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Spring 2014

Summer ADVENTURES IN DOWNTOWN IOWA CITY FESTIVALS, OUTDOOR CONCERTS, CLUBS AND THE ENGLERT MAKE A VIBRANT MUSIC SCENE DOWNTOWN DELECTABLES: A FOOD LOVERS’ TOUR OPTIONS FOR FAMILY FUN ABOUND DOWNTOWN IDEAS FOR ENJOYING A ‘GIRLS’ NIGHT OUT’ FARMERS MARKET—A FAVORITE FOR MORE THAN 40 YEARS


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The IC Downtown Magazine is published in cooperation with the Iowa City Downtown District (ICDD) to champion the District as a progressive, healthy, and culturally vibrant urban center of the region. The ICDD hosts roughly 300 businesses in two distinct neighborhoods: Downtown and the Northside Marketplace. While YOU ARE HERE, get connected. Enjoy Free Public Wifi courtesy of the ICDD on the ped mall. Spread the word and give the gift of one size fits all - the ICDD Gift Card. Reward your employees, surprise your mom, or help out a student. Gift cards can be redeemed at over 90 participating businesses and are on sale on our website or at MidWestOne Bank and the Englert Theater in Downtown Iowa City. If Downtown Iowa City has captured your heart, consider being our “Friend” with a donation of $25 or more. We’ve got sweet merchandise, coffee specials, and free parking for those who do. For all the latest news, images, events and happenings Downtown or on the Northside, follow the Downtown District at downtowniowacity.com and on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

in this issue of ic downtown magazine: A food lovers’ tour 4 Family adventures close to home

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fashion shines downtown

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the jazz, rock & soul of downtown 16 Girls’ night out

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farmers market

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Paint the town blue 27 Downtown Profile

MidWestOne 11 GENERAL MANAGER DIRECTOR OF ADVERTISING Dale Larson EDITOR Amy Sundermann Contributing writers Jim Musser Cindy Hadish Linda Schreiber Lisa Kelly Chastity Dillard Sarah Neighbors Photographers Sarah Neighbors Justin Torner

Design Benson & Hepker Design Account Executives John Waldorf Elizabeth Pittman Danielle Law

IC DOWNTOWN Magazine is produced by Press-Citizen Media in partnership with the Iowa City Downtown District. © 2014 Iowa City Press-Citizen Cover photo: Gloom Balloon at the Yacht Club during the third day of the Mission Creek Festival in downtown Iowa City, Tuesday April 3, 2013. Photo by Justin Torner.


By Cindy Hadish

A food lovers’ tour It’s not a bad dilemma. Downtown Iowa City has so many restaurant options, it can be difficult to choose just one. From hearty breakfasts and quick-service lunches to fine dining, both the Northside Marketplace and the Downtown core offer something for every appetite. Summertime brings a whole new burst of energy to the dining scene, with many establishments offering outdoor seating so patrons can take in the beautiful weather and people watching, while enjoying their meals, snacks or drinks. When asked to select their ideal “culinary tour,” five fans of Downtown Iowa City dining gave answers as varied as the restaurants themselves.

Harry Olmstead, vice chair of the UI Center for Human Rights Advisory Board and SEATS Johnson County Para-Transit Advisory Committee Accessibility is a priority for Olmstead when considering where to dine out. He would choose the Bluebird Diner for breakfast and more. “You’ll find home-cooked meals like Mom used to make,” said Olmstead, who cited the diner’s full wheelchair accessibility as a plus. Olmstead, who also serves as chairman of the Iowa City Human Rights Commission as well as serving on other boards, said Micky’s Irish Pub offers “interesting culinary pizazz” with a sandwich called the Conglomeration that is “huge, mouth-watering and exciting.” Micky’s is wheelchair-accessible when the outdoor patio is open, he noted. Olmstead would choose Graze for its chicken lips with aioli sauce, French fries and other appetizers, and praises its accessibility and outdoor patio on the Pedestrian Mall. For both the main course and dessert, Olmstead would opt for Baroncini, another wheelchair-accessible spot.

