Deep Freeze Brings Normal Activity to a Halt

Updated: 01/06/2014 9:03 AM By: Jennie Olson

AP Photo/John Minchillo
AP Photo/John Minchillo

Hundreds of school districts, businesses and government offices are closed as an arctic blast plunged temperatures to subzero lows not seen in nearly two decades in Minnesota.

Here are some notable closures:

Schools and Colleges

Gov. Mark Dayton announced Friday his decision to cancel all public school classes statewide for Monday. Get more school closure information here.

St. Catherine University, University of St. Thomas and Concordia University St. Paul announced they will be closed Monday. St. Cloud Technical and Community College is also closed Monday.

The University of Minnesota said it plans to remain open, but classes are not in session due to winter break.

The American Indian OIC and its affiliate programs- The Takoda Institute of Higher Education and Takoda Prep are closed Monday.


The Minnesota Zoo will be closed for Monday. Zoo Director Lee Ehmke says the decision was made to encourage people to stay home.

The Lake Superior Zoo is closed for the next couple of days due to the cold.

Businesses and Charities

Rainbow Foods announced they will be closing all Rainbow stores early on Monday night for "the safety of staff and customers". All stores will close at 8 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 6 due and will re-open at 6 a.m. on Tuesday.

The woman's boutique, Hot Mama, will also close all of its Minnesota locations Monday.

The Cupcake locations on University Avenue and in St. Paul are closed on Sunday Monday due to the cold weather.

The Buttered Tin in St. Paul is closed Monday.

Best Buy, General Mills and Allina Health are among companies letting employees work from home Monday.

Achieve Services will be closed on Monday.

Opportunity Partners, a nonprofit disability organization, will be closed Monday. Get more information here.

Lifetime Fitness locations are holding a special School Break Camp this Monday, Jan. 6, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Delayed opening- All XPERIENCE Fitness Locations will be open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. All Kids clubs are closed all day.

Twin Cities Salvation Army is offering its eight worship and services centers as well as Harbor Light shelter as warming stations for those without shelter.

The following Salvation Army centers open 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday:

2024 Lyndale Ave N, Minneapolis
2727 Central Ave., Minneapolis, includes a free meal at 11:30 a.m. Monday through Friday
1604 East Lake Street, Minneapolis, includes a free Noon meal Monday through Friday
1019 Payne Ave, St. Paul, includes a free Noon meal Monday through Friday.
401 W. 7th Street, St. Paul, includes a free breakfast at 7:30 a.m. Monday through Friday.
10011 Noble Parkway, Brooklyn Park
10347 Ibis Street NW, Coon Rapids, includes a free meal  5:30 p.m. every Monday and Wednesday.
2080 Woodlyn Ave. Maplewood

Boys and Girls Clubs of the Twin Cities will be closed Monday.


There won't be any waste pick-up in Minneapolis Monday due to the cold weather. All pick-ups scheduled for Jan. 6-10 will be occur one day later than scheduled.

The cold is also causing issues for Waste Management in St. Louis Park, causing a delay for some garbage and recycling collection routes, the city said Friday. There have been reports of problems with its new Compressed Natural Gas fleet of trucks due to the extremely cold temperatures.

Metro Transit

Metro Transit is telling riders to dress warmly and in layers over the next few days-- and to check the NexTrip website to see if your bus is running on time.

The buses will be running, it's just going to be one cold ride.

Additional businesses are deciding to close and Sunday church services are being canceled at some places of worship. Call ahead to make sure your service has not been canceled.

City Programs

Brooklyn Park: Zanewood Recreation Center, located at 7100 Zane Ave. N. will be open from noon to 5 p.m. to provide a warm place for kids to play.

St. Paul: All St. Paul parks and recreation programming - both indoor and outdoor -has been canceled for Sunday and Monday. Como Park Ski Hill and all outdoor skating rinks and warming houses also will be closed.
St. Paul's Como Park Zoo and Conservatory will be open those days with reduced staffing. St. Paul recreation centers also will be open.

Eden Prairie: Due to the extreme cold weather conditions expected from Saturday evening through Tuesday morning, Eden Prairie’s outdoor skating and sledding facilities will also be closed beginning on Saturday at 6 p.m.

The community center will remain open, but scheduled programs will be canceled.

Robbinsdale: Sanborn Park Rinks and Building will be closed whenever there are dangerous wind chills. They will update the program information line-763-531-1276 on a periodic basis.

Soo Bahk Do instructors have decided to cancel the Monday classes to correspond to the state wide school closure, according to city officials. 

Rink Rat hockey and Hockey Fundamentals that are schedule for this weekend are still on as scheduled at Sanborn Park.

The Robbinsdale Community Gyms and Fitness Center will be open during regular hours. The Monday evening Over 40 Volleyball league and Jazzercise programs are also still on as scheduled.

Check for updates on the Robbinsdale Recreation Services Facebook page for updates.


Afton Alps

Closed Monday, Jan. 6. Open regular hours Tuesday.

Buck Hill

Buck Hill will close at 8 p.m. on Sat. Jan. 4 and remain closed until 3 p.m. on Tues. Jan. 7.

Coffee Mill Ski Area

Closed Sun, Jan 5.

Elm Creek and Hyland Ski

Hyland Ski and Snowboard Area and the downhill operation at Elm Creek Winter Recreation Area will close at 3 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 5, and remain closed until 3 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 7.

Mount Kato

Mount Kato will be Closing at 4 p.m. this Sunday Jan. 5. They will remain stay closed all day Monday Jan. 6, and re-open on Tuesday morning Jan. 7.

Welch Village

Welch Village announced it will shut down operations between 4 p.m. Sunday and noon Tuesday.

Check ski resort websites for updates.

If you would like to add a closure to our list email

Other organizations are opening their doors to those in need. Because this weather can be dangerous, even deadly if you’re outside too long, there’s help for people who need a warm place to go.

The Salvation Army has opened its eight worship and services centers as well as its Harbor Light Shelter as warming stations. The Salvation Army will have blankets and extra food on hand and will be patrolling the neighborhoods to make sure no one is left outside.

Also, teens needing a place to go can go to YouthLink, which is on 12th Street in Minneapolis. The building is open around the clock until Wednesday morning.

Others in need of shelter can call 211 for assistance.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.