan Gallery is a free opportunity to wander through broadcasting booths and witness a number of radio broadcasters, athletes and guest celebrities go on the air during Super Bowl week. 

When: Jan. 29 – Feb. 3. 

Where: Third floor of Mall of America, 60 E Broadway, Bloomington

Super Bowl Experience Driven by Genesis

Free autographs from NFL professionals, photo ops with the Vince Lombardi Trophy and NFL virtual reality — all at the Minneapolis Convention Center. Described as an interactive theme park, the Super Bowl Experience offers something for all ages. 

When: Jan. 27 – Feb. 3.

Where: Minneapolis Convention Center 1301 2nd Ave. S, Minneapolis 

Cost: $35

St. Paul Winter Carnival

Since 1886, St. Paul has celebrated winter and community with the St. Paul Winter Carnival, and they aren’t about to stop now! Events will take place each day throughout the 17-day festival, and include ice palaces, parades, treasure hunts, cat shows and snow plow competitions. 

When: Jan. 25 – Feb. 10.

Where: Rice Park, 109 4th St. W, St. Paul

Note: Registration required for competitions

Super Bowl Breakfast

An annual honorary event, the 2018 Super Bowl Breakfast Bart Starr Award will go to Benjamin Watson of the Baltimore Ravens for his “outstanding character, integrity and leadership in the home, on the field and in the community.” Hear from retired Vikings and special guests. 

When: Saturday, Feb. 3. 

Where: Minneapolis Hilton, 1001 Marquette Ave. S, Minneapolis

Note: Tickets required

Built Ford Tough Sleigh Ride

What’s better than taking a ride in the Official Truck of the NFL and Super Bowl LII? Taking a ride in a sleigh that’s pulled by Official Truck of the NFL and Super Bowl LII of course! Ford trucks will pull sleighs and sleigh riders from 8th Street and Marquette to 12th Street and 2nd Avenue in downtown Minneapolis. 

When: Jan. 26 – Feb. 4.

Where: 8th St. and Marquette, 12th St. and 2nd Ave., Minneapolis