Nordi Gras

Nordi Gras

Join Decorah and Winneshiek County residents in Decorah, IA this July 27-29, 2017 as we celebrate 51 years of Nordic Fest.

Nordic Fest is a celebration of the spirit of Scandinavia. Since 1967, more than 1.5 million visitors from all over the world have attended our festival in Decorah.

Your whole family will enjoy popular culinary dishes, traditional crafts, a colorful parade, lively entertainment, sporting events and our Saturday night fireworks display.

On Thursday evening, the event kicks off with the Opening Ceremonies at 6/45 p.m. The next two days will be full of entertaining activities for the whole family. Along with the festival, travel throughout the community to visit the exquisite arts, boutiques and restaurants.

The entire family will enjoy delicious food, traditional crafts, a colorful parade, unique entertainment, sporting events and our Saturday night fireworks display.

This trip will be fantastic for experiencing the culture which is deeply rooted within the community. Make sure to visit the Vesterhiem Museum to immerse yourself in the heritage. Vesterheim is the national Norwegian-American museum and heritage center that houses over 30,000 artifacts, 12 historic buildings, a Folk Art School, and a library and archives.

The gorgeous weather paired with quality family time is the perfect get-away. Make your plans now to experience the fun!

Seed Savers Exchange

Seed Savers Exchange

For every green thumb, history aficionado or gardener, Seed Savers Exchange at Heritage Farm is a must see. Learn about the seed saving process and the amazing collection of heritage and heirloom seeds maintained there before walking through the gardens to see some of the most amazing fauna anywhere! If the beautiful scenery gets you inspired, there are several walking/hiking trails available throughout the property.

The Lillian Goldman Visitors Center is a great place to start and finish any visit to Heritage Farm. Find out how this amazing organization was started with very humble roots(pun intended!). Browse the wide selection of books including some from Seed Savers Exchange employees! Find all that you’ll need to prepare and maintain your own garden. Why not fill that garden with some of the many varieties of seed grown and sold right there at Heritage Farm. The friendly staff can help with any questions that you may have. If you’re lucky, you may even get to catch a glimpse of the garden crew doing one of their favorite tasks, weeding!

 No matter why you ultimately visit Decorah, make Seed Savers Exchange a visit. The work done on Heritage Farm is essential to passing on our garden heritage to coming generations. Truly a gem among the riches in and around Decorah.

Trout Run Trail

Trout Run Trail

There is no better way to experience the amazing scenery that Decorah has to offer than the Trout Run Trail. An 11 mile loop around the city, it gives you a view of Decorah that is second to none. The trail is accessible by walkers, runners and bicyclists to enjoy. Besides the scenic views, the trail hits many of the sights and attractions around Decorah along the way.

The trail runs along the Decorah Trout Hatchery where you can stop and feed the fish, have a picnic, enjoy Siewer Springs or just take in the beauty of the area. It also runs along the Upper Iowa River for a couple of miles which makes for a beautiful change of pace. Don’t forget about the Decorah Eagle’s nest, seen around the world online. The live feed has given scientists a glimpse into the lives of a mating pair of Bald Eagles in their gigantic nest(weighing in at over 750 pounds!).

The relatively secluded trail also includes various art pieces along it, so be on the lookout. Convenient mile and half mile markers are there for you to keep track of your distance. Despite the rural feel of the trail, you’re never too far away from town, including downtown and its amenities. The bridge that crosses over Highway 9 also has LED lights installed that color it during dark hours with various colors that change. All in all, the Trout Run Trail has something for everyone and is a great representation of Decorah as our slice of paradise.

Winneshiek County Fair

Winneshiek County Fair

No Midwest area is complete without a county fair. Decorah is host to one of the best, the Winneshiek County Fair. It has something for everyone from entertainment, education, vendors and of course, food!

Every year, the fair is host to many forms of entertainment. Various live bands perform on the Grandstand or on the Midway and they always draw a crowd. This year it features William Michael Morgan, Tracy Lawrence and Travis Tritt! There are also several contests to take in. There is a Hobby/Shop contest for those versed in manufacturing. The Bill Riley Talent Show always brings out Winneshiek County’s best. Got a sweet tooth? Check out the bake-off, but don’t tell your Mom and Grandma if it’s better than their own creations! The 4-H and FFA contests are a culmination of lots of hard work from our local youth, preparing them for their lives ahead. There’s also the Bulls and Barrels event for any rodeo enthusiast! Last but not least is the Fair Queen contest to nominate our county representative!

