Midwest Winter Vacation

Al_4_State

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Branson is a ******* tourist trap.

Which is unfortunate, because the area is beautiful. Eureka's only like an hour farther well worth your time.
 

RLD4ISU

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Hermann, MO has quite a few wineries, a few distilleries, restaurants and places to stay. New Haven, MO isn't too far from there - Pickney Bend distillery is located there and they have a glassblower. Though with covid and winter I'm not sure what is open. During the summer you can buy a trolley pass to go wherever you want.

Traverse City would be great - not so much in winter.

The Twin Cities & KC - plenty of places to fit the drink/food criteria

Bentonville & Rogers, Arkansas might be an area to try. At least it should be warmer there. LOL.

This is one way I help figure out where to go for weekend trips, etc: https://www.oalley.net/app/. You put in your location and how long of a drive you'd like to do.

Here's a website I found with ideas for breweries and wineries: http://www.winecompass.com
 

farm85

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I hate that town. Been three times and I would just say no.

OP is looking for wineries, distilleries, breweries & restaurants. Sounds like they also wish to rent a private residence. Branson would fit their guidelines.

I agree that it isn't everyone's top destination. (Just trying to help out the OP)
 

JayV

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This sounds like the scene from "The Great Outdoors" but brought modern by putting it on YouTube. Unbelievable.

I spent a couple days in Amarillo after the Texas Tech football game. I went to the Big Texan and got a 24 oz. ribeye. The following day, driving back to Iowa, i stopped and wrecked a toilet at the Kansas City Public Library. I can't imaging the damage a 72 oz. steak would do.
 
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CtownCyclone

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10 hours from Des Moines can get you to Amarillo, TX. Palo Duro Canyon State Park is just outside of Amarillo and has some of the best hiking I've ever done. It's the 2nd largest canyon in North America and very cool and scenic.

Amarillo also has The Big Texan Steak Ranch and Brewery where you can challenge yourself to eating a 72 oz. steak while being live streamed on YouTube.

There, I just planned your vacation. You're welcome.

I really hope you're not seriously advising someone to vacation in Amarillo for a week.
 

Angie

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I think Madison, WI is underrated. It's a college town so it's got fun stuff to do, is in a beautiful area, and is really near all kinds of stuff (the Dells, not too far from Chicago, etc.).
 
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dmclone

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I think Madison, WI is underrated. It's a college town so it's got fun stuff to do, is in a beautiful area, and is really near all kinds of stuff (the Dells, not too far from Chicago, etc.).
Agree, it's good for a few days but I've only went in the summer. Make sure you get some Hot & Spicy Bread, my god it's good.
 
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Al_4_State

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I think Madison, WI is underrated. It's a college town so it's got fun stuff to do, is in a beautiful area, and is really near all kinds of stuff (the Dells, not too far from Chicago, etc.).

Madison is a lot of fun. We actually live closer to Madison than Des Moines, and get over there probably once a year or so. The brewery scene is kind of average compared to the cultural acumen of the city (one of OP's criteria) but it's a beautiful, unique setting with lots of cool bars and restaurants and it does have a couple good breweries.
 
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Angie

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Madison is a lot of fun. We actually live closer to Madison than Des Moines, and get over there probably once a year or so. The brewery scene is kind of average compared to the cultural acumen of the city (one of OP's criteria) but it's a beautiful, unique setting with lots of cool bars and restaurants and it does have a couple good breweries.

I've only ever been there for work trips, but have tried to soak up some of the culture each time. It's a beautiful area. I can't agree more - and it's got a pretty good music scene.
 

Clonedogg

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FYI Downtown Minneapolis Skywalk system is extensive. You can get within a half of a block of most places.

EDIT: The current temps could be influencing this call out.
 

cyfan92

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Within 10 hours of DSM:

Denver, Dallas, Nashville and Kansas City would be my picks for the entertainment that you have listed. Memphis is Nashville very lite.

Minneapolis would be fun but they have lots of restrictions coming back. Chicago would be worse.

Personally. If you are willing to drive 8-10 hours. I'd commit to an overnight stop and continuing to Galveston
 

jkbuff98

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Within 10 hours of DSM:

Denver, Dallas, Nashville and Kansas City would be my picks for the entertainment that you have listed. Memphis is Nashville very lite.

Minneapolis would be fun but they have lots of restrictions coming back. Chicago would be worse.

Personally. If you are willing to drive 8-10 hours. I'd commit to an overnight stop and continuing to Galveston
I’ve thought about Galveston but don’t know much about it - any advice if we head that way
 

JayV

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I really hope you're not seriously advising someone to vacation in Amarillo for a week.

I could have spent a week hiking at Palo Duro Canyon State Park just SE of Amarillo. Just use Amarillo as a place to eat/sleep. But I realize OP wasn't necessarily asking for outdoor stuff.
 
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dmclone

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For winter and less than a 10 hour drive, I think Nashville/Memphis combo is your best option. Even in Nashville the temperatures are going to be in the mid 40's. In reality, there is not a good 10 hour road trip to escape the cold.