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which provides two floors of space for changing exhibitions. Located on the grounds is a historic Japanese Garden installed in 1929. Walk-in visitors are welcome Tuesday through Sunday with admission by donation. Muscatine Art Center staff offers educational programs and group tours for children and adults. 1314 Mulberry Ave., Muscatine • 563-263-8282

Muscatine Maid-Rite Have a Maid-Rite sandwich in the town in which it was invented. The first legendary loose-meat sandwich was created in 1926 by Muscatine butcher Fred Angell, who combined a special cut and grind of meat with selected spices. As the legend goes, Angell asked a delivery man to taste his “newest sandwich invention.” After a few bites the taster exclaimed, “You know, Fred, this sandwich is made right!” Some believe Fred chose the “Maid” spelling to represent the wholesomeness and pureness of the sandwich. The Muscatine Maid-Rite continues the tradition Fred Angell established in a 1950s-style family diner. 3414 North Port Drive, Muscatine 563-263-3244 •

Muscatine Municipal Boat Harbor and Marina

MUSCATINE ART CENTER Photo credit: Randy Richmond

Bayer Butterfly Garden Open to the public, the Bayer Butterfly Garden attracts many pollinators with an array of brightly colored flowers and shrubs that bloom from early spring until fall. Plant employees planted 65 acres of native grasses and wildflowers with the assistance of the Muscatine County Conservation Board in 1993 and an additional 90 acres were added to the prairie in 1998, including a butterfly garden. Enjoy a picnic at the tables or relax in the gazebo as a pond with dual waterfalls attracts birds and koi swim through the water lilies. Wiggins Road (near Ogilvie Avenue), Muscatine

Contrary Brewing Company Contrary Brewing Company is a microbrewery located in downtown Muscatine. As its name suggests, this brewery doesn’t settle for just any beer, brewing in small batches to ensure consistent, quality brews each time. Stop in and enjoy a tasting flight or bring home a growler to enjoy any time. 411 W. Mississippi Drive, Muscatine (563) 261-7446 •

Discovery Park and Environmental Learning Center Walk or bike the 2 miles of paved trails or the 1.5 miles of mowed trails, fish from the stocked ponds, stop by the outdoor raptor enclosure or visit the Environmental Learning Center all in the 100-acre natural park in an urban environment. The Environmental Learning Center offers numerous


natural history exhibits, two 1,200-gallon aquariums with native fish, live reptiles and amphibians, more than 100 mounted animals and is the home to the Muscatine County Conservation Board office.

own, Charles H. Young, worked toward establishing the Great River Road and according to some, the idea for the green and white pilot wheel marker distinguishing the route is attributed to Young.

The classroom in the Environmental Learning Center is available for rental by organized groups or businesses for workshops and meetings.

Take a moment to enjoy the view at the Mark Twain Overlook (100-198 Lombard St. Muscatine) located by the entrance to the Norbert F. Beckey Bridge close to downtown Muscatine. Here you can find signage dedicated to Charles H. Young’s work toward establishing the Great River Road.

3300 Cedar St. P.O Box 109, Muscatine 563-264-5922 •

Fairport Fish Hatchery Located 8 miles east of Muscatine on Highway 22 and The Great River Road. With 18 ponds, this facility hatches and grows largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, Northern pike and bluegill to stock in Iowa lakes. Walleye are raised for stocking Iowa’s interior rivers. The hatchery was established in 1908 and started out as a freshwater mussel research and propagation station to contribute to the local pearl button industry. It became a fish hatchery in 1929. Self-guided tours available and for education tours call 563-263-5062.

Muscatine Arboretum Take a walk with your four-legged friends and look at more than 1,000 native and ornamental trees and shrubs that have been planted, mulched and labeled. Paved trails wind throughout these 15-acres located adjacent to Discovery Park. In addition to the beautiful trees and plantings, you can also enjoy a Veterans Memorial Area, a medieval style brick labyrinth, a gazebo (perfect for picnics) and many benches to sit and enjoy your surroundings!

