Winter doesn’t have to be cold and brutal. Not when you take your team to one of the hottest destinations around in 2018. So, gather up the group and explore these Iowa places that shine as bright as the sun, even if it is January.
The heart of Iowa is located in communities that are vibrant, richly diverse, and surrounded by some of the most beautiful scenery in the country. Jam-packed with fascinating sites, exciting year-round activities, delightful cultural festivals, eclectic dining, and world-famous shopping, Central Iowa is a planner’s dream come true.
Well known for its first-class entertainment and recreation, Ames attracts visitors to its award-winning Reiman Gardens, Broadway musicals, popular concerts, and Iowa State University Cyclone sports. Named one of the “Top Ten College Towns to Live In,” Ames offers visitors a vast menu of arts and culture, local attractions, outdoor recreation, shopping, sporting events, and more.
The state’s capital city, Des Moines, welcomes guests to a community of assorted activities, sights, entertainment, arts, and culture. With hundreds of local restaurants, free festivals, hundreds of miles of biking and hiking trails, wineries, breweries, live horse racing, and outdoor skating, there’s no shortage of things for your group to do.
Iowa’s Great Lakes Region in the north draws visitors with its popular recreational choices, water sports in the summer, cold-weather activities in the winter, and down-home appeal all year long.
Escape to Okoboji, where glacier-carved lakes extend all the way to the Minnesota border, including Spirit Lake, Iowa’s largest natural lake. Known as a summer vacation destination, winters offer seemingly limitless choices for a group getaway as well. The University of Okoboji Winter Games is one of the local highlights, as well as ice fishing, ice skating, snow showing, fat tire biking, and cross-country skiing. Prefer the great indoors? Check out the Maritime Museum, Okoboji Classic Cars, local breweries and wineries, shopping and so much more.
Energizing and engaging, eastern Iowa is a patchwork of winding streams, rolling hills, limestone bluffs, and charming villages and towns, many nestled beside the mighty Mississippi River. The eastern Iowa region promises a memorable and exciting adventure for your team.
The Mississippi River town of Dubuque is one of Iowa’s oldest communities, yet they’re anything but old-fashioned. Visitors travel here from all around the globe to stay at one their many resorts with premier skiing, snowboarding, sledding and comfy lodging. Casinos, museums, charming restaurants, and fantastic shopping make for great indoor activity options too.
Lewis and Clark found much to explore in Western Iowa with its gentle peaks and valleys. The region boasts a state park where the explorers traveled on their way west. Modern explorers will appreciate the regions’ Danish and German roots reflected in the charming architecture, festivals, local foods, and traditions.
Council Bluffs bills itself as “Unlike Anywhere Else — On Purpose.” Visitors are pleasantly surprised to experience their three casino resorts, riverfront park, pedestrian bridge over the Missouri River, plus its inviting accommodations, dining options, and year-round events. From historic Grant Wood murals and paintings to the Great Plains Wing Museum, from monuments to malls, historic houses to winter disc golf, there’s no limit to what your crew can see and do here.
Spotlight | By Casey Romano, Publisher | January 18, 2022
A best-kept secret of the meeting and event planning industry, Convention and Visitors Bureaus (CVBs), are truly one of the best Iowa resources out there for planners. Read more...
Spotlight | By Casey Romano, Publisher | September 21, 2021
Every planner knows that successful events are all about the details. Of course, the venue is crucial. But if you host your gala in Buckingham Palace and the food is bad, what are your guest going to remember? (Okay, maybe they’d remember the queen, but that bad corn would stick in their minds long after it got stuck in their teeth.) Whether it’s your lunch or your linens, the tent or the torts, the blooms or the booze, when you get the details right, everything comes together flawlessly. Read more...
Spotlight | By Casey Romano, Publisher | June 16, 2021
This month we shine the spotlight on some of Iowa’s best places, events, and attractions to take your team outdoors! Read more...
Spotlight | By Casey Romano, Publisher | March 11, 2021
As the snow melts giving way to spring just around the corner, we approach one of the most anticipated times of the year, summer. Consider taking your retreat or conference to one of these Iowa #instagramworthy group destinations for some inspiration. Read more...