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Ross Wilburn, equity director for the Iowa City Community School District, former Iowa City councilman and mayor An avid cyclist, Wilburn cited Pizza on Dubuque for a great crust as well as their annual appearance on RAGBRAI, and Panchero’s Mexican Grill for a quick lunch. He orders a chicken burrito bowl served in a special resealable container “so I can say ‘Hara hachi bu’” — a Blue Zones reference to eat until 80 percent full — “and save half for dinner,” he said. For dinner, Wilburn would choose Mondo’s Saloon. “I love their chicken tamale,” he said, calling it a “very tasty creative interpretation.” Formosa is Wilburn’s pick for dessert. “They have a gluten-free chocolate decadence cake that is a great occasional treat,” he said.

Katherine Valde, outgoing president, University of Iowa Student Government Like Wilburn, Valde also heads to Mondo’s Saloon, but for appetizers. “I love the chips and dips appetizer and think that it is great to split with friends,” said Valde, a political science and history major graduating this spring. “If students are around during the summer, it makes for a great appetizer to enjoy outside on the patio.” For drinks, Valde cited The Mill Restaurant as a casual place that is welcoming for all age groups and a spot to enjoy live music, while the Java House is great for coffee, along with its environment. Atlas is Valde’s choice for a main course. “Their ingredients are top quality and their portions are large enough to enjoy leftovers the next day for students on a budget,” she said, citing Boulder rolls, tomato bisque soup and the Veg Heaven burrito among her favorites. Dessert would be frozen yogurt at Yotopia. “I think that Yotopia has the best selection of ingredients, and I love to support local businesses,” she said.

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Sarah Walz, part-time urban planner for the City of Iowa City and President, New Pioneer Co-op Board of Directors “I naturally gravitate to the Northside Marketplace for the most part,” said Walz. “It’s away from the crush of students and pretty eclectic.” Her ideal culinary tour would start at Devotay for their tapas, as an appetizer. “Bacon-wrapped dates, cheeses and olives are always on my list,” she said, adding that Devotay’s emphasis on local foods is important to her. “Plus, they are really good at recommending a wine to go with whatever you’re eating, and the atmosphere is intimate and unfussy.” A spot for drinks is a toss-up between the Clinton Street Social Club, where the food and local beer selections are excellent, and Brix Cheese Shop and Wine Bar for its namesake wine and cheese, Walz said, noting that both offer a great atmosphere. Walz would choose Basta for both the main course and dessert, partly because her whole family can eat there, including her son. Basta uses local ingredients, makes their own sausage and “the tiramisu is great,” she said.

Jennifer Jordan, recycling coordinator, City of Iowa City Jordan’s ideal culinary tour would start with appetizers — including deviled eggs and charcuterie — at the Clinton Street Social Club. Drinks, with “whatever IPA is on tap” would be at Micky’s, she said, with the main meal at Atlas, for its Mac ‘n Cheese. Dessert for Jordan is simple. “Anything at Molly’s Cupcakes,” she said.

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Family adventures

close to By Linda Schreiber

Whether impromptu or scheduled, there’s no shortage of activities for the entire family to enjoy in downtown Iowa City. Parents can choose recreation, culture or entertainment. Whatever you decide, it’s a win-win. Downtown Iowa City offers endless possibilities for all ages. Closed to vehicular traffic since the 1970s, the Pedestrian Mall — a three-block area at the intersection of College and Dubuque streets — is the place to gather all summer long. The Iowa City Public Library, at 123 South Linn Street, is a central feature of the Ped Mall and a gold standard for activity with more than 720,000 visits each year and a collection that circulates 1.5 million items including books, art, movies and music.

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In addition, the library presents interesting lectures, programs and activities. KidSpace at the library provides games, programs, homework assistance, displays and more. Teens will find action geared to their interests in the Koza Family Teen Center in the library. For specific information, check www.icpl.org. Just outside the library door on the Pedestrian Mall is the Children’s Garden, sponsored by Soil Mates Organic Garden Education Service, a New Pioneer Co-op program. Now in its third year, visitors can learn about gardening and watch the local food movement grow before their eyes. Scott Koepke, education outreach coordinator at New Pi, answers questions and teaches important life skills related to the Garden.

