Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Come to a Friday morning activity!

Hey Girls,

I am trying to accomplish a few health goals for our Lengthen Your Stride program. Since I moved to Iowa, I have been wanting to become familiar with some of the local hikes and nature trails. Maybe some of y'all would like to join in? Considering I am super pregnant, I am going to stick with the taking my stroller on paved nature walks as opposed to backpacking my chunky kid on a hike.

So, here is the activity:
We will be meeting Friday morning at 9:30 at the Mormon Handcart Park. The trail in the Handcart Park is short but it joins up with Clear Creek bike trail, which is a really wide paved sidewalk through a forested area. Everett and I went and strolled for a while today and we saw two little snakes and crossed a bridge and found a dead mouse... so, it was a huge hit with my 2 year old and he wants to go back. The trail does not loop, so we will just have to pick a point and turn back. Maybe we could walk for 30-40 minutes and then turn back? If some girls wanted to go longer or turn back sooner, that is cool too.

Here is a link to where the park is. (You turn off of either Mormon Trek Blvd or Melrose Ave onto Hawkeye Park Rd and then look for signs.)

What do yall think? Is anyone up to come? Email me back if you do so we get a headcount and dont leave anyone behind.

xoxo Regan Judd

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Iowa Activity Ideas: Oktoberfest(s)

Who knew that we could find not one, but TWO, Oktoberfest celebrations near Iowa City? 

The Amana Colonies will celebrate Oktoberfest from September 28th - September 30th.  For more information and a schedule of events, click here.

The Northside Oktoberfest in Iowa City will be on October 5th & 6th.  For more information and a schedule of events, click here.

With love,

The Literacy Committee

Friday, September 21, 2012

Iowa Activity Idea: Mount Vernon, IA

Rachel H. is one of the Iowa natives in our ward -- she shared this fun information about her hometown, Mt. Vernon:

Mt. Vernon, the town I grew up in, is about a half hour from Iowa city and it has some fun little things to do. This Saturday they have the Old Lincoln Highway arts festival all day. On October 13th they have a chili cook off. And the first Thursday in December they do "magical night" for Christmas. There is a live nativity and pictures with Santa and whatnot- its great for families. They have a lot of great festivals in the summer, like Chalk the Walk and the Chocolate Walk, but that's a ways off.

Anyway its a cute town with a beautiful college campus. There is a nice Frisbee golf course on campus and there is a solar system through town that you can walk along. The planets are separated by distances proportional to real life. 

Click here to access the Mt. Vernon calendar of events.  And just to recap:

September 22nd (tomorrow!!):  Lincoln Highway Arts Festival 
October 13th: Chili Cook-Off 
October 20th:  Great Pumpkin 5k -- more information here.
December:  Magical Night

Thanks to Rachel for letting us know about all of these fun things!  Have a wonderful Friday!

Sending our love,

The Literacy Committee

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Iowa Activity: Fry fest, September 7th

Rachel and her husband were able to go to Fry Fest this year. She was generous enough to let us share a little bit about the concert and even a few photos. It looks like a great concert and that they had a fabulous time.

Rachel: A week or so ago was the annual Fry fest ("a celebration of all that is Hawkeye"). Brennan currently works as an intern for the City of Coralville and since they sort of host it, they had him working at the festival all day instead of the office. I think Brennan was perfectly fine with the change of pace. And I was perfectly fine with the concert tickets that came with it. :) 

The evening didn't get off to the greatest start when I headed down to Coralville. I was just meeting Brennan there after his work day. But President Obama was also visiting Iowa City that day so traffic was backed up since they had the freeway blocked for him. That meant I got to walk a long way to the concert. A very long way. I was already running late so this was extra frustrating to me. But I made it! And I even remembered to bring a jacket for Brennan so he could cover up the pink Fry Fest t-shirt he was tired of being seen in-haha. The performers were Lee Brice and Sarah Evans. I don't know their music very well but they both have a couple of songs that I like. We ended up hanging out backstage for the whole concert. All-in-all, it was an evening we got to spend together, away from the house, without a baby, without spending money, listening to good music, and enjoying beautiful weather. So it was great!

Brennan and Lee Brice. During lunch they handed out "meet and greet" passes to the people in Brennan's office. This is the picture they put on Lee Brice's website. Brennan loves the pink shirt. :)

Thanks for sharing Rachel! And for those of us who missed it, it looks like a fun event we can look forward to next year. Have a great rest of the week!

