Creston and Union County are located in the beautiful rolling hillsides of southwest Iowa, 75 miles
southwest of Des Moines and 100 miles southeast of Omaha. It is the perfect place to spend your next vacation or holiday. Our many “High Lakes” offer an array of outdoor recreational opportunities unmatched in SW Iowa. Over 2,100 acres of water, including five lakes and over 6,000 acres of publicly owned parks, woodlands, prairie and wetlands. All conveniently located within a 25 mile radius. Here you can also experience our railroad history or that of the Mormons who passed through on their way to Utah. Our expanding trails are becoming more and more popular. Please come enjoy and experience Union County.
Afton Splash Pad
Afton City Park
Creston: Arts Gallery
116 West Adams, Creston
641-782-2000, ext. 3
Creston’s Restored Depot
116 West Adams, Creston
641-782-2000, ext. 3
Creston Swimming Pool
Frank Phillip’s Information Center
west on Hwy. 34, Creston, IA
Happy Valley Church
High Lakes Shooting Range
North of Afton
McKinley Park Disc Golf Course
McKinley Park, Creston
Mount Pisgah Mormon
1704 Mount Pisgah Rd, Thayer
Park to Park Trail
McKinley Park to Green Valley State Park
Rainbow Disc Golf Course
500 block of S. Vine & S. Birch
Union County Historical Village
just off Hwy. 34 West in McKinley Park
LAKES OF UNION COUNTY
For information on any of the lakes please
call the Union County Conservation Office
641-347-5100 or Union County Tourism –
Green Valley State Park
PLACES TO STAY
Adams Street Country Lodge
1412 170th St., Creston
Green Valley State Park Cabins
Green Valley State Park
800 S Walnut, Hwy 34 East, Creston
704 New York Ave, Hwy 34 West, Creston
Super 8 of Creston
804 W. Taylor, Hwy. 34 West, Creston
Supertel Inn and Conference Center
800 Laurel Street, Hwy. 34 West, Creston
Three-Mile Lake Cabins
Three Lakes Lodge
801 N. Pierce, Afton
2011 Ringgold-Union St., Shannon City
12 Mile Lake
4 miles east of Creston
Afton City Park
on the square, Afton
Arispe Roadside Park
1937 190th Street, Creston
Country Court Mobile Home & RV Court
1804 Virginia Lane, Creston
west of Afton
Green Valley State Park
Groesbeck Wildlife Area
NE of Afton
Lorimor City Park
west edge of Lorimor
McKinley Park & McKinley Park Camp Ground
Creston – 641-782-2000 ext. 2
west side of Creston
Mount Pisgah Park
1704 Mount Pisgah Road, Thayer
500 block of S. Vine & S. Birch, Creston
Talmage Hill Nature Park
4 miles east of Afton
one mile west of Thayer
Celebrate the 4th of July in Creston
Looking for a Home Town Fourth of July Celebration? Look no further than Creston. There are many fun activities planned for the family and many are free.
One of the highlights of the event is the annual 4th of July Parade held on July 4th in Uptown Creston. Creston is known for their parades and the July 4th Parade is one of the best and biggest usually lasting at least 45 minutes. Before and or after the parade many people enjoy shopping the Flea Market in Uptown Creston.
McKinley Park is the center of many other Fourth of July events. The Union County Historical Village holds their annual Pioneer Days Celebration, Old Tyme Power displays their classic and antique machinery, there is a classic and antique tractor pull as well as games of bingo, food and several other activities taking place.
Another highlight of the 4th of July Celebration in Creston each year is the annual fireworks display at 9:30 p.m. in McKinley Park. on the 4th While fireworks are a staple of many Independence Day celebrations, Creston’s are well above standard. Visitors from around the area, SW Iowa and northern Missouri come again and again to enjoy the show.
In addition to these activities on the 4th, a street dance is always held on the 3rd July. For a complete listing of events and activities please visit www.crestoniowachamber.com.
If you are looking for a place to spend the 4th of July, remember Creston. You won’t be disappointed.
Afton – Gateway to Three Mile Lake
Afton, located at the intersection of Highways 169 and 34, is the southern Gateway to Three Mile Lake
in Union County.
It is a community that meets you and greets you on the square. Every Tuesday evening from June through mid-August, the community gathers in the City Park, located in downtown Afton, to enjoy Lawn Chair nights and a Farmers Market complete with music and food. The Lion’s Club holds a Pre-Fourth of July celebration in the park the Sunday before the Fourth. A Community Church Service, food, entertainment and games are some of the activities on the day’s agenda. The new splash pad on the square is a fun stop for locals as well as visitors.
Afton has been host to the Union County Fair held in July for as long as anyone can remember. A parade, rodeo and demolition derby headline the fair. While at the fair, visit the industry booths, tour the animal barns, 4-H booths and enjoy the great cooking and homemade ice cream.
