A color guard assigned to Navy Operational Support Center Rock Island parades the colors during opening ceremonies at the 2011 Midwest League All-Star Game at Modern Woodmen Park during Quad Cities Navy Week 2011. Navy Weeks are designed to showcase the investment Americans have made in their Navy as a global force for good and increase awareness in cities that do not have a significant Navy presence. (Photo by Steven Johnson)
The Quad Cities area includes Davenport and Bettendorf in Iowa and Moline, East Moline and Rock Island in Illinois. The area boasts award-winning museums, fun festivals and a scenic riverfront. Root for the local hockey and baseball teams, peruse regional and international art at the Figge Art Museum, stop and smell the roses at the botanical center, or feed a giraffe at the Niabi Zoo. Each city offers a variety of recreational opportunities for all ages.
For more information on the Quad Cities, check out the Quad Cities Convention & Visitors Bureau’s website at www.visitquadcities.com or call 800-747-7800. The following is merely a sampling of the cultural and recreational opportunities in the area.
Figge Art Museum
Figge Art Museum’s landmark glass building in Davenport is home to fine art, traveling exhibitions, art classes, lectures and special events. Visit http://figgeartmuseum.org.
Hiking and Biking
There are more than 100 miles of hiking and biking trails in the Quad Cities. Cruise along a Mississippi River trail, run through local parks or take a stroll through riverfront cities. For a list of local trails, visit www.visitquadcities.com/listings/biking-hiking.
Lions, giraffes, zebras and more await you at the 40-acre Niabi Zoo. The zoo is home to more than 330 animals representing more than 140 species from around the world. The zoo is just minutes from the heart of the Quad Cities in Coal Valley, Illinois. Visit www.niabizoo.com.
Putnam Museum and Science Center
Davenport’s Putnam Museum and Science Center gives immersive, hands-on learning experiences to 150,000 visitors each year. The museum’s mission is to inspire ideas, dialogue and interaction among people of all ages through entertaining experiences that connect them to history, cultures, nature and the environment. Visit www.putnam.org.
Quad City Botanical Center
Rock Island’s Quad City Botanical Center features a tropical atrium, an outdoor butterfly garden, a rare conifer collection, a children’s garden, an ornamental gold fish pond and more. Visit www.qcgardens.com.
Experience the Mississippi River by boat. Local riverboat companies offer a variety of experiences, including themed cruises like fall foliage cruises, dinner and dance cruises, narrated sightseeing cruises or overnight experiences. Visit www.visitquadcities.com/listings/gaming-riverboat for more information on riverboat companies in the Quad Cities.
Rock Island Arsenal Museum
Rock Island Arsenal Museum, the Army’s second oldest museum, showcases Arsenal Island’s history, manufacturing processes and military equipment. It has a small arms collection with more than 1,200 military and civilian small arms on display. Visit www.arsenalhistoricalsociety.org/museum.
From malls and major department stores to antiques and unique boutiques, there’s something for every taste and budget in the Quad Cities. Visit www.visitquadcities.com/listings/shopping.
Snowstar Winter Park
Just minutes outside the Quad Cities in Coal Creek Valley, Snowstar Winter Park has 15 trails, a massive terrain park and 11 snow tubing lanes. Skiing and snowboarding instruction is available. Visit www.skisnowstar.com.
The Quad Cities are home to the River Bandits baseball team and the Mallards hockey team. The Quad Cities River Bandits at Modern Woodmen Park in Davenport are the Class-A affiliate of the Houston Astros. Visit www.milb.com/index.jsp?sid=t565 for tickets and other team information. The Quad City Mallards are AA affiliates of the Iowa and Minnesota Wild. Home games are played at the iWireless Center in Moline. Visit http://myqcmallards.net for stats, a schedule of upcoming games and ticket information.
If you’re looking for something a little different, check out a free Backwater Gamblers water ski show. Visit www.backwatergamblers.com for information on upcoming performances.
For a full list of sporting opportunities in the Quad Cities and local area, visit www.visitquadcities.com/listings/golf-sports.