Minneapolis is Minnesota's largest city and the 48th-largest city in the United States with a population of over 380,000. The Minneapolis-Saint Paul region, which includes 182 cities and townships, has a population of over 3 million and is the 16th-largest metropolitan area in the nation.
Known as the "City of Lakes" – it has 20 of those in all – Minneapolis also sits on the banks of the Mississippi River and has an abundance of wetlands, creeks, ponds and falls. Water is not the only natural resource that one can find here. This city spotted with forests once supporting a thriving timber industry is also home to one of the nation's greatest parks systems. Minneapolis contains as much as 770 square feet of park space per resident.
In addition to cherishing its natural beauty, Minneapolis has celebrated a diverse cultural heritage, from its earliest inhabitants, the Dakota Sioux, to the immigrants that have come to city over the years from France, Germany, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Latin America, Italy, Greece, Poland, Japan, China, Korea, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Thailand and more. Minneapolis also has the largest Somali population in North America and is ranked fourth among U.S. cities in the percentage of gay, lesbian or bisexual people in its adult population as of 2006.
Today, Minneapolis is an economic, educational and cultural hub of the Midwest. There are five Fortune 500 companies headquartered in Minneapolis, which gives it the fifth-highest concentration of Fortune 500 companies among U.S. cities. It is also home to the University of Minnesota, which has the fourth-highest enrollment for a four-year public university in the U.S., three private four-year colleges, and several other institutions of higher learning.
Minneapolis residents also value the arts. The city is full of beautiful architecture and is home to several art museums, including the Walker Art Center, one of the nation's major modern art museums, and the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, the largest museum in the city. There are also several performing arts groups, and the largest non-juried performing arts festival, the Minnesota Fringe Festival, takes place each year. Music is present everywhere you turn. Catch a performance by the Minnesota Orchestra at Orchestra Hall or turn into a number of local clubs to hear what Minneapolis' music scene has to offer. Legendary musician Prince, as well as bands Hüsker Dü and The Replacements are natives of Minneapolis.
You may have to make more than one trip to Minneapolis to take in all of the sights, meet all of the people, and eat all of the delicious food that you want.