Sunday, November 4, 2012

Des Moines, Iowa

Its hard to believe that we are getting ready for state #10.  But then again, I feel like this quest is going to take forever.

We signed up for the IMT Des Moines Marathon & Half - both of us are doing the half.  Once again, my husband has a meeting Friday morning so we can't leave until he gets done.  Which is fine with me.  I still had plenty to do - including a quick trip to WalMart - and glad that we could just take our time getting there.

Not a bad drive, sort of boring but we are traveling through Indiana, Illinois and Iowa.

Made it to packet pickup and walked around checking out the booths but not much there.  Did buy some GU.  Never can have too much Gu.  Then we needed to find someplace to eat - STAT!   There was a place called Buzzard Billy's right across the road so I suggested that we just go there. is a Cajun/Creole place and this girl is a total wimp when it comes to spicy food.  Luckily, they grilled a chicken breast without any spices for me.  After dinner, it was time to check into the hotel.


We stayed at the Hotel Fort Des Moines.  Its a tired little hotel but it will serve its purpose and it wasn't too expensive.  It does have a lot of history; Mae West, Richard Nixon, Charles Lindbergh have stayed there.

We got up the next morning and figured we'd head out, pick up an inexpensive breakfast somewhere and then plan the rest of our day.  I think we seriously walked for almost 45 minutes and found NOTHING.  That downtown area seems to roll up on the weekends.  So we just went back to the hotel and ate there.  It was a "buffet" although if I remember correctly we only had 4 things to chose from.  Our waiter gave us some suggestions of things to do so back up in the room & we pulled up info on the ol' iPad.  I suggested that before we do anything we should walk to the start area so that we could get a feel for how long it would take tomorrow.  Walking east, we found a Walgreen's (SCORE!) and then we noticed down a side street, the farmers market was going on, so we decided to investigate.

Biggest Farmers Market I've Ever Been To!  I guess that really isn't saying too much since its only the third one I've ever been to but it stretched for blocks and blocks.  Sadly we got there just about closing time for everything.  However, I got some Kettle Korn and my husband bought some cinnamon almonds...for after the race of course!

We did see a couple of bars that we thought would be perfect to watch college football in later.  But first, let's go explore Des Moines.

We were going to go to the Capital first but decided to find the Pappajohn Sculpture Park.  Well we ended up at some random rose garden (the Claire and Miles Mills Rose Garden) because the address that was listed on Trip Advisor was incorrect.  But it was a nice park and a few roses were still blooming so not all was lost.  A caretaker there sent us the correct way for the Sculpture Park.

Turns out the Sculpture Park was just blocks from our hotel!

Some interesting stuff.  Some weird stuff.  I guess "art" is different to each person.  I'm more of a tradition kind of girl.  In my opinion, the pictures below were the normal pieces.

    Me f-ART-ing around

Back to the hotel briefly and then to find someplace to watch college football!  Surprisingly, we went to an Irish Pub but they weren't showing the Notre Dame game so we went across the street to Johnny's Hall of Fame.  It was a nice afternoon, met some chatty (drunk) people from Nebraska and did some good people watching.

Early to bed.  Gotta that little ol' race tomorrow.

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