This Iowan Goes To Clinton
Clinton, Iowa whose population runs right at 27,000, along with nearby DeWitt, Iowa, was named in honor of the sixth governor of New York, DeWitt Clinton. This senior remembers Clinton very well. When I was in high school, I delivered the Clinton Herald Newspaper to customers in Monmouth, my hometown.
Located only 30 minutes from I-80 and 20 minutes from I-88, Clinton sits on the eastern most section of Iowa along the banks of the majestic Mississippi River. Senior visitors will find one of the most beautiful river fronts on the entire Mississippi River.
A visit to Clinton can include the Bickelhaupt Arboretum, Historical Society Museum, Felix Adler Children’s Discovery Center and a Class-A professional baseball team called the Lumberkings.
Seniors Find Historical Lumber Capital
Clinton is loaded with history. In the late 19th Century, it was known as the lumber capital of the nation. Huge log rafts were floated down river from Wisconsin and Minnesota, cut into lumber in Clinton, and then shipped to growing communities east, west, north and south via the river and railroads.
The railroad and the river continue to provide economic diversity in the area, attracting manufacturing and heavy industry to the community. A host of ongoing events includes the Annual Lumberjack Festival and the Blessing of the Bikes ceremony by the local clergy, so bring along your bike if you are interested, and have it blessed.
Clinton has been recently been added as a stop on the American Queen Upper Mississippi Tour for 2015. Consider taking an Upper Mississippi river cruise on an old-time steamer said to be a “floating antebellum mansion.” The Hop-On Hop-Off Tours featuring shore excursions are highly popular.
Seniors Meet Lumberjacks, Wineries and Riverboats
Other must see and do sites for senior visitors include the Wide River Winery, Eagle Point Park and the City of Clinton Showboat that was built in 1935 and named “The Omar.” She was converted from a tug to a showboat without losing her charming riverboat features and still has her 32 foot oaken paddlewheel.
Plan to visit the Sawmill Museum that can take you back in history when Clinton was so active with all those logs floating down the Mississippi. A recreated 1888 lumberjack camp for kids, and adults young at heart, is where you can come to play and live as lumberjacks and jills.
Clinton is home to Clinton Community College that was founded in 1946 with classes primarily made up of World War II veterans returning home. Ashford University adds to the educational scene.
Many classic older homes dot the landscape all over town. Senior visitors will find Clinton to be a welcoming and quaint river town where Iowans welcome folks of all ages. -jeb