Don’t forget the food. Who could forget it? Fair time means some delicious food for all to have. Who can go wrong with the classic fair food choices? Get your corn dog, funnel cake, cheese curd and anything fried you can imagine fix here! The vendor selection at the Winneshiek County Fair is as diverse as you can think of and deserves a fair of its own just to have time to see it all. What fair wouldn’t be complete without rides and games? The Winneshiek County Fair will not disappoint, make sure you set aside enough time to take it all in and we’ll see you there!

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Women's Weekend Out

Women's Weekend Out

Watch your winter blues fade away at Decorah's Annual Women's Weekend Out event. Women's Weekend Out is held every spring in historic downtown Decorah.  Shopping, culinary delights, fashion show, chili competition, cooking classes, and evening entertainment provides three days of laughter, fun, and camaraderie.

The Great Outdoors

The Great Outdoors

Day 1: Biking (Friday)

Begin with a light breakfast from Restauration located in the Hotel Winneshiek.

If you traveled with personal bikes, you're already set. If not, Decorah Bicycles provides a great selection of rental bikes.

There are some great opportunities to bike in a variety of parks. Bike throughout Decorah on the Trout Run Trail and visit Palisades Park. Be ready to see some wildlife! The birds, rabbits and deer share the trail with you. 

Next, travel on your bikes right to the door of Oneota Community Food Coop. Revel in a natural, organic and local lunch.

After returning your bikes, take a walk or drive to Phelps Park. On your hiking adventure, you will find beautiful sights while breathing in the fresh air.

Stroll back to town and enjoy a handcrafted brew at Toppling Goliath and later, a delicious pizza at Mabe’s.

Finish your night at the Hotel Winneshiek. Constructed in 1905, this historic boutique hotel provides a unique experience. Guests are surrounded with the original marble walls, terrazzo floors, cherry pillars and three-story glass atrium.

Day 2: Canoeing (Saturday)

Rise and shine! Just kidding, sleep in! Today is going to be a fun-filled day.

Begin with brunch at Magpie Coffeehouse. It provides a comfortable atmosphere along with great staff, tasty food, and the best coffee.

Feel free to meander around downtown. The charming boutiques and shops won’t fail to catch your eye!

Spend the rest of your day on the Upper Iowa River. Canoe, kayak or tube - take your pick and let one of our many experienced outfitters take care of the rest. They offer hassle-free shuttle service and can help you determine the best route. Bring your water camera because the scenery is unmatched. There will be one hundred foot towering bluffs and soaring eagles.

After your fun in the water, clean up and get ready for fine dining at Rubaiyat. Enjoy the atmosphere, company and food.

Finish your well-spent time in Decorah with a cocktail at the Tap Room on the first floor of the Hotel Winnshiek.

Golfers, It's Tee Time

Golfers, It's Tee Time

Day 1:

Start the morning with the 9-hole course, South Winn Golf & Country Club. There is nothing better than enjoying the crisp, fresh air in your lungs and bent grass under your golf shoes.

Take a break and enjoy lunch. In Calmar, The Train Station would be a great choice. Make sure to try their famous “Flash Burger.”

After lunch, try a more challenging, 18-hole course such as, Oneota Golf & Country Club. This is a great option for with spending time with family and friends while having some friendly competition.

For dinner, experience T-Bock's Sports Bar & Grill. They have just the beverage to quench your thirst. They offer 22 beers on tap and a wide variety of bottled beers and wine. It’s perfect after a long day of golfing.

There are many lodging options when visiting Decorah. Visit our Stay tab to browse your options of bed and breakfasts, cabins, hotels or lofts.

Day 2:

Because you love golf… spend another day golfing on different courses within the county!

Start with a great breakfast at the Family Table in Decorah.

A short, 10-mile drive will take you to the small town of Ossian, Iowa. Here, they offer a beautiful 9-hole course, Silver Springs Golf & Country Club, to begin your day.

After your round of golf, take a 6-mile drive to Festina, Iowa and check out the World's Smallest Church. Also, 12 miles from Ossian there is a town named Spillville. Here, you can tour Bily Clocks Museum & Antonin Dvorak exhibit.

Travel back to Decorah and have a late lunch Don Jose. If you have a sweet tooth, indulge in dessert at the Whippy Dip.

Rooted in Agriculture

Rooted in Agriculture

Day 1:

  1. Explore Seed Savers Exchange Heritage Farm headquarters in the morning, an internationally-known organization helping people save and share heirloom seeds.
  2. Enjoy a short drive to a 150-year-old family farm at Winneshiek Wildberry Winery, taste award winning wines and have lunch on site.
  3. Go back in time at Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum whose historic buildings and exhibits tell the story of pioneer agriculture, also explore beautiful downtown Decorah.

