Main Street McGregor Feature Image

BBQ and A Book Store Make For A Perfect Day In McGregor, Iowa

There’s something to be said about a great BBQ joint in a river town, with a flare of history and nature. Backwoods Bar and Grill in McGregor, Iowa, offers all that and more.


I will admit it, it had been a few years since I had set food on the main drag in McGregor, Iowa. So, I was pleasantly surprised to find a restaurant that still has my taste buds wanting me to return.

Backwoods Bar and Grill offers some of the best BBQ I have had in quite sometime. The smoked pulled pork sandwich came highly recommended and it was fantastic topped with a tangy, sweet BBQ sauce.

pulled pork sandwich

From the occasional all you can eat buffet to pizza and nachos, Backwoods Bar and Grill in McGregor has you covered. The indoor seating is abundant and it offers a fun, casual setting. A stage is set for live music and a bar offers a chair for you to call yours throughout the day. For updates on entertainment and food specials, be sure to “like” Backwoods Bar and Grill on Facebook.

I’m all about quaint river towns and McGregor is all that and more. How about a book store that offers books and more?

Paper Moon

Paper Moon is a fun place to swing into while in McGregor. Each level offers something for everyone. If you are looking for a fun gift for someone of any age, you will find one here.The building itself almost speaks to you as you climb the stairs and take a step back in time with the architecture that reaches out to you.

steps in Paper Moon

Something that really caught my eye in the Paper Moon, was how the store owners have incorporated learning and fun together. This area serves as a cute, little reading area for kids. How cute are these puppets?


A lot of you know that I still prefer holding a book in my hand while reading, so you can only imagine how warm my heart was as I strolled through this store.

Several local authors are featured in the store, as well as several how to books. I stumbled on this nice selection of cooking and how to books. The decor is as charming as the building itself.

books in Paper MoonThis is just a small sampling of what you will find while strolling down Main Street in McGregor, Iowa. With the Mighty Mississippi River on its doorstep and Pikes Peak State Park nearby, McGregor is a win-win for anyone wanting to explore the Northeastern part of Iowa.

Stay Connected:

Facebook: Paper Moon McGregor

Facebook: McGregor-Marquette, Iowa

Website: McGregor and Marquette Chamber of Commerce

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A traveler at heart with a passion for travel in the Midwest. SaraB

Read All of Sara's posts and be inspired to travel SaraB

30 thoughts on “BBQ and A Book Store Make For A Perfect Day In McGregor, Iowa

  1. Your community has been strong through all of this. It’s amazing what we Iowans can do when we pull together. I will see you this fall, as I venture over to your store and experience all that your area has to offer for fall.

  2. Sara, it was great meeting you in my store, the Paper Moon, in McGregor,IA. I appreciate greatly your promotion of the store and Mc Gregor. As you know, on
    July 19th, McGregor was hit with a tornado. I always thought the beautiful bluffs would protect us. Shocking this would happen.
    Our historic town lost two historic buildings. There were three to four building that were heavily damaged but their dedicated owners are working hard to make the damage just part of a historic building’s history.
    Our building took on damage but most is not visible. So to your readers, Mc Gregor is still here and making giant steps everyday. We will welcome your visits everyday.

  3. I’ve not been to Iowa, but BBQ and a bookstore is a perfect day anywhere. Looks like a super cute town.

  4. I would agree with you 100%. Our Iowa State Fair rocks and so do a lot of other places.

  5. It is very true. I have lived and traveled extensively in the USA, and it is quite shocking and disappointing that many people really have no idea where it even is! Maybe they have heard of the Iowa State Fair, but that is about it. They have no idea what they are missing!

  6. Never heard of McGregor at all before reading this. I have to admit, I know next to nothing about Iowa. However, if they have great BBQs then it’s definitely worth a visit!

  7. Thank you. I’d like to think that people know about my home state of Iowa, but reality is that a lot of them fly over or drive through Iowa.

  8. There are so many fabulous places like this in Iowa that nobody knows about. The BBQ photo made my mouth water 🙂 So glad you are sharing the wonderful places in this fabulous state!

  9. I would skip the BBQ for the bookstore. Given my fascination and interest in books, I would get lost in the bookstore. The store looks so unique and innovative that I am sure I would not realize the time flying by.

  10. Little towns like this are so great. I grew up in a town that sounds a lot like this. It’s fun to go back and stroll through town again every once in a while and remember why I love it so much. Plus, um, BBQ.

  11. This looks like the kind of dream place you’d stumble upon on an epic roadtrip. Super cute!

    And I agree with the earlier comment… long live the bookstore! 🙂

  12. I haven’t tried BBQ in Iowa, which is kind of weird as my Dad’s family is from Iowa! Is it vinegar based or something else? The town looks delightful!

  13. I love good BBQ places! It’s hard to find it here in Asia. Also, I’m glad to see there are still some small bookstores out there. Many have gone wayside lately.

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