CIty of Anoka

Anoka, Minnesota

A northern suburb of Minneapolis-Saint Paul, the city of Anoka was first settled by immigrants in 1844. By the mid-1850s Anoka had grown to include a school, a store and a flour mill. The city was formally incorporated in 1878. The name Anoka was derived from two Indian words, meaning “on both sides” or “from both sides,” referring to its location on the banks of the Rum River.  Anoka makes a strong claim for providing the first volunteers to the Union Army during the Civil War. 

The nearly 7 square-mile city of Anoka lies at the confluence of the Rum and Mississippi Rivers, about 20 miles northwest of Minneapolis. Adjacent communities include Dayton, Ramsey, Andover, Coon Rapids, and Champlin.  Fifty schools and nearly 39,000 students make the Anoka-Hennepin Public School District the largest school district in Minnesota.  District 11 includes parts of twelve other municipalities besides Anoka.  For the 2020 school year, there were five top private schools in the Anoka zip code, serving over 700 students.  In Anoka County, students can choose from eight charter schools.  Higher education centers in Anoka include Anoka Technical College and Anoka-Ramsey Community College in neighboring Coon Rapids.

 

The school district along with Federal Cartridge, Hoffman and Anoka County are among the top four largest employers in Anoka.  In 2000, twenty-two year-old Bjorn Skogquist was elected mayor and became the second youngest person to ever hold that office in Minnesota.  Skoguist served as mayor for eight years.

 

Notable celebrities born in Anoka include former Congresswoman and Presidential candidate Michele Bachmann, former Miss America and Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson as well as the host of Prairie Home Companion, Garrison Keillor. 

Prime attractions of Anoka include:  Shopping for dated technologies, jewelry, other rare treasures at Antiques on Main.  Touring the 100-acre Berry Hill Farm, home of strawberries, raspberries, pumpkin and rhubarb.  Stage play watching at Lyric Arts Main Street Stage theater.  Museum touring the Historical Society of Anoka.  Fishing for bass, bluegill, crappie and pike at Rivers Bend Park and Rum River North Park.  Exploring the antique and artifact collection at The Big White House.  Playing a round at the championship-level Green Haven Golf Course.  Visiting the 90 year-old Ferry Street Bridge over the Mississippi River, linking Anoka with Champlin, where morning walks and quiet time is available at the Peninsula Point Park.  Playing baseball, soccer, tennis or jogging around the 23-acre George Enloe Park, or relaxing at Sunny Acres Park, or cooling off with water slides and a zero-depth swimming pool at the Anoka Aquatic Center, or enjoying the skating and bike ramps at the John Ward Park, (also known as Rocket Park.)  Enjoying 17-century etiquette and ceremonial service with soup, scones and tea at the Victorian teahouse, The Mad Hatter.