A few steps farther on the Ped Mall is the City Plaza Playground. This fun zone, funded in part by the Optimist Club of Iowa City, features slides and climbing structures with a soft surface for landing. Another must-see is BenchMarks 3, featuring individual benches as a canvas for original community artwork. The juried artwork showcases a “tones of home” theme that is intended to invoke color, vibrancy and a sense of place. This year, 30 benches will be painted and displayed throughout Downtown over the summer. Challenge family members to locate each bench and record the visit with your “selfie” photo! Walk a couple blocks northwest from the Ped Mall and discover the legendary history about Iowa City being the

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second capital of the Iowa Territory and first capital city of the state of Iowa. The Pentacrest, which is part of the University of Iowa, is home to Old Capitol. This venerable block houses the Old Capitol Museum as well as the University of Iowa’s Museum of Natural History in Macbride Hall. Visitors of all ages can spend hours viewing exhibits related to Iowa’s history and experience everything from political documents and historic maps to sloth bones and bird songs. Both museums are free. In 2008, Iowa City was named a UNESCO City of Literature, the third city so designated in the global UNESCO Creative Cities Network. The University of Iowa and Iowa City’s strong literary pedigree led to this important classification. The city’s heritage is shown in the Literary Walk, a series of bronze relief panels featuring authors’ words and attribution. The series also displays quotations and writing stamped into the concrete sidewalk along Iowa Avenue and Linn Street. The 49 authors and playwrights featured have ties to Iowa. Kids love a challenge . . . can they find every one? For more vigorous exercise, the Robert A. Lee Community Recreation Center, 220 Gilbert Street, offers numerous activities and youth day camps throughout the summer. For more information, check www.icgov.org/?id=1098 Need to refuel? There are plenty of food options in Downtown, and kid-friendly favorites are readily available. Swankie Frankies (hotdogs), Bo James (burgers and fries) and The Wedge (pizza) are all near the Ped Mall. Wander just a few blocks north to the Northside Marketplace for Pagliai’s (pizza), Oasis (hummus and falafel) or Hamburg Inn No. 2 (diner favorites). Dessert and snack options abound. From frozen treats (Yotopia, Aspen Leaf, Orange Leaf, Whitey’s Ice Cream, and Cold Stone Creamery) to fresh baked delights (Bread Garden and Molly’s Cupcakes), hungry families can find refreshment around every corner. Three bookstores — Iowa Book & Supply, Prairie Lights, and the University Bookstore and Iowa Hawkshop — offer hundreds of titles for purchase and hours of enjoyment later. Prairie Lights offers an especially impressive selection of books for children and teens, while Iowa Book and the University Bookstore are great sources for all things Hawkeye. Fashionista alert: If wearable art is your style, don’t overlook opportunities to create your own statement. Beadology Iowa and Home Ec. Workshop are two downtown businesses that offer individualized, free and fee-based special classes for artists of all ages. Parking downtown is easy and abundant with five parking garages and more than 1,100 on-street, metered parking spaces. Every day, the first hour of parking in three city garages is free. On-street meters accept credit cards and are free on Sundays.

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DOWNTOWN businesses midwestone.com

Midwestone Historic downtown bank’s resplendent renewal underway By Linda Schreiber

Midwestone’s historic building on the corner of clinton and washington streets before (below) and after (right) the renovation.

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Headquarters: 102 South Clinton Street

Two mantras come to mind to explain MidWestOne Bank’s restoration of its downtown Iowa City location at Washington and Clinton streets: “location, location, location” and “timing is everything!”

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“Our goal is to preserve the original beauty and integrity of this historic building,” said Amy Hospodarsky, MidWestOne community relations manager. “The project also demonstrates our commitment to Iowa City as a community bank and reaffirms our location in downtown Iowa City as our headquarters.” MidWestOne chose Iowa City’s Neumann Monson Architects to design the project, and Knutson Construction Services of Iowa City is the general contractor. The original building was designed by renowned Iowa firm Proudfoot, Bird and Rawson. The $12 million project, originally slated to begin in 2008, was postponed when the area was hit by a devastating flood and the beginning of a national recession. The five-phase renovation finally began last year and will return the building to its original 1913 appearance. Phase I, which restores the building’s historic exterior as well as the fourth through sixth floors, will be completed this spring. Interior renovation will restore the patina, hardwood floors, wooden office doors topped with transoms and wood paneling. When completed in 2016, the building will be placed on the National Register of Historic Places. Hospodarsky said, “The timing was perfect. We love downtown; it’s our home.”

