What does "Not Much To Do" mean? (Des Moines: car insurance, school)
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"It's a great place to live but I wouldn't want to visit." was posted by IloveJazz, and to the contrary, Dubuque sees over 1.1 million tourists per year, and Des Moines slightly less. Festivals like the Iowa State Fair, and County Fairs can sometimes attract people from other states, The America's River Festival in Downtown Dubuque in early July is very popular, with a lot to do. Des Moines and even Davenport have several festivals. You can view one of a kind scenery in far Eastern Iowa, (east of Manchester, north of Maquoketa.) Waterloo and Cedar Rapids often have live music downtown on Friday and Saturday nights in Summer, and Mississippi River towns; Dubuque, Davenport, Bellevue, Clinton, Muscatine, Burlington, can offer a lot to do, especially in summer. You have RAGBRAI in July, with thousands, or was it hundreds, of bike riders riding across the state starting by dipping their bikes in the Missouri River near Sioux City, and riding across the state, ending in Bellevue. The Missouri River, as well, and northwestern Iowa, in some spots, are very scenic, north of LeMars. Take a boat ride, GAMBLE at one of Iowa's premier casinos, Riverside is a Golf/Casino Resort with a very new innovative golf course with high tech golf carts, and world-class holes. Casinos such as Meskwaki, Dubuque Greyhound Park and Casino, and Diamond Jo Casino can be rather enjoyable as well.
Of course, there is not as much stuff to do in Iowa as in other states, I.e; Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota... Sometimes we go to Chicago, or St. Louis, or Minneapolis, or Omaha on a day trip, Iowa has a convenient location. Iowa simply doesnt have as much stuff to do because 1. The population is very low, barely 3mil, and 2, there aren't a lot of big cities, there isn't a big city, unless one would call DM big.
Woodward Girl, when we lived in rural Iowa we always had to make a lengthy drive of up 80 to 150 miles or so round trip to go to a nice mall, or eat at a nice restaurant. Most of the time we didn't go, because by the time you drove there you would be too tired to do anything.
Instead, we would eat at the few local restaurants in the area we found that were smoke free, and we would go to garage sales and an occasional Farmer's Mkt. We would go to local festivals when they had them.
The festivals were always fun. And, petting zoos too. Can't even count how many petting zoos we took the family to while we lived there.
Spent a lot of time at local libraries, and spent much time driving around looking at farms and old barns and pretty landscapes out in the country.
We would also drive through small towns and look at the architecture of the old houses.
Yes, I agree with the last paragraph. I think you are right about local libraries and driving around looking at pretty landscapes and the architecture of old houses in small towns. I have done all of those things, indeed. Those are things you can do in IA, you know IA well. I have never really done the other ones, because I like to keep to myself...
I'll answer this the best I can. I am from Des Moines, but have lived in Boston and now California.
Here's an example from the Boston perspective. "After work, I am going to have dinner in the Boston Common. The oldest public space in America. While eating some unique vender food, I am going to sit and watch the beautiful architecture of the area. Taking in the fact that I am sitting where this nation began. After dinner, I am going to take a stroll through Chinatown, and visit some unique stores.
This weekend I think I'll take a road trip up to the White Mountain National Forest in New Hampshire. If summer time, I'll go hiking in the beautiful mountains, maybe see some moose, or a waterfall. In winter, maybe go skiing.
Next Tuesday I have tickets to the Red Sox-Yankees game (extremely hard to get). After the game, I'll hop on the T (subway) over to the North End. Have dinner in a little Italian restaurant that makes me think I'm in Italy.
The list goes on and on.
In Des Moines, we have a farmers market, and a few other random things to do. There is only so much farmers market one can handle before it gets old.
I'll tell you on one HUGE plus Iowa has that most places don't. EXTREMELY cheap cost of living, and friendly people. Boston had the most unfriendly people I have ever encountered, but it was great there. Loved it.
Great post. I enjoyed what you said about Boston and NH's White Mountains, which judging from photos are breath taking. I appreciate the east coast comparison. With IA, there isn't as much history as say Boston. I've never been to the east coast, but I want to visit someday.
