Cedar Rapids Tourist Attractions
Visit Cedar Rapids, Iowa, for a variety of cultural experiences. Visit the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art to see works by American artist Grant Wood. Explore the 1880s Brucemore Estate, complete with acre-long gardens and displays on local history.
Enjoy a dip in the pool or ice skating rink, and see farm animals. The National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library to learn about the history of immigrants from the Czech Republic and Slovakia during the 19th century.
The city’s historic architecture is an integral part of its culture. In the 1920s, the city was home to the Paramount Theatre, a movie palace that still hosts Broadway shows and concerts. Cedar Rapids’ cultural scene includes the National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library, the Indian Creek Nature Center, and the historic Brucemore estate. There are also numerous historical sites to see, including a beautiful Queen Anne-style mansion.
The city also offers several colleges and universities. There are two four-year universities in the area, including Cedar Rapids University and Mount Mercy University. Cedar Rapids also has a night MBA program run by the University of Iowa. Two-year colleges in the area include Kirkwood Community College and Kaplan University, which was formerly known as Hamilton College. Another large university located in Mount Vernon is just 30 miles away. And there is also the University of Iowa’s main campus in Iowa City.
The city is divided into four quadrants, with the south and north sides being divided by 1st Avenue. On the west side, the city is divided by the Cedar River. The only area that doesn’t have a quadrant is Mays Island, which is outside of the city limits. However, it does tend to follow cardinal directions. If you’re planning a trip to Cedar Rapids, you should plan your visit during the fall season.
National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library #1
The National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library features both permanent and rotating exhibits that highlight Czech and Slovak culture in Iowa and elsewhere. It aims to bring this rich heritage to all who visit it.
The Czech & Slovak Library offers guided tours that will enhance your experience.
Throughout the week, there are many events and programs at The National Czech & Slovak Museum. The museum’s schedule often includes teen workshops, acoustic concerts, or movie screenings. The National Czech & Slovak Museum and Library are open seven days a semaine.
The African American Museum of Iowa is located nearby, across the bridge at 12th Avenue.
Address: 1400 Inspiration Place SW, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
In the middle-to-late 19th Century, Brucemore Estate was a family home. The mansion and 26-acre estate were inhabited by many influential families over the next 100 years. Each family added their own touches to the property. The property was left to the National Trust for Historic Preservation by Brucemore’s last resident in 1981.
Brucemore, a community cultural center since 1981, invites both locals and tourists to visit the mansion and its surrounding gardens . Brucemore is also well-known in Cedar Rapids as a host of exciting events and giving tours. It’s also a great place to relax and enjoy the beauty of objects from the past.
The standard tour includes information about the architecture, furnishings and estate’s rich history. Brucemore also offers other tours that go deeper into the estate, including those that focus on servants’ lives and the stunning gardens. Brucemore offers special winter tours that feature holiday cheer and decorations.
Address: 2160 Linden Drive SE, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Paramount Theatre #3
The Paramount Theatre is located on the National Register of Historic Places. It brings together the past and the present with world-class performances in an restored, grandiose theatre setting.
The theater was originally built in 1920s as a vaudeville and movie palace. It has been through many renovations over the years, particularly after the 2008 floods. It has been restored to its former glory and is now open for live performances including Broadway plays as well as community concerts.
The Paramount Theater also houses Orchestra Iowa which is the state’s most reliable source of orchestra music. Stand-up comedians, professional speakers and nationally touring live music performances are just a few of the other performances that take place on stage. The marquee’s many performers put on an impressive show. But it’s the auditorium’s historic setting that makes the show memorable.
Address: 123 3rd Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Cedar Rapids Museum of Art #4
The Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, built by Charles Moore (1925-1993), is a must-see first stop. It houses the largest collection of Grant Wood’s works in the world.
You can see important paintings such as Woman with Plants (1929), and Young Corn (1931), while a separate location allows you to visit the studio where he created American Gothic (1930).
The museum’s focus is on Midwestern artists of the 20th century like Marvin Cone. However, its collection is extensive and includes 21 Ancient Roman busts and contemporary art by Jun Kaneko, a Japanese ceramic artist whose huge heads greet visitors at the museum’s 3rd Avenue side.
Bever Park #5
Cedar Rapids’ large park east of Cedar Rapids has been in the news since 1893. It has a long history of caring for animals.
This tradition lives on at Old MacDonald’s Farm which is open from May to mid-August. It houses lovable farm animals such as goats, chickens and ducks.
The Bever Pool is also open during school summer breaks. It features zero-depth entry, six lap lanes measuring 25 yards each and a water slide.
You’ll also find shelters and large pavilions that you can rent for large picnics or family reunions. There is also a trail through the woods, flowers gardens, and playgrounds.
FAQs: Top Rated 5 Amazing Places To Visit In Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Why is Cedar Rapids called the city of 5 seasons?
One of the city’s defining features is its Tree of Five Seasons sculpture, which stands at the corner of 1st Avenue and the Cedar River. It was commissioned by a local businessman who wanted to create a three-dimensional version of the city’s logo. It now sits alongside the river, attracting tourists from around the world.
Why does Cedar Rapids stink?
The city of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, has an odor problem, but it’s not the same as a Sinclair meat packing plant. If you’re visiting this quaint community, you’ll notice a distinct smell of oatmeal cookies. Compared to many other Midwest cities, Cedar Rapids stinks a lot better. In fact, the city was dubbed “The City of Five Smells” by author Peter Greenberg. Greenberg played off the city’s slogan “The City of Five Seasons.”
Is Cedar Rapids Iowa a good place to live?
If you’re looking for a new place to live, you may have wondered: Is Cedar Rapids Iowa a good city to live in? If you’re looking for a city with a strong manufacturing economy, this might be the place for you. ADM and Cargill are among the companies that have three facilities in Cedar Rapids, and the city is home to many suburban communities such as Cedar Hills and Marion. A unique feature of the city is an island downtown, which offers an interesting contrast with the college town culture.
What is Cedar Rapids Iowa famous for?
If you’re wondering “What is Cedar Rapids Iowa famous for?”, you’re in luck. The town is just over one hundred and thirty thousand people, and has been called “flyover country” by many. This term refers to a large portion of the United States, where the prettiest and most exciting things to do are found on the coasts. That said, you won’t find anything less exciting than Cedar Rapids’ many attractions.