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The Surf Ballroom and Museum

  • 460 North Shore Drive Clear Lake, Iowa 50428
  • 641-357-6151
  • Website
  • Year Round, Mon-Fri: 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.
    Additional Summer Hours, between Memorial Day and Labor Day, Sat: 9 a.m. - 1 p.m., and Sun, 1 p.m. - 4 p.m.

Nestled in Clear Lake, Iowa, The Surf Ballroom and Museum is perhaps the state’s most unique venues.

The original venue – located across the street from the current venue – opened in 1934, and featuredĀ a roof garden for dancing outdoors, five lakeside windows and a boardwalk leading to nearby docks. A fire destroyed the original building in April 1947, and the venue was rebuilt across the street and reopened in July 1948.

The Surf Ballroom has played host to countless famous musicians who put on shows in the venue, he most famous of which was Buddy Holly’s last performance before his tragic death.

In 2009, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame dedicated the ballroom as a rock and roll landmark, and it’s truly something worth seeing at least once in your life. And in 2011, The Surf was listed on the National Register of Historic Places.