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Top Things To Do in Downtown Cedar Rapids

Couples Having FunWhen moving to Cedar Rapids & the Corridor area of Iowa residents enjoy a wide variety of entertainment and cultural events (when they aren’t at the local rink playing hockey). From comedy clubs, interactive dinner theater, museums, opera, and a wealth of knowledge to discover and explore at the public library you and your family have a lot to choose from in the top things to do in downtown Cedar Rapids. 

Performances on Stage 

Penguin’s Comedy Club: The small venue located at 208 2nd Ave SE in downtown Cedar Rapids is all a comic needs to bring down the house with big laughs. The club first opened its doors to comedians in 1989. The upcoming winter comedy series presented by Penguin Comedy Club is being held at the Olympic South Side Theater at 1202 3rd St. SE #200 downtown Cedar Rapids. Scheduled acts include Greg Warren, Mr. Showtime David Scott, Jimmy Pardo, Creed Bratton (from “The Office”), and April Macie. 

The Dinner Detective Murder Mystery Show: Interactive comedy murder mystery dinner theaters have delighted audiences from around the world ever since Joy Swift introduced the murder mystery interactive dinner theater genre in England back in 1981. “The Dinner Detective”® is currently playing at the DoubleTree by Hilton Convention Complex at 350 1st Ave NE. 

Paramount Theatre: The 1,700 seat theater located at 123 3rd Ave SE in downtown Cedar Rapids recently completed a $35 million renovation. Residents enjoy a wide variety of touring shows, symphonies, operas, and community productions. Upcoming February 2023 performances include “The Best of The Beatles” a classical tribute from the Orchestra Iowa Pops III and a traveling Broadway production “The Simon & Garfunkel Story”. 

Cedar Rapids Opera: Located at 425 2nd St. SE in downtown Cedar Rapids, the company has been presenting two (and sometimes three) operas every season since 1998. The upcoming performance in June 2023 is a double feature. You get two operas for the price of one and each is a comedic masterpiece. Puccini’s one-act Gianni Schicchi followed by Robert Lindsey-Nassif’s American Gothical (a love letter to Grant Wood's painting American Gothic). 


Cedar Rapids Museum of Art: Located at 410 3rd Ave SE downtown Cedar Rapids is a world class museum. The museum features collections from Iowan artists and ancient Roman marble sculptures. Current exhibitions include “Through the Lens: Photography after 1950 from the Collection” January 14th-April 30th 2023, “Byron Burford: Ringmaster” November 19th 2022-October 29th 2023, and “Chunghi Choo: Visionary” October 29th 2022-October 8th 2023. 

African American Museum of Iowa: Located in the heart of downtown Cedar Rapids at 55 12th Avenue SE on the Cedar River is a museum devoted to preserving African American history and culture. The current exhibition “Suspended” explores the “role public schools play in funneling students into the prison system”. It is a free exhibit on display at the Cedar Rapids Public Library from October 2022-Summer 2023 at the downtown location, 450 Fifth Ave SE. 

Media, Technology & Events at the Public Library

Cedar Rapids Public Library (Borrowing, Media & Technology): There are two locations for residents to peruse books and media from the Cedar Rapids Public Library. One location is Ladd Library at 3750 Williams Blvd. SW and the other is the Downtown Library at 450 Fifth Ave SE. In addition to an extensive collection of books to borrow and read, library card holders have access to movies, music, magazines, laptops, public computers and printing, and activity kits. The activity kits range from practicing zippers and buttons for little kids, to bicycle repair kits, crochet kits, and kits designed to help assist people with memory loss to engage in sharing memories and storytelling. 

Cedar Rapids Public Library (Events): There are various events hosted by the public library for ages of all groups. There is an art exhibit scheduled for January 28th-February 27th 2023. The work is from members of the community who participated in the “play, make, learn, connect” event for the “Tiny Art Show”. There is also an upcoming eight-week open dialogue forum for adults interested in the artwork of Iowa artist Grant Wood beginning Monday, January 30th, 2023. 

Ice Skating 

Outdoor Rinks: The city has two free outdoor rinks for residents. One is located just outside downtown at Noelridge Park at 4900 Council St. NE and the other is located across the river on the outskirts of downtown at Hughes Park at 2100 Wilson Ave SW. 

Coldwell Banker Hedges Realty is a locally owned and operated affiliate of Coldwell Banker Real Estate. We have been helping Midwesterners with all of their real estate needs since 1887. Our roots are strong. We look forward to helping you find the perfect home in the Cedar Rapids & Corridor area and establish your family roots in Iowa. Contact us today!

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