Central Iowa · Grownup Getaways

Go West, Monie & JayJay-Scratching the Surface of Grinnell (Part 2 of 2)

Colleen Kleinart pours the goods at Solera in Grinnell, IA.
Colleen Kleinart pours the goods at Solera in Grinnell, IA.

Grinnell, IA: Poweshiek County

It’s been quite a day and it’s time for something fermented. Luckily for us, our guide for the afternoon, Emily with the Grinnell Area Chamber of Commerce, has an idea that will do the trick. She leads us to Solera!

Solera had just turned a year old when we visited this great wine bar. Colleen is this proud owner and operator, of Solera and will be be pouring your drinks for year to come! https://www.facebook.com/pages/Solera/666879070037539
Solera had just turned a year old when we visited this great wine bar. Colleen is this proud owner and operator of Solera and will be be pouring your drinks for years to come!
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Solera/666879070037539

Wine…..chatter….wine….and what comes next? Art! And for the town of Grinnell, they have that very much covered. It’s time we hit the campus of Grinnell College and one of the most important stops we make on this trip.

The entrance to the gallery at the Bucksbaum Center on campus of Grinnell College. http://www.grinnell.edu/
The entrance to the Faulconer Gallery at the Bucksbaum Center on campus of Grinnell College.
http://www.grinnell.edu/

Grinnell College is labeled as a “private” school. Only because we, as a society, haven’t come up with another way to categorize an institution of higher learning that’s not funded by state regents. But, there are very few things that aren’t completely open to the public and tourists on this campus and in this wonderful town. Grinnell College opens its doors free of charge to much of its campus. Literally, every sporting event is free to the public and so is this fine gallery of art and photography. This has made the citizens of Grinnell more than patriotic about their local college. Many people of this town can you tell you how they witnessed basketball player, Jack Taylor, set an all-time NCAA record of 138 points scored by one person in a game. For absolutely free. Citizens of Grinnell can tell you about one of the country’s top rated aquatic centers and all the meets with the rigorous competition they’ve witnessed…..for free. And they can tell you about all the world class pieces of art that they have marveled at through the years…..for free. Grinnell College is an institution that has one of the country’s largest endowments, a huge list of notable grads, and the reputation that is renowned throughout the world. But, it’s community first for this school. Grinnell first and Grinnell College next.

A far look at the art gallery at the Buckbaum Center on the campus of Grinnell College in Grinnell, IA.
A far look at the art Faulconer Gallery at the Buckbaum Center on the campus of Grinnell College in Grinnell, IA.
German Expressionism was the theme for our visit at the Bucksbaum Center at Grinnell College.
German Expressionism was the theme for our visit at the Bucksbaum Center at Grinnell College.

IMG_0692

IMG_0694

IMG_0700

Not only did the Faulconer Gallery possess an amazing array of artwork, it also holds displays of famous photography. Our visit of Grinnell College showed the talented works of photographer Gordon Parks.

An intro to the display of some of our country's most important portfolios of African-American photography. Bucksbaum Center at Grinnell College.
An intro to the display of some of our country’s most important portfolios of African-American photography. At the Faulconer Gallery on the campus of Grinnell College
No interpretation needed. Only reflection. Bucksbaum Center at Grinnell College.
No interpretation needed. Only reflection. Faulconer Gallery at Grinnell College.

We weaved inside and out of the Grinnell College campus. Emily was a graduate of Wartburg, in Waverly, but knew her way around Grinnell College as if she was showing an incoming freshman the “ropes” of college life in this Iowa town.

International represent the international students that attend Grinnell College. Home to over 1600 and many of them crossing the pond to get to here.
International flags represent the international students that attend Grinnell College. Home to over 1600 and many of them crossing the pond to get to here.

I have the art sweats and there is only one thing that can help me. Something that will give me the sugar sweats. And Emily knows right where to go. A building that was formally a filling station for automobiles and is now a filling station for bellies of all sizes. Including mine. A building on the National Register of Historical Places is serving up its own history everyday. Grinnell gives us the Candyland Station!

IMG_0713IMG_0714

Roberta served up some delicious old fashion strawberry sodas. One of the many reasons to make the trip to Grinnell, IA. I nearly chipped the glass trying to eat it all. I'm not ashamed either. https://www.facebook.com/CandylandStation
Owner Roberta See served up some delicious old fashioned strawberry sodas. One of the many reasons to make the trip to Grinnell, IA. I nearly chipped the glass trying to eat it all. I’m not ashamed either.
https://www.facebook.com/CandylandStation

Candyland station is more than a hub for ice cream delights. They make great sandwiches, burgers, and soups and supply an experience that both the modern and the nostalgic can enjoy. It’s the perfect pit-stop for anyone visiting Grinnell! With our ice cream consumed, Emily was ready to show us more of Grinnell’s downtown district.

The Strand Theater is a downtown Grinnell icon.
The Strand Theater is an Iowa icon in downtown Grinnell.

There are so many stories to be told by the locals of every town in America. Grinnell is no exception. Emily took us in to many businesses around the Grinnell loop. One stop was to show off the meticulous works of the town’s jeweler and learn about the history of the area from this proud business owner.

