When you tell someone from out of state that you’re from Eastern Iowa, you usually get questions about potatoes and whether you live on a farm. Even though the rest of the country may not know a lot about us, we have everything (and more!) you need to live a great life. From affordable living to arts and culture to great restaurants, you really can have it all in Eastern Iowa.
1. It’s affordable
You don’t have to pay an arm and a leg for a mortgage or groceries in the Corridor. According to US News, Iowa is ranked number 3 of the most affordable states in the US, in terms of cost of living and affordable housing.
2. We don’t skimp on the arts
When you are in the mood for entertainment, you don’t have to look far. Eastern Iowa has many different music, theatre and venues and provides something for everyone. There’s Hancher, the Paramount Theatre, Orchestra Iowa, McGrath Amphitheatre, and the Englert Theatre, just to name a few.
3. We celebrate food. Like, really celebrate it.
In Eastern Iowa, you can enjoy all different types of food throughout the year at our many food festivals. Try new flavors of BBQ at Blues & BBQ and BBQ Roundup, sip on some soda at Iowa City Sodafest or beer at Northside Oktoberfest, taste some bratwurst at Wurst Festival, and taste a variety of foods at Taste of Iowa City.
4. Hawkeye football & The Wave
We may not have a professional sports team, but Hawkeye Football is close enough for us. Whether you’ve had the pleasure of tailgating and attending a game, or you’ve just caught one on the tv, you can feel the excitement and spirit of the fans. Our new tradition, The Wave, exemplifies the spirit of Hawkeye fans and their love for the community.
5. So many festivals, so little time
You don’t have to travel far to experience the arts and different cultures. While Iowa City has Jazz Fest, the Iowa Arts festival, and Friday Night Concert Series, Cedar Rapids offers the Freedom Festival and Asian Fest. There’s even the Iowa Renaissance festival and Maifest in the Amana Colonies.
6. Four seasons of fun
When you’re living in Eastern Iowa, you get to experience all four seasons. While it may not be the most exciting to scrap the ice off your car every morning in the winter, there’s nothing like hearing the crunch of the leaves in the fall, the sight of fresh snow on a winter morning, the tulips pop up in the spring, and feeling the sun on a perfect summer day.
7. Locally owned restaurants with authentic cuisine
We love our bacon and sweet corn in Eastern Iowa, but we also love trying new foods. There are a lot of options when it comes to other cuisines. Siamville for Thai, Masala for Indian, and Baroncini for Italian are some of our favorites.
9. Wineries and breweries galore
Gone are the days where you have to travel to California or beyond to visit a winery. Cedar Ridge Winery and Fireside Winery offer a variety of wines that are crafted using grapes grown in Iowa. We also have many breweries, including Backpocket Brewing in Coralvile, Millstream Brewing Company in Amana and Iowa Brewing Company in Cedar Rapids.
10. We celebrate local