Saturday, June 2, 2012


When planning today's drive from Forest City to Lincoln, we decided not to take the most direct route. Instead, we embarked on a day of zigging and zagging through Iowa's very rural midsection, with a midday stop at Point B on this map: Breda, Iowa.

If you travel five miles west of two-lane US 71 on even narrower Carroll County Road E16, this is what you'll see. There, in the distance, between the wind turbines, sits Breda.

When we pulled into the proud town of 500 early this beautiful Saturday afternoon, Bullwinkle had a mighty presence along Main Street.

It had been more than 40 years since Paul had visited this quiet corner of the world. Today, Mary was a Breda newbie. We got acquainted with the place by enjoying a walking tour around town.

Our first stop was this charming house on the west edge of town. Although it had been a few decades since he'd seen it, Paul recognized the home right away. This is where Paul's father grew up.

We continued our walking tour by following the path that Paul's dad took to each school day, arriving at St. Bernard's. When Breda was founded in 1877, the first families were mostly German Catholics. One of the first efforts of the new community was to construct this magnificent church, which was completed in 1880. It is definitely Breda's centerpiece.

Stepping inside, it became obvious how hard this small community has worked to preserve the beautiful house of worship over the last 125 years. It's exquisite.

Around the corner, we took note of the charming old City Hall. Paul remembers seeing emergency vehicles parked in the garage on the brick building's north side.

We didn't burn many calories on our walking tour, but by the time we were back on Main Street we were ready to enjoy some lunch. We walked on over to Kay's Korner, which is housed in the old bank building. There we enjoyed a couple of very tasty sandwiches and some mighty fine company.

We were delighted to meet Kay herself. Paul's dad has been a life-long subscriber to The Breda News. Over the years, we've perused several editions of the weekly hometown paper. One of our favorite columns is Kay's Korner, which is written by the News' editor and publisher, Kay. It was a pleasure to meet the lovely woman behind the masthead. She was eager to hear about Paul's father and shared a few stories about life in Breda. She's a tireless promoter of the town, which she refers to as her little Utopia. After spending a couple of hours here, we can certainly understand why she feels that way.

Tonight we're resting comfortably in Lincoln, Nebraska, which is a new state for Bullwinkle. With that former blank spot filled in on his travel map, we're looking forward to spending a couple of days in the state capital and then making our way west.


Sue and Doug said...

not hard to figure out how you spent most of your day! are one 'blogging machine'!!

Dana Brown said...

I was looking for images of my home town and found your blog. Breda is my home town. So glad that you found it and got to visit! Memories.