According to Google Maps, we traveled 584 miles, and drove for 12 hours and 8 minutes during our week in Iowa while avoiding highways.
Each state we visit, we will choose at least one point of interest from each of the following categories: Famous Person, Famous Food, Road Side Attraction, State Capitol & State Museum, National Park, Historic Location, Can't Miss Attraction, and Made in the USA Factory tour. Some of the categories may have more than one selection, and sometimes a category will be vacant due to the lack of a candidate. Please click on the links below for the corresponding blog related our experiences in Michigan over the past week.
Famous person: John Wayne
Famous food: Corn on the Cob
Roadside attraction: Birthplace of Captain Kirk
State Capitol/Museum: Des Moines, IA
National Park: Effigy Mounds National Monument
Historic Location: Buddy Holly Crash Site
Can't miss attraction: Field of Dreams
Made in the USA Factory tour: Winnebago
Please view our previous blog posts for the past week for further explanations of our experiences in Wisconsin.
A breakdown of our expenses of the past week are as follows:
$ 2.13 gal. in Dubuque, IA was the lowest price paid.
$ 2.37 gal. in Harpers Ferry, IA was highest price paid.
Groceries: $ 19.00
Walmart $ 19.00
We did not spend a lot on groceries because ate out way too much this week.
Dining out $ 119.00
Pizza Ranch $23.00 (unbudgeted)
Pizza Ranch $24.00 (unbudgeted)
Chinese Food $23.00 (unbudgeted)
Moe’s $14.00 (unbudgeted buy yummy burrito x2 )
DQ $ 4.00 (unbudgeted but yummy)
Whole Foods $ 31.00 (budgeted and yummy)
We ate out more than usual this week exceeding our dining out budget.
Entertainment: $ 6.00
Felton Place Elevator $ 6.00 (Budgeted 2 round trip tickets)
We did great in this category again!
Walmart $ 0.00 (slept in parking lot x7 nights)
We continue to do great in this category
We did great in this category
Iowa Expenses Grand Total: $ 307.00
(Our expense list does not include re-occurring expenses such as insurance and cellphone etc. )
Is Iowa Our New Home State?
Here are the rules:
Below are the 5 categories that are important to us in choosing our new home state. Each category is rated from 1 to 10 based on our personal experience in no particular order. 1 is the lowest and 10 is the highest for each category. Each category will receive 2 scores; 1 from Lori and 1 from Nate. The average of these two scores will determine the final score for each category. To determine a state’s final score, we will average the total score of each category. If a state’s final score is less than 8, then that state is eliminated from consideration. At the end of our year long cross country trip, the states that scored 8 or higher will be subject to further consideration. In addition, Lori and I each have 1 wild card option, which allows a state that otherwise would have been eliminated, to be considered as our new home state.
“Agriculture, manufacturing and retail form the basis of Iowa's economy”
“Jobs opportunities for those with higher education within the state are limited”
Economy score: 5
Cost of Living:
“With a sales tax 6% and an 8.98% income tax, it would be cheaper to live in Connecticut”
“Gas and food prices were comparable with surrounding Midwestern states”
Cost of living score: 3.5
Quality of life:
“A drought would devastate the corn and hog industries, and the possibility of tornadoes are very scary!”
“The water was so polluted, and the air quality was so poor, I could barely breathe”
Quality of life score: 2
“Unless your idea of fun is a game of corn hole, there is not much to do in Iowa”
“While it is usually a challenge to eat out as a vegetarian, in Iowa it was almost impossible”
Culture Score: 3
“While the roads were very well maintained, everything was extremely rural and far apart”
“Despite the large numbers of farms and farmer markets in the state, there was very little organic produce available”
Environment Score: 3
The verdict is in:
The final score for Iowa was 3.3, and it will NOT be our new home state. Neither Lori nor I opted to use our Wild Card Option on this state.
Below are the current standings:
West Virginia 6.0