Iowa Mancation: Central Iowa

Need a bachelor party idea? A weekend of fishing or golf? Maybe some father-son bonding time? Check out this "mancation" that will take you across Central Iowa for the best in food, sports and beer.

Templeton Rye, Templeton
Known simply as “The Good Stuff” to those in the know, Templeton Rye was a favorite libation of Al Capone during the Prohibition era of the 1920s. The tiny town of Templeton is still home to the whiskey manufacturing facility and open regularly for tours and tastings. Visitors may even get the chance to help hand-label a few bottles.

German Hausbarn, Manning

What better stop on a guy’s trip than a town named Manning? Check out the German Hausbarn, which was relocated to the town from northwest Germany. The structure, originally built in 1660 (yep, over 300 years ago), gives visitors a picture of how the town’s German ancestors lived. The building includes living quarters for a family as well as livestock and farm equipment – truly part house, part barn.

John Wayne Birthplace, Winterset

Courage. Strength. Grit. All things John Wayne symbolized over his 50-year career starring in more than 175 movies. Visit The Duke’s hometown and see the impressive collection of John Wayne memorabilia, movie props, costumes and rare photographs and letters from Hollywood stars.

Jethro’s BBQ, Des Moines Area (several locations)

Are you up to the challenge? The Adam Emmenecker Challenge, that is. The “sandwich” is made of all of the favorite foods of one hungry former college basketball star. It includes a pork tenderloin, chicken tenders, cheddar sauce, fried cheese cubes, Texas brisket, bacon, a cheeseburger and a spicy pickle to top it off. Plus a pound of waffle fries. You’ve got 15 minutes to eat it… and, go!

Iowa Cubs Baseball, Des Moines

After your meal, take in a ball game at Des Moines’ Principal Park, home to the Triple-A Iowa Cubs, minor league team for the Chicago Cubs. If baseball isn’t your thing, check the schedules for the Iowa Energy (basketball), Iowa Barnstormers (arena football), Des Moines Menace (soccer) or Iowa Wild (hockey).

Craft Breweries

End your day at any one of Des Moines’ stellar craft breweries. Hit the trail to 515 Brewing Co., check out the brewing operation at Confluence Brewing Co. or grab a bite that’s way better than typical bar food at Exile Brewing Co. Browse all of Iowa’s breweries with the Iowa Wine & Beer app (iOS and Android).

Legacy Golf Club, Norwalk

Consistently at the top of the list when it comes to Central Iowa’s best public golf courses, The Legacy features a professionally designed 18-hole championship course along with a full-service practice facility and indoor Learning Center with hitting bays and a putting studio – keeping you on top of your game!
Goldie’s Ice Cream Shoppe, Prairie City

After golf, grab a hearty lunch at Goldie’s in Prairie City. Voted “Iowa’s Best Pork Tenderloin” in 2009, you just have to try one of their huge sandwiches. The restaurant also features a soda fountain counter where you can sidle up and score a sundae, float, malt or just about any ice cream treat you can think of.

Slideways Karting Center, Knoxville

Challenge your friends to a race – a go-kart race! The sprint car style karts zoom around the oval 1/16th mile slick concrete track at blazing speeds. Choose open racing or formatted racing – where your group is set up in heats to compete for one ultimate winner.

Knoxville Raceway & National Sprint Car Hall of Fame, Knoxville

The exhilarating and dangerous sport of sprint car racing is commemorated at the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame, which houses cars and driver memorabilia from across the country. The museum is attached to the Knoxville Raceway, which holds weekly sprint car races and draws huge crowds for the Knoxville Nationals each summer. If you didn’t have a need for speed before you visit – you will after!

Peace Tree Brewing Co., Knoxville

No visit to Knoxville is complete without tipping one back at the local craft brewery. Try ale brewed with Iowa sweet corn (Cornucopia), Iowa whiskey (Templeton Red) or the 2014 World Beer Cup® Gold medal winner, Blonde Fatale. The taproom regularly hosts live music and events.

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