OUR STORY

The latest from the DRA

Autumn Adventure on Schmitt Island

SAVE THE DATE!
Join us on Sunday, October 15 for an Autumn Adventure on Schmitt Island, a celebration of our island's vibrant present and exciting future! Explore hidden gems, enjoy interactive exhibits, and participate in a Scavenger Hunt with prizes. #SchmittIsland #SaveTheDate

United Way’s Over the Edge

Thank you to everyone who donated to United Way of Dubuque Area Tri-States to help send #TeamDRA Over the Edge of the MidWestOne Bank building! Q Casino Diamond Jo Casino Dubuque

UW-Platteville Dubuque Community on Campus Day

We're at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville Dubuque Community on Campus Day! If you're on campus stop by to visit and get t-shirt! #withDRA

Podcast Episode 4

Dive into the latest Dubuque Rising podcast, Episode 4, featuring Molly Grover, President of the Dubuque Area Chamber of Commerce, and Ali Fuller, Founder of Driftless Consulting Group. Join Alex and his guests as they explore critical economic topics affecting Dubuque and rural communities. Listen and download now to stay informed! https://bit.ly/3EAe0uc #DubuqueRisingPodcast

NAMI Community Walk

Thank you to the DRA and Q Casino team members who joined us for the NAMI Dubuque Community Walk for suicide awareness today! #withDRA

2023 DRA Grant Reception

Thank you to all the incredible grant recipients who joined us at the DRA Grant Reception last week! Your dedication to making a positive impact in our community is truly inspiring. Check out the photos below and tag yourself and your organization. #withDRA

Visit our Facebook page to view all of the photos.

Happy Labor Day

On this Labor Day, we recognize and salute the efforts you put into our community. Take some time to relax and recharge! #HappyLaborDay

Dubuque Rising Podcast Episode 3

Get ready for another episode of the #DubuqueRisingPodcast featuring the amazing John Sutter, VP of Field Of Dreams Dyersville Iowa Operations. Join us as we dive into the boundless enthusiasm and incredible potential that the Field of Dreams project holds for our beloved Iowa. Tune in now at https://bit.ly/44jKwef

Over the Edge 2023

Join us at Gary Dolphin's Iron Bar on August 30, 4-6 pm, as we shake things up for a great cause! Ryan Mills and Rob Korman from Q Casino are taking over the bar to raise funds for United Way of Dubuque Area Tri-States through Over the Edge. Let's help them go over the edge in style - see you there! #TeamDRA

Congressional Staff Visit

A huge thank you to the Congressional staff for their insightful visit to Dubuque and the Dubuque Ice Arena today! We're grateful for the opportunity to showcase our plans for Schmitt Island and share our vision for an exciting future. Your interest and engagement are vital as we work towards making Schmitt Island a vibrant hub for the community.

Episode 2 “The Impact of Giving Back”

Tune in to the latest episode of the Dubuque Rising Podcast with Alex Dixon! Discover the impact of giving back within our community as Racquel McClellan, The Dubuque Dream Center Development Director, and Gary Stoppelman, Dubuque Museum of Art Executive Director, share their insights. https://bit.ly/43Zd1hd #DubuqueRisingPodcast

Hiring Creative Content Intern

Exciting Opportunity for a Creative Content Intern at the DRA 
The DRA, a 501(c)(4) organization, seeks a part-time intern with a blend of technical, creative, and interpersonal skills. They aim to provide social, economic, and community betterment while enhancing Dubuque area tourism.

The intern will craft engaging narratives through video and written content, supporting mission-oriented community work. Proficiency in storytelling, graphic design, photography, and video production. Knowledge of social media best practices.

⏰ Hours: 15-20 hours per week
💰 Pay: $16/hour
✉️ Apply: https://bit.ly/3qhInSA #Hiring #JoinOurTeam

2023 Women’s Leadership Network’s Annual Connect Experience

Exciting day at the Women's Leadership Network of Dubuque's Annual Connect Experience! Looking forward to gaining valuable insights on "Purpose and Perspective" from the incredible speakers. After the morning conference, we can't wait to hit the golf course and network. Q Casino

Golfin’ with Dolphin & Play with Lepay 2023

⛳ Yesterday, team members of Q Casino had a fantastic time at the Golfin' with Dolphin & Play with Lepay 2023 golf tournament, supporting the United Way of Dubuque Area Tri-States! Such an amazing event for a wonderful cause!

