Holiday Guide: The Quintessential Thanksgiving in Iowa

Iowa is a wonderful place to celebrate Turkey Day. With the smell of homemade pie in the air and autumnal landscapes surrounding you, it doesn’t get much better. From turkey trots, to parades, to food banks, here’s how to enjoy the quintessential Thanksgiving in Iowa in 2022. 

Joe’s Place, Iowa City, IA

For the perfect place to let loose the night before thanksgiving, Joe’s Place in Iowa City provides plenty of space, a great bar selection and an unofficial meeting spot for University of Iowa students, alumni, and community members alike. If you have had any tenure in Iowa City, you’ll run into someone you know at Joe’s Place, and chances are you’ll meet someone new too. 

Coffee Cup Cafe, Sully, IA

While baking your own pie can go a long way for the Thanksgiving holiday, a pie from the Coffee Cup Cafe will surely add some extra sweetness to the spread. Featuring all the holiday staples including apple, pumpkin and cherry, it’s highly recommended to check out other new favorites on the Coffee Cup Cafes long menu, including toasted coconut, lemon meringue and pecan pies.  

New Pioneer Food Co-op, Multiple locations

Featuring locally-raised, free-range frozen and fresh turkeys, the New Pioneer Food Co-op has you covered when it comes to a high-quality bird. The spread selection doesn’t stop when it comes to turkeys at the New Pi Co-op, and with plenty of fresh holiday sides, ingredients and suggestions for what to cook, New Pi can help deliver on a first-class meal and leftovers. 

Jordan Creek Town Center, West Des Moines, IA

If Black Friday is circled on your calendar the day after Thanksgiving, then the place you’ll want to head to in the wee hours of the morning is the Jordan Creek Town Center in West Des Moines. Featuring more stores than you can visit in a day, Jordan Creek contains small shops unique to the area and mega brands like Best Buy, Scheels and Younkers. 

Theta Parents Weekend meant that my favorite family member came to visit 🐶💗

A post shared by Maddie Hiatt (@maddiehiatt) on

Meskwaki Cultural Center and Museum, Tama, IA

For more perspective on the Thanksgiving Holiday, a visit to the Meskwaki Cultural Center and Museum in Tama is worth your attention. Featuring artifacts, photographs, and plenty of stories to share, visitors to the Meskwaki Cultural Center learn about the history of the Meskwaki Nation, as well as their current cultural presence. Admission is free to this captivating display of culture, and you can keep everything you learn well past the holidays. 

Des Moines Turkey Trot, Des Moines, IA

Get your turkey trot on this Thanksgiving at the Des Moines Turkey Trot. Touted as one of the best trots in the nation, the Des Moines Turkey Trot hits all the scenic parts of the city and comes packed with a lot of holiday cheer. Racers can opt for a casual 5K, a slightly more competitive five-mile route, or a tot trot for the young turkeys out there. Whichever trot you choose, and even if you just spectate the event, it’s a festival full of good cheer and friendly faces.  

Food Bank of Iowa, Des Moines, IA

In the spirit of giving gratitude to what we’re thankful for, there are a lot of great organizations to get involved with during the holiday season. The Food Bank of Iowa is one among many of those organizations that can use volunteers of all sizes. Whichever organization you’d like to help out this holiday season, the first step will be getting in touch with them and asking how they could use your help. 

Ox Yoke Inn, Amana, IA

If not for the main holiday meal, at least once during the season be sure to leave the cooking up to the professionals at the Ox Yoke Inn in Amana. Featuring family-style entree selections, including savory turkey, mashed potatoes and chilled salads, there’s little to no room left on the table at the Ox Yoke Inn for anyone’s hunger to remain. 

Share your favorites!
Iowa Search
Best Things To Do Near You
Best Things To Do Near You
Sep
29

Music in the Garden: The Feel Right

6:30 PM
Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden, Des Moines, IA
Learn More
Sep
29
Sep
30

The Slaughterhouse Haunted House Attraction

7:00 PM
The Slaughterhouse Haunted House, Des Moines, IA
Learn More
Sep
30
Sep
30
Sep
30
Sep
30
Show More
Best Places To Go Near You
Best Places To Go Near You
3135 Highway 117North, Colfax, IA
About Us:In 1964, Red Atwood became interested in collecting Lionel O gauge trains. As the years passed and the trains began to accumulate, Red sta... Read More
32835 610th Avenue, Cambridge, IA
About: Center Grove Orchard, owned and operated by the Larry D. and Pat Black Family, has been open to the public since 1994. We planted our first... Read More
2349 233rd Street, Marshalltown, IA
It is owned by the Marshall County Conservation Board and it is visited by thousands of people each year including every fifth-grader in the Marsha... Read More
2349 233rd Street, Marshalltown, IA
1958: The Marshall County Conservation Board (MCCB) was authorized by a vote of County residents to "acquire, develop, maintain and make avail... Read More
North Clinton Street, Albion, IA
56461 180th Street, Ames, IA
Amenities:   Bicycling, Camping, Conference Rooms, Cross Country Skiing, Free Parking, Gazebo, Off-road Bicycling, Pets Allowed, Picnic Table... Read More
1330 6th Street, Ames, IA
Ames Skate Park located in Brookside Park at 1330 6th St is a great place for beginner and expert skaters to work on their skills, meet other skate... Read More
3333 Rusty Wallace Drive, Newton, IA
Iowa Speedway, “The Fastest Short Track on the Planet,” is a state-of-the-art 7/8 mile asphalt paved tri-oval race track and motorsport... Read More
1407 University Boulevard, Ames, IA
Mission: Educate, enchant, and inspire an appreciation of plants, butterflies, and the beauty of the natural world. History: Reiman Gardens has ... Read More
201 1st Avenue South, Altoona, IA
About Us Class Act Productions is a children's community theatre that strives to give young people, regardless of experience, the opportunity to p... Read More
440 Science II, Ames, IA
The Insect Zoo in Iowa State University's Department of Entomology is an outreach program developed to foster an appreciation of insects found in I... Read More
Scheman Building, Suite 102, Ames, IA
Iowa State Center Mission Statement: "To develop and support the programming, facilities and services necessary to establish the Iowa State Cente... Read More
1000 Venbury Drive, Altoona, IA
Altoona's Skate Park  features stairs, moguls, a double hump box and more challenges for novice and skilled skaters. It's a great way to get ... Read More
305 34th Avenue North West, Altoona, IA
About Us:Adventureland Amusement Park contains over 100 rides, shows, and attractions including some of the country's most exciting roller coasters... Read More
Show More
Select a Iowa town to find
the Best Things-To-Do and Places To Go around you