Be sure to add Afton to your travel agenda. It is a great place to visit. Please call 641-347-5224 for further details or visit their website at www.aftoniowa.com
Enjoy the Outdoors in Union County
Union County is one of southwest Iowa’s wildlife and outdoor recreation “must go places”. Located along and near Highway 34, with easy access to Interstate 35 and Interstate 80 the lakes and beautiful landscape are easily accessible to the avid outdoorsman and those who enjoy the outdoors and the beauty which Southwest Iowa offers.
Whether its deer or turkey, waterfowl or pheasants, walleye, Muskie or the lowly catfish, opportunities for hunting and fishing are plentiful in and around Union County. Union County’s High Lakes offer an array of outdoor recreational opportunities unmatched in southern Iowa. Five lakes including award winning 3-Mile Lake and Green Valley State Park along with 2,500 acres of publicly owned woodland and prairie….all conveniently located within a 20-mile radius of each other.
The lakes offer opportunities for water-skiing, boating, camping, hiking and picnicking and some great ice fishing during the winter months for the entire family.
The duck and goose hunting is excellent. Turkeys were stocked in the area in the late 70’s and have expanded to the point where just about every patch of woods has turkeys now.
The region has become a favorite for deer hunters as well.
Thousands of acres of CRP and cropland furnish an excellent habitat for wildlife. Or, if you prefer, you can hunt along the banks of Three Mile and Twelve-Mile Lakes, where hundreds of acres of cover and food plots have been created to draw wildlife.
Opened in 2013, the High Lakes Shooting Range, is another spot for the outdoor enthusiast.
Three great golf courses can also be found in Union County along with an expanding hiking and biking trail which now runs from McKinley Park in Creston north to Green Valley State Park. This Park to Park Trail is paved over five miles and once at Green Valley State Park you can enjoy another 3 plus miles of paved trails along with 6 miles of grass trails around Green Valley Lake. These latter trails are suitable for hiking and mountain bikes.
For more information on hunting, fishing or other activities in the area please call Union County Conservation at 641-347-5100. Call Creston/Union County Tourism for a free travel guide at 641-782- 7022 or visit our website at www.unioncountyiowatourism.com.
Enjoy Three Mile Lake Recreation Area
Three Mile Lake Recreation Area is Union County’s largest recreational facility and family destination spot. The area is a haven for all nature lovers, yet it is only a few miles away from three golf courses, Historical Village, YMCA and restored Depot to name but a few attractions. You are also close to great shopping and Dining.
Here you can find year-around rental cabins at the modern campground or two campgrounds overlooking the lake have 80 sites to accommodate recreational vehicles, trailers and tent campers. Each site has electrical hook-ups. Water is available along with picnic sites, a fish cleaning station and dump stations. Showers, sinks and flush toilets are available nearby at the year-around comfort stations. Wi-Fi is also found in the main campground.
Acres of underwater structures make for some of the best fish habitat in Iowa. Bring your own boat or use one of the 11 fishing jetties or explore nearly 24 miles of shoreline for your own
“best” spot. For those with special needs, there is a wheelchair accessible fishing pier.
The lower portion of the lake is open to sailing, power boating and water skiing (sorry, no inboards or jet skis). “No-wake” boating is permitted on the remainder of the lake. The swimming beach offers you the opportunity to spend the afternoon lying on the sand or swimming in the lake.
Come see for yourself all that Three Mile Lake and the surrounding area have to offer. To find out more please call the Union County Conservation Office at 641-347-5100.
Experience Hot Air Balloon Days in Creston
Creston and Southwest Iowa’s rolling hills and blue skies are a perfect setting for nearly 40 hot air balloons participating in the Hot Air Balloon Days the third weekend in September – September 15, 16 & 17, 2017. Now in its 40th year, the event is the second largest of its kind in the state of Iowa.
In addition to the balloon races during the weekend there is also the annual Hot Air Balloon Days Parade with high school marching bands from across the area, along with balloonists and many others on Saturday morning starting at 10:30 a.m. in Uptown Creston. The Creston City Center is the site of various activities for spectators of all ages as well. A Flea Market and Craft Fair is a must see as well as a stroll through town to visit the local merchants open for your shopping pleasure during the day.
On Saturday afternoon you can continue to enjoy your day at the airport and participate in or enjoy the pedal pull and Pet Show. In addition to these activities for the children, there is a Show & Shine Car Show taking place as well. The very popular NightGlow begins at dusk.
The event wraps up on Sunday morning with the last balloon race, weather permitting. Mark your calendar and make your plans early to attend. For more information please call the Creston Chamber of Commerce at 641-782-7022 or visit their website at www.crestoniowachamber.com. Up, Up and Away.
