This is the first year since T and I have been married that we aren’t camping over Memorial Day weekend! Can you believe it?!  This also means that I’m on the hunt for something for us all to do!  The boys will be spending the weekend with us, but R will be working, so it’ll be T, M, & I!  I decided since I was on the hunt, I’d put together a round-up of family friendly things to do in Iowa over the weekend!

So, let’s get started!

Iowa Veterans Cemetery – The Iowa Veterans Cemetery in Van Meter, Iowa is breathtaking.  Pack up the family and take a visit to talk about Memorial Day and it’s original purpose!  What better place to do this than in the Iowa Veterans Cemetery?!  Check out what Jeni of Sincerely Iowa thought when she visited.

Pappajohn Sculpture Garden – While you’re down in the Des  Moines area, stop downtown and take in the farmers market on Saturday and then a tour of the Pappajohn Sculpture Garden!  It’s free to the public and a great place for families to burn off energy, enjoy Iowa sunshine, and appreciate some art!


Clear Lake Yurts – maybe camping and the outdoors are more your thing!  If so, check out the Yurts at McIntosh State Park by Clear Lake, Iowa.  Val of Corn, Beans, Pigs, & Kids and her family visited them and had a fantastic time!

Clear Lake Yurt, image courtesy of Corn, Beans, Pigs, & Kids

Ledges State Park – Maybe a little more nature or seclusion is you idea of  camping.  If that’s the case, Sincerely Iowa recommends heading to Ledges State Park & Campground near Boone, Iowa.  Not only can you camp there, there are gorgeous trails, creeks, and more to explore!

Ice Cream – If you’re like me and my guys, we’ll never turn down trying new foods or new places to eat…or food in general!  Maybe you’re just looking for a day trip.  I suggest checking out the North Iowa Ice Cream Drive-Ins like Val and her family did!   You can read about it here!   I think an ice cream road trip is definitely going on my list of summer to-do’s with our family!

Viking Drive-Inn, image courtesy of Corn, Beans, Pigs, & Kids

Festivals – If you’re looking for something more traditional in the form of a Memorial Day celebration, the Des Moines Register has put together a fantastic list!

Gusto Pizza!

Finally, don’t hesitate to get creative!  Take a day and explore one of Iowa’s many state parks!  Take in an iCubs game and visit a restaurant downtown!  (We highly recommend Gusto Pizza!)  Pack up the family and the bikes and head to the High Trestle Trail for a ride and stop at one of the trail-side pubs! Or,  head to Clear Lake and take a ride on the Lady of the Lake, swim at the beach, and have supper at the Landing!  No matter what you do, as long as you’re doing it as a family, you’ll have a great time!

High Trestle Trail Bridge




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