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Tranquility on the trail

Rachel Wick
Updated: January 27, 2020 11:06 PM
Created: January 22, 2020 08:16 PM

(ABC 6 News) -- One hour and 57 minutes south of St. Paul, right across the Minnesota/Iowa border, is a property unlike any other in the area.

In 2004, Kurt and Paula Meyer moved into their custom-built home in St. Ansgar, Iowa that they named Tranquility. A place where they can escape the city life and get back to their roots.

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"This is where I'm from, and deeply from. 6 generations. This is our home," said Kurt Meyer.

However, their secluded location has also become an unlikely gathering place for some big names.

"I really enjoy Cory Booker. He's a special man. Beto O'Rourke was special. Amy Klobuchar. It was really special to have Amy here," said Kurt.

A political stomping ground in a remote location. An opportunity for Kurt and Paula to highlight the beauty of north Iowa while giving candidates in the Democratic Party the opportunity to highlight what they can do for the state and even the country.  

"I grew up in a union household, my dad worked at the plant in Austin, and I think because the Democratic Party, I felt more comfortable affiliating with the Democratic Party than with the Republican Party. Moreover, members of my family are more comfortable in the other direction and that is fine. To each his or her own. I know that politics is important to our way of life, and politics opposed to one of my other passions, which is Minnesota Twins Baseball; I cannot determine the outcome of a Twins game. However, when it comes to political campaigns or politics in general, one can come out of the stands, roll up their sleeves and become a participant," said Kurt.

In 1980, Kurt and Paula were a couple of campaign kids.

"I compare it to a peace corps experience," said Kurt.

They made lasting relationships along the way.

"In many cases, they are still dear friends of mine. These people not just make the Christmas card list… you call them, you see them when you are in town when they are in town. You let them know what's going on in your life, and god-willing… they're still part of yours," said Kurt.

Major candidates have said some incredible things in these rooms…

"When candidates come to north Iowa, Kurt is one of the first people that they call," said Kurt's wife Paula.

But, the people behind the scenes are also important reasons why the Meyers continue to open their doors, offer a Midwestern meal…"often SPAM for breakfast," said Kurt.

And give them a place to grow their passion for politics.

"I have gained, immeasurably, from the young men and women who I have come to know through politics. It is a joy, it is a pleasure, and it has made me a better person. In some small way, it may have helped them, but I know my life has been immeasurably enhanced through those relationships," said Kurt. 

Paula and Kurt don't play favorites when it comes to the candidates.

"I am asked often, 'Who are you going to caucus for, Kurt?' I say, "You will probably see when we gather to caucus," said Kurt.

Keeping their home a civil place and a welcome refuge for political campaigns as they work to make their voices heard across the nation.


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