2022 T-Bone Trail · Museums and History · Southwest Iowa

Adams County, Iowa For Pleasant Jailhouse Memories, Country Club Steaks & “Old School” Cheeseburgers

*The Southwest Iowa region has been a destination on The Iowa Gallivant several times with Adams County welcoming me to town my whole life. Our travels were sponsored and funded by the Western Iowa Tourism Region. Some of the meals, goods and services were complimentary. The views expressed in this blog post are of our own. Now, let’s Gallivant!

8 years in the Adams County Jail and loved every minute of it!

Adams County, Iowa

The video above was something we didn’t plan on doing until after we got back in the car with our breakfast. I knew at some point I wanted to include the old jailhouse during our visit to Corning, and it was with coffee in hand when I knew I wanted spend some time on the porch with this being the vary porch my family enjoyed for 8 years while Grandpa was sheriff. But where did we get those yummy pastries and coffee? Just down the hill from the Adams County House of History at Sweet Desires Bakery with the iced coffee coming from Backgrounds Coffee Bar & Boutique!

Breakfast Time

Sweet Desires has been one of the most popular bakeries in Southwest Iowa for a very long time. They also feature some Dutch letters and their specialty called Pom-Poms! The owner is named Pom, but I didn’t ask if their was a connection to the yummy fruit filled pastries they’re known for.
Opening a box of Adams County heaven. Sweet Desires is one of the Corning Main Street District establishments you never want to miss out on when you’re in town. I’ve had a lot of great memories that were made possible by this bakery, and I can taste the decades of good times and nostalgia with every bite!

Bonus Beef

I love it when a community can repurpose an old school instead of having sit idle years after it shuttered. Prescott, Iowa is one of those communities that’s been able to feature an old school and it sends up some major lunch lady vibes thanks to Cooper’s Kitchen!

Don’t worry about directions to Cooper’s Kitchen. Prescott is a small town and you just gotta look for the tallest brick building in the area and pull into the back lot. Enter the lower level of the school and follow the aroma of Holly’s cooking! 813 1st Street just for good measure.
Hey, look what happened again! Western Iowa has shown us copious amounts of Ranch dressing in a handful of communities, and we can add Prescott to the list. Thank you, Cooper’s Kitchen!
Two of the best hosts you could ask for when you’re taking a tour of Prescott! The school’s kitchen is still very much in operation and getting the locals fed along with a few visitors, too!
A hot and juicy cheeseburger coming right up in Prescott! Click on the video below and see how this Adams Co burger does on camera! Superstars made everyday at Cooper’s!
Old school cheeseburger at the old school!

Local History

If you seek rare artifacts, collectibles, agricultural relics and all around Iowa history then Prescott’s Kline Museum is what you’ll want mosey through in Adams County. Rusty, rare, refurbished and full of surprises in every room!

Even the fire engines had style back in the day. Emergency use only, but something tells me this was taken out for an Adams County spin from time to time.
The antique farm equipment hub you’ve been looking for! If this is your hobby then you just found a whole day in Prescott!
One of my favorite parts of the Kline Museum was right here. Local barber that cut hair for decades and his chair looking like it’s still ready for the next customer. Quite a collection of classic comic books to read……That’s Tom & Jerry!
An impressive display of historic tractors sit proudly throughout the Kline Museum. They deserve a proper retirement From the years of hard work they put in with the local farmers, and Prescott sure did a great job of giving them one.
The Kline Museum even has something for the insect experts out there. Is it a moth or a butterfly? You’ll find out soon enough with these exhibits that’ve educating folks for years!
Somewhere out there, there’s an Adams County family that remembers watching programs on one of these early TVs.

Go Shopping

Time to get back to the Corning Main Street District and do some shopping! I’ve been telling folks for years to make trips into small town Iowa for shopping excursions because they’re hosting some incredibly unique businesses. We make our return to Real Deals!

Directly on Davis Ave and jam packed with countless gifts, clothes, art, jewelry….Well, just get over to Corning and see it!
Did I mention novelty popcorn items? Well, I just did! Real Deals doesn’t skimp on variety!
Mooooooooooove over old shoes! These are fit for the Western Iowa T-Bone Trail!
Come on in, bread makers! Real Deals knows how to make your party a delicious and memorable one!
And the cows showed up again to Real Deals! Beautiful artwork and photography ready for your home, office or wherever the heck you want to put it! Watch the video below and see another section of Real Deals in Corning!
Now, that’s a Real Deals section that I’d travel for!
Davis Ave can really flower up your day in Corning. The specialty of Lone Arranger!
There’s always going to be someone you can find to give a bouquet to. Lone Arranger has some serious pros that make a colorful impression!

One of the anchors of Davis Ave-Corning is a center that’s been hosting artists and their works for years now. It’s another place I don’t want to miss when I visit, and these walls and exhibits always have something new when I show up. Corning Center for the Fine Arts never disappoints and always brings out some of the best talent this area has to offer.

Artwork from folks of all levels and ages can be observed here at the center. There’s always something that’s so gratifying when you purchase something from a local artist.
Batman fans could use this in their house. The Joker brought to life in Corning, Iowa!

