Welcome to the Commonweal Theatre & Historic Lanesboro!
Rated one of the best weekend getaways in MN!
I drive four hours to visit Lanesboro and support this theater company. Performances are professional, often moving or inspiring. We always come away richer for the experience. Actors visit with us and discuss the plays. They are welcoming and willing to engage. The entire experience is magical!!” —Linda
The Commonweal Theatre, one of the best theatre companies in the Midwest, is located in the historic town of Lanesboro in the heart of southeastern Minnesota’s beautiful Bluff Country. Nestled in a deep valley on the Root River, Lanesboro offers visitors a wide variety of outdoor activities, first-rate theater, rich artistic experiences, unique shopping and fine dining and lodging to fit every taste and budget. There is an abundance of things to do in Lanesboro, MN.
Surprisingly accessible, Lanesboro lies a mere 40 miles from the famous medical destination city of Rochester, MN. If you are looking for things to do in Rochester MN or the surrounding areas while you’re here, then Lanesboro should be on the top of that list. As you travel south from Rochester on state highway 52, you’ll pass through the picturesque rolling farmland of the region, which lies over karst geology—limestone peppered with sinkholes and caves, like famous Niagara Cave, just a 25-minute drive beyond Lanesboro. In fact, the Bluff Country around Lanesboro takes its name, and its great beauty, from this geology. Also within easy reach are quaint and historic Decorah, IA (45 minutes), and the Mississippi River towns of Winona, MN, and La Crosse, WI (each within an hour’s drive).
You can experience much of this beauty from a bicycle, or on foot, along the Root River and Harmony-Preston Valley State Trails. This interconnected, state-maintained system, comprising 60 miles of paved trails passing through the middle of Lanesboro, is nationally regarded as Minnesota’s “Cadillac of Trails.”
Understated and self-assured, this Southeast Minnesota burg is a busy stop along the 60-mile-long Root River bike trail. The limestone bluffs, unpretentious shops and river bottoms offer visual delights.” — America’s Prettiest Towns, Forbes
Or take in the views afloat on the Root River itself as you kayak, canoe or tube your way along the lazy river on a summer day. After your shuttle ride back into Lanesboro, freshen up and enjoy a satisfying meal at any of several restaurants in town, then head to the Commonweal for an evening of professional, live theatre.
Fun fact: Lanesboro is the bed and breakfast capital of the state. And you can be at that capital in under an hour if you leave from Rochester. You’ll feel as if you’ve entered an entirely different world. Lanesboro is a quaint, small town whose main street will have you snapping selfies as you lick the dripping ice cream from your other hand. Yes, it’s really that picturesque.” — Rochester Post Bulletin
So join us in Lanesboro, one of the best weekend getaways in MN. With so many things to do in Rochester MN and the surrounding region, all within just a short drive, Lanesboro is the perfect hub for your visit to Bluff Country!
Visit one of Smithsonian Magazine‘s 20 Best Small Towns! Also voted as Travel & Leisure’s 20 most Beautiful Winter Towns!