Well, after my take on others posts, I will have my say. I am from the midwest, although more MN than IA, perhaps. But, WHAT does not much to do mean? Well, it means different things to different people, for sure. I think it is just that there isn't much here, in terms of what other places have, if you want to be entertained- to some people.
To be sure, there are some things to do, the person who lives in Burlington summed them up, or at least those things are what I think is the main entertainment of those around me. I also think what Cactus Sam said are things to do in IA, things I have done, for the most part. I guess there are things to do, it depends on what it is. I myself when I use that phrase just mean it isn't a city, it doesn't have what cities would have, not that I've ever lived in one. I think the question that started this thread a good one though. Maybe we who are in the midwest use it frequently without knowing what it really means. To me, it means it doesn't have what I think other places have, but until I get to the east coast, I am not going to find out. I know I have over used that phrase without thinking what it really means..I'm sure others have too in IA.
Haha, I am going with the being board is only in your head point of view. I have several friends back in Chicago that if I call them and ask what they are up to, they reply, "not much, Im pretty board" or "theres not much to do at night, I just sit at home and watch TV" . I mean come on! Being board is most of the time based on the amount of energy you put into not being board. You can find things to do almost everywhere you are. (granted they may not be the things you most like to do)
Yap the cost of living in IOWA is cheap....lets me buy toys with the extra money so if your wondering what I'm doing in IOWA......
Grilling some big ole steaks on the commercial grill and having a cold beer, after that I am going to watch a movie on my big ole plasma tv, later I am going to visit with my neighbors and have another beer. tomorrow I am going to fire up the boat and spend all day on the river. The next day I am going shopping and then riding my bike for 50 miles or so on some country roads. Next weekend I am going to a play, gonna check out the new place to eat and a few rounds of golf....yup, I can't say I don't have anything to do.....
I grew up in Cedar Rapids, went to college in Ames, lived in Washington DC for five years and moved back to Iowa City recently. It's the old cliche that Iowa is so boring, there's nothing to do here, everyone living here has heard it a million times. After having the ability to live in a variety of areas in and out of Iowa I've realized that the same things are said of many medium to small size cities like Des Moines and Cedar Rapids. People in DC said the same thing about nearby cities like Richmond, Va and Dover Delaware. To me it's just a personality thing, some people just need to have a huge sprawling city with endless variety, fast pace, and rat race fever to feel like their really living. I've got no problem with that, in fact I loved living in a huge exciting place like DC, it really was a fun place to live. I also like living in Iowa for many reasons too. A lot of the same places or types of places are available to us here, just not as many of them ex: bars, restaurants, events. I've learned to appreciate what Iowa offers, and yes there's fun to be had here too!
Small town Ia is going to the pub after work with co workers, unless there is a football/ basketball/ softball game being played by the local high school.
Small town ia is going to church on sundays, staying for bible study, then meeting the family at the local resurant for lunch followed by the local sunday movie matinee, followed by bowling or cards till grandma makes supper for the crowd consisting of real mashed potatoes and corn from her garden.
Small town Ia is belonging to the gun club, the card club, the quilt club, every other club, and the volunteer fire and ambulance dept, who get together to train and drink beer regularly. Its also kiwanis, elks, moose, amvets and more
Small town is when the local grade school has its christmas, or spring concert and the whole town shows up so that there is standing room only.
Small town Ia is making your own venison turkey, and having neighborhood fish fry becasuse you have fished the limit for a whole year and the freezer is so full the wife is p---ed. Small town Ia is hunting for turkey, pheasant, deer, buffalo and fishing alot too. Small town Ia is
Attending the neighboring town's applefest, oct fest, watermelon days, tall corn days, popcorn days, tulip days you name it , every town has its Day and a parade.
Small town Ia is driving 15 miles to take the wife for a night out to a bar and grill in the next townthat is almost identical to the one where you live.
Small town Ia is running out of unseen rental movies by february.
Small town Ia is not missing a single stock car race at the local track all season long.
Small town Ia means the county fair is one of the biggest happenings all summer.
Summer in small town Ia will mean you can find your child at the local pool from open to close except for lunch at least five days a week.
Small town Ia means if your kid doesnt do his homework the teacher calls you that night and you agree to check and sign it nightly from now on.
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