Episode 1 “The Origin”

Tune in to the first episode of the Dubuque Rising Podcast! Join Alex Dixon and special guest Gary Dolphin as they explore the origins of the DRA and its incredible "community-first" history! Don't miss this enlightening conversation – listen now! https://bit.ly/45nQbBh #DubuqueRisingPodcast

2023 Core Grants Announced

We are thrilled to announce that DRA has awarded over $1 million in grants to 52 exceptional organizations in the tri-state area! These grants will empower and uplift our communities in so many ways. Together, we are making a positive impact that will last for years to come! https://bit.ly/3KiKHzp #withDRA

Dubuque Rising: A Surprising Gem on the Mississippi

The new podcast "Dubuque Rising: A Surprising Gem on the Mississippi" is now live! Join Alex Dixon, President & CEO of DRA and Q Casino, as he takes you on a captivating journey, where history meets the future, through stories from those who helped shape this unique community making Dubuque a thriving destination. Download for free at https://bit.ly/44BDtyL

Saint 4 Life Foundation Golf Outing 2023

Team members from the DRA and Q Casino had amazing time participating in the Saint 4 Life Foundation's golf outing yesterday! Together, we can build a vibrant hockey community and making a positive impact.

Scouting Golf Classic 2023

DRA and Q Casino team members are hitting the greens for a great cause at the Scouting Golf Classic! Proceeds of the event support Scouting programs that make a positive impact on youth in our community. 

Happy 4th of July

Wishing everyone a happy and safe 4th of July! Enjoy the fireworks, celebrate the spirit of independence, and have a fantastic holiday! #IndependenceDay

City Council Meeting

A big thank you to the Dubuque City Council for giving us the opportunity to present updates on the Schmitt Island Development last night! We were thrilled to share the exciting progress happening at Q Casino and discuss our vision for the future of Schmitt Island. Together, we're creating a vibrant and dynamic destination for the community. City of Dubuque Government

Mission Grant Recipients 2023

The DRA is thrilled to announce the recipients of its Mission Grants for 2023, totaling an impressive $250,000! Congratulations to Travel Dubuque, United Way of Dubuque Area Tri-States, and Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque for their outstanding efforts in community development and growth. Together, let's build a stronger and more vibrant Dubuque! https://bit.ly/3pic9pT #withDRA

DALMC Golf Outing

What an amazing day at the Dubuque Area Labor-Management Council's golf outing yesterday! We had a blast supporting a fantastic organization while enjoying some friendly competition on the greens!

2023 Clarke Golf Classic

Team members from DRA and Q Casino are playing in the Clarke University Golf Classic, which supports scholarships for local students! We're proud to be part of this fantastic event, making a difference in our community and empowering young minds. Together, we swing for success and support a great cause!

Dubuque Jaycees 2023 Core Grant

We are thrilled to announce that the DRA Board members have approved a Core Grant of $20,000 to the Dubuque Jaycees! This generous award will play a pivotal role in supporting this year's Fireworks & Air Show Spectacular, set to take place on July 3!

Memorial Day Parade Photos

Thank you to all who joined us at the Memorial Day Parade on Schmitt Island! It was a heartwarming sight to see the community come together to honor our veterans. Your presence and support made this event truly special. We extend our deepest gratitude to the brave veterans who have served our country, as well as to everyone who participated, organized, and contributed to making this parade a success! 

View the all the pictures from the parade on our Facebook page. #withDRA

2023 Memorial Day

Happy Memorial Day! Today, we pay our respects to the courageous individuals who served our nation. Let us remember the heroes who made our freedom possible. #MemorialDay

Veteran’s Memorial Day Parade

Join us on May 29 at 10:30 am for the Memorial Day Parade honoring veterans on Schmitt Island!

After a three-year absence, the parade is back, starting from the Q Casino parking lot and ending at the Veteran's Memorial Plaza. Following the parade, there will be a short program, wreath laying, and a community cookout with free food provided by Hy-Vee. Don't miss this incredible event to honor our heroes! #MemorialDay #withDRA

Veterans Freedom Center Core Grant

Yesterday the DRA Board approved a Core Grant for the Veterans Freedom Center. They've been awarded $10,872 to organize the Veteran's Memorial Day Parade and Community Cookout. Let's come together as a community to honor our veterans and enjoy a day filled with gratitude, remembrance, and delicious food! #withDRA

2023 Days of Caring

Team DRA had an incredible day participating in Days of Caring, cleaning up Schmitt Island! Despite the flooding, we finally got the perfect weather to tackle all the trash and debris. A huge thank you to all the amazing team members from Diamond Jo Casino Dubuque and Q Casino who joined us today. #TeamDRA

Core Grants 2023

The DRA Core Grants application will be opening on May 8!

