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Happy 4th of July!

by Robert Washburn

It's time to celebrate our freedom this 4th of July!  Omaha is a great place to find 4th of July events to help you do that.  Here's what we have to look forward to in Omaha next week.

Bank of the West Celebrates America

Come to Memorial Park on June 30 for the 27th annual for their free concert and fireworks show featuring Cool & the Gang.

Red, White & Zoo!

Join the Doorly Zoo and Aquarium on July 1-4 for entertainment including bounce houses, music, and animals!

Blair's Annual 4th of July Fireworks Celebration

The Dana College hosts Blair's 4th of July fireworks display.

Have a safe and happy 4th of July!

 

entertainment including bounce houses, music and special animal encounters for all ages.entertainment including bounce houses, music and special animal encounters for all ages.

 

Omaha is Home to Great Food

by Robert Washburn

One of the nice thing about living in Southwest Iowa is the close proximity to Omaha and all the great food it has to offer.  Every year, TripAdvisor.com lists the best restaurants in America and has rated over 1000 restaurants in Omaha.  Here's a few from the top of the list that will make it worth the drive.

Orsi's Italian Bakery & Pizzeria

For almost 100 years, Orsi’s Italian Bakery & Pizzeria has been making the best Italian food in Omaha. You find all the best Italian favorites here, from pizza to calzone to sandwiches. Even though Omaha has changed over the years, Orsi's has not.

Block 16

Alton Brown of the Food Network says their Garcon Burger is the best burger in the country. Block 16 features imaginative dishes like Duck, Duck, Goose Fries, which is pulled roasted/barbecued duck on a bed of crispy fries. Wash it all down with a hard pear cider and you're set for an unforgettable dining experience.

Drover

We certainly can't leave a great steakhouse off this list.  Omaha is known for its steaks and Drover is the place to eat them. You can't beat the whiskey-marinated filet mignon. And if steak isn't your thing, you can go with the chicken, salmon, and shrimp. But in the end, it's the great Nebraska beef that keeps this steakhouse at the top of the list.

Enjoy the Beauty of Mills County Parks

by Robert Washburn

When was the last time you explored the parks in Mills County?  Whether or not if you live in Glenwood or the surrounding areas in Mills County, Mills County parks have great things in store for you, no matter your interests.

If you want the ideal place to go for a hike, take some photos, or to just enjoy the beauty of nature, then West Oak Forest is just the park to go to.  Located in the Loess Hills, this park covers 308 acres with forested and hilltop prairie remnants. You can hike to the top of the 1100 ft bluff, or search for endangered species in the park. This area was once inhabited by the Glenwood Culture, who’s earth-lodge sites and burial mounds have been documented within the park’s boundaries.

Pony Creek Park is the only county park that allows camping, with electrical and non-electric sites available for nightly rates, with a nearby playground. You can enjoy the scenic overlook platform and the hiking trails, along with the 82 acres lake that’s perfect for fishing or canoeing.

Mills County Parks have a lot in store for your recreational needs.  Visit their website for a full list of parks.

If Your Home Hasn’t Sold Yet, Check the Price!

by Robert Washburn

It's been a hot year in the housing market and homes are selling at their fourth highest pace over the past year. many real estate agents are reporting bidding wars as demand has been strong.  If you're trying to sell your home and it hasn't sold yet, then it could be the price. In fact, pricing it only 10% above market value drastically cust the number of people that will even look at your home, as indicated in this chart.

So if you're not getting the results you need from your home sale, then sit down with your agent and take another look at the price.

Upcoming Events in Council Bluffs

by Robert Washburn

Summertime is coming soon, and the fun is ramping up in Council Bluffs.  Here are some upcoming events in Council Bluffs that are sure to be fun, and perhaps educational, for the whole family.

Look Up to the Stars
Council Bluffs Public Library

Look Up to the Stars
Council Bluffs Public Library | June 1 | 7 PM to 8 PM

Former NASA consultant Kevin Manning will present an entertaining exploration of the universe and all of its wonders.  And weather permitting, you'll get to look at the night sky through a powerful telescope.

Ticket to Ride! Family Night at the Museum
Union Pacific Railroad Museum | 
June 2 | 5 PM to 7 PM

Learn all about the destinations that the railroad would carry people to with the Camerail Club.  You'll also learn about the bicycle routes in Council Bluffs with Heartland B-Cycle.

Kid's Fishing Derby
Arrowhead Park | 
June 3 | 
1 PM to 3 PM

The entire family is invited for an afternoon of fun at Arrowhead Park.  This event is being held on the same weekend as FREE fishing weekend, so there's no need for a permit for Iowas residents. This free event is for children under 16 who will receive a free gift and prizes are awarded in several categories.

There's plenty more fun in store in Council Bluffs.  Check out the full list of events coming up this June.

