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Apple Valley Community Events

Apple Valley Freedom Days

The APPLE VALLEY FREEDOM DAYS Committee is a volunteer group, who work very hard to make Fourth of July in Apple Valley a fun filled event!! We have gone from a one day to a 4­5 day event. We are ALWAYS looking for sponsorships to help cover the cost of our events! Most of our events are free or have a minimal fee. The reason? We want our families and visitors to be able to enjoy the events!! We do have two very faithful sponsors... the City of Apple Valley and the Apple Valley American Legion. But, they can’t do it all!! We NEED thebusiness community support to keep this Family Fun filled event to be even better!

Minnesota Zoo ­ Ongoing Events

Wings Financial World of Birds Show ­ Soaring hawks, talking parrots, majestic owls, and many more rare and beautiful feathered creatures delight and amaze Zoo guests. Hawaiian Monk Seal Demonstrations – 12, 2, and 4pm daily ­ Experience the sights and sounds of the Hawaiian islands during our Hawaiian Monk Seal Demonstrations – daily at 12:00, 2:00 & 4:00 p.m. Come and connect with these critically endangered marine mammals and their trainers in their new habitat in Discovery Bay, the only place to see these amazing animals outside of Hawaii. Learn more about Hawaiian monk seals, the challenges they face in the wild, and what the Minnesota Zoo and others are doing to help save them.

Conservation Carousel ­ Round and round, up and down!

The Minnesota Zoo’s hand­crafted Conservation Carousel is located along the Northern Trail. $2 token per ride for guests 42 inches and taller, carousel tokens are purchased at the self­service kiosk near the carousel. Camel Rides – May 23 to September 7 Hours are 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM, weather permitting. Cost is $6 non­members, $5 for members. Photos are $6.

Tropical Reef Dive Show ­ Our spectacular floor­to­ceiling underwater viewing allows you to watch aquarium staff SCUBA dive with the sharks and tropical fish of the Coral Reef. Dive shows are daily at 10:30 a.m. (limited capacity) This program provides unique, engaging on­site animal experiences to zoo guests.

Each Backstage Pass is a unique, once­in­a­lifetime experience designed to foster positive, lifelong connections to the natural world.

Cow Milking Demonstration (seasonal) ­ The dairy barn at the Well’s Fargo Family Farm features daily cow milking demonstrations at 11, 1, and 3, April through November.

Shark Feedings ­ Watch the savage beauty of our sharks and other marine life during theirscheduled feedings. Discovery Bay shark feedings are at 11:30 a.m. on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday.

Penguin Feedings ­ Come watch our Penguins get fed at 10am and 2:30pm

Apple Valley Arts Foundation

Uponor Shakespeare Under the Stars

Live theater event at Kelley Park. Event includes a free theatrical performance of "Twelfth Night” by Apple Valley Live! Theatre Company. This event is co­hosted by the Apple Valley Arts Foundation and the City of Apple Valley.


Apple Valley Businesses


Holding over 1,000 visitors at a time, these are the top waterslides in the area and also offer tubing down the lazy river, zero level entry for infants, sandbox and swing area and restaurant attached but covered picnic areas to bring your own food if you wish.

VIVO Kitchen, Apple Valley

VIVO Kitchen just opened on February 11, 2014.   You will feel the ambiance of an "uptown coolness" and the taste of a "downtown classiness."   Upscale yet casual and relaxing, VIVO Kitchen is the DESTINATION RESTAURANT in the southern Twin Cities. The owners of the renowned Zelo’s in downtown Minneapolis and Bacio in Minnetonka have taken to creating another top Fine dining location for the best of occasions.   Or just stop by as casual as you like, as we are the gathering place for Apple Valley.  Say "I'll meet you at VIVO.


Apple Valley Beginnings

Apple Valley's historical roots lead back to the mid-1800s when it was a farming community known as Lebanon Township. The first settlers to the area were believed to have come from the east coast around 1855. On April 6, 1858, the Dakota County Board of Commissioners created Union Township. The board met again on April 26, 1858, and changed the boundaries of Union Township, creating Lebanon Township from a portion of the former Union Township.

The first town meeting was held on May 11, 1858, in a home near the area that is now Westview Elementary School. Lebanon Township remained much the same for its first century. The town's population in 1881 was 252 and in 1960 was 585.

Township Growth

The township began to transform in the mid-1950s. Residential neighborhoods began to develop in the spring of 1955. A Planning Commission was established in 1962. In 1963, Orrin Thompson began building in the area. Thompson selected the name Apple Valley for several of his plats on either side of County Road 42 that were located in the southwest corner of the city. Thompson had an apple tree planted at each home in some of the new developments. In 1966, a volunteer fire department was organized. In the general election of 1968, the residents voted to incorporate the Town of Lebanon as the Village of Apple Valley. A mayor and four councilmembers were elected and took office on January 1, 1969. On January 1, 1974, Apple Valley became a statutory city.

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