Looking for culture among the cornfields? Look no further than America's Hometown! After all, Charles City is home to a strong arts and entertainment base, historic treasures and some of the finest art works in the region. That's right, Picasso, Rembrandt van Rijn, Alexander Calder, James Whistler and Grant Wood are all alive and well in Charles City ... or at least their works are in the Charles City Public Library, which boasts the priceless Arthur Mooney art collection and a modern, newly expanded facility to exhibit it in. The library also offers an extensive reference collection, Internet access and genealogical section to go along with its fine printed, audio and video book collection.
The Charles City Arts Center has a little culture to offer as well, with a permanent collection of local, regional, national and even international fine art, along with numerous traveling exhibits. Art-A-Fest, art classes, the Beaux Arts Ball and the Stony Point Players community theater group are just a few of the other activities the Arts Center presides over. Speaking of community theatre, the Stony Point Players and the Arts Center recently acquired the Charles Theater, one of the last art deco movie theaters left in the Midwest. In addition to continuing its tradition of showing first-run movies, the 1935 theater also offers a stage for community theater productions, variety shows and a children's theater workshop. The Floyd County Historical Society Museum is one of the largest in Iowa, with an extensive collection of more than 110,000 items displayed in over 40 exhibits. The museum features a restored turn-of-the-century pharmacy and drug store, an 1853 log cabin, period rooms, and is the proud keeper of Charles City's tremendous tractor legacy with a collection of antique tractors, Hart-Parr/Oliver/White memorabilia and a huge tractor manual archive.
If you're more in tune with music, America's Hometown is playing your song with its GRAMMY award-winning high school music program (recognized as one of the top 100 in the country) and community groups such as the Charles City Singers, Municipal Band and Community Jazz Band. Other organizations as well, such as Camerata St. Charles and the Sweet Adelines add to the harmony that is the Charles City music scene, while each year America's Hometown plays host to North Iowa's only drum and bugle corps competition. If you're a history buff, Charles City is home to a number of places listed on the National Register of Historic Places, including the 1906 Suspension Bridge, Wildwood Park, which was the first golf course in Iowa to be placed on the Register, as well as a number of homes in the community. Both the Charles City Area Chamber of Commerce and Community Revitalization maintain local Historic Register lists, along with other historic points of interest in town.
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