If you’re looking for some fun activities around Osceola and Clarke County, Iowa, you’ll have a hard time picking from this list! From festivals to parades, and even some recreational “grown-up” fun, local residents and visitors have the opportunity entertain themselves from morning through midnight and beyond. And if you’re looking for entertainment on a budget, we have the top 10 solutions (okay, maybe 9.5) for you to choose.
1. Osceola’s Independence Day Celebration
Osceola, Iowa is known for its American pride! Week-long entertainment surrounds the town square with a carnival atmosphere, including rides, food vendors, live music, contests, and games for everyone! If you’re a parade junkie, Osceola’s Independence Day parade is second to none and pulls people from all over southern Iowa. With many different organizations and businesses passing out candy, city emergency crews blasting sirens, marching bands keeping the pace and locals passing out popsicles to cool you off, there’s just no comparison. Gather around after a day of celebrating to watch the fireworks show seen throughout the entire town.
2. Holiday Brilliance on the Osceola Square
Santa Claus is coming to town! Early in December Santa Claus has his elves bring down his little red house to see all the boys and girls. If you don’t get the chance to see and chat with Santa, that’s okay, the first Saturday in December, the lighted parade brightens up the square along with a musical performance as Santa hears the last of your Christmas wishes before flying back to the North Pole.
3. Becky Persels Skate Park, Trail, Pool, and Soccer Fields
Looking to get physical? The Clarke County Parks and Recreation department has many opportunities to enjoy the outdoors. Take a stroll on the Hembry Pathway, or take advantage of the open soccer fields. Roll down the ramps at the Becky Persels skating park then cool off at the Osceola Family Aquatic Center. Heck, it’s so cool, even Fern Underwood’s Free Swim Night was featured on KCCI. Family friendly, the recreation complex makes it possible to go all together and enjoy each activity.
4. Come Out and Support The Local Teams
Our schools have some great local sports and extra curricular activities to follow. Clarke County’s high schools boast some of the best and most competitive sports, from softball champions to football, basketball, and more! School spirit is what you’ll get in the stands, on the stage, under the spotlight, and in the classrooms. Clarke County students and their families take pride in every extracurricular activity. The hallways of Clarke Community and Murray Schools are filled with awards for activities from marching band, speech, and athletic accomplishments. There are plenty of seasonal performances put on by the musical groups and theater clubs too. Check out the Clarke County Schools section for updates and information so you can support our students!
5. Clarke County Fairgrounds
Got an itch for livestock judging, machinery shows, and food competition? Then you must be a Fair-Goer! The Clarke County fairgrounds, just outside Osceola on highway 34, has events throughout the year to give you a true picture life in Clarke County. But at the end of July, the BIG EVENT, The Clarke County Fair takes place. This is no small-town event! The Clarke County Fair brings in local and regional competitors, from kids to adults as well as groups like 4-H and others to show off their talents hoping some get featured at the Iowa State Fair in August! Craft shows, jamborees and flea markets are some of the other things that show the real fun and talent in the area!
6. Clarke County Speedway
Do you live life in the fast lane? Looking for an exhilarating, edge of your seat experience? Sit in the first row and you’ll get all the live action at the Clarke County Speedway. Racers come from all over to zip around the track as fans cheer them on through the end! Sponsored by local businesses, race nights also have chances for the audience to get involved! For a list of upcoming races, visit http://www.clarkecountyspeedway.com.
7. Osceola’s Thursday Night in the Park
Did someone say FREE concert? That’s right, live music every Thursday night in Osceola. Local businesses sponsor entertainment (and sometimes food) to get you ready for Friday and grooving on to your weekend. Hosted by Clarke County State Bank, the Annual Ice Cream Social is just one of the many popular events held at Thursday Night in the Park. Bring your lawn chairs and dance moves and meet on the square in Osceola Thursday nights!
8. The Loft Events
Every once in a while, you need to kick back and relax. The Loft on Clay has plenty of relaxing events for any age! Unwind with a glass of wine, put your painting skills to the test, or learn how to make a beautiful portrait for your home! Margarita parties, live entertainment, and private parties are also held at the Loft at an affordable price!
9. Osceola’s Farmers Market
Craving some fresh food in your diet? Don’t have a garden? The Osceola Farmers Market provides the freshest garden goods from vegetables, fruits, and even homemade treats! Open Tuesdays from 3-6 p.m. and Saturdays 8-12 p.m., the Farmers Market is located on the Osceola square until mid-October.
10. Lakeside Casino Resort
Finally, and not without its own fanfare, Clarke County and Osceola, Iowa is home to one of the Midwest’s best and brightest casino / hotels and event centers. The budget is certainly flexible here, but Lakeside Casino Resort has over 100 hotel rooms and suites; a continually changing list of internationally recognized entertainment and one of the best casinos for playing action around! From roulette, slots and cards, to dining and live entertainment, Lakeside Casino Resort can fill those exhilarating moments you are craving! For event listings, check out this link: http://www.redtrucktickets.com/websales/pages/VenueListPage.
Think of it, if you just pick one activity from this list each week, you’ll have enough fun and family enjoyment to last over two months! And your list shouldn’t stop there. Because of Osceola and the County’s unique location in southern Iowa, just off I-35, and Highways 34 and 69, access to outdoor recreational activities like hunting, fishing, and more is as abundant as you’ll find anywhere in the state. There’s always something happening in Osceola and Clarke County. Make sure you check out clarkecountylife.com for updates on the latest news, happenings around town!