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Welcome to Ames! Here is Some Stuff to Do During Your Downtime...

We are excited to welcome you to Ames, Iowa -- for the first time! -- for the 2019 Young Entrepreneur Convention!

While the weekend will be filled with incredible speakers, great networking opportunities, and the fast-paced pitch competition, it can’t be all work and no play. Check out this hidden heartland city and experience the best that Ames has to offer!


Want to get to know a networking contact better, or retreat from the crowds to a place with a small-town feel? Head over to Ames’s Historic Downtown District! To get your much-needed caffeine fix, check out coffee shops like Morning Bell Coffee Roasters or Café Diem, or try local tea blends at Little Woods Herbal. If you’re in the mood for a bite to eat, check out the Olde Main Brewing Company or the Grove Café.


Ames boasts a diverse array of eating options to satisfy the most particular palates. Check out Provisions Lot F or The Café for unique modern dining, or head on over Dublin Bay for a fun pub-style atmosphere and authentic Irish cuisine. Café Beaudelaire boasts a Brazilian twist on classic café fare, while +39 Restaurant offers an authentic Italian dining experience. If you’re in the mood for classic comfort food, head on over to Hickory Park and enjoy their house-smoked barbeque.


Ranked as the second-best college town in America by, it’s no wonder that Ames has a vibrant scene for after-hours fun. Check out Welch Avenue for fun places like Mickey’s Irish Pub, Welch Avenue Station, or the Blue Owl Bar. If you’re in the mood for a more laid-back vibe, check out the London Underground or grab a drink at Wallaby’s Bar and Grille. Be sure to check out Ames’s best-kept secret – Cellar 626, a hidden gem (in the back of Cyclone Liquors in the Lincoln Center shopping center) of a speakeasy tucked into the heart of Ames, open only on Thursday and Friday nights.


Spring is here, and that means Ames will be in full bloom! If you’re in the mood to get outside and get moving, check out Ada Hayden Heritage Park just north of Ames (pictured above). With paved trails and a picturesque lake, Ada Hayden is just a 13-minute drive from our conference location at the Gateway. Another great option for hiking and exploring is Ledges State Park, located just 25 minutes away from the heart of Ames. If art and design is more your speed, check out the many sculptures and floral displays at Reiman Gardens.

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