Fort Dodge's Past
Fort Dodge started out as a fort built by the United States Army in 1850 in the area where the Des Moines River and Lizard Creek meet. Just a few short years later, it was decided that the fort was not necessary and it was abandoned. One of the former shopkeepers ended up purchasing the land and buildings and founded the town that it is today. It soon became an important hub for the mining, milling, and production of gypsum. Residents can explore the Gypsum City Off-Highway Vehicle Park made almost entirely of recycled gypsum products in tribute to the town's history.
Celebrate the Arts
Both artists and art admirers will take delight in Fort Dodge's numerous art galleries and museums. At the Blanden Memorial Art Museum located in the Oak Hill district, residents and visitors can explore American 20th century paintings and prints, as well as many Asian, European, and American works dating as far back as the 16th century. Be sure to check out a number of galleries and local artist studios that are scattered around town, such as the photography at Buckroyd Studio, the stunning pieces at Crystalwood Creations, and the ever-popular Colonial Fireplace & Art Gallery.
Grab a Bite
When you are ready to satisfy your food cravings, Fort Dodge is sure to have whatever it is you are in the mood for. Chen Garden is a town-favorite for affordable, authentic Japanese and Chinese fare, from sushi and hibachi, to orange chicken and egg rolls. Community Pizza offers a wide range of traditional Italian food, as well as specialty pizzas. It offers delivery for the days that you need a night off from cooking. You will be able to satisfy your sweet tooth at Larita's Cakes 'n More. Enjoy artfully-crafted cake pops, scrumptious cupcakes, and more.