2019 Heartland Family Fun
2019 Heartland Family Fun
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Offering beautiful views of soft gushing waterfalls and miles of lush green hiking trails, Union Grove State Park is a gold mine of wilderness recreation in central Iowa. Around 20 minutes from the exciting Tama and innovative Toledo, the park is a welcome lakeside retreat for locals and RV campers alike. Whether you're looking to get in some fishing, boating, or swimming, Union Grove’s 110-acre lake offers the perfect setting for a day on the water.
Built in 1935 by Lake Park & Holding Company, Union Grove Lake was later sold to the state of Iowa in 1938. The surrounding land was then developed for public use to create the Union Grove State Park you can enjoy today. The park features a relatively flat landscape filled with trees such as tall oak and brown sugar maple, and wildlife such as white-tailed deer and wild turkey. You’ll love bringing a blanket to the glassy Union Grove Lake at dusk to watch the sky light up with the setting sun and then fade into darkness to showcase a clear starry night. If it's rest and relaxation you crave, search for an RV in Tama County today.
Stargazing is a must for night owls camping at Union Grove State Park, as the park offers ideal stargazing locations such as the dazzling waterfront or the freshly mowed park turf. Bundle up in a cozy fleece sweater and bring your loved ones for a clear, otherworldly stargazing experience. Far away from the noise and smog of city life, fresh night air and a sweeping sky of sparkling stars await you.
Union Grove Lake offers numerous fishing opportunities in a no-wake environment, providing a peaceful place to connect with nature and quiet your soul in any size boat or on land. Fishing here includes catfish, crappie, bass, and bluegill. If, after a full day out in the hot sun, you find yourself looking to cool off, don that swimsuit packed away in your rental RV and dive into the lake!
Hiking trails are a full adventure in and of themselves, as there are three miles of trail to explore. Trek the one-and-a-half-mile North Trail, a moderately easy path that you can walk, run, or snowmobile down. Or hit the easier South Trail for some scenic cross-country skiing. Walk paths of packed snow with the chirping melodies of songbirds flying in the air around you, or go for a brisk morning run with the sun peeking through the inviting forest.
You’ll love motorhome camping at Union Grove State Park, as there are seven reservable campsites with full hookups. With tree cover offering privacy to each site, you're provided with the perfect setting to start that book you’ve always wanted to read. Sites are spacious, fitting rigs up to 35 feet long. A quarter of the park's campsites are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.
Amenities here include hot showers, modern restrooms, a clean swimming beach, and numerous picnic areas for you and your family to enjoy. Drink in the sights and sounds here, far away from civilization, with the sound of crickets outside your window and stars sparkling above you. This is one wilderness getaway that will have you bringing your family and friends along for the adventure.
Just eight minutes away from the park in Gladbrook is the unique Matchstick Marvels Museum. Featuring large-scale sculptures, famous architecture, and intricate machines, all made completely of matchsticks glued together by artist Patrick Acton, this is one attraction you won’t want to miss on your Union Grove State Park camping trip. Popular displays include the International Space Station, United States Capitol, and the battleship U.S.S. Iowa.
While in town, swing over to one of the many five-star restaurants where you can chow down on pub fare, pizza, comfort food, or classic American cuisine. And if you forgot hot dogs for the family picnic, stop by one of the gas and grocery stores for a quick fix.
If you're looking for something a little different, take the 20-minute drive over to Traer, where you'll find the fascinating Salt and Pepper Shaker Gallery. With thousands of salt and pepper shakers in all colors, shapes, sizes, and varieties, you’ll have a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Once you’ve had your fill of the fruit basket of shaker surprises, head over to the nearby Traer Historical Museum, showcasing the rich cultural and historical history of Tama County. Have fun diving into the many artifacts and displays hidden away in the museum. Then, when all is said and done, head back to your rental motorhome for that night of stargazing and toasted marshmallows you’ve been looking forward to all day.