Once the holder of prisoners and a watchful warden, the Clayton County JailHouse has been transformed into a picturesque Bed & Bath that is there to offer a warm welcome at the end of a day trip or weekend adventure. Situated at the top of the hill into Elkader’s historic district, the Elkader JailHouse Inn offers three beautiful suites to stay in, and a peaceful garden in the back to lounge in on a warm summer day. Owners Julie and Tim welcome all guests with a warm smile and a delicious breakfast in the morning, wishing guests a good day when they walk out the jail doors.
On a warm, sunny weekend, the weather was perfect for kayaking down the Turkey River. So, I called up a couple friends, and we made a weekend trip to Elkader to float down the Turkey River. We started at the town park, and kayaked for as long as we could manage. We passed the Motor Mill, and kept floating down the river until we felt the need to stop for dinner. During the float, we admired the scenic river valley bluffs that surrounded us. As the wind blew and rustled the leaves in the tree tops, the faint scent of the grasses and natural wetland filled my senses with its calming, earthy aroma. With every turn of the river, a new view was opened up to us. It was a trip full of beautiful views to pair with a beautiful day.
After a full day of kayaking, we decided to stop in Garber to find a place to eat. We came across the Anchor Inn Supper Club, and I had a delicious chicken filet sandwich. The hot, crispy chicken sandwich was enough to fill my belly after a long day of kayaking. Everyone agreed, this small American restaurant was delicious and the service was great! After our meal, we called a friend to pick us up so we could go back to Elkader to spend our evening in the JailHouse Inn.
As we walked through the doors of the historic building, we were welcomed inside by Julie, who showed us into our suite for the evening. We were staying in the Emma Big Bear suite, which was decorated with warm reds, oranges, and yellows. It gave the room a warm feeling, and made us feel like we were in a home away from home. When I crawled into bed for a well-earned rest, I was greeted by a soft, comfortable bed and crisp white linens. It was a blessing that we were able to stay there for the evening, and we found it truly would be criminal not to stay in this jail.
Written by Jayna Felder | Photo Credit to Elkader JailHouse Inn