Very near the top of the living in Iowa bucket list — probably right after sweetcorn stands and the I-80 truck stop (ha) — would have the be a visit to the American Gothic House. You know, the one in the background of the second most famous painting on the planet (behind the Mona Lisa):
Well, Joe and I drove through Eldon on a camping trip (more about that in another post) and on the return route we stopped at the house, which is by far the biggest attraction in town. There’s a lovely little visitor center/museum, where the mayor of the town was doing a Sunday volunteer shift. She helped us into one of the dozens of pairs of costumes provided for visitors to re-create the iconic image — complete with pitchfork and glasses!
The grounds to the house/museum include a cement staging area that marks exactly where you should stand to get the photo framed properly. We relied on some kind strangers to take ours. Then I lent Joe out to be a stand-in male for a girl who had visited by herself. The randomly cool thing about the American Gothic House Center is that the little park next door to the museum is a small disc golf course! Iowa is such a funny state sometimes. They were even selling souvenir disc golf discs in the gift shop. (We opted for a Christmas ornament.)
The American Gothic House visit was definitely a fun little stop after camping. The only downside is now my iconic photo is of me after having not showered for about 72 hours. Gross! We’ll have to send our photo in for their wall, although I doubt we’d replace the Klingon couple:
(Fun fact: My co-worker showed me a painting Grant Wood did of her grandfather! Apparently the work is up at the Muscatine Art Center.)