Twister of Terror

It was June 1968, eerily a stormy time in U.S. history. Protests against the Vietnam War raged across the country. Matin Luther Kind had been cut down by an assassin’s bullet in Memphis in April. Two months later Robert Kennedy would be slain in Los Angeles. Later that summer the Democratic National Convention in Chicago … Read more

We’ll help you plan your escape

Make Okoboji your getaway summer vacation destination. With six lakes, Okoboji is the lake life you’ve been craving. And with countless activities and unique experiences, a vacation to Okoboji is one you’ll never forget. Outlined is a weekend trip itinerary with suggestions on lodging, dining and activities. Whether you’re wanting some QT with the fam … Read more

Nautical Nostalgia

“Most of all it’s that steamer, time you set sail, Ah, the crowd’s always steam in’, Streamin’ and lean in’ on the rail – Jimmy Buffet” Steamboats ruled Okoboji navigation at the turn of the 20th century. By: Greg Drees At the apex of the era, more than a dozen of them piled the waters … Read more

A Slice of History

By: Carole Achterhof “The Story of the O’Farrell Sisters restaurant can’t be served without a few special ingredients- two generations of independent, industrious women, a seasoned boat captain, a missing railroad ledger and pie that won’t be served before its time.” O’Farrell Sisters has been an Okoboji legend since 1948, when it was originally located … Read more

Showpiece Chateau

” ‘Okoboji Phatnoms:’ A look at businesses and other places of intrigue in Okoboji’s Past” By Greg Drees Always there has been the banter about its supposed sultry side. It was a bordello, one rendition claims. Or perhaps a verboten gaming hall, says another. But these are just contrivances at best. Whatever the conjecture of … Read more

Okoboji Phantoms

A look at businesses in Okoboji’s historical past… Vern and Coila’s Magic Ride By Greg Drees The place bore their first names, a couple which had been scarred by the Great Depression and fought their way back through hope and resiliency. In the summer of 1946 they turned the key to Vern & Coila’s, a … Read more

Classic Craft Chronicles

By Greg Dres “Okobojian Denny Anspach and his family own a fleet of classic wooden boats that they have restored an preserved over the years.” Awestruck by the beauty and timelessness of the classic wooden boats, Denny Anspach began a lifelong love affair with the nautical treasures. In farmsteads, fields and boatyards from New Hampshire … Read more

Bridges Over ‘Boji Waters

By: Greg Drees “First bridges connected settlers with development..” Travel with the Time Machine back to the 1850s, when the first settlers, immigrants and adventurers were arriving in the Okoboji area. Their eyes beheld what their Native American predecessors had first witnessed- a land of irresistible beauty and a chain of lakes that held them … Read more

Best Activities for Teens in Okoboji

Explore these teen friendly activities with you, your friends, and or family for any weekend or weekday in Okoboji! Arnold’s Park Beach sand volleyball Right on the beach, Arnold’s Park offers 5 sand volleyball courts that host league games and friendly competition! Grab everyone you can find to fill up the teams and courts! Saturday … Read more

Central Emporium Stores

Full of unique locally owned stores, come down and make your way through each store in the Central Emporium  located in Arnold’s Park! Delaphina With a small collection of knick knacks and clothing wear, they have many cases and displays of beautifully made jewelry; such as, earrings, necklaces, and bracelets. Come on down to spoil yourself … Read more

Queens Court Shops

A vacation is never complete without visiting all of the Arnold’s Park Shops! Come on down and leave with plenty of shopping bags! Sweet Memories With sweet selections of cotton candy, taffies, and other delectables, Sweet Memories is the perfect place to visit to satisfy your sweet tooth! Daily Addiction Daily Addiction offers a large … Read more

Live Music in Okoboji!

Click here for the most up-to-date live music schedule, or scroll down to learn more about the great music venues in the Iowa Great Lakes Area! Okoboji offers an array of different venues and atmospheres to fit with the incoming musicians around the lakes area. Throughout the summer, you can find live music 7 days … Read more

Okoboji – Just Beach it

Grab your beach towel and sunglasses to come explore our Okoboji beaches!  Arnolds Park City Beach Arnolds Park City Beach is in the middle of all the excitement during the Okoboji days. Just next to the bridge on Highway 71, you can walk or drive to the available parking lots after enjoying breakfast at the … Read more

Fall Fishing!

Angling in the Iowa Great Lakes offers diversity. By Greg Drees People are drawn to water magnetically, spiritually. Anglers are among the most ardent to seek lakes of fortune. They come from near and far to the waters of Okoboji, lured by the legend of the fisheries, which are healthy, diverse and full of mystery. … Read more

Biking Goes Bonkers

Spine and loop trails draw cyclists to the lakes By Greg Drees In 1988, a new RISE initiative funded by the Iowa Legislature provided $1 million annually for the development of recreational trails in Iowa. From this start was born the Dickinson County Trails Association (DCTA), which won a grant the following year for $357,121 … Read more

Boji Brewhaha

Craft beer explosion By Greg Drees Just a few short years ago, only a handful of breweries existed in Iowa. Today, as many as 60 such breweries – with their popular taste rooms in tandem – have opened their doors statewide. The Iowa Great Lakes is home to two of them – West O Beer … Read more