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Fashion shines

downtown By Chastity Dillard and Sarah Neighbors

Summer is finally here!

The downtown fashions at Revival

After a long and icy winter, buying new summer clothes is an overdue treat. Turn the page to see what the experts at some of downtown’s hottest shops are predicting for this season.

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Catherine’s Boutique, 7 S. Dubuque Street, welcomes warmer weather with a window display of flip flops and bright bikinis. Inside the door, shoppers can find breezy tops and understated Dogeared necklaces in the shape of the state of Iowa. Venture farther in for flowing summer dresses and short shorts designed to handle the summer heat in style. And don’t forget about track suits, suggests Kara Schares of Catherine’s. “It’s a casual cut, but they’re done in a dressy fabric. Everybody loves them,” she said. “Once a customer gets them on and warms up to the idea of having a banded bottom pant, they’re so cute.” Down the street at Textiles, 109 S. Dubuque Street, Ritu Jain curates a collection as comfortable as it is beautiful.

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With an eye for color and texture, her displays offer great ideas for seasonal layering. Expect to find beautiful spring and summer dresses complete with perfect accessories — colorful scarves, sleek leather Hobo bags and the artistically rendered jewelry of Jade Scott. Jain expects to see flowing tops paired with leggings and fun colors, like apple green, purples and periwinkles. “Seventies looks — boho chic — are coming back,” she added. “Whenever you have a narrow bottom, it just looks better with a flowing top.” Revival, 117 E. College Street, blends chic modern style with vintage looks in their clothing lines and accessories, including Replay Vintage sunglasses from the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s.


From left: Girls and women of all ages crave prints at Catherine’s (first two photos); Add a pop of color to a new summer dress with a cheerful handbag from Textiles; from Revival, High-waisted shorts will definitely be a must once again for summer fashion; Shirts and ties are always in fashion at Ewers; For a clean, preppy look, check out the new Vineyard Vines line at Active Endeavors.

“You will definitely see cutoffs and kimonos,” said Anna Wicks, Revival’s marketing and e-commerce assistant. “High-waisted shorts with cute little crop tops will still be big. We’re seeing a lot of sweet vintage styles, as well as stripes.” Summer brings brighter colors and lighter styles for men as well. Vineyard Vines is an increasingly popular line for men of all ages, said Dave Nerad, store manager of Active Endeavors, 138 S. Clinton Street. “There’s a youthful, nautical look and feel to the line, a fresh look,” he said. “It has a comfortable feel and great fabrics.” Ewers Men’s Store, across from the Pentacrest at 28 S. Clinton Street, has long been a mainstay of professional

men’s clothing in Iowa City. Even formal clothing lightens up for summer, including gorgeous suits in gray sharkskin or natural linen, perfect for a summer wedding. Classic looks are always in style at Ewers, with timeless fashion from Austin Reed, Sewell, and Henry Grethel. Ewers co-president Bill Noser explained, “In the summertime, we see lighter tones and more patterns. Shirts in lavender and yellow are popular, and sportswear features more small checks and stripes. The past couple of years have also brought in a trimmer fit in men’s clothing.” Whatever your favorite style, the wide variety of downtown shops make it possible to find the perfect outfit for any summer occasion.

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Bernie Worrell performs at the yacht club during the 2013 mission creek festival.

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The jazz, rock &

soul of downtown By Jim Musser; Photos by Justin Torner

Not so long ago, summertime in downtown Iowa City meant a much slower pace. There were longer gaps in University of Iowa activities, and summer school was more sparsely attended, so options for witnessing live music dwindled considerably.

But times do change.

Summer means only a slight dip in activity and attendance at the U of Iowa these days, and local clubs and venues hardly skip a beat in amping up the party heat.

