Virtual FAM-Tour (2020)

Welcome to the 2020 Virtual FAM-Tour!

Join Kim Grzywacz with CIT Signature Transportation as she takes you on a 6 day adventure around Iowa exploring all the state has to offer. Along the way you will see 23 of our members destinations and they will show you why our home state is such a great place for group travel!

Hop on the bus and join us on this journey!

DAY 1:

Cedar Falls
Hansen’s Dairy
Matchstick Marvels

On Day 1, we start in Cedar Falls where you will spend time in the thriving and vibrant downtown full of shops and restaurants. Grab a drink before enjoying the excitement of a topnotch Broadway show.

Then switch gears and get a little mud on your boots while visiting the farm at Hansen’s Dairy. Meet the cows who are treated like celebrities on this 150-year-old farm. Drink fresh milk and eat some of their delicious homemade ice cream. Yum!

After that, finish your sight-seeing at the amazing Matchstick Marvels! Witness the meticulously scaled reproductions from talented Iowa artist Patrick Acton whose medium is, yep, you guessed it, matchsticks.


DAY 2:

Des Moines
Iowa Quilt Museum
Adams County
Le Mars

Day 2 will have you spending time in the State Capitol with host Catch Des Moines. There are oodles to do in Des Moines including: seeing the lions at Blank Park Zoo, riding the roller coaster at the amusement park, reflecting at the Des Moines Art Center, and feasting on delicious cuisine.

After all of that excitement slow things down at the Iowa Quilt Museum in lovely Winterset, Iowa. Stop in and appreciate the amazing artistry from some of the world’s most renown quilters.

Next head to Adams County for refreshments at the local winery before heading to the boyhood home of American icon – Johnny Carson.

The last stop of the day is Le Mars! Start with dessert for a change at the Wells Visitor Center & Ice Cream Parlor and finish with an amazing meal and a Broadway-style show from performing sensations – the Brown family at The Brown’s Theater and Gift Shoppe.


DAY 3:

Clear Lake
Mason City

Take to the water on Day 3! Not everyone knows that Iowa has fabulous lakes too! Start the day cruising around Lake Okoboji and get a real taste of the Iowa Lake Life.

Next head to Clear Lake and remember the great Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and JP “the Big Bopper” Richardson at the nostalgic Surf Ball Room. Then hop back on the water and cruise aboard the Lady of the Lake.

On the last stop of the day in Mason City appreciate the architectural genius of Frank Lloyd Wright at the Historic Park Inn and share in the joy of visiting Music Man Square and the boyhood home of Meredith Willson.


DAY 4:

Charles City
Hawkeye Buffalo Ranch
Fayette County
Wilder Memorial Museum

Instead of the Lake, hit the river on Day 4 and stop in Charles City, home to Iowa’s first Whitewater Course – another “Unexpected Iowa” adventure. But the fun doesn’t stop there.

You get to pet a buffalo! Martha, from the Hawkeye Buffalo and Cattle Ranch will take you on the most immersive ride through their quaint ranch.

Visitors won’t get enough of the breathtaking scenery in Fayette County which lies right on the southern edge of the Driftless Region – a spot untouched by the last glacial drift. Who knew there was so much pristine woodlands in Iowa?

On the last stop of day 4, visit the Wilder Memorial Museum in Strawberry Point, which features an exquisite, historical collection of dolls, wonderful period displays, and fine china – that gives you a special glimpse into the stories of this special town and its residents.


DAY 5:

National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium
The Sawmill Museum
Riverboat Twilight
Quad Cities

Two rivers form Iowa’s eastern and western borders. Spend Day 5 on Iowa’s Eastern edge learning about the role the Mississippi River played and continues to play in creating Iowa’s identity.

Start the day in the oldest city in Iowa – Dubuque, named after the man said to be the first settler in the state, Julien Dubuque. Ride the world’s shortest, steepest railway – Fenelon Elevator and sample some amazing food.

One of our favorite stops in Dubuque is the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium. Their incredible aquariums allow visitors to marvel at the creatures in the River up close. You can even touch a stingray!

Have an interactive experience at the Sawmill Museum in Clinton learning about the history of the logging industry. It would have been amazing to see the bustling activity on the Mississippi hundreds of years ago – a story the Sawmill Museum has portrayed so vividly.

Then head to the vibrant Quad Cities where you can catch a professional baseball game, view world class art at the Figge Art Museum, and tour the John Deere Pavilion.

After such a wild day, a relaxing cruise on the Riverboat Twilight is the perfect place to be. Nothing like good food, the peaceful water and one of those gorgeous Iowa sunsets to end your evening.


DAY 6:

Celebration Belle
Cinnamon Ridge Farms
Amana Colonies

On Day 6, the final day of the IGTA Virtual FAM tour, take one last ride on the Mississippi aboard the gorgeous Celebration Belle and enjoy a cup of coffee overlooking the river.

Fully relaxed from the cruise, head to Cinnamon Ridge Dairy where you will learn how progressive Iowa farming can be. Here the cows are milked by robots, and get this, the cows call all the shots – when to be milked and how many times! Amazing.

Travel to Kalona Historical Village – home to one of the State’s largest Amish settlements. View plenty of buggies, horses, beautiful farmsteads and enjoy some amazing homemade comfort food. This is truly a beautiful place that is good for the soul.

Finally, on the last stop of the trip, treat yourself to the unique culture of the Amana Colonies – a place where the German heritage still runs strong. There are so many little shops, wonderful eateries where meals are served family style, and a brewery. We will see you there for Oktoberfest!