Posts Tagged ‘road trip’


Iowa Sheep & Wool

22 June 2009

Weekend before this past weekend, my sister and I took a road trip to Iowa for the Iowa Sheep & Wool Festival. The original plan was for my aunt J to go with us (she’s a spinner and a weaver), but she ended up with a scheduling conflict. So, we sisters had a little weekend trip, just the two of us.

We both took Friday off, so we were able to leave town a little after noon. Wendy drove my car, as she loves to drive, and I love to make other people drive so I can knit. She had already checked the route and made some notes on where to go, but I set up the iPhone GPS to see how accurate it was. It did pretty well. Got us all the way to the hotel in West Des Moines without any problems. It took us about 4 hours to make the drive. A big rain storm hit right before we reached the hotel. Once we arrived, we ordered some Chinese food and hung out in the room until bedtime.

The next morning we headed out for the festival, which was in Adel, Iowa, about 20 minutes west of the hotel. Thankfully, the rain had stopped overnight. It was pretty cloudy but that meant it was nice and cool.

Having only been to one other fiber festival before, I wasn’t sure what to expect. Turns out that though I thought this would be a large festival, it wasn’t. Not by a mile. The fairgrounds where the festival was held were not that big – there were a lot of buildings but not a lot of activity. One building was holding classes; one building housed the sheep-to-shawl competition; another building had the fiber vendors; and another one had some animals.

We walked around and saw some sheep. There were black sheep.

Horned sheep (okay, I know it’s a ram. I think. Right?)

Brown sheep.

Bald sheep.

And little baby cow sheep (Yeah, there’s no such thing. But they look like cows with the spots, you know?).

You get the idea. There were lots of sheep.

Anyway, after seeing the sheep, we had lunch. Or rather, we attempted to have lunch. The only food vendor was this one selling various lamb items – lamb burgers, lamb brats, lamb burritos, lamb jerky, etc. I decided to try a lamb cheeseburger and Wendy tried the lamb brat. Big mistake. Unless you like lamb. Very gamey. Not so yummy. Not sure I’ll get that taste out of my mouth any time soon.

Bad lunch got me in the mood to shop, so we headed over to the fiber vendors. I ooh’d and ahh’d over all the soft and pretty fiber. Wendy pissed off one of the vendors when she accidentally knocked over a rack containing pamphlets (the woman was not nice about it even though it was an accident – needless to say she didn’t get any of our business). After making the rounds of all the vendors and pricing everything, I made some purchases, a couple of which were definitely impulse buys. I’m hoping the buyers remorse stay away.

After shopping, we had pretty much done all that we could do there and decided to leave. It was a little after noon at that point. Our original plan was to stay Saturday night and drive home Sunday morning, but after finishing at the festival so quickly we decided to head home. Thankfully the hotel let us out of our reservation for Saturday night.

We did a quick bit of sight-seeing on the way home and I’ll share those pics in a later post, as well as pics of the fiber/yarn haul.