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The Week in Social 9/13 - 9/17

September 21, 2021

The Week in Social rounds up the best of Iowa’s uplifting stories, exciting initiatives and fun events from all 99 counties discovered through social media. In a time where every bit of good news is cherished, this series is devoted to being a fun, lighthearted way to stay informed about Iowa’s good news.


Celebrate Fall with Iowa Farm & Fun Passport

Nothing says fall like pumpkin patches, orchards and local creameries. This year, you can experience fall adventures using the Iowa Farm & Fun Passport which gives you deals and discounts to the best local farms and creameries throughout Iowa. It’s free to sign up, and the more locations you visit on the dairy trail, such as an ice cream maker, expresso machine, artisan pizza oven and more.

“Iowa is fortunate to have four seasons of travel,” said Amy Zeigler, state tourism manager for the Iowa Tourism Office. “Both the Iowa Farm & Fun Passport and Fall/Winter Iowa Travel Guide provide an abundance of ideas to inspire travel and offer activities over the next several months.”


Seven Iowa Beers Awarded at the Great American Beer Festival

The Brewers Association awarded six Iowa Breweries medals of excellence at the 2021 Great American Beer Festival. The festival showcases over 4,000 beers from more than 800 breweries and is one of the largest beer festivals in the world. SingleSpeed Brewing in Cedar Falls won both gold and bronze for their Contemporary Gose and Session Beer. Three other gold awards were awarded to the Fruited Wood and Barrel-Aged Sour Beer from Marto Brewing Co., the Historical Beer from PIVO Brewery, and the Juicy or Hazy Strong Pale Ale from Peace Tree Brewing Co.

The Brown Porter from Lion Bridge Brewing Co. won silver, and bronze was awarded to Wood- and Barrel-Aged Strong Beer from Keg Creek Brewing Co. Ready to try these award-winning breweries? Be sure to use the free Iowa Wine and Beer Passport to redeem special discounts and win prizes.


Celebrate at the Latino Heritage Festival

This year you can celebrate Latino and Hispanic Heritage Month by attending Iowa’s Latino Heritage Festival in Des Moines on September 25 and 26. The festival features local Latino art and cultural booths showcasing the food, language, customs, politics, demographics and celebrations of the Latino population in Iowa. Attendees can also taste Latino-American foods from food vendors and participate in cooking demonstrations of Latino meals. There will be a variety of children’s activities such as inflatable jumping castles and piñata making. The family-friendly festival costs $5 to attend and children under 12 years old enter free.


BIG Challenge Grant Competition Encourages Business Growth

Calling all small business owners, entrepreneurs and dreamers! Submit your brilliant idea to the BIG Challenge which encourages blooming businesses to build, innovate and grow in northwest Iowa. Each finalist will have the opportunity to work with a coach from the Small Business Development Center at the University of Northern Iowa Center for Business Growth and Innovation. The finalists will then present their idea to an audience and judges for a chance to win thousands in cash prizes.


Real Simple Magazine Names Fort Dodge as the “Center of Spookiness”

If you are looking to have a spooky adventure this fall, Real Simple recently noted 20 haunted places in the United States to see on a Halloween road trip. The Banwell Terror Bridge in Fort Dodge is listed as Iowa’s center of spookiness. The bridge is one of the state’s oldest bridges, and locals advise visitors to keep their doors locked as there have been tall tales of strange orbs, voices and phantom trains on the bridge. If you are looking for something a little less grim, Fort Dodge is home to the award-winning Soldier Creek Winery and the Des Moines River Water Trail.

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