If your organization is in need of funding for a project or program, we encourage you to apply for a Core Grant. Requests up to $50,000 will be considered.

The deadline to submit your application is May 19, so don't delay! Visit our website for more information and to apply. #DRA

Make-A-Wish Iowa

We are excited to announce that the Make-A-Wish Iowa has received a $10,000 grant from the DRA, helping to make wish granting possible in the Dubuque area! We are thrilled to have been able to contribute to such a wonderful organization that brings joy and hope to children with critical illnesses.

The DRA funds recently helped make Gray's wish come true! Gray is a 5-year-old girl with a nervous system disorder, and her wish was to go on a beach vacation with her family in Hawaii. Gray wanted to attend a luau, swim with dolphins, and enjoy the beautiful island scenery. Thanks to the Make-A-Wish Foundation and the DRA, Gray's wish was granted, and she was able to create unforgettable memories with her family.

Thank you, Make-A-Wish Foundation of Iowa, for all the incredible work that you do! #withDRA

2023 Grant Kickoff Thank You

A huge thank you to everyone who came out to support the DRA Grant Kickoff Reception at the Diamond Jo Casino Dubuque last Tuesday. Your attendance and participation made the event a huge success! Check out these photos from a great night!

Mission Grants Apply Now

📣 The DRA's Mission Grants are now open for applications!

The deadline for applications is April 21, so don't delay! Apply now and help us make a difference in our community. #withDRA #MissionGrants https://bit.ly/3ZWWFnt 

Mission Grants Open on April 9th

The DRA’s Mission Grants program will be accepting applications from April 9-21. Organizations may request grants ranging from $50,000 to $300,000 to support their mission and make a positive impact in our community.

We're committed to making a difference, and we can't wait to see the amazing projects you have in store. Mark your calendars and visit our website for more information on how to apply! https://bit.ly/435XEEz #DRA #MissionGrants

Camp Courageous

We are thrilled to announce that Camp Courageous has received a $25,000 grant from the DRA to complete their new multipurpose field! This field can be used as a baseball/kickball field, pickle ball court, soccer field, and 4-square court, all with a flat, smooth, and soft surface that will ensure that all campers can use the facility without fear of injury.

At the DRA, we believe that access to safe and inclusive recreational opportunities is a basic right for all individuals, regardless of their abilities. This multipurpose field is a huge step towards achieving that goal, and we are proud to support Camp Courageous in this endeavor.

We can't wait to see the impact that this new multipurpose field will have on the campers and staff at Camp Courageous! #withDRA

2022 Grant Kickoff Recap

We can't wait to see everyone tonight at the Grant Kickoff Reception at the Diamond Jo Casino! Take a look at some of the photos from last year’s kickoff event. #DRAGrantKickoff #withDRA

2023 DRA Grant Kickoff Reception

Join us for the DRA Grant Kickoff Reception at Diamond Jo Casino on Tuesday, April 4! This event is your chance to learn about the exciting grant opportunities available in 2023. RSVP by March 24 at https://bit.ly/3Jn05tv #withDRA

Monticello Community School District

Congratulations to the Monticello Community School District on receiving a $10,000 grant from the DRA to support their school literacy needs!

We are proud to have contributed to the improvement of student achievement in reading by helping the district update their reading curriculum with the most recent and best materials available. We are confident that this investment will have a positive impact on the students of Monticello for years to come, and we are honored to have played a role in their success.

Keep up the great work! #withDRA #Education

Dubuque Jaycees

We are thrilled to announce that the Dubuque Jaycees were awarded a $25,000 grant from the DRA to support their 3rd of July Fireworks and Air Show!

This community event not only raises the profile of Dubuque as a major destination for a place to "live, work, & play," but also serves to enhance the local community's participation in honoring and celebrating the anniversary of our nation's independence.