Day 2: Sleep in! Enjoy a wonderful breakfast in Decorah.

  1. Explore and eat lunch (and sweets) at Pinter's Gardens and Pumpkins with vast plant, landscape, and patio displays and fall pumpkin patch and corn maze.
  2. Learn hands-on about modern dairy farming at Iowa's Dairy Center from 1-2:30pm, tour the operational farm, meet the cows, and pet the calves.

A Weekend for the Heart

A Weekend for the Heart

Day 1 (Friday night)

 Begin with an authentic and delicious dinner at Koreana.

 Stay at the comforting bed and breakfast, B&B on Broadway. The stay includes guest services like chilled, local wine delivered right to your room or breakfast served on your schedule.

 Day 2 (Saturday)

 Begin with a light breakfast and coffee at Java Johns.

 Then, there a many options, but here are two depending on your preferences.

 Option 1:

Visit Day Spring Spa for a relaxing experience. Treatments are tailored to meet your individual needs and range from simple and therapeutic, to spa packages that provide several hours of relaxation.

Option 2:

Visit Twin Springs Park and the a one-mile trail into the woods. Become one with nature and really experience Decorah.

After either of these options, enjoy a stroll through downtown Decorah. Visit the wonderful boutiques, shops and arts. 

 Before dinner, visit the Winneshiek Wildberry Winery for a friendly wine experience amidst the beautiful rolling hills of Northeast Iowa.

For dinner, try McCaffrey's Dolce Vita. This casual setting is paired with delectable food and nestled in the wooded Twin Springs Park.

Day 3 (Sunday)

Sleep in and enjoy a delicious breakfast in bed.

A Winter Weekend

A Winter Weekend

Northeast Iowa is an adventure for snowmobilers with hundreds of miles of groomed trails.

Each trail system is maintained by local trail clubs. They keep the trails clear of debris and well marked with appropriate signage to help you navigate to hotels, restaurants and gas stations.

Immerse yourself in the nature of Iowa and stay at the The Roundhouse Retreat. This "geodesic" roundhouse guesthouse is located just 5 miles Northwest of Decorah.

Also on your weekend vacation, try cross-country skiing. We have great areas for you to ski in Decorah. Plenty of the trails are groomed for a brisk work out, or a leisure outing with your family. Don’t want to bring skis with you? Decorah Bicycles can take care of your rental needs.

On this get-away, enjoy our cozy cafés to warm up. Try the espresso at Impact Coffee Bar & Roasters, breakfast and cappuccino at Java John’s and a home-made pastry and latte at Magpie Coffeehouse.

Decorah offers great options for fine dining as well as casual dining . You will be sure to find everything to satisfy your tastebuds after long and fun-filled days in the snow.

 

 

Listings

Related Upcoming Events

August 2018
September 2018
  • Sep
    01
    Tomato Tasting at Seed Savers Exchange | View Details Location: Seed Savers Exchange, 3094 North Winn Road, Decorah, Iowa 52101
    Event Date: Sat, Sep 01, 2018

    Tomatoes... and more tomatoes!

    Contact: 563.382.5990

    Tomato Tasting

    Free

    • 12:00 pm - 4:00 pm

    • LGVC open 10:00 am - 5:00 pm

    Sample dozens of open-pollinated heirloom tomatoes - including favorites and rare varieties from SSE’s seed bank- at our annual FREE Tomato Tasting event.

    Attend demonstrations, enter our salsa contest, and celebrate fall in our beautiful gardens.

    • 12:00 pm - 5:00 pm Hayrides (last hayride goes out at 4:15 pm)
    • 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm Tomato Tasting
    • 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm Salsa Contest
    • 1:30 pm Demonstration: Preserve your tomato haravest for the winter
    • 2:30 pm Your Questions Answered: Tips and tricks for growing your best tomatoes
    • 3:30 pm Demonstration: Saving seeds from tomatoes

    Salsa Contest Registration

    Check back for Oneota Community Food Co-op’s Salsa Contest link, held here at our annual Tomato Tasting.

