Ah, fall weather. A beautiful time in Iowa, when the humidity of summer fades and the cool air ushers in the sights, smells, and tastes of a new season. It is a favorite time for many, and the perfect time for outdoor activities with friends and family. This year, like many years before, Iowa City and the surrounding area offer much for the resident or traveler. Below are a few events and attractions well worth visiting:
Cyclo-cross: Iowa City will host one in a series of races in the Telenet UCI World Cup of Cyclo-cross in conjunction with the annual Jingle Cross event September 23-25. With entertainment, food, beverages and close-to-the-action viewing, this event is a highly enjoyable spectator sport. Tickets are just $15 for Saturday races (10 and under free) and Friday and Sunday admission is free. Visit the website to learn more about the sport of Cyclo-cross.
Oktoberfest: Take a day trip for Amana’s annual Oktoberfest celebration September 30 – October 2. With live music all weekend and traditions that hearken back to German roots, you’ll feel right at home (even if you don’t carry a drop of German blood)! You'll quickly learn the celebratory expressions - zicke zacke, zicke zacke, hoi hoi hoi!
Apple Picking: Wilson’s Orchard is a treat for the young and old each fall. Catch Golden Days October 1-2 or visit between 10am and 6pm any day of the week through October. Apple turnovers, apple donuts and apple slushies – these and other goodies are available in the store before and after you pick!
Iowa City Book Festival: Hosted by the Iowa City UNESCO City of Literature, Iowa City’s annual Book Festival returns to downtown October 4-9. With readings and literary visits from authors to take place in Hancher, Iowa City Public Library, Old Capitol Museum and other walkable locations, the festival combines a rich literary history with a love for reading and writing. Visit the book fair that Saturday between 10am and 4pm to peruse the selection of book covers to add to your shelf. While here, visit our bookstores, including Prairie Lights, and stroll the Iowa Avenue Literary Walk.
Pumpkin Patch: At Colony Pumpkin Patch in North Liberty, visitors can walk through a custom-designed corn maze and pick pumpkins for carving or decoration. The Fall Festival on October 8 will also include a bounce house, food, hayrack rides, chainsaw carver, interactive games, corn box and barrel train. It's a perfect outing for the kids or groups.
Beyond things to do, there are always things to eat – and many area restaurants serve food with local, in-season ingredients, so menus change regularly. Come spend some time in Iowa City in what many argue to be the best season of the year.