Minnehaha Falls: Minneapolis's most embarrassing tourist attraction


If you've ever looked at a tourist booklet for the Twin Cities, you probably saw a mention of the Minnehaha Falls with a creek bubbling and flowing off a cliff before it plunges downwards to the Mississippi River. Sounds like the most perfect form of nature in the city you could imagine, right?


If you have anyone visiting from out of town, please for the vitality of our city's tourism industry, keep them as far away from the Minnehaha Falls as possible. Unless you want to walk back to the car with your tail between your legs.

These supposed "falls" can barely even be called a trickle these days, but out-of-town guests still seem to make the trek over there.

The Pioneer Press went to the "Falls" and showed how very embarrassing our tourist site really is this summer.

Why is the creek so ridiculously nonexistant? Our area is in a pretty bad drought: precipitation the past 14 months is 16 inches below normal. That hurts the area lakes like Lake Minnetonka that feed Minnehaha Creek. The dam to the creek was even shut down to protect Minnetonka's water levels.

About 850,000 people visit the falls each year.

Some visitor comments from the PiPress:

Andy Sprague, 59, of Minnetrista, joked Wednesday as he visited the 53-foot Minneapolis landmark. "When it looks like this, it's embarrassing."

"I thought there would be a waterfall, not just dripping water," said Chemin Chu, 36, of Little Canada.

Like Chu, Remus Hardin, of Chicago, went to Minnehaha Falls for the first time Wednesday.

"Ain't no sense in sticking around when there's nothing to see," said Hardin, 28.

Mark Murnane, 49, grew up in St. Paul but now lives in Cape Coral, Fla. He took his family to see the falls, but when they saw a rock wall instead, they headed elsewhere.

We are ashamed. Thanks, Mother Nature.