Cedar Rapids  Tourism Office

FREE THINGS TO DO IN CEDAR RAPIDS

WHO DOESN'T LOVE A FREE OUTING NOW AND THEN? WHETHER YOU NEED AN IDEA FOR A DATE, OUTING WITH THE KIDS OR A FEW IDEAS FOR YOURSELF, HERE IS A GUIDE TO FREE THINGS TO DO IN THE CEDAR RAPIDS, IOWA AREA!

1. NewBo City Market

At NewBo City Market—a dynamic public space where local entrepreneurs create an environment of fresh, wonderful food, products and experiences— you’ll find live entertainment throughout the year. For example, on Thursday evenings May through September come out for free exercise including walking, biking, running, yoga and cardio. Open Wednesday 10 a.m.-8 p.m., Thursday 10 a.m.-8 p.m., Friday 10 a.m.-8 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

NewBo City Market Yoga

2. Wickiup Hill Learning Center

New this year to Wickiup Hill Learning Center is the Wickiup’s Wandering Woods—a new children’s outdoor natural playscape open year round from sunrise to sunset. Children are encouraged to build, create, climb, balance, move and get messy with natural materials. Go inside to explore Oliver & Ava’s River Raft Adventure Exhibit, designed around a story of a school-aged boy and girl who follow a magical dragonfly on a learning adventure related to Native American history, nature and watersheds. 

children's outdoor natural playscape

3. Linn County Parks Geocaching Challenge

Take the Linn County Parks Geocaching Challenge and explore 25 Linn County parks, preserves and historic sites. Whether you are a seasoned geocaching expert or just learning, this is the perfect way to enjoy the outdoors. 

4. Indian Creek Nature Center

Indian Creek Nature Center’s grounds and trails are available to explore at no charge. Trails are open daily from sunrise to 10 p.m. Visit their website to see the latest hours for the Nature Center and Creekside Shop.

kids walking at Indian Creek Nature Center

5. Grant Wood Studio

Visit the Grant Wood Studio, a quirky art studio where the famous artist painted the iconic American Gothic. Open April through December on Saturdays and Sundays 12-4 p.m.

6. Cedar Rapids Museum of Art

On the third Thursday of every month from 5-8 p.m. admission is free at the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art. The Museum’s collection is particularly strong in American art, especially from the first half of the 20th century. There are a number of artists the Museum holds in great depth – including the world’s largest collection of works of art by Grant Wood.

Cedar Rapids Museum of Art

7. Veterans Memorial Building

In the Veterans Memorial Building you can see the only commissioned stained glass window by Grant Wood, which is dedicated to soldiers. View it from the inside during week days Monday through Friday 9 a.m.-4 p.m. or see it back lit during the evening from the outside.

stained glass window Veterans Memorial Building

8. National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library

Students of all ages (preschool through college) are invited to visit the National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library’s engaging permanent and traveling exhibits for free on the first Saturday of each month during regular museum hours.

National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library 

9. Grand Lodge of Iowa

The Grand Lodge of Iowa (also known as the Iowa Masonic Library and Museum) is reputed to be the largest Masonic library in the world with more than 100,000 volumes. The Library’s museum also contains three exhibits featuring an original Grant Wood painting, a Civil War flag from an Iowa regiment, Asian armor, Native American weapons, as well as pottery and decorative arts from around the world. Open Monday through Friday 8 a.m.-12 p.m. and 1 p.m.-5 p.m.

masonic lodge cedar rapids

10. Czech Village New Bohemia Main Street District

Visit Czech Village New Bohemia Main Street District to experience both the history and the revitalization of Cedar Rapids. A lively mix of art, culture, cuisine, and shopping, this urban neighborhood has endless opportunities and things to see.

Also featured in the Blog
Cedar Rapids  Tourism Office

Gardens Galore

Area gardens are in full bloom in August and it is the perfect time to explore the area's grandest public gardens.

Full Blog »
Featured Partners
NewBo City Market Inc.

NewBo City Market Inc.

NewBo City Market is a year-round public market in the heart of Cedar Rapids' New Bohemia neighborhood, a place for shopping,…

Indian Creek Nature Center

Indian Creek Nature Center

Escape into the beauty and wonder of nature at Indian Creek Nature Center, featuring four miles of well-groomed trails through…

Cedar Rapids Museum of Art

Cedar Rapids Museum of Art

The Cedar Rapids Museum of Art houses more than 7,200 works of art spanning many eras-from Roman antiquity to the present. The…

Veterans Memorial Building

Veterans Memorial Building

The Veterans Memorial Building is managed and maintained by the Veterans Memorial Commission. The Building is on the National…