Thank you for all that you do to make Dubuque a great place to live and visit! #withDRA #CommunityEvent #IndependenceDay #LiveWorkPlayDubuque

City of Dubuque Received $9,138,168 in 2022

As the license holder for gaming operations at Q Casino and the co-licensee for Diamond Jo Casino, the DRA contributed over $9 million to the City of Dubuque in 2022! #togetherwecan #with DRA

Dubuque Arts Council

We're thrilled to announce that in 2022, the Dubuque Arts Council received a $10,000 grant from the DRA to fund an incredible project featuring Ball in the House, an acapella group of 5 talented men from Boston. Through this project, an Artist in Residence program was established in elementary schools throughout the Tri-State area, giving students the opportunity to experience live professional music programming. We're proud to have supported such an impactful initiative and look forward to seeing the positive effects it has on the community. #withDRA #musiceducation

$3 Million Awarded from Destination Iowa

Congratulations to the City of Dubuque for being awarded $3,000,000 for the construction of an open-air amphitheater on Schmitt Island! This new addition is sure to provide a beautiful and unique outdoor venue for residents and visitors to enjoy a variety of performances and events. We can't wait to see this project come to life and enhance the cultural offerings of the city. #SchmittIsland #CommunityEnrichment

February DRA Board Meeting

Big thanks again to the Diamond Jo Casino for hosting our February DRA Board Meeting! We appreciate your hospitality and look forward to future events at the Diamond Jo.

Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission

Congratulations to Q Casino and Diamond Jo Casino on getting their license renewed with the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission! It's a testament to their commitment to providing a safe and enjoyable gaming experience for all their patrons. Here's to many more years of success and fun!

Proposal Approved

Exciting news! The DRA board has approved a proposal for Iowa-based RDG Planning & Design to develop a comprehensive development plan for Schmitt Island, a city-owned property on the Mississippi River. This is a significant investment of $302,660 by the organization, and the plan should be completed within the next 12 months.

We're looking forward to seeing the positive impact this development will have on our community and the Mississippi River. #SchmittIsland #MississippiRiver #CommunityDevelopment

Board Chair Mike Donohue

Please join us in welcoming Mike Donohue as the new Board Chair for the DRA! Mike has been part of the DRA Board of Directors since 2014. Outside of the DRA, he is the CEO for Northeast Iowa Area Agency on Aging. With his extensive experience and leadership skills, Mike will be a valuable asset to the organization and we are thrilled to have him on board. Let's give him a warm welcome as we look forward to the exciting initiatives he'll lead.

Schmitt Island Development Corporation Board of Directors

The DRA had the opportunity to host the Schmitt Island Development Corporation (SID Corp) Board of Directors for their quarterly meeting.

SID Corp is fortunate to have an exceptional group of individuals who bring a wealth of experience and expertise to the table. Their guidance and leadership will play a critical role in shaping the direction and implementation of development on Schmitt Island.

We look forward to working together to continue to innovate, grow, and make a positive impact in our community!

$75M+ Redevelopment

The DRA is thrilled to announce the Q Casino renovation and expansion project to create a better experience for our employees and guests! This investment fits into a bigger plan to develop Schmitt Island, that goes to the heart of who we are as a city, and what we offer to locals and visitors.

Thank You Kevin Lynch

We're grateful for the leadership and dedication of Kevin Lynch, who served as the Board Chair of the DRA for the past two years. Thank you for your unwavering commitment and support.

2022 YP Symposium

Thank you for including the DRA in the 2022 YP Symposium. We love to share our stories and inspire Young Professionals to get involved in our community!

UW-Platteville Check Presentation

Congratulations to UW-Platteville on your 2022 Core Grant award! 

Avelo is coming to Dubuque!

Through the DRA Mission Grant program, the Dubuque Area Chamber of Commerce received an award for $125,000 to Restore, Recruit and Retain Local Commercial Air Service Campaign. The announcement of Avelo's nonstop service to Orlando is only the beginning of the campaign to bring air service back to Dubuque. Welcome to Dubuque Avelo!

Ground Breaking Ceremony - Go the Distance

Congratulations to our friends with Go the Distance Baseball, LLC on your groundbreaking in Dyersville. Thank you for investing in our community!  We look forward to many good times to come!

October Mission Grant Awards

The final Mission Grant award recipients for 2022: 
Dubuque Community YMCA/YWCA | $160,000
Hills & Dales | $100,000
Boys & Girls Club of Greater Dubuque | $100,000
Crescent Community Health | $125,000
Loras, Clarke, & University of Dubuque | $200,000

September Mission Grant Awards

Congratulations to our most recent Mission Grant Recipients!
Dubuque County Historical Society/National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium | $50,000/year for 3-years
St. Mark Youth Enrichment | $125,000
Habitat for Humanity | $200,000
United Way | $75,000
Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque | $100,000
 

DRA at UW-Platteville

DRA staff visited UW-Platteville and had the opportunity to share our story with the students. We handed out t-shirts too!