Owner, Bill Hammen and his team, will not only hook you up with an amazing tennis bracelet, He'll can give you the history lesson that professors and state historians would be impressed with.
Owner, Bill Hammen, and his team, will not only hook you up with an amazing tennis bracelet, but also give you the history lesson that professors and state historians would be impressed with.
Shiny stff! Some proud merchandise at Bill's Jewelry Shop in Grinnell, IA.    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Bills-Jewelry-Shop/261330007232966
Shiny stuff! Bill’s Jewelry Shop in Grinnell, IA created Grinnell beads inspired by the jewel box that is the Merchant’s National Bank.
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Bills-Jewelry-Shop/261330007232966

You can read about the jewel-box bank in part 1 of our Grinnell blog.

https://theiowagallivant.com/2015/03/15/go-west-monie-jayjay-scratching-the-surface-of-grinnell-part-1-of-2/

Grinnell needs a places that sells flowers, chocolate, and delicious made from scratch meals that can picked up and easily be served in minutes.  Luckily for Grinnell they have all that covered. Under one roof! We make our way into Flowers by DZyne and Memories Made and meet a couple of very busy entrepreneurs.

Meet the ladies of a 1000 different hats! Cynthia Sherman and Stephanie Connor.  http://bestgrinnellflowers.com/
Meet the ladies of a 1000 different hats! Nichole Bushong and Stephanie Connor.
http://bestgrinnellflowers.com/
Let's see here. Flowers and chocolate in one place. Cynthia and Stephanie can get anyone out of the doghouse with just stop! https://www.facebook.com/pages/Flowers-by-DZyne/582101291859777
Let’s see here. Flowers and chocolate in one place. Cynthia and Stephanie can get anyone out of the doghouse with just stop!
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Flowers-by-DZyne/582101291859777
Now all you need to do is make dinner. And this amazing menu of gourmet ready to go meals will seal the deal from Memories Made. Just pick them up in the very showroom you're getting your flowers from and chocolate and velvet top hat...and moral advice....
Now all you need to do is make dinner. And this amazing menu of gourmet ready to go meals will seal the deal from Memories Made. Just pick them up in the very showroom you’re getting your flowers from and chocolate and velvet top hat…and moral advice….

The reason to make the trip to Grinnell doesn’t stop with bike experts, great food, wine aficionados and art galleries. You’re just getting warmed up with the uniqueness of this great town. By now you’re probably wondering where a person can get some organic grocery shopping done. And now you just remembered you need a gift that baby shower that your crazy aunt told you that you needed to go to. Oh no! I was supposed to pick up a vintage Atari video game for my friend! Done, done and done!. No need to leave the Grinnell downtown district for any of these. Emily and the crew are on it!

McNally's has been a Grinnell staple for over 100 years. They have the selection and expertise for any local or traveler.  https://www.facebook.com/pages/McNallys-Foods/1442843339293192
McNally’s has been a Grinnell staple for over 100 years. They have the selection and expertise for any local or traveler.
https://www.facebook.com/pages/McNallys-Foods/1442843339293192
We told you they've been around for over a 100 years! McNally's houses a blast from the past delivery truck with colorful mural behind it.
We told you they’ve been around for over a 100 years! McNally’s houses a blast from the past delivery truck with colorful mural behind it.
McNally's has the power of cheese! An impressive spread of local cheesy delights and from around the world.
McNally’s has the power of cheese! An impressive spread of local cheesy delights and from around the world.

Now its time to get fedora, hair bow, suspenders and and gadgets that can keep any kid occupied. Or distracted grownup. Like the chief blogger of The Iowa Gallivant. Giggles and Bows here we come!

Giggles & Bows is one of Iowa's largest children's boutiques that draws shoppers from far and near. I still wish they made onesie in adult sizes. http://www.gigglesnbows.com/
JoAnn Fynaardt and her trusty employees operate Giggles & Bows in downtown Grinnell. One of Iowa’s largest children’s boutiques that draws shoppers from far and near. I still wish they made onesie in adult sizes. 
http://www.gigglesnbows.com/
The eye catching storefront of Giggles & Bows in downtown Grinnell. From children's sundresses to outfits that junior can wear to all occasions. JoAnn has it all ready to throw on! https://www.facebook.com/GigglesNBowsGrinnell
The eye catching storefront of Giggles & Bows in downtown Grinnell. From children’s sundresses to outfits that junior can wear to all occasions. JoAnn has it all ready to throw on!
https://www.facebook.com/GigglesNBowsGrinnell

Tecmo Bowl. Asteroids. Duck Hunt. Pitfall. These are the classic games that occupied my time growing up and I survived to tell the stories. Bring on the Gamers! Gamers, a small chain selling video games and more, was a surprise to find here in Grinnell. Maybe it has its success due to the nearby college students or maybe it is due to the great collection of vintage games filling its shelves- it was great to see the technology housed among the historic.

The modern storefront nestled in to the historic Grinnell downtown district. They've got Gamers!
The modern storefront nestled in to the historic Grinnell downtown district. They’ve got Gamers!
Vintage entertainment through the decades. After I do my homework, an episode of Who's the Boss and quick PB Max, I'm hitting up some of these games.  https://www.facebook.com/grinnellgamers
Vintage entertainment through the decades. After I do my homework, watch an episode of Who’s the Boss, and devour a quick PB Max, I’m hitting up some of these games.
https://www.facebook.com/grinnellgamers

Emily showed us around of some other great place we’ll need to visit on our net trip to Grinnell. Like taking in the disc golf tournament called the Goose Poop open. A museum of transportation that is located in an old buggy manufacturing plant. And many more restaurants and good times that Grinnell has to offer. The history of Grinnell is rich and can only be accurately told by the proud people that call it home. So get into Grinnell and experience it for yourself and be apart of the future to come. Thanks again, Emily! You know how to showcase this great area!

Be sure to read Part 1 of our Grinnell trip!

Thanks for reading! -Team Goodvin

One thought on “Go West, Monie & JayJay-Scratching the Surface of Grinnell (Part 2 of 2)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s