3390 Hwy 22, Muscatine • 563-263-5062

Access from Discovery Park (3300 Cedar St.) or Harmony Lane, Muscatine • 563-260-5807

Great River Road

Muscatine Art Center

The Great River Road is a collection of state and local roads that follow the course of the Mississippi River through 10 states from Ontario to the Gulf of Mexico. Developed in 1938, the road is 2,340 miles designated with a green-and-white sign showing a river steamboat inside a pilot wheel with the name of the state or province. Muscatine holds a special fondness for the Great River Road as one of our

Built in 1908, the Laura Musser Mansion — part of the Muscatine Art Center — provides an elegant setting for the display of fine and decorative arts. The mansion’s hallways feature an impressive collection of works by artists such as Renoir, Degas, Chagall and Pissarro. Period rooms blend family furnishings with paintings that depict the Mississippi River. Linked to the original mansion is the Stanley Gallery

Ditch the traffic and dock your watercraft on the riverfront at the Muscatine Municipal Boat Harbor and Marina located by Riverside Park on the Mississippi River. The harbor has 18 slips for houseboats and 64 slips dedicated for smaller, pleasure and speed boats. There are slips available for rent for the current season. Transient slips are available. Gas, diesel and pump-out service are also available. The gas dock is in operation from approximately May-October. 110 Harbor Drive, Muscatine • 563-263-0241

National Pearl Button Museum @ The History and Industry Center

as the “gold rush of the Midwest”, it wasn’t gold, it wasn’t silver, it was mother of pearl shells, taken from rivers of 19 states to make 1.5 billion pearl buttons annually, 1/3 of the world’s pearl buttons.. a story started in the 1890’s. Learn about how Muscatine is still a thriving manufacturing center on the second level of the museum through displays on 1940s and 1950s entrepreneurial giants who led to the manufacturing of products like office furniture, retread tires and corn product processing. Be sure to visit the gift shop to find locally-made Muscatine and pearl button memorabilia…you will receive clam good luck! 117 W. Second Street, Muscatine • 563-263-1052

Norbert F. Beckey Bridge After enjoying the beautiful river views in the daylight, be sure to take a look at the Norbert F. Beckey Bridge — the only bridge over the Mississippi River that has LED lights. Completed in December 1972, it replaced the Muscatine High Bridge, which stood from 18911973. A pillar from the old High Bridge still stands at Riverside Park in Muscatine. The bridge, which stretches 1,500 feet from Iowa to Rock Island County, Illinois, across the Mississippi River, is awash in a rainbow of colors and lights up the night. Mark Twain might have seen his most beautiful sunsets in Muscatine, but modern residents and visitors to this historic river town now have their own light show to enjoy. Located on Iowa Highway 92 and Illinois Route 92

Old Barn

Visit this county farm barn to experience and learn our agricultural heritage and history, located in Discovery Park on the west side of Muscatine. Available for private tours. The barn is located adjacent to Discovery Park on the west side of Muscatine. To get to the barn turn west on Harmony Lane from Houser Street. 563-264-5922

Experience the Muscatine that was the “Pearl Button Capital of the World,” a story proudly being told


Oscar Grossheim Photo Collection More than 55,000 glass plate negatives of historical photos taken by photographer Oscar Grossheim are included in this collection that spans the late 1890s to the early 1940s. Grossheim’s collection includes photos of local scenes, landscapes and portraits of residents from that time period. The Musser Public Library has over 5,000 of the images digitally archived. As a service to the public, the reference staff provides access to high quality, photographic images in print for a reasonable fee. 408 E 2nd Street., Muscatine • 563-263-3065

Pine Creek Grist Mill and Melpine Schoolhouse One of the focal points of Wildcat Den State Park is the Pine Creek Grist Mill, located in the eastern part of the park. The mill is thought to be the oldest working mill on its original site between the Mississippi River and the Rocky Mountains. It was built in 1848 by Benjamin Nye in response to the growing demand for pioneering families to have their crops ground into usable products like flour and meal. Today, the Mill is on the National Registry of Historic Places. Near the mill is the classic one-room Melpine Schoolhouse, built in 1877, which is a museum of rural school memorabilia including old school books, photos, period desks, lunch buckets and more. Don’t miss The Pioneer Log Cabin and The Historic Stone Church located in the state park. 1884 Wildcat Den Road, Muscatine • 563-263-4818

Rose Bowl This bowling facility includes, nightlife area, banquet room and concessions. With 48 lanes, there’s plenty of space for bowlers of all skill levels and is a great place to host a party or to meet some friends. Don’t miss the ever-popular Glow-N-Bowl on Friday and Saturday nights, with large screens playing popular music videos, black lights and all-you-can bowl for an all-inclusive fee. 1411 Grandview Ave., Muscatine • 563-263-0770




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Muscatine Visitor's Guide  

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