Another family tradition of ours is an ice cream stop at the old McMahon drug store. The Main Street District of Corning still has a soda jerk and classic malts!

Another generational business that’s been a staple in Adams County. There’s no way I could accurately count all the sugary drinks and malts I’ve had here. There’s nothing better than having my own kids experience this wonderful blast from the past!
One Cherry Coke and one strawberry malt for the road! Thank you once again, McMahon’s!


Just north of Corning is one of SW-Iowa’s favorite lakes. Lake Icaria for cabins, cottages, camping, and entertaining days on the water!

Iowa’s county parks seem to be getting more and more popular every year. Folks have been discovering and rediscovered these natural treasures at an inspiring rate, for the past few years, and it’s been a welcomed occurrence all over the state. Lake Icaria has grown in popularity and it’s seeing a longer reach in visitors with every passing season. The great part, like many of Iowa’s county parks, some of their cabins are open year round. That means you can get the family packed up for a rural vacation in the summer or plan a cozy getaway in the winter. I suggest looking into Lake Icaria for both of them and especially on the weekdays!

Cabin with a view! #6 Red Head and all its comfort we knew it would have.
Make yourself at home right when you unlock the door. Modern cabin with that rural feel!
Two sets of bunk beds and a great AC/heater to make everyone comfortable. Always remember to pack your own bedding when you visit Iowa’s county parks!
The accommodations of the Red Head cabin comes with a comfy couch with a foldout bed as well. Stretch out and relax when you get to Icaria!
Your live bait, beverages and snacks will stay nice and cool in your cabin at Icaria. Look what showed up to the lake! Donuts from Sweet Desires!
The porch and its view of the lake is a welcomed addition to the cabin. Hiking trails, picnic areas, fire pits and grills are all just steps away from the front door.
Hey, it’s Travis! He’s the director of Adams County Conservation and he welcomed us to Icaria. He was great to talk to, but something else caught our attention….
This little guy calls Lake Icaria home and became a quick friend to Gigi. I heard he’s an amazing water skier!

Stay Active

The hiking trails of Icaria are an excellent way to stay active with the Adams County scenery surrounding you. But it’s not the only way to keep the daily activities going in Corning. Stop into the CHI Health Wellness Center for a round of golf…..indoors!

The simulator can be revved up anytime of the year, and has several options when it comes to courses. Don’t worry about slicing here! And there’s plenty of Mulligans to go around!
Actually you may want to watch out for this guy. That golf ball talked a lot of trash for a little dude. It only took me 8 swings to hit a drive!

Let’s Eat Steak

From a simulated golf course to an actual one in Corning. Happy Hollow Country Club is a longtime gathering place for its members and guests, and it was our turn to see why. Time for a steak dinner with A LOT of pasta on the links!

Enjoy a few holes on the course and then pile in for cold drinks and hot meals at the Happy Hollow Country Club! 2068 Valley Road in Corning.
Sure, we love thick steaks, but we crave big and fresh salads as well. Look at this grilled chicken salad at the Happy Hollow!
It was Beef Stroganoff night at Happy Hollow Country Club, and the dining room was filling up with these hefty plates of pasta. However, there was another reason we showed up to the golf course. Click on the video below see what else we ordered!
A great steak supper at the country club!
Ribeyes with giant baked potatoes! Classic meal with a fun group of folks in Adams County!
The pasta bowls had more than stroganoff landing on the tables. Creamy linguine Alfredo with tender jumbo shrimp. What a great and tasty night at Happy Hollow Country Club! Click on the video below and meet some of the folks who had dinner with us…Spoiler alert! They might just be working in farming or know a thing or two about beef!
We could have talked beef for hours!

Evening Out

Back to Davis Ave in Corning and a restaurant that is a must when you’re on and Adams County getaway. We had a fantastic dinner and now it’s time for dessert at Primrose!

Ricotta donuts and oh-so sugary! Primrose is one of the best farm to table restaurants in Iowa so you know they’re going to have an excellent dessert menu. That ramekin of ricotta paired with warm donuts…….I’m a believer, Primrose!
The famous strawberry shortcake given a gourmet makeover at Primrose in Corning!
Shopping, popular restaurants, art, sweets, ice cream, desserts, pizza, salon, gourmet coffee, history and more can be found on Davis Ave and all over Corning. A classic night out in this community could be topped off by a flick at a classic movie theatre. The Corning American Theater could be the perfect way to conclude a night in SW-Iowa!

It will always feel like home in Adams County, and this Gallivant was no exception. It had been years since I’ve been to some of the places we visited and it was a pleasure catching up with the folks we encountered last year on the trail while meeting more of the area’s memorable locals. I saw more of the Adams County spirit and more reasons why visitors, travelers, vacationers, and tourists keep stopping by. Continue growing, Adams County! There’s another carload that’s going to love it there own the way!

Make your reservations for Lake Icaria at MyCountyParks.com

Be sure to like the T-Bone Trail-Western Iowa on Facebook!
I told you that Prescott gave me lunch lady vibes!

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