Rochester, MN is an ever-evolving city and we regularly receive inquiries from moms that are looking to make the Med-City their new home! Researching information about a new city can stressful, time-consuming and overwhelming. We hope that this guide will alleviate that for new Rochester residents by providing them as much comprehensive information as possible.
We understand that moving (especially with kids) can seem like an insurmountable task! Wightman Brock Real Estate Advisors understands this too and we are so grateful to them for sponsoring this wonderful resource. We hope that this guide eases any worries, helps you with the transition and introduces you to life in Rochester, MN with kids! We love our city and we are committed to helping make this transition easier for you.
Wightman-Brock Real Estate Advisors
From the moment one decides to move, there are seemingly a million more choices and decisions to be made. This is not a journey to take alone. This is a journey to walk with someone you know, someone you trust, and someone you can depend upon.
Ron, Lynn, and Randy know this is a delicate, and often emotional time in ones life. They are honored to be chosen to take this journey with so many. With over 20 years of experience buying and selling homes in Rochester and Southeastern Minnesota, Ron, Lynn, and Randy love what they do. And it shows.
If you’re considering buying or selling your home, or a move to Rochester and Southeastern Minnesota, Ron, Lynn, and Randy would love to meet with you, hear your story, and take this journey with you.
North Pointe Dental
North Pointe Dental is a family-owned, local dental office offering preventative, cosmetic and restorative services for your entire family. Dr. Jason Toney and his staff are committed to providing the very best care in a warm, relaxed environment. Our patients enjoy personalized service, experienced practitioners and consistent care at the leading edge of the dental arena. Whether you are looking for routine care for your family or a full restoration to your very best smile, we would be happy to welcome you to your new dental home!
Tonna Plumbing, Heating & Cooling
Few things matter more than home comfort. But why settle for any old HVAC company when there’s a team that lives by the words “just right?” Serving the Rochester area for more than 40 years, Tonna Plumbing, Heating & Cooling puts the heart back in home by providing quality HVAC, plumbing and water treatment services. Trust our experienced professionals to right every wrong in your home and make your living space feel “just right” once again.
Great Harvest Bread
At Great Harvest we still believe in baking bread the way it was done in the beginning – from scratch; using pure and simple ingredients. The same care goes into our sandwiches and goodies.
Come introduce yourself and try a free slice of fresh bread. We love seeing new faces. Great Harvest bread is truly one-of-a-kind. It’s simple. Handmade. Wholesome. Tasty. Bread. The way it ought to be.
Clean As a Whistle
Clean as a Whistle Housecleaning specializes in residential cleaning in and around the Rochester area. Our services focus on maintenance, deep cleanings, and move in/move out cleanings. We are locally owned and operated and have been providing exceptional cleaning services to the residents of Rochester for the last 6 years.
Olmsted Medical Center
Quick, convenient care online. We’re here to help you feel better…fast. Our team of healthcare providers treats more than 20 common medical conditions virtually. Create an account, complete a short online interview, and our team will review your information and send you a treatment plan within an hour.
Rochester MN Moms Blog Neighborhood Groups
**Won’t you be our neighbor?**
Our goal at Rochester MN Moms Blog is to create community on AND offline. We launched Neighborhood Groups to connect mamas to one another right where they live in Rochester. We hope this will become a great way to build community and be there for one another as we navigate motherhood. Join your neighborhood group or the 1-2 closest to you!
Schools in Rochester MN
There are an abundance of education options in Rochester MN. This guide is helpful in getting you started in the right direction: from public, private, charter, choice and even homeschooling, we have all the details you need to get going with schooling in Rochester, MN!
Other School Related Posts
Early Education in Rochester MN
Picking a preschool, nursery school or childcare center that fits your child’s and your family’s needs can be an overwhelming task. As parents, we are clearly aware of the importance of our decision. Our guide will provide you with options for preschool, nursery school and child care centers!
Fitness, Health & Wellness in Rochester, MN
For many of us, there are barriers to fitness, health & wellness. Among those are not knowing where to start in choosing a fitness facility or business for your needs. It can be time consuming to do all the research! This comprehensive guide is a one-stop shop for you as you choose how to begin (or continue!) your wellness journey.
Rochester MN Photographers
New babies, family milestones, special achievements, momentous occasions: we love the opportunity to beautifully capture these memories. Rochester MN Moms Blog is pleased to provide you with a guide to Rochester area photographers. It is our hope that this resource will make it easier to find *just* the right photographer to capture the memories you make!
Rochester MN Coffee Shops
There is just something about that first sip of coffee in the day. Looking for a local spot? Why not try out one of our many Rochester MN coffee shops! We’ve included our favorite drinks at each spot for some easy inspiration for the next time (next hour) you’re in need of that caffeine fix.
Day Trips from Rochester MN
Looking to take a little Day Trip? The southeast MN area offers an abundance of things to see and do all within a perfectly manageable drive from Rochester! Why not take a journey to a place you have yet to visit…and some you might not have thought about! Our contributors have put together ideas for day trips just a short drive from Rochester MN.
We are so lucky to have some super delicious, authentic Mexican dining options in Rochester, MN! From hole in the wall, to food trucks, to traditional dining…we’ve listed out our very favorite locations to grab some fabulous cuisine!
Guide to Gluten Free in Rochester MN
Have no fear! There are so many wonderful gluten-free dining options and businesses to fulfill your G-Free needs in Rochester, MN . We are always looking out for businesses to add to this list, so check back often!
Ultimate Summer Bucket List | Although this is our summer bucket list, there are so many things to do in the off-season!
