I go on a lot of day trips. I like to check out the Iowa towns and countryside. Generally, I usually do not have a prepared list of things to do or places to see. I just snoop around till I find something that interests me. But today (June 08, 2017) was different--we had excellent "local resident" tour guides as we spent the day in Newton, Iowa.


The story begins--It is 9AM and we are starting our day with breakfast at the Midtown Cafe on the square in Newton. A lot of sentiment here. Darcy started teaching in Newton 30 years ago. I would often meet her here for breakfast before work. I am happy to say--nothing has changed--not even the pictures on the wall and the non-matching plates. There is one more important non -changing factor--friendly and folksy home town wait staff and the same great food at a very reasonable price.

Sculpture art is a big thing in Newton. That could be an all day adventure--locating the 90 plus sculptures throughout the city.

But from everlasting to everlasting the Lord's love is with those who fear him, and his righteousness with their children's children--with those who keep his covenant and remember to obey his precepts. (NIV) (Psalm 103: 17,18)

When people think of Newton, they often think of the Newton Speedway. I had never been there when we pulled in here on our way into town. No action today, but that's ok. I don't think my ears would allow me to be there on race day.

Local movie theaters are an important part of  a smaller city's lifeblood. I am glad they can still compete with the nearby big cities multi screen theatres. Above: Popcorn anyone--a wall mural on building wall of the adjacent alley.

Drive-in movie theaters were just a part of small town life when I grew up. Now there are only two or three left in all of Iowa and the Valle Drive-in at Newton is the only one in central Iowa.

The Maytag Park has the distinction of being placed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The beautiful wall murals below are found on buildings throughout the city.

Maytag cheese is produced in Newton.

My view for the month: As you can see in my opening  paragraph, we had a very special reason for our day trip to Newton this month--the reason--our family. After breakfast we started out on our family adventure. I have actually seen most of this before, but we wanted to do it with our family and share it with you. This month's blog started with a family story--now I will close with a family story. Our youngest granddaughter, Jordyn Soule, graduated from Newton High School this month. Here she is with her two sisters (right). She will be attending the University of Northern Iowa this fall. It will be an adjustment for the empty nester parents, but that is an adjustment we all have to make. Things change as time moves on. I am hoping 30 years from now Darcy and Kerry can take their three girls back to breakfast at the Midtown Cafe and find the same pictures on the wall, the same mis-matched plates and the same good food--some things never need to change. But that is just a joke and just a metaphor--my real hope is they will have the same great family memories we have had. Same goes for our son's family--Trent, Kris, Grant and Grace.

Here is one thing you can count on--every Iowa county seat town having a beautiful courthouse. Newton is no exception. The Jasper County Courthouse was built in 1909. In 1981 this beautiful limestone building on the town square was placed on the National Register of Historic Places.