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High gas prices good reason to vacation in Iowa

May 27, 2013
Estherville Daily News

It seems like deja vu all over again.

Gas prices nipped at $4 a gallon this Memorial Day weekend, enough to make some folks curtail or at least think about their travel plans.

Hopefully, this won't keep people from taking a vacation this summer. If you're still in doubt, why not vacation right here in Iowa. Here are some suggestions:

n The Lakes are right next door. People drive from hundreds of miles around to vacation there, and we're 15 miles away.

n Maquoketa Caves State Park. This is a gem. Located south of Dubuque, these caves remain at 50 degrees throughout the year. There's a lot of history there, too, from the Native Americans who first inhabited them to the settlers to used one of the larger caves as a dance hall. It's certainly worth the drive, and there's a campground right at the park.

n Croton. Never heard of Croton? Well, this community located northwest of Keokuk has the distinction of being the only place in Iowa where Confederate cannonballs fell. There's even an old log cabin where the damage is preserved.

n Honey Creek State Park. Home of Rathbun Lake and some of the finest sport fishing in Iowa. It's located just north of Centerville.

n Preparation Canyon State Park. Embedded in the midst of the Loess Hills, this is where many pioneers wintered over before heading west to Oregon. It's a beautiful place, and a must-see if you live in Iowa. It's located east of Blencoe.

n The Iowa Speedway. Located at Newton, this is about as close to The Brickyard as you can get in Iowa. See:

n Living History Farms. Located in West Des Moines, the only difference between this and threshing bees is that it lasts all summer.

n Pilot Knob State Park. Just east of Forest City off Highway 9, this park features a hill rising from the surrounding prairie topped with a stone tower that lets you see for miles in every direction. There's plenty of camping too.

n Science Center of Iowa. Des Moines. If you have kids at home, it would be a crime not to take this in this summer. Learn more at:

These are just a few things to do in our great state this summer. So load up the car and check things out and find out how great of a state Iowa really is.



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