  • Sep
    22
    Turkey River Music Festival | View Details Location: Inwood Ballroom, 116 Bridge St, Spillville, Iowa 52168
    Event Date: Sat, Sep 22, 2018

    Great Music, Food, Beer, and Games

    Contact:

  • Sep
    29
    Annual Loop de Loop Race Sponsored by Decorah Rotary | View Details Location: 400 Claiborne Drive, Decorah, Iowa 52101
    Event Date: Sat, Sep 29, 2018

    Events include 5K, 10K, and half-marathon

    Contact: www.decorahrotary.org

    Date and Time:  The Loop de Loop 5K, 10K and half-marathon will be held Saturday September 29, 2018.  The races will begin at 8:00am with staggered start times for each race.
    8:00am – half-marathon
    8:15am – 10K
    8:30am – 5K

    The starting line will be located at the Decorah High School Baseball field on Claiborne Drive. Due to the charitable purposes of this event, unfortunately we are unable to provide refunds of registration fees in the event the race is cancelled.

    Registration:  Early registration for the 5K and 10K run/walk is $25 and can be completed online (www.decorahrotary.org) or mailed to Loop de Loop PO Box 442 Decorah, IA 52101.  Early registration ends 5:01 PM on Friday, August 31. After that time the 5K and 10K registration fees will be $30 until Friday, September 14, after which time they will be $35.00.

    Youth registration (18 & under) of $15 is for entry into all race events.

    Half-marathon registration, which can also be completed online, is $55 for early registration thru Friday, August 31, $65 through September 14 and $75 after September 14.

    T-Shirts will be mailed for all registrations received after September 21, 2018

    Pre-registrations and online registrations will close at midnight, September 27, 2018.

    Registration is available during packet pick-up.

    Packet pick-up is Friday, September 28 from 5:00 - 7:00pm and Saturday, 29 beginning at 6:30 - 7:45am in the Decorah City Hall building. 

    Timing: This race will be timed using a disposable timing chip option. A small chip will be placed on the back of the race number. The chip is completely disposable so once you cross the finish line, you can immediately head for the post race activities.

    Course:  The course for the half-marathon and 5K and 10K will start just off Claiborne Drive near the Decorah High School baseball field.  The half marathon will then proceed to the Trout Run Trail which is a closed loop path winding its way through the countryside on the outskirts of Decorah. The 5K and 10K will follow a flat course near the Upper Iowa River.  Both races will finish at the start line. Please see link for maps and elevations. www.decorahrotary.org. 

  • Sep
    29
    Fort Atkinson Rendezvous Days | View Details Location: Fort Atkinson, Iowa 52144
    Event Date: Sat, Sep 29, 2018

    No admission - free parking - bring the family!

    Contact: Penney Neuzil: 563-277-2793

    Trade or Buckskinner Registration

    It is once again time to reserve your site at the Fort Atkinson Rendezvous. Due to continued State budget cuts, the Rendezvous will again be run by The Fort Atkinson Community, with the assistance of Park Ranger Scot Michelson & Jeff Hildebrandt. The Friends of Fort Atkinson Committee will be in charge.

    The Rendezvous dates are September 29 & 30, 2018

    September 28 is School & Media Day - If you school is interested in attending, please contact us at:

     

    5K Fun Run

    Date:   Saturday, September 29, 2018 at  8:30 A.M.,   Rain or Shine

    Where: Shelter in park by

    Fort Atkinson  Community Center

     Race Day Registration: Begins at 7:30 A.M.

     Registration: Pre-register by September 17, 2018 to receive a  long sleeve performance t-shirt

    Registrations will be accepted up to race time, but not guaranteed a t-shirt.

    All 5 K participants will receive a post race snack.

    Finishing time & places will be available.

    Entry Fee: $25 w/a long sleeved performance tee

    Sponsored by: Friends of Fort Atkinson (proceeds toward Rendezvous expenses)

     

    1/2 mile Kids Obstacle Run
    (parents are welcome to run with child) to start at 8:00 a.m.
    Ages 10 and under

     

  • Sep
    29
    Fort Atkinson Rendezvous Days 5K Run/Walk and 1/2 Mile Kids Obstacle Run | View Details Location: Shelter in Park, Fort Atkinson, IOWA 52144
    Event Date: Sat, Sep 29, 2018

    Pre-register by September 14 to receive t-shirt!

    Contact:

  • Sep
    29
    Northeast Iowa Farm Crawl | View Details Location: Northeast Iowa
    Event Date: Sat, Sep 29, 2018

    Learn how local farmers grow your food & manage their farms!

    Contact:

    Saturday 10:00 am - 5:00 pm     &      Sunday 1:00 - 5:00 pm

    The Northeast Iowa Farm Crawl will be held Saturday, September 29th from 10am - 5pm and Sunday, September 30th from 1 to 5 pm.
    Howard, Winneshiek, Allamakee, Chickasaw, Fayette, Clayton and Buchanan Counties
    Learn how local farmers grow your food and manage their farms on this self-guided tour. You might even find fun kids' activities and local foods to buy and cook up for dinner!
  • Sep
    29
    Rotary Club Annual Loop de Loop Race | View Details Location: Trout Run Trail, Decorah, Iowa 52101
    Event Date: Sat, Sep 29, 2018

    Three events including 5K, 10K and half-marathon!

