A tiny town when it was first named Coralville in 1866, the city is celebrating its 150th Anniversary with a big free event on Sunday, October 1.

If the first thing that came to your mind was '1866 was not 150 years ago,' you're correct. Even though Coralville (previously known as Clarksville) got its name that year, it wasn't incorporated as a town in Johnson County until October 3, 1873.

The all-ages celebration at Xtream Arena (200 E. 9th St.) in the Iowa River Landing takes place on Sunday afternoon, October 1. Below is what will be happening at the free event.

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There will be live entertainment throughout the three-hour celebration (2 to 5 p.m.) including a magician performing from 2 to 5 p.m., and live music from Adam Beck (2 to 3 p.m.) and Kevin Burt (3 to 5 p.m.). The Young Footliters Youth Theatre will do a pop-up cabaret (2:15 to 3:45 p.m.). Coralville Mayor Meghann Foster will give a toast to Coralville at 4 p.m.

Other activities during the afternoon:

  • Free popcorn, cupcakes, and water
  • Barnyard Discoveries petting zoo (on E. 9th St.)
  • "Stump the Historian" game
  • Free admission to the Johnson County Historical Society Museum and/or Antique Car Museum (both are adjacent to Xtream Arena)
  • Children's games, crafts, and coloring pages
  • Timothy Walch will be signing his book "Coralville: Images of America" (book will be available for purchase)
  • Ice skating (must bring your own skates)

And finally, other things to see:

  • Vehicle on display from Coralville Police Department, and also truck from Coralville Fire Department
  • Display of Coralville history
  • Digital history display from the library
  • Display from League of Women Voters
  • Display on upcoming Coralville projects

Even though the event is free, there will be a number of commemorative items available for purchase. Those include:

  • 150th Anniversary buttons
  • 150th Anniversary community cookbook
  • Coralville apparel (including hoodies, hats, long and short-sleeve t-shirts, kids t-shirts, women's tank tops)
  • postcards of Coralville's wheat pasting murals (public art project installed earlier this year--one of the murals is below)

Coralville had around 300 residents when it was incorporated in 1873. 150 years later, the population is now more than 23,000. Here's to the city's next 150 years!

Complete details on Sunday's 150th Anniversary Celebration are available here.

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