Clinton Iowa is located about 2.5 hours due west of Chicago, on the banks of the Mississippi. This pretty little town has many attractions for visitors including a genuine small-town atmosphere. A good place to start your visit would be the riverfront marina which has several amenities including a swimming pool and splash-park as well as biking and pedestrian paths. Here you will also find the City of Clinton Showboat, which presents a full calendar of theatrical performances. Baseball fans can watch the LumberKings in action at the Nelson Corp Field and garden enthusiasts should not miss a visit to the Bickelhaupt Arboretum. Families can have hours of educational fun at the Felix Adler Children’s Discovery Center. Certain attractions may be temporarily closed or require advance reservations. Some restaurants are currently offering pickup only. Hours/availability may have changed.

1.Eagle Point Park

Eagle Point Park
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Eagle Point Park was originally established by the owners of the Clinton and Lyons Railway back in 1888. One of the few good things to come out of the Great Depression in 1933/34 was that Federal funds were used as a relief program to employ hundreds of people who spent many weeks on projects to improve the park. When you visit today you can still enjoy the fruits of their labor as you walk across the limestone bridge, visit the pavilion or climb the many steps of the lookout tower. Recreational activities in the park include numerous hiking trails, bike paths, picnic areas, a children’s playground and a dog park. The park offers exceptional views out over the Mississippi.

Eagle Point Park, 611 S. 3rd Street, Clinton, IA 52732, Phone: 563-242-2144

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2.City of Clinton Showboat

City of Clinton Showboat
© City of Clinton Showboat

The City of Clinton Showboat was originally built in 1935 and saw over 25 years of service as a tugboat on the Ohio River. Today the outer shell of the historic vessel still resembles her origins, but the interior has been totally changed from those early days, to accommodate a modern, air-conditioned/heated live performance theatre for the people of Clinton. The Showboat is permanently docked at Riverfront Park where she welcomes audiences to come and enjoy an outstanding live theatre experience. The Clinton Theatre Group stage several productions each year as well as educating aspiring actors and performers from the community.

City of Clinton Showboat, 303 Riverview Rd, Clinton, IA 52732, Phone: 563-242-6760

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3.Nelson Corp Field, Clinton, Iowa

Nelson Corp Field, Clinton, Iowa
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Built as a Works Progress Administration project after the Great Depression, Nelson Corp Field is a baseball stadium in Clinton which is home to the Clinton LumberKings Minor League baseball team. Since it was originally built the stadium has undergone one major renovation and improvement project in 2006, but still maintains its characteristic art deco theme which was so popular in the 1930’s. More recent additions include a party deck, a picnic pavilion, playground and a picnic garden area. Although the stadium is mainly used for baseball, you may also find a football match or two on the calendar as well as regular live music concerts.

Nelson Corp Field, 537 Ball Park Dr, Clinton, IA 52732, Phone: 563-242-0727

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4.Bickelhaupt Arboretum, Clinton, Iowa

Bickelhaupt Arboretum, Clinton, Iowa
© Bickelhaupt Arboretum

Bickelhaupt Arboretum is a must-see outdoor living museum where you can admire a vast collection of labeled trees, shrubs and plants. The arboretum, which covers 14 acres, represents a true labor of love by Bob and Francis Bickelhaupt, who established the garden in the 1970’s. Today the arboretum is maintained by Clinton Community College who also actively engages with the community to foster a love of nature and a better understanding of horticulture. The arboretum hosts regular classes and tours of the gardens and maintains a lending library. Best of all, the arboretum is open to everyone, free of charge, 365 days of the year.

Bickelhaupt Arboretum, 340 S 14th Street, Clinton, IA 52732, Phone: 563-242-4771

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5.Felix Adler Children’s Discovery Center, Clinton, IA

Felix Adler Children’s Discovery Center, Clinton, IA
© Felix Adler Children’s Discovery Center

The Felix Adler Children’s Discovery Center was named for a clown who loved children and constantly strove to entertain and educate them during his 50 year career with the Barnam and Baily Circus. Since it was first established in 1993 the center has gone from strength to strength and welcomes over 24,000 eager and receptive minds each year. The center offers the ideal environment for children of all ages, and their parents, to learn through play. The exhibits are strictly hands-on and children are encouraged to push their boundaries and try new things. There is also an events room where children’s birthday parties can be held.

Felix Adler Children’s Discovery Center, 332 8th Ave S, Clinton, IA 52732, Phone: 563-243-3600

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6.Candlelight Inn, Clinton, Iowa

Candlelight Inn, Clinton, Iowa
© Candlelight Inn

The Candlelight Inn Restaurant is a popular meeting place located in Riverside Drive. The Clinton branch of the restaurant has a wonderful alfresco dining area on a large deck overlooking the Mississippi River. Still serving much the same menu that has kept regular visitors coming back for over 10 years, Candlelight Inn strives to ensure consistency of quality and flavor. The most asked-for dish on the menu is their legendary Chicken George, perfectly deep-fried chicken tenders served with their signature sauce and sides of your choice. Other popular dishes include steaks, various choices of grilled or broiled fish and salads.

Candlelight Inn Restaurant, 511 Riverview Dr, Clinton, IA 52732, Phone: 563-243-3200

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7.McKinley Street Taverne, Clinton, Iowa

McKinley Street Taverne, Clinton, Iowa
© McKinley Street Taverne

The McKinley Street Taverne is located in a historic building which was built in 1878 to house the offices of the M.A. Disbrow Sash and Door Company. Striving to keep the history alive, the tavern is dotted with historic photographs and artifacts which you can admire as you sip and dine. The restaurant has a reputation for serving consistently good food in a pleasant and relaxed pub-style atmosphere. On the menu you will find a good selection of delicious appetizers like Crab Rangoon, Fried Mushrooms, Chicken Strips or Shrimp Cocktail. Mains include a good selection of steaks, several choices of seafood (including Alaskan king crab), chicken dishes, burgers and salads.

McKinley Street Taverne, 2301 McKinley St, Clinton, IA 52732, Phone: 563-242-3134

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7 Best Things to Do in Clinton, Iowa

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