Update! Crowdfunding Goal Met in Time for 20th Anniversary Celebration

Peggy Boyle Whitworth Amphitheater Improvement Project

September 26th, 2014

Update! Crowdfunding Goal Met in Time for 20th Anniversary Celebration

Throughout the month of July, Brucemore completed a very successful crowdfunding campaign that exceeded the $10,000 goal. In early September, Brucemore began a nine month process to enhance the site’s natural amphitheater, including improvements to the stage’s physical structure, backstage area, and electrical configuration. In 2015, Brucemore will celebrate twenty years of outdoor theater in the updated performance area, renamed in honor of Peggy Boyle Whitworth, Brucemore’s founding director. 

Watch this page for updates over the next nine months! (Most recent updates on top)

Update: 9/25/14

Marty (Paulson Electric) completes the wiring on the backstage panel. The wires are not hot yet.
The outlet that powers the ticket booth and entryway lighting is moved to a more discrete location near the pond.
One of two boxes installed in the audience space to safely house the light-tower footings and access to the new cable raceways.

 9/17/14 Update – Preparing the lawn for seeding

After the raceways and power lines have been buried, Brucemore staff prepares the area for seeding.
Seed is purchased for planting in the amphitheater.  In Iowa, the best time to plant seed is after September 15 and before October 1.

9/16/14 Update – Paulson Electric upgrades electrical configuration

Paulson Electric digs trenches to install raceways and power lines. Sound and lighting cables will be run through the raceways during performances, alleviating the hazard of cables running through the audience space.
 A new pedestal power panel is installed backstage. The new panel will include additional access points to better accommodate future stage productions.

Visit the project’s Indiegogo Site to learn more about the project


Do I need to pay to enter the estate and walk on the grounds?

No. Visiting the Brucemore estate during grounds hours is free. Tickets are only required for scheduled tours and events, and they can be purchased in advance online.

Is a reservation needed to visit Brucemore?

You do not need a reservation to visit the grounds on your own. You do need a ticket to go inside the mansion. We recommend purchasing tickets in advance online or by calling 319-362-7375 for any of our mansion tours or other scheduled special themed tours due to limited capacity. Please visit our calendar to see upcoming opportunities and to purchase your tickets.

Touring the Mansion

Can I take pictures inside the mansion?

Yes. Photography is allowed during tours for personal, non-professional use. Tripods, selfie-sticks, or other photography equipment will not be permitted. Photographs should not distract from others’ enjoyment.

How large is the mansion?

Brucemore is approximately 15,000 square feet.

How many fireplaces, rooms, and floors does Brucemore have?

There are 21 “main” rooms, 14 fireplaces and four floors plus an attic.

Is all of the furniture original to the house and families?

Much of the furniture you will see on display belonged to the second or third families to live at Brucemore; however, some pieces had to be replaced with replicas or similar antiques.

Is the mansion handicap accessible?

The Brucemore mansion includes multiple floors and several staircases. Because of the historic architecture, some spaces are not accessible. Due to preservation work, the wheelchair lift that offers accessibility to the first floor is not available at this time. An elevator is not available from the first floor to the other floors at any time. Learn more about accessibility at Brucemore.

Group and School Tours

Is there an age requirement for students visiting Brucemore?

You do not have to be a certain age to visit or attend a program at Brucemore. Different programs are best suited for different ages. Tours of the mansion are recommended for 4th grade students and older.

Where do we park?

Parking is available on site a short walk from the mansion or carriage house. Buses must follow special instructions. Large events may not be able to accommodate on-site parking; please see the event calendar information for exceptions.

Is bus parking available?

Yes. Bus parking is available near the carriage house. Buses must arrive via special directions as they are unable to fit in our historic gates.

Is there a lunch area at Brucemore?

There are a couple of small picnic tables in the orchard and Adirondack chairs in pairs across the property to utilize during the warmer months. You are also welcome to bring your own blanket or chair to picnic on the grounds. Please carry out any trash to help our small staff keep the grounds beautiful.

Does my group have to arrive together?

Your group does not have to arrive together, however, parking on site is limited.

What is your payment policy?

Brucemore admission for group tours is often requested to be paid prior to the visit and a deposit may be required. Payment can be made by cash, check, or credit card and should be paid in one sum.

Do I need to make an appointment to tour the mansion?

You must have a ticket to a tour or program inside the mansion. Many tours do sell out in advance; purchase online or by calling 319-362-7375 in advance of your visit to guarantee your spot. See the schedule here.

Is the mansion wheelchair accessible?

The mansion is not currently accessible to wheelchairs due to preservation work. The mansion includes multiple flights of stairs. Most of the outdoor areas of the site are accessible. See our full accessibility information and contact us with additional questions regarding your visit.

Can I walk on the property?

Yes, the grounds and gardens are open daily most of the year. Several self-guided interpretive panels are available. See hours here.

What is Brucemore’s ticket policy?

Tickets are non-refundable, but may be rescheduled for comparable programs as space allows. Learn more.

I’m attending a large event at Brucemore. Where do I park?

Large events may require you to park offsite. Please read the event details on the calendar for specific information for each event.

Are weapons allowed at Brucemore?

We prohibit weapons on the property and at programs to ensure the safety and security of all employees and people visiting Brucemore.