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Most of the music-centric downtown bars and clubs offer regular “free” nights as well as shows with a cover charge. The Mill’s “Open Mic with J. Knight” every Monday is a popular choice. The Mill is a full-service restaurant with a 52-year history as the local center for folk, Americana and bluegrass, as well as some blues and rock. Every other Wednesday, they host the Burlington Street Bluegrass Band, one of the best of its kind this side of Tennessee. It’s a great family outing from 7 to 10 p.m., with a $5 cover. Wednesday Night Jam Sessions at the Yacht Club on Linn St. are free. The Yacht Club’s second incarnation is primarily a haven for jam bands and related funk outfits. They’ve just added an upstairs bar and can cook anything you want, as long as all you want is grilled cheese and tater tots. Gabe’s has been rocking for about 45 years, currently blending local talent with national rock and hip-hop acts (e.g., Blitzen Trapper in May, King Khan & the Shrines in June). Gabe’s has frequent (if not on dedicated dates) “Oasis Stage Presents” nights with no-cover band shows. The Blue Moose Tap House spins a “Free Bass Dance Party” most Saturdays and hosts “Gemini Karaoke” on Thursdays. The Blue Moose offers a similar mix to Gabe’s (i.e., local/national and rock/hip-hop), but with two stages — especially the generous downstairs room — they can sometimes garner bigger acts. The Clinton Street Social Club has vintage jazz and some killer solo blues/folk acts who often play free gigs. George’s Buffet — a cozy, nearly-80-year-old neighborhood tavern on Market St. — brings in hot blues, jazz and funk acts on Mondays and Fridays with some regularity, and never a cover. Public Space One (PS1) specializes in indie rock and various eclectic alternative formats, providing like-minded local and national touring acts with a non-bar outlet. The Englert Theatre, a 102-year-old theater restored by a combined community effort of volunteers, local businesses and city government, has a roster of reasonably priced concerts scheduled for this summer, among them Aaron Neville (June 17), Judy Collins (June 19) and ex-Traffic classic rocker Dave Mason (August 5). For those who prefer their live music in the daytime, the Java House on Washington Street presents free taping sessions for host Ben Kieffer’s “Java Blend” show on Iowa Public Radio. All manner of (largely) Midwestern folk, rock, pop, blues acts perform from 2 to 3 p.m. on Friday afternoons, but these tend to go on hiatus in mid-summer.

Forget about the lazy days of summ with a long, proud history and Dow keep our music very much alive and 18

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Downtown is also a great place for outdoor music, and music lovers can look forward to a dizzying array of weekly concerts and special event festivals. Presenting a broad spectrum of styles and genres drawn from local/area sources to national and even international acts, these free events keep the downtown buzzing. Presented by Toyota of Iowa City, the Friday Night Concert Series offers free concerts at the Weatherdance Fountain Stage (on the Pedestrian Mall outside the Sheraton Iowa City Hotel) every Friday from May 16 to September 12, except for those Fridays included in the Summer of the Arts (SOTA) festivals. The concerts run from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. and feature many of the finest musicians from the fertile Eastern Iowa talent pool, bringing in a Steely Dan tribute band, folk/Americana, a Grateful Dead tribute, blues, Celtic, garage rock, funk/ R&B, classic rock, salsa, pop and more. A companion series — the Saturday Night Concerts sponsored by Press-Citizen Media — has four scheduled dates. Location is the same; in the event of rain, the Friday and Saturday concerts will be moved to the Chauncey Swan Parking Ramp at the corner of Washington and Gilbert Streets.

Pentacrest by the historic Old Capitol building and various side stages strategically placed in the downtown area. Many tremendous artists have graced its stages over the years, and the high quality and stylistic range of performers, plus the free admission, has earned it kudos from National Public Radio to Downbeat magazine to dozens of Midwest tour guides. Add fireworks, food and beverage booths and 25,000-plus people, and you’ve got an All-American shindig. The latest addition to the SOTA fest collection is the Iowa Soul Festival, and 2014 marks its second edition. Taking place in downtown Iowa City September 19-21, it celebrates African-American culture via food, dance, music and art. Food, beverages and all manner of art and craft objects are available for sale. Music (again, all free) ranges from blues, funk, soul, Afro-Cuban, gospel and hip-hop. Superstar Al Jarreau returns to Iowa City as the opening night headliner. One of last year’s most popular features was the Gospel Brunch Sunday morning. It will return this year at the Sheraton Iowa City Hotel.

