Two decades ago, Jeff Holmes founded the original CanoeSport Outfitters in a space so tiny he could only display five or six boats. Today, CanoeSport Outfitters’ Indianola location sprawls out across more than 20,000 square feet of retail space dedicated to stocking shimmering hulls and essential accessories.
Five miles south, on the sandy shores of Lake Ahquabi, lies CanoeSport Outfitters' satellite concessions outpost, which rents canoes, kayaks, and standup paddleboards to those who forgot to bring their pet dolphins. The outpost also teaches basic and advanced paddling classes—including water-based yoga—and sends groups on guided tours of the surrounding waters. No matter the task, the team members from CanoeSport Outfitters hold true to their philosophy of supporting sustainable recreation that minimizes environmental impact.
Anytime Fitness is a busy, popular fitness chain that works to remove common obstacles to working out. At any one of the 21 locations this Groupon is valid for, clients have 24/7 access to the gym’s cardio and strength-training equipment, and some locations offer group fitness classes, such as Zumba and small group training. Certified personal trainers are available to help those looking to take their workouts to the next level, and members can finish their exercise routines with a stop off at the onsite tanning booth to add a summery glow to muscles.
Pleasantville Golf & Country Club's nine-hole course blankets the Marion County countryside with a circuit of tree-lined fairways. Originally opened in 1965, the course boasts the trademarks of a mature layout, with well-defined greens, tall timbers, and fairways that are starting to show flecks of gray. The semiprivate club also encompasses an outdoor swimming pool and Bogey's, a grill with a full-service bar and a menu of sandwiches, burgers, and other casual eats.:
12-unit motel and 2-suite Guest House with a "Make Yourself At Home" atmosphere. Covered outdoor seating, deck with grills, fish cleaning station, lake nearby. Friendly, relaxing ambiance just one hour south of Des Moines or 2 hours north of Kansas City off I-35.
Open for just one month every autumn, The Pumpkin Ranch seems more like a scene from a child’s dream than a family-run business. But that’s the way the Handsaker family planned it, hoping to create a family-friendly hub that celebrated their love of all things autumn. They began by cultivating their 9-acre cornfield into a complex maze, incorporating 12 checkpoints that make sure guests are on the right path and offer clues to the ranch’s Farm Scene Investigation mystery. Alongside the maze, the Handsakers have built up a 10-acre patch of pumpkins and gourds, where squashy specimens wait to be carved into jack-o’-lanterns or stomped into wine.
The hayrack ride transports guests to and fro on the ranch, speeding up walks so guests can spend more time reveling in the play zone’s bounce houses, climbable straw bales, and tire towers. For more exhilarating pastimes, the ranch offers tennis-ball launchers that send the bright orbs soaring at water-based targets, exhilarating zipline courses, and fire pits to warm up chilly fall afternoons. Inside the concession stand, staffers sell steamy cups of specialty ciders and hot chocolate alongside homemade baked goods, giving guests a taste of fall, and outside, vendors serve up larger bites such as grilled and smoked meat to fuel the outdoor fun.
The skilled staff at High Point Equestrian Enterprises trots out its national competitive jumping and showing experience to guide new and advanced riders along the trail of horseback riding. Centered around the english riding discipline, lessons begin with an orientation that helps to assess student skills and determine appropriate goals, such as walking, cantering, jumping, showing, and becoming the first jockey in space. Complimentary practice helmets, saddles, bridles, and saddle pads protect riders as they embark on an equestrian journey with High Point's safe and gentle learning horses—specially-fed a diet of soft cotton and baby dreams—who patiently help beginners learn the basics of horse preparation and steering. More advanced riders will learn to master proper positions and methods of working and communicating with horses. All classes are held at The Paddock, which boasts a heated indoor arena, replete with gravity harnesses deployed in the event of adverse weather conditions.