The lodge at Honey Creek Resort.

There are expansion plans for the state-owned Honey Creek Resort in south central Iowa. Iowa Department of Natural Resources director Chuck Gipp says the private firm hired to manage the park will build a wedding pavillion and install a year-round, outdoor pool.

“The new management group is Delaware North,” Gipp says. “They’re incredibly experienced throughout the United States in the National Park system…This is their first park at a statewide level.”

The park sits on the shore of Lake Rathbun. It opened in 2008 and has offerend an indoor water park and an 18-hold golf course. There’s a 105-room lodge as well as 28 cabins which will be “refreshed.” Gipp says the private firm that took over management about a year ago has taken other steps to add value to the resort experience, too, like having boats and kayaks that paying guests can check out without forking over an additional fee.

“They’re doing what they need to do in order to draw people down there,” Gipp says.

The new management company took over last June. The company has agreed to make $2.5 million worth of upgrades. The Honey Creek Resort, which is near the town of Moravia, covers about 850 acres and cost the state nearly $60 million to build. A few years ago legislators paid off the debt on the park early.