For more than three decades, the Iowa Arts Festival has served as a multi-faceted cultural beacon, converting downtown Iowa City into a full-tilt, three-day party that attracts revelers from throughout the Midwest and beyond. Block after block of street booths displaying and selling visual art and the drool-inducing international cuisine of Culinary Row are wonderfully enhanced by three days of fabulous (and free) outdoor music. Set for June 6-8, the 2014 Iowa Arts Fest offers yet another sterling lineup, with the Indigo Girls headlining Friday and the Steve Earle Band topping Saturday’s presentation. MusicIC is in its fourth year of existence. Subtitled “Where Music and Literature Meet,” it is a nod to Iowa City’s designation as an internationally recognized “City of Literature,” presenting music for small ensembles inspired by works of literature. There are four concerts scheduled in the series. All take place in June, with two at Trinity Episcopal Church, one at the Englert and one in the Iowa City Public Library. Again, all are free and open to the public. Since its inaugural event in 1991, the Iowa City Jazz Festival has varied in size and shape, but generally has expanded in length from a one-day shot to a three-day event (always around the Fourth of July) with a main stage on the

er. Iowa City is a great music town ntown is still working hard to kicking, all season long.

opposite page: Mucca Pazza at the Englert during the Mission Creek Festival in downtown Iowa City. Above: Lake Street Dive performs at the Englert Theatre in Iowa City on Tuesday, March 25, 2014. The band includes Rachael Price (lead vocals) and Bridget Kearney (upright bass). Left: Fans of Future Rock at Gabe’s on Friday during the Mission Creek Festival in downtown Iowa City.

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When the sun sets,

it’s ‘Girls’ Night Out’ By Lisa Kelly

The weekend is finally here! It’s time to gather your girlfriends and get ready to hit the town. Downtown Iowa City has great options to suit every taste. Whether you and your friends are looking for good food and a quiet place to catch up, an intellectual experience, luscious desserts with fancy drinks, or music and dancing, you can find what you’re looking for. Consider beginning the festivities with a visit to Zender’s Salon and Spa, 4 S. Linn Street, where you can de-stress and bond with girlfriends over mani/pedis, relaxing massages, or facials. Salon owner Donna Zender believes that “massages and facials are part of a holistic approach to lifestyle and are necessities that everyone deserves and needs for health.” Be sure to arrive early for your appointment to spend a few minutes meditating or relaxing in the spa area. A large mani/pedi room and several spa treatment rooms make this a perfect location for group events.

JOSEPH’S STEAKHOUSE

212 S. CLINTON STREET • IOWA CITY, IA 52240 • 319.358.0776 • WWW.JOSEPHSSTEAK.COM 20

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After the spa, head over to Share Wine Lounge & Small Plate Bistro at the Sheraton Hotel, 210 S. Dubuque Street, where you can share drinks and small plates with friends. University of Iowa seniors Emily Gilbert, Sydney Heim, and Kristiana Piechocki recently bonded with their visiting mothers at Share. The group enjoyed a round of Moscow Mule cocktails and celebrated the end of senior year. Chef William Hawkins has created a unique menu of entrees and small plates, using locally sourced food whenever possible. The restaurant purchases food from local farmers’ markets in the summer, their eggs come from the Farmer’s Hen House in Kalona, and at least one of the items in the cheese “flytes” is always locally made. If you don’t want to limit “Girls’ Night Out” to the weekend, Share offers Wine Down Wednesdays where you can listen to a jazz trio, try a $6 glass of wine from a featured region, and enjoy an appropriate cheese pairing. To take advantage of Iowa City’s literary culture, meet your friends at Prairie Lights bookstore, 15 S. Dubuque Street. Part of the community since 1978, Prairie Lights brings in authors from around the country for almost daily readings. Owner Jan Weissmiller recommends the pecan rolls from Deluxe Bakery in the café or the delicious seasonal coffee drinks to complement any reading or book browsing.

The Iowa City Yacht Club, 13 S. Linn Street, provides a unique experience. The basement bar offers live music almost every night. Owner Scott Kading explains that the venue typically brings in half local bands and half regional bands, many of which “love the place and return even though they could fill a larger venue.” The bands tend to be bluegrass or jam bands. In addition, on Monday nights you can catch The Catacombs of Comedy show. For a nightcap, classy cocktails, or delicious desserts, a great choice is The Eden Lounge, 217 Iowa Avenue. “It feels like you’re in a bar in a bigger city like Chicago or Vegas,” says manager Amanda Oropeza. Oropeza recommends the Pear Flower or Garden of Eden martini paired with the Chocolate Decadence cake. Most of the desserts, along with a unique small-plate menu, are made in-house by chef Chase Birscoe. Molly’s Cupcakes also provides Eden Lounge with a special Molly’s Drunken Cupcake — a chocolate cupcake filled with Bailey’s cream and topped with amaretto frosting. Eden Lounge is open Thursday through Sunday and features either live piano music or a D.J. each night. For an extra special night with friends, make reservations for “table service” in the swanky VIP lounge where you can get a dedicated server to mix drinks and serve gourmet small plates for your party all night long.

