Originally sculpted into the Knoxville hillside in 1922 using teams of horses, slip scrapers, and dynamite, Pine Knolls Country Club's semiprivate course gently rises and falls across nine holes of rolling parkland terrain. The course still retains the same basic design of the prototype, featuring relatively open fairways and two ponds that come into play on four holes, placing a premium on confident strokes or 9-irons that double as snorkels. The country club also invites midsummer revelry with a swimming pool, a stately clubhouse with a full-service bar, and speedo-clad golf carts.
The crew at Athletes Advantage helps players and teams hone their swings and pitches in an indoor, 150'x42' facility. Batting cages and pitching lanes are equipped with mounds, and Iron Mike pitching machines lob balls at waiting batters, and both baseball and softball players throw in pitching lanes. Private instruction is overseen by experienced pros, who also oversee boot-camp classes that combine cardio and weight training.
Kosama is all about personal fitness training in a group setting. Believing that nutrition, muscle confusion, and personal consultations are the elements that bring fitness success, Kosama certified trainers teach energetic and motivating classes. Every day brings a different workout, and clients train in kettlebells, plyometrics, kickboxing, suspension- and core training as they burn calories and gain lean muscle.
When owner Aaron Stevens says that climbing “builds strength, self-confidence, and trust,” he’s speaking from experience. For much of his life, Aaron suffered from acrophobia, otherwise known as a fear of heights. To deal with his fear, he took an unexpected strategy. He started climbing.
Today, when he walks around Climb Iowa’s 10,000 square feet of top-roping, bouldering, and lead-climbing stations, his proudest moments are when he sees guests “persevere on the climbing wall and achieve a level they never thought they could attain.” An avid outdoorsman, Aaron and his crew oversee simulated climbing terrains that include cracks, overhangs, laybacks, verticals, and slabs. In addition to open sessions, Climb Iowa’s team members lead classes tailored for both beginning and intermediate to advanced climbers. They also offer yoga classes to keep climbers lithe, along with youth summer camps and a recreational and competitive climbing team. Beyond the classes, an extensive stock of gear equips climbers for adventures inside and outside of the gym. Climb Iowa’s construction reflects its team’s love of the outdoors, sporting an eco-friendly design with plentiful natural lighting, geothermal heating and cooling, bicycle racks, and parking spaces for Flintstone cars.
The race's runners squirm and snort at the starting line. Ham Bone, Miss Piggy, and Pork Chop may just be piglets, but in the course of one fall season at Dan-D Farms, they'll transform into world-class swine sprinters. Approximately every two hours, they'll storm down a 100-yard improvised raceway, complete with a water obstacle. That's right––a water obstacle. "Our pigs," farm owner Debra Kearney confirms, "can swim."
These riotous races are just one part of the lineup of events that overtakes Dan-D Farms each fall. Guests flock to this family-friendly affair to scramble over hay bales, feed wooly sheep, or test their sense of direction in one of two hay mazes. Each year for their maze, Debra and her family––including dad, Dan––devise a new design, but try to stick to things that are Iowa related. Past mazes have included the image of iconic Iowans such as native son John Wayne, and the ISU Cyclones and Iowa Hawkeyes mascots, as well as a reproduction of the American Gothic painting by Anamosa, Iowa–native Grant Wood. Each June, they begin marking the design into the 20-acre field, painting and flagging rows like boxes on grid paper, and then cut out the tunnels before the corn grows knee-high or develops the ability to cry. While this intricate, artistic design requires huge amounts of time and labor, less energy is spent carving out the separate haunted corn maze, where the fear-factor relies on simple twists and turns, instead of fancy effects or animatronics. "It's really not too hard," Debra says, "to scare people in a dark, dusty corn field."
At Nova Cinema, cinephiles and casual moviegoers alike nosh on popcorn while watching first-run movies projected on full-size silver screens. Nova Cinema’s selection of talkies changes weekly, with current high-octane thrillers, family flicks, and love stories showing seven days of the week. Recent selections include The Hunger Games, Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance, _ and _Dr. Seuss' The Lorax, as well as 21 Jump Street, a coming of age story about street signs learning to conquer their fear of heights.
Started as a nonprofit club back in 1974, Des Moines Skydivers originally provided a way for its skydiving-enthusiast members to enjoy an expensive passion as cheaply as possible. After upgrading its Cessna 195 to two newer models, the group expanded its focus, welcoming members of the public to Winterset Airport for first-time jumps, tandem jumps, accelerated training courses, and varied jumps for seasoned skydivers. The group also holds an annual get-together every Labor Day weekend called Dollar Daze, during which partygoers can pay a dollar to either jump from an airplane or give a quick smooch to the pilot.