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Digital 2021 Passport released for 12 Iowa Scenic Byways

DES MOINES — The Iowa Tourism Office has created a checklist for traveling along Iowa’s 12 scenic byways and the so-called “digital passport” provides some discounts along the way.

“As you travel the byways, you can check in at various locations along the way,” says Jessica O’Riley, communications manager for the Iowa Tourism Office. “There’s about 100 different locations along the 12 participating byways. Each check-in gets you entered to win a monthly prize package. Some of the participating locations also offer deals and discounts. Each time you redeem a deal or discounts, that also counts as an entry into the monthly prize package.”

The promotion will last through December 31, 2021, so each month somebody with one of these Scenic Byways Passports will win a prize package worth about two-hundred dollars, including an overnight, stay along one of the byways. The 12 scenic bylaws take travelers to national landmarks, historic sites and local attractions.

The best way to see Iowa is to get off the interstates and explore the backroads and uncover those hidden gems in the small towns,” O’Riley says. “The Scenic Byways are a great way to do that.”

O’Riley says the byways also showcase the state’s topography.

“A lot of people tend to stay in one corner of the state…If you’re in western Iowa and you can appreciate the Loess Hill, maybe you’ve never seen the Driftless area in northeast Iowa,” O’Riley says. “It’s a great opportunity to get out and really explore our own backyard.”

This summer, the state launched a similar digital for the 100th anniversary of the state park system and O’Riley says it was so popular all the prizes were redeemed within the first two weeks. O’Riley’s theory? People like a check-list.

“If you show them: ‘Here’s a list of things to do,’ people love checking things off and completing a task,” O’Riley says.

Download the Iowa Scenic Byways Passport here. January’s prize package is from the Iowa Valley Scenic Byway. It includes a one-night stay at the Hotel Millwright in Amana and gift certificates at Amana shops.

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