Clear Lake, Iowa a Winter Getaway

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Disclosure: This post was created in sponsorship with Clear Lake, Iowa Chamber of Commerce. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

About two hours north of Des Moines is Clear Lake, Iowa. There are many things to see and do in this small town including fishing, swimming, sailing, shopping, and more. Many may think of Clear Lake as a summer destination spot, but the Color of Wind Kite Festival is one of the many reasons you should visit in the Winter too. The perfect weekend getaway trip in the dead of winter.

Clear Lake, Iowa, Kite Festival, Color the Wind

On the third Saturday in February, each year kite fliers from all over come together to put on a fun, colorful show in the sky on the frozen Clear Lake. It was an amazing site to see all the kites in the air. Kites included large dragons and octopuses, to a flying pig.

Clear Lake, Iowa, Color the Wind, Kite Festival

Tips before you go:

  • Wear your snow gear! We bundled the kids in all their winter weather gear. It was a chilly morning with light snow, but soon cleared up.
  • Bring lawn chairs. It is encouraged to come and stay awhile. Bring blankets, lawn chairs, snacks and hot coco and enjoy the site.
  • Bring a sled. I am not sure why I did not think of this, but we saw many parents dragging their kids around on sleds on the lake. It looked like lots of fun!
  • Pack those heat warmers. Grab a box of hand and foot warmers. They will be your best friend throughout the day.

Before we headed towards the Color the Wind Kite Festival we stopped at the Clear Lake Arts Center for the kids to color and create their own kite. It was a fun experience! I was really impressed on how all the volunteers knew how to create a kite. There is a lot of tying, taping and cutting that goes into it.

Kite, Clear Lake, Iowa, Color the Wind. Kite Festival

The Clear Lake Arts Center was also where they held a fabulous reception for the kite fliers and attendees. We enjoyed some appetizers and drinks while talking to one of the crew members of the I80 Kite Fliers. It was very interesting to learn how they began this hobby and an expensive hobby at that! Many of the large, colorful kites cost well over a thousand dollars. Teams such as the I80 Kite Fliers have multiple kite fliers who work together and choreograph their kites to music, which takes some great talent to do!

Color the Wind, Kite Festival, Clear Lake, Iowa

While in Clear Lake we of course enjoyed some great beverages and good eats. We stopped at Lake Time Brewery for a few local craft brews and fun games with the kids.

Lake Time Brewery, Clear Lake, Iowa

Cabin Coffee Co. located in downtown Clear Lake, was the perfect spot to grab a hot beverage before heading to the lake. I loved the cabin feeling and the seats right in front of the window where you could sit as the snow fell. The food was top notch too! They were super family friendly. The kids enjoyed sitting in their saddle seats. They also had a small play area with books and other small toys.

Cabin Coffee Co., Clear Lake, Iowa

We had a blast exploring Clear Lake, Iowa in the Winter and cannot wait to return this summer to experience what this cute town and lake has to offer.


Erin Huiatt

Erin is a reliable resource and stepping stone for women and families to find support and make connections within our community. She wants families to feel confident to reach out and ask for help and advice to get pointed in the right direction. She enjoys traveling and exploring with her two children in tow!

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