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7/17/2015
If you’re in Cedar Rapids, get ready for cultural immersion! From Czech Village to the outlying Amana Colonies—with plenty of food, drink and market stops along the way—the second-largest city in Iowa is an eye-opening, mouth-watering destination. 1. Cedar Ridge Vineyards Pick your potable at Cedar Ridge, aka the first licensed distillery in Iowa since Prohibition. If... More
7/10/2015
Sitting in a gazebo overlooking a lake, we drink a toast to the setting sun as we watch Grevy’s zebras, Sichuan takins, Sable antelope and even a Bactrian camel visit the water below us. Witnessing this sundown ritual, it feels like we’re on an African safari. But we’re much closer to home—southeastern Ohio, in fact—at The Wilds, a 10,000-acre conservation center... More
7/7/2015
At Hands On Art Studio in Door County, Wisconsin, gold, red and blue tiles for mosaics fill jars like jellybeans in a candy store. Owners Cy Turnbladh and Karen Ohm are used to seeing customers wander around their two-story barn with the same look of wonder that kids have when surrounded by sweets. Would-be artists choose from projects such as including fused glass, metal... More
6/16/2015
It's flea-market season. Whether you're a browser, a buyer or a bargainer—or all three—here's our list of must-attend Midwest flea markets, each filled with quality antique, vintage and art finds.   Illinois Sunday at Sandwich Antiques Show Sandwich, Illinois; July 12, August 9, October 11. Admission: $5. After watching attendance drop at... More
5/29/2015
Iowa's capital is known for being home to the State Fair, but Des Moines also gives artists, foodies and explorers plenty to love. 1) John and Mary Pappajohn Sculpture Park You'll find 28 playful, surreal and modern sculptures at the park. The Des Moines Art Center curates the collection, which looks especially fabulous at night when lights illuminate the... More
5/22/2015
With water recreation, golf, hiking, biking and skiing, the little resort town of Galena, Illinois, offers big outdoor fun during your active Midwest weekend getaway. 1) Eagle Ridge Resort and Spa Four championship courses and 63 scenic holes establish Eagle Ridge as a premiere place to tee off, but if golf’s not your thing, don’t worry. This expansive resort also... More
5/18/2015
Every state has roadside attractions—fanciful, often artsy, and definitely unusual items or places that catch your eye as you're driving by. Here in America's Dairyland, we've got plenty. (Surprisingly, no massive chunks of cheese are on the list.) Some are weird, others intriguing and a few are pretty darn interesting. In no particular order, here are some of my favorites.... More
5/5/2015
With cheap eats, a free art museum, spacious parks and vibrant historical areas, Omaha makes a fun and affordable Midwest weekend getaway. 1) Joslyn Art Museum Nebraska’s premiere art museum wows with gorgeous Art Deco architecture and an exterior of 38 kinds of marble from around the world. Inside, the 11,000-piece permanent collection includes Greek pottery, Impressionist... More
4/23/2015
In any of the Midwest’s most populous states, you’re probably within a weekend drive of a luxury hotel and spa. But residents of the upper Midwest—specifically the greater Chicago and Milwaukee areas—have a special backyard gem: Destination Kohler, the region’s highest-ranked getaway. Yes, Kohler, the folks who long ago defined the sinks, tile and showerheads that... More
4/6/2015
At 6:15 a.m., I’m one of only four people along the Door Trail in Badlands National Park. I venture off the boardwalk to find a spot to sit and wait for dawn. It feels hushed and almost sacred as the sky lightens and sun slips above the horizon, throwing a coppery glaze on the park’s spires, buttes and pinnacles. If I had to pick a top way to enjoy the park, it’s sunrise... More