The Literacy Committee

p.s. don't forget there are only 10 days left in the month of September. Make sure to enter your goals in the sidebar of the blog!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

September Goal Reminder -- D&C 89

This morning during Relief Society, Kim taught an excellent lesson about the Word of Wisdom.  She challenged us to read D&C 89 and prayerfully consider how we can better live the Word of Wisdom.

This challenge is also one of our monthly goal suggestions -- so, please count your reading of the Word of Wisdom as a goal achieved!

Sending our love,

The Literacy Committee

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Iowa Activity Idea -- Lake Macbride

Lake Macbride is located just a few miles north of the Iowa City/Coralville area. If you haven't visited before, this would be a great place to spend a few hours with your family or invite friends along to make a day of it. The State Park offers picnic shelters, camping, trails, swimming, boating and fishing.

Lake Macbride State Park: here
Lake Macbride Boat Rental Information: here
University of Iowa Outdoor Rental Center: here

For Labor Day a few families got together and rented canoes.

Larkin: Our afternoon at Lake Macbride was fabulous -- it is a beautiful area with lots to do! I tried canoeing for the first time and it was WAY out of my comfort zone (water and I do not get along). Once my anxiety subsided, it was a really fun and relaxing way to spend the afternoon. Cody & I will definitely be going back next summer. 

In addition to canoes, you can also rent pedal boats, pontoon boats, and kayaks for reasonable prices. There is a fun little swimming area and beach near the boat rental shop. I am sure the area will be just lovely in the fall when the leaves start turning colors -- there are so many fun walking & biking trails around the lake to enjoy. 

Abbey: I love canoeing, its such a fun thing to do with my husband. The lake is beautiful and its a good workout too. :) 

Hayley: Have you checked out Lake McBride? We have fallen in love with this litte lake! You can rent canoes, kayaks, paddle boats, and party pontoons. We spent Labor Day cruising around the lake by canoe, enjoyed a picnic and had fun playing at the beach. Unfortunately boat rentals are closed until Memorial Day but add this to your list of "Future Fun Things to Do" for next summer!

Thanks for sharing; Larkin, Abbey, Hayley and Melissa!

Love, The Literacy Committee

Monday, September 10, 2012

September - Personal Health: Biking

Hayley and her family have been taking advantage of the nice weather and abundance of trails in the Iowa City area. Weekly family bike rides would be a perfect activity to count towards a September Personal Health goal.

Tim and I have been making a more valiant effort to get out and go biking every week. There are so many awesome trails all over Coralville and Iowa City to enjoy. And as the leaves begin to turn and it cools off it will be even more fun to explore. Kate had a great time...can't you tell?! I'm always up for a ride, let me know when you want to go.

For more information about biking trails in the Iowa City area, click here and for Coralville, click here. For information about the North Liberty Recreational Trail and other parks in North Liberty, click here.

We look forward to hearing more of the ways you are incorporating the September Personal Health goals into your life this month!


The Literacy Committee

Friday, September 7, 2012

Iowa Activities: Int'l Writing Program Events

This year the International Writing Program's Fall Residency is welcoming 31 writers from 28 countries around the world. They're not just novelists, poets, playwrights, translators, and filmmakers...they are book publishers, recorded musicians, film editors, slam poets, librettists, playwrights, human rights workers, BBC journalists, and art curators. 

The IWP is providing over 100 free public events that will allow you to meet this fascinating group of residents. These include readings, panel discussions, film screenings, and Global Express, which features actors performing the writers' work on stage.

Want to know more? Check out these links online:

-- Biographies of the 2012 residents: here
-- Calendar of events: here
-- UI Arts Iowa calendar: here
-- Blog: here
-- Twitter page: here
-- Facebook page: here
-- The UI Master Calendar of Events: here

Thanks to the Elder's Quorum for passing along this information!

The Literacy Committee

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Iowa Activity Idea -- FRY fest

The 4th Annual FRY fest will take place FRYday, September 7, 2012, and will recognize and celebrate the 35th Anniversary of the renewal of the Iowa vs. Iowa State football rivalry, the day before the Hawkeyes take on the Cyclones in Kinnick Stadium. FRY fest is a one day celebration to kick-off the Hawkeye athletic seasons the Friday before the first home football game.

Location: Iowa River Landing in Coralville (Coralville Marriott Hotel)
For more information visit the Fry fest website here.

