Vol. 12 October 2009
Dear Friend,
As a loyal supporter of Adel you are receiving the DiscoverAdel.Com monthly newsletter. If you are having trouble viewing this document or it's images, you can view the Newsletter at the site.

This month we celebrate our 12th issue! My staff and I have had the privilege to meet some wonderful people in our quest to showcase the uniqueness of Adel.

In the past yer we've covered two movie shoots, great local stops, new businesses and much more. As we look forward to another great year, we'd like to thank you, our faithful readers and our sponsors for keeping us on the web.

This month we showcase Miriam Dunlap of the Atherton House where we learned what Fair Trade means. We talk with Ron Bergman of Cool Beans about opening a new business in Adel. We also have a great Q&A with Teresa Moyer of Archer Home Center.

In addition, I've got a recipe from my Mom and great information from around town!

In This Issue
Feature Article - Miriam Dunlap - Atherton House
Ron Bergman - Cool Beans & Cool Cakes
Teresa Moyer - Archer's Home Center
Around Town
Recipe of the Month
Adel Public Library News
What is DiscoverAdel.Com
SpotlightMiriam Dunlap - Atherton House
Dallas County Court House Adel IA

This month we spoke with owner Miriam Dunlap of Atherton House, a local gift shop that sells artisan crafts, Fair Trade items and collectibles.

Atherton House Adel, IowaNothing from the store is "Made in China" unless it is made by an artisan native to that region. These one of a kind gifts carry the touch of an artist's hands rather than that of machinery. Most items are made in limited numbers and may only be available once a year which adds to their character.

Atherton House was opened in 1995 and celebrates its 15th Christmas this year. The name Atherton comes from a family relative dating back to the Civil War. Miriam and David Larson, co-owner and husband of 25 years, share 30 years of combined museum backgrounds that help make the Atherton House experience unique. Before choosing Adel for their business, Miriam and David worked at Living History Farms. Miriam drafted and designed some of the historical buildings from scratch to accommodate tours yet maintain their historical accuracy. Miriam also designs the flyers sent throughout the year to remind patrons of upcoming Atherton House events.

After leaving Living History Farms, Miriam then came to Adel as the Main Street Director. When the Atherton House came on the market, Miriam and David knew it was the right spot, as their gifts fit better in a house than a storefront. The yard was also a major selling point, which has allowed the yearly Kiln Opening to become such a popular event.

Atherton House Adel, IowaThis fall, Atherton House has many items that are both beautiful and socially beneficial such as African baskets, Cambodian Purses, Darfur bracelets, and Zulugrass necklaces that help women's co-operatives around the world. These co-ops present safe work environments that educate women with marketable skills and trades to establish financial independence. Miriam has recently returned from New York where she orders many of her fine gifts and found that an increased number of vendors have taken the initiative to "Go Green." Some are changing the way their items are produced; others have modified their packaging materials.  The Atherton House encourages you to continue the trend and bring in reuseable shopping bags when visiting the store.

When asked to define Fair Trade items, Miriam states that the artist is being paid what they have asked to be paid and the products are made ethically and sustainably. This applies to American artists as well as international co- operatives. One must be careful however when purchasing Fair Trade items such as coffee beans at some big box stores. Some multimillion-dollar operations artificially force prices lower for profit, which defies the entire purpose.

Atherton House Adel, IowaAtherton House is also showcasing American Pottery, Art Tiles by Motawi and Jemerick, German nutcrackers, Swedish linens, and American Bittersweet, grown in Coon Rapids. American Bittersweet is known for its big berries, long stems, and tends to be more difficult to cultivate because of its long growing requirements. Other fall treasures include hanging glass plates from Panora, made from Grandma's antique plates, that have been made from recycled materials.

Atherton House is different in many ways, most notably the stories behind the products. Every item has a story, which Miriam, David, and her staff members love to supply. Some of these stories are sent with the items when purchased by the store, others are passed along in the verbal tradition of our ancestors, from generation to generation. Many of the stories come from customers!