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Iowa City Farmers Market:

Ripe for summer fun

By Cindy Hadish

For more than 40 years, the food and the music have kept people coming back to the Iowa City Farmers Market. “Every week is a little different,” said market supervisor Cassidy Bell about the music and variety of produce offered at the market, held from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesdays and 7:30 a.m. to noon Saturdays in the Chauncey Swan parking ramp at 460 E. Washington Street. This season’s Farmers Market will run from Saturday, May 3, through Wednesday, October 29. Expect to find the best that Iowa growers have to offer all season long. That’s because the Iowa City Farmers Market intentionally keeps a high ratio of produce vendors, Bell said, compared to other markets that center around crafts. Many of the growers return year after year, she noted, pointing to a lengthy waiting list for seasonal vendors. About 130 vendors attend Saturday markets and 60 on Wednesdays.

This season will feature at least a few new vendors, including a food truck called The Box Lunch, which has made occasional appearances at the market in the past and sells burgers, fries, tacos and “comfort food,” Bell said. “It’s like a diner on wheels.” This year, live music will be extended an extra month, running June through September, from 9 to 11 a.m. Saturdays and 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesdays. Music can range from acoustic guitar players sauntering through the grounds to reggae, folk, accordion-players, banjos and full bands. In addition, employees of Robert A. Lee Community Recreation Center bring chalk and other supplies for children to enjoy during Art in the Park at times when music is offered. Upcoming special events include Taste of the Market in August and Kids Day in September. “There’s always something interesting going on,” Bell said. “It helps get people there and keeps them there.”

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Downtown is

turning blue By Linda Schreiber

Iowa City is undergoing a transformation. The historic city is turning blue . . . as in what Dan Beuttner has termed “Blue Zones.” The National Geographic and New York Times best-selling author traveled the world learning the best strategies for longevity and happiness. His book, “Blue Zones,” identifies some of the best practices for health, and the locations that have the greatest life expectancy.

Buettner’s message incorporates the Power of 9® simple rules to change: n

Move Naturally (Be active without having to think about it)

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80 Percent Rule (Stop eating when you’re 80% full)

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Plant Slant (Eat mostly a plant-based diet heavy on beans, nuts, and green plants)

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Wine @ Five (Drink 1 glass of wine daily if you have a healthy relationship with alcohol)

Downtown, Fresh Food Concepts Inc., a group of businesses owned by Jim and Maureen Mondanaro, is seeking recognition as a Blue Zone site. The couple has been involved in food service and wellness businesses for decades in the Iowa City area.

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Know Your Purpose (Discover your purpose in life)

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Down Shift (Slow down daily, rest, take vacation)

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Family First (Make loved ones a priority)

“Jim and Maureen recognize and value building healthy communities,” says Frankie Schneckloth, Bread Garden Market creative coordinator. “They want their businesses to reflect the Blue Zone philosophies, and that’s very, very exciting.”

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Right Tribe (Create a healthy social network)

The Iowa City Area Chamber of Commerce led a successful campaign to be a Blue Zone. On the city’s Northside, Mercy Iowa City achieved certification.

n Belong

(Be part of a spiritual community)

You can be Blue, too. Sign up or get your business started to better health. Visit the website https://iowa.bluezonesproject.com/communities/iowa-city

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You love Iowa. You love Catherine’s. You love Dogeared jewelry at Catherine’s. catherinesic.com


Timeless tradition. Some traditions last for generations. Hands Jewelers has been offering excellent merchandise and exquisite service through five generations and 160 years.

Celebrating 160 Years

109 East Washington Street • Downtown Iowa City 319-351-0333 • 800-728-2888 • www.handsjewelers.com facebook.com/Hands Jewelers • @handsjewelers


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