“I remember the sights and sounds and smells of home because the memory of home is the thing that never leaves us.” – Wyatt Cooper
What To Look For On Your Pella, Iowa Vacation?
Pella, IA – “Stuff to do in Pella, Iowa” is probably not something you Googled recently, right? True, Iowa is not as popular as California or, say, Alaska, but at the end of the day, it has its charms. And since we’re all about the small town frenzy lately, we figured this place is worth taking a look at. And as always, we were right.
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Okay, so, Pella, Iowa tourism is typically not for the energetic. We say this because this small town located in Iowa’s Marion County doesn’t offer a whole lot to do for, say, adrenaline junkies. But, here’s the thing: it does offer tons of interesting adventures and opportunities, only, on a slightly smaller scale. And that’s not a bad thing at all. In fact, it makes it that much more intriguing and exclusive.
First Off, There’s Tons Of Interesting History
If you’re into history, you’ll be interested to know that Henry Peter Scholte, along with some 800 Dutch immigrants, founded the town in 1847. Fleeing the state church of the Netherlands’ religious persecution, as well as famine, Scholte and his bunch agreed on the name Pella, meaning City of Refuge, for their new home, which they found in the Iowa prairieland.
Today, this picturesque small town is referred to by many as the Garden City, and boasts the renowned annual spring tulip festival called Tulip Time. This place is also Wyatt Earp’s childhood home, believe it or not. A farm near the town is where Nicholas Porter Earp, Wyatt’s father, decided to settle. What’s more, this is also the birthplace of Wyatt’s brothers Morgan and Warren.
What’s The Best Way To Spend Your Vacation In Pella, IA?
The 10,000+ population of the town enjoys a strong industry and healthy business community, thanks mostly to the Vermeer and Pella Corporations. Some of the most famous attractions in Pella include the Pella Opera House, but also the Vermeer Mill, which has been fully restored and is today the largest working grain windmill in the country. Lake Red Rock is the largest lake, and at the same time, a staple of Iowa tourism that mostly caters to visitors from the Pella area.
The Tulip Time Festival, for example, is rightfully one of Pella’s greatest celebrations, which lasts three days and brings in more than 150,000 visitors to town. The 2017 Tulip Time Festival is scheduled May 4-6 and will boast traditional Dutch attire worn proudly by the locals, marching bands, parades and elaborate floats. And the cherry on top during the festivities at “America’s Dutch Treasure” will, of course, be the hundreds of thousands of gorgeous tulips scattered across the Sunken Gardens Park, Scholte House Gardens, Pella Historical Village and other locations throughout town.
What About The Dining And Lodging Experiences In This Iowa Small Town?
Some 25 restaurants mean it’s no wonder this small town has so many reasons to be festive. We didn’t have time to visit all of them, but we particularly liked De Scoop, which is a delicious ice cream shop, as well as Jaarsma Bakery and its buns and breads to go. If you’re feeling more luxurious when it comes to your Pella dining experience, Kaldera Restaurant & Lounge is where you ought to be.
Finding accommodation in Pella requires almost no effort at all, as you only need to point and you’ll be happy with your selection. We went with the Royal Amsterdam Hotel, which is located downtown and has a European theme. It’s also located across from the aforementioned tallest working windmill in the country and conveniently situated along a canal. Boasting 38 rooms, 4 suites, 2 wheelchair-accessible rooms and free breakfast, along with many other conveniences, this hotel will set you back anywhere between $99 and $139 per night. If you’re more of an adventurer, however, the area is also home to several campgrounds, cabins and even inns.