Celebrate Memorial Day In Council Bluffs

by Robert Washburn

Memorial Day is a time to reflect on the sacrifice made by our veterans who gave so much for our freedom.  

Council Bluffs is a great place to celebrate that freedom with the Loessfest celebration this weekend! It's a celebration of our city and our unique landscape.  There will be a whole range of free events this weekend.  Thousands of people come every year to enjoy the fun at Tom Hanafan River’s Edge Park.

Some of the main events include:

KC and the Sunshine Band - Friday, May 26, 7 pm

This concert is free thanks to various sponsors and kicks off the celebration.  You'll "Get Down Tonight" with this multi-grammy award winning band who have sold more than 100 million albums over the past 40 years.  The music starts at 7pm with Jimmy Buffet cover band Bluffet.  The park opens at 4pm, so get there early to get a spot on the lawn.

Country Rocks the River
Saturday, May 27, 2017, 5:30 p.m

Country Rocks the River - Saturday, May 27, 2017, 5:30 pm

Get ready for country music to storm the stage with 3 country acts during the evening starting at 5:30pm.

Fireworks for Freedom - Sunday, May 28

This unforgettable display will follow the Omaha Symphony concert.

That's just the beginning of all the fun to be had this weekend.  Check out what else is happening at Loessfest.

Have a safe and fun Memorial Day Weekend!

How to Qualify For a Mortgage

by Robert Washburn

Many people who are looking to buy a home are understandably confused about the mortgage process. Yet it’s an important and crucial part of the process of buying a home, so understanding it is critical.  The graphic below outlines the basics about the mortgage process so you can get an overview of what’s involved. 

Notice some takeaways from this graphic.  Many buyers are putting down as little as 3%. You also don’t need perfect credit to qualify for a loan.  And if there’s anything you don’t understand about the process, feel free to ask.  We’re here to help!

Say Thanks to Mom This Week

by Robert Washburn

It’s time to say thanks for all our moms have done for us this Sunday.  Are you still looking for something special to do to show your gratitude? There’s a number of great ways to tell her how much you appreciate all she’s done.  Here’s a few ideas that will get you started.

Brunch

Sunday brunch is always a welcome treat for mother.  Dante Ristorante Pizzeria in Omaha is featuring 1/2 priced bottles of wine, as well as farm to fork features just for Mom! Nosh Restaurant and Wine Lounge is featuring a Sunday Brunch as well.

Spa Day

Pamper that special lady with a spa day! Omaha has a number of outstanding spas to make her day special. Oasis Massage & Spa Inc is highly rated and features a wide range of message and spa services.

Sweets

Sweets always hit the mark when saying thanks.  Stay Sweet Nicola’s in Council Bluffs features a wide array of baked goodies, like cupcakes, cookies, cakes, fruit tarts and more.

Whatever you do, make sure you say thanks to mom this Sunday for all she’s done and have a happy Mother’s Day!

Homes Are Selling Fast in Iowa

by Robert Washburn

The NAR surveyed their members to find out their monthly Confidence Index.  This index is a primary indicator of the strength of the housing market based on a survey that's sent our to 50,000 real estate agents.  The data points in this survey are expected home sales, prices, and market conditions. What it showed was very encouraging.  As you can see in the graphic below, homes sold an average in 34 days in March! Iowa was one of the states that sold homes faster, at 31-45 days. That means now is the time sell your home in Southwest Iowa. And if you're looking to buy a home, that means you need to act faster, as homes are selling more quickly, reducing inventory.

Missouri Valley is Home to Great Food

by Robert Washburn

For a small community like Missouri Valley, you wouldn’t think there would be so many great places to eat – but there are! Missouri Valley has some really outstanding local restaurants that are favorites with locals and visitors alike.  Here’s a few you might want to try out next time you visit, or if you live in Missouri Valley.

Penny's Diner

Located next to the Oak Tree Inn, this 50’s style diner brings you all your favorite meals from the era.  The outstanding customer service also reflects the 50’s, with 24-hour service and a staff that’s always willing to please. With generous portions and home-style cooking, you can’t go wrong with Penny’s for a great American meal.

Bamboo Village Chinese Café | 514 E Erie St, Missouri Valley

For outstanding big city Chinese food, this is the place in Missouri Valley. They have great food at affordable prices, with a roomy and clean dining room.  Try the sweet and sour chicken and the crab Rangoon. Certainly the best Chinese food around.

Dairy Den

You’ll feel like a kid again with this throwback to the good old days of ice cream treats made the way they used to be. Plus they make a loose meat sandwich that’s to die for.  Sure it’s a hole-in-the wall, but those are the best!

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 38

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Rob Washburn
Ed Spencer Real Estate - Farms America, INC
Mall of the Bluffs
Council Bluffs IA 51503
402-981-6999
712-322-7653
Fax: 712-624-9251

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