Union County Historical Village and Museum Is a Must See
The Union County Historical Village and Museum is located in Creston just off of Highway 34 West in beautiful McKinley Park. Here you can find buildings reminiscent of a prospering village in Iowa around the 1890’s. You can see the fully furnished last operating rural school in Union County. Other original buildings brought to the complex include an 1855 log cabin, a barn originally built in 1896, a house built before 1900 and the Spaulding Methodist Church, built in 1878 where weddings still take place today. A depot, originally from Lucas and later used at Brooks, along with a signal tower from the Creston rail yards and a caboose, emphasize the importance of the railroad heritage to the area.
Replicas in the village include a general store, harness shop, barbershop, blacksmith shop, fire station, machine shed, print shop and gristmill. A museum adjoins the village and contains hundreds of artifacts and Union County memorabilia.
The Village hosts the annual Pioneer Days event on the 4th of July. Demonstrations and music representing Union County’s heritage are presented.
The Village is open from 1:00 to 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Saturday and Sunday from Memorial Day through Labor Day or by appointment and is free to the public. Tours can also be scheduled during the year. For more information please call Dick at 641-782-4000 or Sharon at 641-782-2870.
Experience Creston’s Historic Railroad Depot
Creston began as a railroad town in 1869. It was located at the high point on the Burlington Line between the two great rivers, the Missouri and Mississippi.
In 1960 Creston was cut from the division title and the historic 1899 Rail Depot was closed and sold to the city of Creston for $1.00. Orginally the building was condemned and scheduled for demolition, but citizens of Creston saved the historic landmark. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973 and in 1978 the Creston City offices located to the restored Depot.
Today, besides Creston City offices you can find the Union County Congregate Meal Site located in the building as well as Creston: Arts, the Gallery. Also, the restored Depot now houses a Presidential Doll Collection, given to the city by a long-time resident, which depict all first ladies in their inaugural gowns through Mrs. Clinton. In the Memorial Room on the first floor, designed as a waiting area from long ago, the Creston Model Railroaders have built a working replica of Creston during its railroad hey-day.
Many train lovers visit the Depot to enjoy the atmosphere and the over fifty plus trains that still pass or stop in Creston on a daily basis. For more information please call 641-782-7022 or visit our website at www.crestoniowachamber.com
Make Uptown Creston a Must Stop
Uptown Creston offers locals, visitors and guests a wide variety of shopping experiences. Here you can find unique shops for clothing, furniture, antiques and collectibles along with several great local restaurants to mention a few of the selections that await you.
Quilts & Other Notions located at 209 West Montgomery Street in Creston is one of the finest quilt stores, not only in southwest Iowa, but the region. Here you can find over 7000 bolts of quilting fabrics, notions, books and patterns. Celebrating over 30 years in business the staff is very knowledge and more than willing to assist the novice quilter to those who have been quilting for years. Their phone number is 641-782-8874.
Quilts & Other Notions is “your total sewing store”.
Maple Street Memories scrapbook store is located in the Old Post Office in Uptown Creston. Rehabilitation of the build is ongoing. Maple Street Memories has become well known to crafters around the state and nation for their full line of scrapbook supplies, including over 3000 kinds of papers. They offer specialty die cuts and papers that can be customized to a customer’s projects.
You can visit Maple Street Memories in person at 222 North Maple Street in Uptown Creston, or at www.maplestreetmemories.com or on Facebook. You can also visit their ebay stores at http://stores.ebay/better-letter-stamp and http://stores.ebay/gotta-notion. In addition to these great stores, there are numerous other locally owned stores and boutiques in Uptown Creston.Quilts & Other Notions located at 209 West Montgomery Street in Creston is one of the finest quilt stores, not only in southwest Iowa, but the region. Here you can find over 7000 bolts of quilting fabrics, notions, books and patterns. Celebrating over 30 years in business the staff is very knowledge and more than willing to assist the novice quilter to those who have been quilting for years. Their phone number is 641-782-8874. Quilts & Other Notions is “your total sewing store”. Maple Street Memories scrapbook store is located in the Old Post Office in Uptown Creston. Rehabilitation of the build is ongoing. Maple Street Memories has become well known to crafters around the state and nation for their full line of scrapbook supplies, including over 3000 kinds of papers. They offer specialty die cuts and papers that can be customized to a customer’s projects. You can visit Maple Street Memories in person at 222 North Maple Street in Uptown Creston, or at www.maplestreetmemories.com or on Facebook. You can also visit their ebay stores at http://stores.ebay/better-letter-stamp and http://stores.ebay/gotta-notion.
In addition to these great stores, there are numerous other locally owned stores and boutiques in Uptown Creston.