Grinnell College has an attractive 120-acre campus of spectacular academic facilities that include the Noyce Science Center, featured in architectural journals; and the Bucksbaum Center for the Arts, designed by Cesar Pelli. The College also owns the 365-acre Conard Environmental Research Area (CERA), located about 14 miles from the campus and used on a regular basis for research and teaching.
The city of Grinnell is a community rooted in agriculture, but also benefits from a long history of international commercial connections and civic pride, leadership, and accomplishment. Grinnell’s buildings are rich in architectural interest. Thirteen sites in town are listed on the National Registry of Historic Places, including the Louis Sullivan “Jewel Box” bank building and the Walter Burley Griffin “Ricker” house. The city of Grinnell offers members of the campus community a chance to enjoy the quality of life that has earned it a place among the 25 “Best Small Towns in America” in the book of that title.
Outdoor recreational activities include lakes, prairie preserves, cross country ski trails, and a paved bicycle path connecting Grinnell and Rock Creek State Park. In town, attractions include a downtown triplex cinema, eclectic downtown shopping, coffee shops, bed-and-breakfast inns, weekend antique auctions, restaurants, and diverse city parks.
From Grinnell, it is less than an hour’s drive to Des Moines and about an hour to Iowa City, a university community with vibrant cultural attractions and a renowned teaching hospital. The urban amenities of Minneapolis-St. Paul, St. Louis, Kansas City, and Chicago are all accessible within a four- to five-hour drive.