As they look around the shop they are reminded of their Grandmother's ornaments and tell tales of their childhoods. In some cases, the gifts may even be made from the same mold as their family antiques. Many of the vendors are 4th or even 12th generation family-run businesses that use the same techniques and tools of yesteryear. Miriam adds she is bombarded with calls during the holiday season trying to recall the stories and recipes to pass along. Many callers try to write down the stories exactly and that's not how it's done! The spirit of the item or the story comes from taking the old traditions and adding or changing the smaller details to make it your own.

Atherton House is also the only store where customers seem to spend their time on the floor, especially the marble collectors! They will sit in the sun and admire the craftsmanship, looking like kids in a candy store. Customers know that traditions, not fads, can be found within Atherton House.

Atherton House Adel, IowaAtherton House hosts many events throughout the year starting with the Spring Folk Art show. Next is the Kiln Opening and Pottery Show in May featuring fresh Derby Pie, close to 95 different potters, and welcomes approximately 1500 patrons, some flying in from California and New York for the experience! In June look for the Handmade Bear Show featuring local artists and Steiff Bears from Germany. Atherton House has been awarded the Steiff Bear Best of America label based on sales, appreciation, and representation of the Steiff family. Each year, collectors from around the Midwest meet to show off their bears and share the experience of Steiff Bears. Life long friends have been made at this event, a proud note for Atherton House and Adel.

The Fall season brings the International Folk Art show featuring African baskets, woodworking and jewelry from around the world. Christmas is celebrated twice at Atherton House, the first week in November, when Miriam and David showcase all the new home décor, and again in early December to celebrate St Nicholas and Santa Lucia. Customers flock to the store to find authentic designs that are hard, if not impossible, to find such as German Nutcrackers and French Santon figurines.

Atherton House Adel, IowaMiriam and David love Adel because of the sense of community and the unique charms of all the different businesses.

Miriam and David appreciate that customers are referred to their business and enthusiastically encouraged their customers to visit the other speciality shops around Adel.

To find out more about Atherton House, please visit Miriam and David at 202 S 9th Street in Adel or call 515-993-2034.
Ron Bergman - Cool Beans & Cool Cakes
Cool Beans Cool Cakes Adel Iowa

This month, DiscoverAdel spoke with Ron Bergman, owner and operator of Cool Beans Café and newly established Cool Cakes Bakery.

Cool Beans Adel IowaRon moved to the community to be with his fiancée Mary Francis after closing his construction business.

Ron has always loved baking and has been doing it most of his life. Ron purchased Cool Beans in August of 2008 to help gain capital to begin his bakery.

That September, he began to build on the square, opening the new Cool Beans Cafe December 2nd. Ron is very happy with the move, stating "We love it here on the square! It's a lot busier with many new faces."

Cool Beans offers gourmet coffee drinks and beans, baked goods, and deli style lunch menu. They have a vast selection of regular, flavored and decaffeinated beans and roasts from around the world.  Ron's favorite is the Brazil Porta Rosa which he describes as having a slight berry taste and smooth body.

DiscoverAdel recommends the Highlander Grogg, a flavored bean with notes of butterscotch, caramel and hazelnut. Did you know that Cool Beans has their own private coffee line? Distributed by a private roaster in South Dakota, Cool Beans has sold more of this smooth body coffee than other whole bean sold in the store.

The lunch menu has been the same for 5 years, prompting Ron to revitalize the menu this fall. The new menu, available in the next few weeks, will have items that are unique and unlike anything you will find in Adel. Look for new flat breads and paninis. Other additions will include donuts and Danishes to the morning menu.

Cool Beans Adel IowaInterested in a great Friday night date but don't want to drive out of town? Cool Beans has joined forces with Brick Street BBQ to offer Friday Steak & Rib Night. Ron pulls the commercial grill on to the street and prepares New York Strips, Fillets, and Top Sirloin steaks for the ever growing crowd.

