Per the Amana Colonies Convention and Visitors Bureau (ACCVB):
Chilly temperatures and snow have arrived in eastern Iowa just in time for Winterfest in the Amana Colonies. The eighth annual Winterfest will offer fun for everyone during this year’s celebration Saturday, Jan. 28.
The new outdoor event this year at the market barn will be the traditional German Hammerschlagen, with contestants competing in this fast-paced game to be the first to drive a nail into a crosscut section of a log. Participate in the other great outdoor fun at the market barn, including open fire chili, meet the Winterfest Ice Princess, log-sawing competition, the Great Amana Ham-Put, the best beard competition and more. Events at the market barn take place between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.
The wildly popular Amana Freezer 5k Run/Walk at 9 a.m. kicks off a great day of additional outdoor events in Amana. Also, learn about bald eagles during the eagle watch at the Lily Lake and enjoy a marshmallow roast at Millstream Brewery.
Not ready for the cold? There are lots of indoor activities at Winterfest, including breakfast the way it used to be served during the “Cooking on the Communal Hearth” at the Communal Kitchen Museum in Middle Amana. The Amana Heritage Museum is also sponsoring a free admission day. Come to Heritage Designs to see Amana quilters create a beautiful heirloom using an original, communal-era design. The Amana Woolen Mill will have knitting and spinning demonstrations and the Amana Furniture Shop will offer shop tours. Families can participate in chocolate dipping and learn how to make chocolate-marshmallow snowmen during a candy-making demonstration at the Chocolate Haus.
The fun of Winterfest goes on all day and night. Try hot spiced wine and other samples all day as you visit each of Amana’s six wineries during the Winter Warmer-Upper Wine Walk. Then, enjoy some evening entertainment starting at 5 p.m. with accordionist Ron Johnson at the Bierstube of the Ox Yoke Inn. Amana’s own 50s and 60s band, Silver Wings, will perform starting at 6 p.m. at the Old Brick House Market (former Brick Haus Restaurant).
Many other activities will be held all day throughout the community. A complete list is available at www.FestivalsInAmana.com. Consider the Amana Colonies your handcrafted festival escape.