Day Trips | Great places to see and fun things to do just a short drive from Rochester MN!
Guide to Ice Skating | All you need to know about ice skating in Rochester MN!
Winter Fun Guide | We love making the most of winter here, and if you’re not from Minnesota and this is your first winter…we’ll help you grow to love it too!
Parenting Support Groups | Looking for other parents who “get” what you’re facing or going through? Our list of parenting support groups is a great place to start in looking for support on your parenting journey!
Little Libraries | Ever heard of Little Libraries? These are small lending libraries that take various shapes and live in people’s front yards in neighborhoods all over the city!
Story-Time Round Up | All the great places to catch stories for your little people in Rochester MN!
Apple Orchards and Pumpkin Patches | One of our favorite times of year…so many wonderful places for Harvest fun!
Farmer’s Market Finds Scavenger Hunt + Free Printable! | Our beloved Farmer’s Market is located at 4th Street and 3rd Avenue downtown Rochester from May-October and at the Olmsted County Fairgrounds November – April. This fun printable scavenger hunt makes the farmer’s market exciting for your little people!
Spring Nature Scavenger Hunt | Another fun outdoor scavenger hunt you can do in your neighborhood!
Family Fun Autumn Scavenger Hunt + Free Printable!
Bird Watching with Kids | A beginner’s guide to watching birds with your kids!
5 Fall Family Fun Hikes | Area hikes that are fun and manageable with children!
The Rochester MN Dining Scene is growing and offers a great variety of really creative options. Below are some of our favorites but is certainly not an exhaustive list!
Victoria’s Ristorante & Wine Bar | Classic Italian in a really fun setting. Generous portions, scratch pastas, fabulous menu selection, great wine, and kids 12 and under eat free with an adult entree purchase!
Forager Brewery | Community focused, locally sourced, all around cool spot, Forager will become your go-to. Small batch craft beers and wood fired beers anchor the menu but it will be their family focused events and cool vibe that will keep you coming back.
Bleu Duck Kitchen | Bleu Duck Kitchen has a classic and welcoming atmosphere where the exhibition kitchen is the focus. Perfect for a celebratory meal or a special date night! However, their recently added bar menu is fabulous for small bites to share for a quick an informal dining option. (Pro tip: RMMB founder, Becky, is a huge fan of their craft cocktails…particularly the Old Fashioned.)
Terza | Terza was created in the spirit of Dell’ Anima which means “soul of the pasta” and celebrating the bountiful flavors of Italy with friends & family. Pro Tip :: La Vetta, their chic roof-top bar offers the best views of the downtown skyline!
Salute Wine Bar | A perfect downtown Happy Hour location that offers an extensive wine list and small plates for sharing. We also love it as it in the summer dining al fresco is right on the Peace Plaza (heart of downtown Rochester) and offers great people watching.
Newt’s | A local tradition since 1980, they have been voted best burger since 2003! Guess you’ll have to see if it ends up being your favorite local burger too…Two locations: downtown and North (off of Hwy 52 near the car dealerships).
Zzest | A fun culinary experience that brings punch and passion with a focus on local. Featuring an open kitchen and a fabulous patio with wood-fired pizza in the summer.
Whistlebinkies | A pub in the Old English tradition…offers fab pub fare as well as the BEST popcorn in town (FREE). Over 30 beers on tap!
Rochester is divided into 4 main “areas:” NW, NE, SW, SE. All mailing addresses will also have this identification as well. The fastest growing areas of town are the far NW and SW areas of town and where you will find the majority of new builds in town. However, there are some older established neighborhoods closer to downtown that are quite desirable due to their proximity to the Mayo Clinic downtown campus. These neighborhoods include: Kutzky Park, Slatterly Park, Historic SW, Pill Hill, and Eastside Pioneers.
For more information please visit RNeighbors, a resource center for Rochester neighborhoods as well as other neighborhood information.
Feel free to join our Neighborhood Groups and ask REAL Rochester, MN moms why the love living where they do in our great city!
Where to Apply for your Driver’s License
You will apply for your new driver’s license or ID card at the Government Center downtown (151 4th St SE, Rochester, MN 55904). There is ample parking in front of the Government Center but it is all metered so be sure to bring change. Be prepared to wait approximately 15 minutes.
License Center (NW)
Oh my, do we ever love the library. It’s no secret that the Rochester Public Library is one of our favorite places to take our little people. They have an extensive children’s section, incredible children’s programming, resources for ALL families, fun events (Stuffed Animal Sleepovers!), and helpful and familiar faces ready to help and point you in the right direction. They also have a great play space in partnership with the Minnesota Children’s Museum-Rochester.
A few things to note:
- If you are registering for a library card, be sure to bring along some sort of verification of your local address.
- The library is located downtown. There is some street (metered) parking, but there is a handy ramp attached to the library for a minimal fee.
- The skyway access to the library is located on the 2nd level of the ramp. Follow the hallway to the elevator (there is a beautiful mural to look at!) and take that to ground level. There you will enter the library. The children’s area is to the right.
- They have a drive-up book return on the west-side of the library near the entrance to the parking ramp.
There are two main medical care systems in Rochester: Olmsted Medical Center and Mayo Clinic. It is good to understand what each offers in terms of care for your family. There are highly recommended pediatricians at each facility: our neighborhood groups would be a great place to ask for personal recommendations.
Each clinic has fast care options for things like strep tests, ear infections and cold/flu symptoms:
Olmsted Medical Center eCare | Convenient access to treat over 20 medical conditions virtually!