Merle Cox of Brick Street BBQ supplies the Ribs and famous Baked Beans. Meals include sides such as baked potatoes, salads, bread, and beans. The café is also open with coffee and desserts available inside. Friday Steak & Rib Night is on a first come, first served basis from 5pm - 9pm every Friday night!

Cool Beans also offers catering! Ron states that most catering events start with a menu designed by the customer. Most individuals know what they want to be served at their event and turn to Ron for is gourmet culinary skills. Anything goes with Cool Beans catering service which has prepared Prime Rib meals to large orders of deli sandwiches. Ron's catering services are not just for Adel, reaching into downtown Des Moines on a regular basis.

Looking for a new, stylish place to hold your next event? The Banquet Room in the upstairs of Cool Beans is available for receptions and small gatherings with a maximum capacity of 75 people. This little known gem is perfect for baby showers, wedding receptions and meetings. If you're planning your event after hours, Ron has been known to use the main level for smaller gatherings of 20-25 people as well. To reserve this space, please contact Ron at 515-993-1955!

CakesCool Cakes Adel IowaNew To the Community! Ron has purchased the space previously used by Café in the Park to use as a production kitchen for Cool Cakes Bakery.

Those 2000 square feet will grant Cool Cakes enough room to build large, deluxe cakes like the Sweet Corn Festival's 30th Anniversary Court House cake made in August.

Cool Beans Adel IowaThe Anniversary cake was Ron's first venture into giant cake construction for which he is well equipped. Before purchasing Cool Beans, Ron ran his own construction company!

The massive cake took 200 hours to complete and required Cool Beans to be closed. The entire seating area was taken up to accomplish the mighty feat, which will no longer be a problem in the spacious production kitchen.

Ron currently has plans to build a 3-D replica of Jack Trice Stadium which will be 3 feet wide by 3 feet deep with an unknown height! He estimates it will take approximately 8 hours to complete the cake. Ron plans to split his time between locations, staying at Cool Beans during the lunch rush and then heading to Cool Cakes in the afternoon.

Cool Cakes products are already available at Cool Beans and with flavors like Triple Chocolate and Milky Way they're sure to please any crowd! The website for Cool Cakes Bakery is currently under construction ( and will be available in a few weeks. To find out more in the mean time, visit and click on the bakery tab!

Cool Cakes Bakery will participate in their first cake competition this fall. New for 2009, Iowa's Premier Wine and Food Expo, presented by Hy-Vee, will include Des Moines Best Cake Competition. The Cake contest will be November 13th and 14th at the Iowa Event Center. Be sure to purchase your tickets to this two day event which includes demonstrations by celebrity chef Duff Goldman of the Food Networks' "Ace of Cakes!" To find out more about the competition or to buy tickets, visit

To find out more about Cool Beans Café and Cool Cakes Bakery, please visit them at 803 Main St. Adel, or call 515-993-1955.
Teresa Moyer - Archer's Home Center

Archer Home Center Adel Iowa

For our October issue, we spoke with Teresa Moyer co owner of Archers Home Center. Teresa and co owner/ husband Dave have lived in Adel all of their lives, graduated from ADM, and appreciate owning their family run business in a small town.

Archer Home Center Adel IowaArcher's Home Center has the advantage of offering small town service with big town pricing. Teresa and Dave make it their goal to offer quality products and services that span many different departments and specialties.

Q. What is the history of your company?
A. Dave originally worked at Archer TV in Des Moines for thirteen years as a salesman and co-owner. In 1986, he sold his shares in the Des Moines stores and opened a franchised store of his own in Adel. The store opened just two blocks east of the present location offering TV's and appliances.

Q. What products and services do you offer?
A. Since 1986 we have expanded our services to include Floor Covering, Heating and Cooling, Cabinets and Counter tops, Bedding, Home Theater, Central Vacs, and Window Treatments. Our custom products include flooring, cabinets, counter tops, sound systems, and blinds. And we do service all products we sell!