    Contact:

    Date and Time:  The Loop de Loop 5K, 10K and half-marathon will be held Saturday September 29, 2018.  The races will begin at 8:00am with staggered start times for each race.
    8:00am – half-marathon
    8:15am – 10K
    8:30am – 5K
    The starting line will be located at the Decorah High School Baseball field on Claiborne Drive. Due to the charitable purposes of this event, unfortunately we are unable to provide refunds of registration fees in the event the race is cancelled.
    Registration:  Early registration for the 5K and 10K run/walk is $25 and can be completed online (www.decorahrotary.org) or mailed to Loop de Loop PO Box 442 Decorah, IA 52101.  Early registration ends 5:01 PM on Friday, August 31. After that time the 5K and 10K registration fees will be $30 until Friday, September 14, after which time they will be $35.00.
    Youth registration (18 & under) of $15 is for entry into all race events.
    Half-marathon registration, which can also be completed online, is $55 for early registration thru Friday, August 31, $65 through September 14 and $75 after September 14.
    T-Shirts will be mailed for all registrations received after September 21, 2018
    Pre-registrations and online registrations will close at midnight, September 27, 2018.
    Registration is available during packet pick-up.
    Packet pick-up is Friday, September 28 from 5:00 - 7:00pm and Saturday, 29 beginning at 6:30 - 7:45am in the Decorah City Hall building.
    Timing: This race will be timed using a disposable timing chip option. A small chip will be placed on the back of the race number. The chip is completely disposable so once you cross the finish line, you can immediately head for the post race activities.
    Course:  The course for the half-marathon and 5K and 10K will start just off Claiborne Drive near the Decorah High School baseball field.  The half marathon will then proceed to the Trout Run Trail which is a closed loop path winding its way through the countryside on the outskirts of Decorah. The 5K and 10K will follow a flat course near the Upper Iowa River.  Both races will finish at the start line. Please see link for maps and elevations. www.decorahrotary.org.
     
    Courses will close and services discontinued after a 15 minute per mile pace for all races.
  • Sep
    30
    Fort Atkinson Rendezvous Days | View Details Location: Fort Atkinson, Iowa 52144
    Event Date: Sun, Sep 30, 2018

    No admission - free parking - bring the family!

    Contact: Penney Neuzil: 563-277-2793

    Trade or Buckskinner Registration

    It is once again time to reserve your site at the Fort Atkinson Rendezvous. Due to continued State budget cuts, the Rendezvous will again be run by The Fort Atkinson Community, with the assistance of Park Ranger Scot Michelson & Jeff Hildebrandt. The Friends of Fort Atkinson Committee will be in charge.

    The Rendezvous dates are September 29 & 30, 2018

    September 28 is School & Media Day - If you school is interested in attending, please contact us at:

     

    5K Fun Run

    Date:   Saturday, September 29, 2018 at  8:30 A.M.,   Rain or Shine

    Where: Shelter in park by

    Fort Atkinson  Community Center

     Race Day Registration: Begins at 7:30 A.M.

     Registration: Pre-register by September 17, 2018 to receive a  long sleeve performance t-shirt

    Registrations will be accepted up to race time, but not guaranteed a t-shirt.

    All 5 K participants will receive a post race snack.

    Finishing time & places will be available.

    Entry Fee: $25 w/a long sleeved performance tee

    Sponsored by: Friends of Fort Atkinson (proceeds toward Rendezvous expenses)

     

    1/2 mile Kids Obstacle Run
    (parents are welcome to run with child) to start at 8:00 a.m.
    Ages 10 and under

     

  • Sep
    30
    Northeast Iowa Farm Crawl | View Details Location: Northeast Iowa
    Event Date: Sun, Sep 30, 2018

    Learn how local farmers grow your food & manage their farms!

    Contact:

    Saturday 10:00 am - 5:00 pm     &      Sunday 1:00 - 5:00 pm

    The Northeast Iowa Farm Crawl will be held Saturday, September 29th from 10am - 5pm and Sunday, September 30th from 1 to 5 pm.
    Howard, Winneshiek, Allamakee, Chickasaw, Fayette, Clayton and Buchanan Counties
    Learn how local farmers grow your food and manage their farms on this self-guided tour. You might even find fun kids' activities and local foods to buy and cook up for dinner!
October 2018
November 2018
December 2018
July 2019