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Dave’s Old Home Café in Pisgah
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Dave’s Old Home Café in Pisgah

We traveled the Loess Hills National Scenic Byway to the little town of Pisgah (pop. 251), home of Dave’s Old Home Cafe.

Remember that toe-tappin’ country music song from the 1970s by C.W. McCall called Old Home Fill ’er Up and Keep on Truckin’ Cafe? The Old Home bread commercial that inspired that song was filmed at the Old Home Cafe.

As luck would have it, our waitress, Shasta, is the granddaughter of the folks who owned the cafe at the time. She pointed to some faded pictures on the wall of the actor and actress who played C.W. and his heartthrob waitress, Mavis, for the filming of the commercial.

Shasta recommended the broasted chicken—and it was tasty enough to sing its praises, as ol’ C.W. would say. It came with a generous helping of potatoes and Texas toast that would have made Mavis proud.

It was getting late in the afternoon and we had one more stop we wanted to make—at the Murray Hill Scenic Overlook. Shasta pointed us to a road leading out of town, and we leisurely wended our way through more of the Loess Hills until we came to the overlook.

From high atop a hill, we could see miles and miles of Missouri River Valley farms below us. Many of the farms have sprinkler irrigation systems—something you don’t see very often in Iowa.

We asked about that, and though the soil appears rich and black, it tends to dry out more than most soils during periods of low rainfall. With the water table relatively close to the surface, it makes economic sense to irrigate the crops.

The shadows were lengthening as the sun sunk toward the Nebraska side of the Missouri River. It was our cue to fill ’er up and start truckin’ for home…with that C.W. McCall song playing in our minds much of the way.

This content previously appeared in the popular “Road Trip” series in Our Iowa Magazine. Learn more about the publication at

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  1. Travel Iowa Team
    Travel Iowa Team
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