Category Archives: Living in Minnesota

We live and sell real estate in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Sharing what we love beyond the pretty city of Minneapolis when exploring the rest of the state.

Minneapolis is a Great Place to Live

Minneapolis is a great place to live. Don’t believe me? Check out these rankings to see how/where/why Minneapolis makes the list again and again for being a top destination to live.

Minneapolis is ranked number 3 in Bankrate’s top 10 top places to live in the U.S. in 2020.

Curbed put Minneapolis on their list of the 10 best cities to move to right now.

U.S. News analyzed the 125 most populous metro areas to find the best places to live. To make the top of the list, a place had to have good value, be a desirable place to live, have a strong job market and a high quality of life. Minneapolis ranks number six.

According to the folks at Wallethub Minneapolis is the best city for an active lifestyle.

We’re also a really great state for a staycation according to Trips to Discover.

And I’ll end with this article originally posted in 2017 because I still agree 100 percent with the authors top 20 reasons to live here.

3 Winter Activities To Do This Weekend

It’s suppose to be in the 30’s this weekend. Cue the celebration! (If you knew how cold it’s been here in Minnesota you’d be celebrating too.) But all kidding aside when we see temps in the 30’s it’s time to get outside and experience the joy of winter. That’s right, I said outside. Not sure what to do? Here are our top picks.

The St. Paul Winter Carnival: This event runs through Feb 2 so technically you have some time but it’s going to be in the 30’s this weekend so why not. There are Ice Sculptures, Ice Bars, Parades and so much more.

Lake Harriet Kite Festival: This one is open from noon to 4 on Saturday. Go see kites of all shapes and sizes, colors and themes flying over a frozen lake. Other fun things to do include ice fishing, snowshoeing, and a marshmallow roast. This is a free event. Including a free ride from Metro Transit.

Minnehaha Falls: I saved the best for last, I’m not sure how many of you have seen a frozen water fall but it’s pretty amazing. I highly recommend that you dress warm, wear your warmest and sturdiest winter boots and go explore. When we went we went followed the creek and enjoyed a beautiful long walk. My last piece of advice, don’t forget your camera, this place is very Instagrammable.

Summertime in Minneapolis

Ah Summertime in Minneapolis. It really is the best time of the year. Maybe it’s because we’ve finally de-thawed and we can go outside without multiple layers of clothing and boots on. Oh the freedom of flip flops. And while many of us escape every weekend to the family cabin up north, a lot of us are left looking for fun activities to do closer to the city. Lucky for us there is no shortage of fun things to do. Here are our top 5.

  1. The lakes. It doesn’t matter if you want to relax on the beach, go for a swim, rent out a kayak or paddle boat our Minneapolis lakes offer something for everyone, including food. We love to walk around the lake and then enjoy a refreshing IPA for us and ice-cream for the kids. Our favorite places to go are SandCastle  and Bread and Pickle. 
  2. Outdoor concerts. There’s no shortage of places to go to see live music in Minneapolis. From Music in the Parks  to the Basilica Block Party and the MN State Fair there’s something for everybody all summer long.
  3. Baseball. And we have two really great options right here in our beautiful cities, the MN Twins and the St. Paul Saints. The stadiums are beautiful and both offer free fireworks on Fridays after the game during the summer.
  4. The Minneapolis Sculpture Garden. It’s one of the largest urban sculpture parks in the country and home to the famous Spoon and Cherry.
  5. Visit one of the local Farmers Market. It turns out we have over 60 of them.

Summertime in the City | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

#summertime #minneapolis #mattengengroup #thingtodo #livinginmn

Family Fun Day!

Our family found ourselves with nothing to do yesterday. Amazing, I know. This almost never happens to us, no sports? no work? what to do? I was personally looking forward to curling up with a good book and staying in my PJ’s all day. But we live in a house with two boys, who are 12 and 14 years old. If we didn’t find something to do as a family they’d spend the day in front of the TV playing Fortnite with their friends. And that means I would lay in bed that night fretting about the massive amount of screen time I just let them consume.

Matt and I decided we’d go bowling at Town Hall Lanes. Both boys surprised us and quickly agreed to go. If you haven’t been to Town Hall Lanes it’s a neighborhood bar/restaurant and 10 lane bowling alley located in Minneapolis. Matt and I like the food and their beer, the Masala Mama is our favorite. The atmosphere at Town Hall Lanes is relaxed, clean and kid appropriate. It was busy, it always is, but we were able to get a lane immediately. We got our shoes, ordered drinks and appetizers, made new friends and bowled 2 really fun games. Turns out I can still kind of bowl, at least well enough to beat the boys!

Family Fun Day! | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

We love the fun retro feel of the lanes.