Archers Home Center Adel IowaQ. What products/ services are you best known for?
A. Probably TV's and Appliances, because that's what we started with. However, our floor covering department is now the biggest percentage of our sales.

Q. What can you tell our readers about your home flooring options?
A. We have all types of flooring including, carpet, tile, wood, laminates, vinyl.  We also provide free measuring and estimates. We will install all products we sell. We have our own installers so we schedule for our customers too.  Many of the products we sell are "green". The carpet line we sell the most is 40% recycled product and contains corn by-product. It is the "greenest" carpet in the industry.

Q. As we enter the fall months, do you have any tips for homeowners?
A. Of course, as fall approaches, we suggest getting your furnace checked out before it turns cold so that on that first cold day you are not without heat. There are rebates now available on all "energy efficient" appliances.  Also, fall is great viewing for TV watchers, with new seasons starting, so it is a good time to take advantage of our sales on TV's.

Archers Home Center Adel IowaQ. Do you have any current sales or upcoming promotions?
A. In October, we start our "GOLD TAG FLOORING SALE" during which we have special pricing on all flooring products.

Q. How is your company involved with the community?
A. We donate to several charities including local organizations. We are also members of Adel Partners and supporters of ADM Booster Club.

Archer Home Center Adel IowaQ. What can you tell us about your staff?

A. We have a great staff!!! Some of them have been with us almost from the beginning. Our kids, Kurt and Andrea work at the store. Kurt is store manager, and Andrea works with the bookkeeping and scheduling of service calls. Steve Bell, who is also a store manager and electronics expert, has worked for us for over 16 years. Dave Carscadden, salesman, has worked here for 22 years. Michael Qualls, our appliance technician, has been here for 15 years. So as you can see, most of our employees are seasoned.

Q. How are you personally involved with the community?
A.Kurt has been a volunteer High School basketball coach for eleven years. We are very busy with our families. Family is our priority. Dave and I each have mothers to care for, and of course, there are our five grandchildren, Micah, Faith, Callie, Sadie, and Ethan. We spend a great deal of time with them when we are not at work.

To find out more about Archer's Home Center, upcoming sales and custom orders, please visit them at 618 Green Street, Adel, IA 50003, call (515) 993-4241, or visit
Around Town

New To The Community

Ron Bergman of Cool Beans has purchased the space previously used by Café in the Park to use as a production kitchen for Cool Cakes Bakery. Read More...

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The Strippers Were In Town!

Adel Quilting and Dry GoodsIf you were out and about last weekend you may have seen all of the people at the Quilt shop and wondered what was going on. Adel Quilting and Dry Goods was part of the "Strippers on Wheels Bus Tour". It covers 12 quilt shops and 5 states.

They entertained 3-4 buses a day with up to 50 people on a bus. A total of 11 buses came to town. Each participant received two packages of pre-cut "strips", hence the name, and a pattern. Atherton House was also open that Sunday to help entertain guests and the Methodist Church served lunches to the travelers.

Adel Quilting and Dry Goods is owned and operated by Jacque and Frank Johnson and is located at 909 Prairie St. Adel, IA 50003. To keep up with the events at the Quilt shop, be sure to check out Jacque's blog:

They have two quilting retreats coming up in October. The first is the 12, 13, amnd 14 and the second is the 15, 16, and 17. To find out more, visit or call 515-993-1170.

So, to wrap it up, this is the DiscoverAdel.Com newsletter! We hope that you've enjoyed this issue and will share it with your friends.

Chris Brocka

Featured Article

Atherton House Adel Iowa
Each month we
showcase a business or organization that makes Adel special.