2012 Schedule of Events

FRYday, September 7, 2012
  • 9:00am – 2:00pm
    FRY fest Blood Drive, by the UI DeGowin Blood Center. “I Bleed Black & Gold” T-shirts for all successful donors! Sign up in advance here.
  • 9:00am – 3:00pm
    FRY fest Car Show, presented by Carousel Nissan
  • 10:00am – 8:00pm
    FRY fest World’s Largest Hawkeye Tradeshow
  • 10:00am – 11:30pm
    Autograph session for Frank Fritz from The HISTORY Channel’s American Pickers
  • 10:00am – 1:00pm
    Hawkeye Collector’s Showcase(closes at 1:00pm and reopens at 4:00pm
  • 11:00am – 7:00pm
    Tailgate Row (Food Vendors)
  • 11:30am – 12:30pm
    Presentation by Frank Fritz from American Pickers inside the Hawkeye Collector’s Showcase
  • 12:00pm – 1:30pm
    Autograph Session with former Hawkeyes Rob Houghtlin, Rob Thein, and Matt Hughes, and former Cyclones Thomas Buck and John Quinn
  • 2:00pm – 3:00pm
    Inside Stories of the Iowa vs. Iowa State Rivalry Panel Discussion on the Tigerhawk Stage with former Hawkeyes Larry Station, Chuck Long, John Harty, Rob Houghtlin, Matt Hughes, Rob Thein, Derek Pagel, Warren Holloway, Mike Humpal, and Andy Brodell, and former Cyclones Thomas Buck, John Quinn, Bret Meyer, and Bret Culbertson. The panel discussion will be facilitated by former Iowa Sports Information Director Phil Haddy
  • 3:00pm – 4:30pm
    Autograph Session with former Hawkeyes John Harty, Derek Pagel, Warren Holloway, Mike Humpal, Matt Kroul, and Andy Brodell, and former Cyclones, Bret Meyer, and Bret Culbertson
  • 4:00pm – 6:00pm
    UI Women’s Gymnastics Demonstrations inside the tradeshow
  • 4:00pm – 7:00pm
    Hawkeye Collector’s Showcase
  • 4:00pm – 8:00pm
    FRY fest Small FRY Zone, located at Diamond Dreams
  • 5:00pm
    Beverage garden and concert grounds opens
  • 5:00pm
    The Last Ride on the Pep Rally stage (not ticketed)
  • 6:00pm
    FRY fest Pep Rally, presented by the Iowa City Area Association of REALTORS® with honorary guest Coach Hayden Fry
  • 7:00pm
    FRY fest Concert – Lee Brice
  • 8:30pm
    FRY fest ConcertSara Evans, presented by Two Rivers Bank & Trust

Monday, September 3, 2012

Czech Village, Cedar Rapids

Here is another great Iowa Activity idea that isn't too far from home. Hannah visited the Czech Village in Cedar Rapids and was gracious enough to share a little about her visit and even a few photos.

From Hannah: I can tell you right now that the Czech Museum was fantastic. They had a really cool exhibit with Alfonz Mucha's artwork. (He has his own style named after him.) It's a very beautiful and interesting story. They also had legit traditional clothing. Embroidery Galore! I could never come close to making clothing so beautiful. But anyways the Czech Museum and Library were the highlight of the trip. 

"Cedar Rapids is a city that is home to thousands of Czech, Moravian and Slovak immigrants and their descendants since the turn of the Century. Many more Czechs homesteaded and settled the farms and small towns surrounding Cedar Rapids. The Czech Village is a restored section of what was the shopping district for many of those immigrants. Czechoslovakians, known as Bohemians, have made lasting contributions to the Cedar Rapids community. Czechs began arriving in 1852 to work in local packing plants, and soon a "Little Bohemia" was established in the southwest sector of the city, now known as Czech Village."

National Czech and Slovak Museum & Library, click here.
Address: 1400 Inspiration Place SW, Cedar Rapids IA
Hours: Monday through Saturday, 10am - 5pm.

For more information about the Czech Village (including a map!), click here.

Thanks for sharing Hannah! - and Happy Labor Day,

The Literacy Committee

Saturday, September 1, 2012

September Theme: Personal Health

Happy September! 

This month we are incredibly excited to officially kick off the Lengthening Your Stride program.  September's theme is personal health.  The goal suggestions this month provide several ideas that can improve various aspects of our personal health.   

Our bodies are an amazing gift from Heavenly Father and it is our responsibility to be good stewards over them.  If we follow the teachings of the church regarding our personal health, we are promised: "health in their navel and marrow to their bones . . . wisdom and great treasures of knowledge, even hidden treasures; [you] shall run and not be weary, and shall walk and not faint . . . the destroying angel shall pass by them, as the children of Israel, and not slay them. (D&C 89:18-21).

We hope that this month you can gain a deeper understanding of the blessings that come through lengthening your stride in the area of personal health. 

Please feel free to share your insights and thoughts with us throughout the month.


The Literacy Committee