The weather forced some people to look for a last minute hotel. Some were in the right place at the right time, and pulled into a tropical resort, just off the frozen interstate. According to employees at the Ramada Tropic Resort, the hotel has had a few walk-in guests, but the majority of their guests are those that have had to change their travel plans.
“Everyone has been pretty content. We’ve had a lot of stay overs from last night anyway; they went ahead and stayed because of the weather. They didn’t want to make the drive,” said Amanda Martinez, an employee at the Ramada Tropic Resort in Des Moines.
“We’re stuck here for tonight, or tomorrow or however long it takes so we can head back to southern Iowa,” said David Clark.
David Clark and his family drove to the Des Moines area to pick up supplies for their family business. About a year ago, Clark created “Kool Clipz,” a clip for ear buds. “While I was washing the dishes I didn’t want to touch my ear buds because my hands were dirty. I was actually at a restaurant in Southern Iowa,” said Clark.
But it wasn’t until his daughter Alyssa spoke up, that it became his way of life. “She said dad just make it your business. So we set forth and started making one after another, and here we’re only a year into the process,” remembered Clark.
Clark makes the product in Earlham Iowa, but they are “skinned” or covered with a design, in Urbandale. He was picking them up Thursday when the weather hit, “I paid extra money to get them rushed done but then the weather came in quicker than expected,” said Clark.
So Thursday night, Clark and his family were stranded in Des Moines. But since they stopped at the Ramada Tropic Resort, it’s like they stumbled upon a tropical get-away. “I think it’s probably the best place to get. We’ve met tons of people from around Iowa and people all over the place,” said Clark.
Lori King was glad to see unexpected guests walk through the door. King was staying at the hotel for a music festival she is organizing at the hotel over the weekend: the 1st Annual Bluegrass Festival.
“It’s very exciting when somebody new comes to a blue grass festival,” said King.
At first she thought the weather was going to mean disaster for their music event at the hotel this weekend, “We’ve had a few calls about it, wondering if with the weather if we were still going to have it,” said King. But now with the snow bringing people in and off the roads it may be just what they need.
The festival is bringing in blue-grass groups from all over the state, as well as Minnesota and Missouri. The show starts Friday at 7pm, and Saturday at 1pm and 7 pm. King said they specially chose a hotel with a water park to host it, hoping families would bring their children. King explained they are trying to get more kids interested in the music, and it is a family oriented event overall.