This month we interviewed
Miriam Dunlap from the Atherton House

If you have a business or organization you would like to see featured, please contact us at
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Recipe of the Month
DDiscover Chef

Winston's Pecan Pie

Throughout the year my mother transfers her hand written recipes over to the computer. I go through them to discover great family recipes of my past.

Recently, I discovered one that said "Winston's Birthday Pie." Winston is my youngest brother and he's turning 40 this year.

I remember standing in the kitchen snitching pecans as she baked. The heavenly smell rolled through the house. She'd have to bake more than one pie so that everyone could have seconds.

Now mind you, she was baking pecan pies long before Winston was born. I could have sworn it was my favorite, or my Dad's, or my Grandfather's, but somehow he managed to get his name on it.

Trying to be fair, Mom offered to name the fried cabbage for me, but it just doesn't have the same ring to it, does it?

I guess in all honesty, it is fitting, since he's cracked the most pecans over the years for many of those pies.

No matter what it's named, I think you'll like it!

Happy 40th Winston!

3 eggs  
2/3 cup sugar
1 tsp salt
1 cup corn syrup
1/3 cup melted butter
1 cup pecan halves
Preheat oven 375 degrees

1. Beat eggs add sugar and salt butter and syrup beat again.

2. Pour into unbaked
pie shell (see below).

3. Arrange pecans
on top of filling.

4. Bake at 375 degrees for one hour.

5. Test for doneness
with knife blade.

6. Serve

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Pie Crust

You can always use a pre-made pie shell, I won't tell, but if you're dreaming of a flaky, homemade crust, try this recipe.

3 cups flour
1  1/2 cups  shortening
salt (optional)
1 egg
5 Tbs cold water
1 Tbs vinegar

1. Blend flour, shortening and salt with fork until it resembles coarse corn meal texture.

2. Set aside.

3. In small bowl mix together egg, cold water and vinegar, gradually mix it into the flour mixture.

 4. Divide dough into four pieces or balls.
Do not work and press the shape!

5. Take one ball of the dough sprinkle flour on rolling area and on rolling pin.

6. Roll out dough in each direction, to fit the pie tin. The less you work and handle the dough the flakier the crust.  

7. Place in the pie tin with edges of dough hanging over the rim some.

8. Flute the edge all around. poke crust with a fork on bottom and sides.

Library News
Adel Public Library

Friends of the Library
Bake Sale
The annual Friends of the Library bake sale will be held from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Oct. 16th at the library.  Proceeds from the sale will benefit the Friends of the Library.
Adult Activities @ the Library
Oct. 8th at 6:30 p.m. TFE: Cutting Edge Psychology

Oct. 15th at 6:30 p.m. Adel Museum Tour

Oct. 22nd at p.m. Ghosts Among Us

Please contact Lynne at the library for further details.

Halloween Fun
On Oct. 20th at 1:30 p.m. the library will have a Halloween party for school age children.  The party will include a craft, story, games and a snack.

Teen Read Week
Teen Read Week is Oct. 17th - Oct. 23.  To celebrate, the library will be hosting the teen movie, Coraline on Oct. 21st. at 3:45 p.m.  Snacks will be provided.

For further information about any of these programs please contact the library at 993-3512 or by email at

October Events
in Adel 
Homecoming Pre-Events
October 1st.
Schedule for: Powder Puff Football game, Crowning of the King and Queen, and  Bon Fire.
continue reading...
ADM Homecoming
October 2nd.
Schedule for: Parade, Pep Rally, Game.
continue reading...

Beggar's Night
October 31st.
6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
continue reading...
There's More!
New events added weekly, be sure to checkout the
at Calendar
 for more.
What is DiscoverAdel.Com
DiscoverAdel.Com Image is a destination website.

Our goal is to inform everyone of the benefits of Adel. Not just those who live in Adel, but also our friends in the surrounding communities.

From unique shopping and award winning events, to the outstanding services, you can find it all in Adel!
As Adel grows and changes, so will our website.

Be sure to bookmark to check out new businesses, changing events, and local stories.
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