Wednesday, June 03, 2009

The Amana Colonies, Iowa

Woke up to a rainy day. Drove the scenic back roads from Pella to the Amana Colonies. Rained all the way. The Amana Colonies is a group of seven villages. Amana, East Amana, Middle Amana, High Amana, West Amana, South Amana and Homestead. In High Amana we stopped at the High Amana General Store. From inside & out, it looked like the store that had been there since 1857. There were candies we hadn’t seen since we were children. Good ‘n Plenty, Mary Jane’s, etc. Bought locally made cream soda, root beer and cherry soda. We can’t recall the last time either of us has had cream soda. Bought some very good local German mustard. We drove around for a while hoping the rain would stop; never did. About 2:00 we gave up and went to the Middle Amana Middle Park Campground. $16.05/night. The park is surrounded by corn fields. I let Gopher off her leash to run for a while.
Iowa is an interesting state. Mostly agricultural in nature. Corn to the horizon most everywhere you go. I’m not sure just what I expected of Iowa but not the interesting places we’ve found so far.
The Amana Colonies have a very fascinating history. The Colonies were a German religious commune that thrived from 1842 through 1932. This link to Wikipedia tells the story:

June 3, 2009

A pretty, cool, sunny morning. In the morning we went to the Amana Stone Hearth Bakery in Amana. Bought three very good strudels and one cinnamon roll. Excellent. Our favorite treat is still the crumb cake & strudel from Hermann, MO. Walked through the Amana General Store and then toured the Woolen Mill. That was interesting. We watched wool fabric being made from the yarn. There was a loom from when the mill was first built in 1857. This is the only operating woolen mill in Iowa. Carol bought a cotton blanket for those chilly nights. We continued east stopping near Davenport, IA at the West Lake Park campground operated by Scott County.

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