Family Fun Day! | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

And the shoes.

Family Fun Day! | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

Success, no one fought the picture and everyone smiled. #momwin

Everyone was feeling pretty good after bowling and no one was in the mood to go home so on a whim we decided to head to Can Can Wonderland for some mini golf.  When we arrived we were told it would be a 1 hour and 45 minute wait. I almost lost the family but I convinced everyone to step inside, (thankfully I had been here before and knew what to expect). Once inside they were blown away by what they saw and decided to stay.

We ordered a few drinks at the bar while the boys ordered popcorn and a pretzel from the State Fair themed menu. Then we played vintage pinball, foosball as a family but the majority of our time and money went to trying to conquer Donkey Kong. The time flew by. We were mini golfing before we knew it. Navigating our balls around lit up ferris wheels, a tornado and at one point we had to trade our golf club for a baseball bat. The boys were captivated and challenged the entire time. The atmosphere was fun, creative and definitely kid friendly. A quick tip, if your kids are older go a little later in the day, it was fun when they dimmed the lights and the place lit up.

Family Fun Day! | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

Vintage pinball machines is really fun to look at, hard to play.

Family Fun Day! | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

Mom and dad against Preston and Dillon for a couple games of foosball – we win!

Family Fun Day! | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

I can’t remember what hole this was but this couch brought back so many memories. So did the blanket.

Family Fun Day! | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

The first hole starts with a bang. Your ball takes a ride on a lit up ferris wheel.

#thingstodo #minneapolis #sundayfunday #minigolf #bowling #family #mattengengroup


Winter in Minnesota

Winter in Minnesota really isn’t my favorite time of the year. So why do I live here?  Well when I awoke this morning I was reminded how beautiful winter can be. Most days I’m too cold to really enjoy the beauty of it. I bundle up and run as quick as I can from place to place. But when I looked outside this morning the sun was shining and the snow was clinging to the trees, it was almost magical. What did you think of the last snowfall? Love it or hate it? We would love to hear.

Winter in Minnesota | Matt Engen Group | Real Estate Blog


Winter in Minnesota | Matt Engen Group | Real Estate Blog


Winter in MN | Matt Engen Group | Real Estate Blog

#winterwonderland #onlyinmn #mattengengroup #home

US Bank Stadium

Wow, the first game at US Bank Stadium was more than just a game, it was an experience.  Before we even got inside you knew this was going to be different, you could feel it in the air. Vikings fans were out in full force. The streets and the tail gating lots were packed, not a lot of room to throw around the football or move, but it was fun.


The general mood and excitement continued as we moved inside and got to our seats. First family photo at US Bank Stadium. Not bad. I love that the person taking it captured the US Bank Stadium banner, this way we’ll always remember where we were.


The Vikings got things started with a moving #wearenorth video and then Jordin Sparks sang the national anthem. This has always been one of my favorite parts of the game. I love how the anticipation builds with the song.


Fast forward to half time, I knew after reading the Star Tribune article that morning that I didn’t want to miss the half time show and I am beyond thankful I didn’t. The MN Orchestra put on quite the show, the Prince tribute was amazing. I was so happy to be a part of it, yes I know my only role was to wave my cell phone and sing along but it was simply magical, an experience I will never forget.


And to top it all off, the Vikings win! It was definitely a night we will always remember, according to our boys it was the best game ever. #SKOLVikings

I Heart the Twin Cities Marathon



This past weekend I’m happy to announce we ran the Twin Cities 10 mile! I’m proud of our accomplishment and overwhelmed with pride for the Twin Cities for 2 reasons, and they happen to be the very reasons we choose to live here. The first is the coarse, it winds you through the most beautiful parts of both Minneapolis and St. Paul, it’s absolutely beautiful, at certain points breathtaking. I had to fight the urge to stop and take a few pictures along the way. The second is the fans (the people) they’re crazy and I say that in a good way. I couldn’t stop myself from smiling over and over again, they kept me happy and my spirits up, making the run so much easier than it would have been had I been running alone. The creativity of the signs people make, the parties, the bands/music and the cheering. I’m assuming after a long day of encouraging others the fans have to be just as exhausted as the participates, I imagine many lose their voices. A few of my favorite signs; I’m sure this seemed like a good idea 4 months ago. Find a cute butt and follow it. You paid to do this! and If you think this is hard try growing out your bangs. Thanks for keeping it fun.

Thanks also to Twin Cities in Motion the organizers of this event, the City of Minneapolis and the City of St Paul for keeping our cities beautiful, the police officers, the firefights and the 100’s of volunteers it takes to pull off an event this large and once again to the fans – you’re simply the best!