2022 DRA Grant Reception

Congrats to our 2022 DRA Grant Recipients!

Schmitt Island Renderings

Newly released Schmitt Island renderings

DRA announces Core Grant recipients at July Full Board meeting.

DRA announces Core Grant recipients at July Full Board meeting.

Southwest Wisconsin organizations receive Core Grant Award!

Congrats to our friends and neighbors in Southwest Wisconsin who were awarded a 2022 Core Grant. Thanks to Platteville City Manager, Adam Ruechel (2nd from right), Erik Flesch, The Mining and Rollo Jamison Museums (Middle) and Angela Wright, Grant Writer, and active community volunteer (Far Right) for making the drive to attend the announcement last week! #WithDRA

Woman from DRA & Diamond Jo Leadership team at WLN Annual Connect Event at Dubuque Golf & Country Club

Kathy Buhr (DRA/Director of Strategic Philanthropy and Schmitt Island Development), Wendy Runde (Diamond Jo/Vice President & GM), Lisa Potter (Diamond Jo) and Jennifer Theide (Diamond Jo)

City Council Members visit Schmitt Island!

City Council Members visit Schmitt Island! 

Hills & Dales Visit

Alex & Kathy visited  our friends over at Hills & Dales!

DRA Donates to Dyersville Inc Events

DRA Donates to Dyersville Inc Events

Kathy Buhr (DRA/Q Casino) and Wendy Runde (Diamond Jo Casino) present check to Dyersville Inc Events.

The Dubuque Jaycees July 3rd

The Dubuque Jaycees were presented with a $25,000 check to support the annual July 3rd Fireworks & Air Show Spectacular.

DRA & Q Casino team volunteering at the Dubuque Regional Humane Society

DRA & Q Casino team volunteering at the Dubuque Regional Humane Society

DRA & Q Casino team at the Southwest Health Golf Outing.

DRA & Q Casino team at the Southwest Health Golf Outing.

International Center for Responsible Gaming appoints Alex Dixon to its Governing Board.

International Center for Responsible Gaming appoints Alex Dixon (President & CEO of DRA/Q Casino) to its Governing Board.

River Museum River to Sea 2.0 Exhibit

Alex and Kathy stopped by the River Museum to check out their Rivers to the Sea 2.0 Exhibit and 3D Theatre.

Fountain of Youth Open House

Kathy and Alex stopped down to the Fountain of Youth's open house. Caprice got to explain some of the wonderful things he's doing to help the community.

Optimist Club of Platteville

The Road Show led Kathy & Will to Platteville. We got to present who the DRA is and what we do, We also got to hear about all the wonderful things the Optimist Club does as well.

Steeple Square Guest Bartending

Alex (President & CEO of DRA), Wendy (GM of Diamond Jo Casino), and Kevin Lynch (DRA Board Chair)  guest bartending for tips at Steeple Square on 5.25

DBQ Trees Forever

The team took some time out of their busy schedules to plant some trees with Dubuque Trees Forever.

April 2022 Board Meeting

Marie Ware, Leisure Services Manger for the City of Dubuque, leading a walking tour of Schmitt Island following the April DRA Board of Directors meeting. 

 

First and latest check to the City of Dubuque

Latest check to the City of Dubuque. Given in February 2022.

Board at the Retreat

DRA Board at the 2022 Retreat

$1 Billion Impact Since 1985

$1 Billion+ economic impact in the Dubuque area since 1985.

DRA Impact Over the Years

Dubuque County Emergency Responder Training Facility, funded with the help of a $750,000 contribution by the DRA

QSO Begins

In 2008, the Diamond Jo Casino opened an $84 million land-based casino. As the QSO for Diamond Jo Casino, the DRA is responsible for distributing funds received from them back into the community.

Addition of casino

In 2005, Dubuque Greyhound Park & Casino completed a $33 million renovation, more than doubling the casino size from 11,675 sq/ft to 29,600 sq/ft.

Busy day at the races

The Dubuque Greyhound Park opened for it’s first day of live racing on June 1, 1985. A typical day at the races included a full parking lot, including an average of 20-30 buses, with the record being 48 buses in a single day of racing!

Opening Day

As the nation’s first and only nonprofit greyhound race track, the Dubuque Greyhound Park had it’s inaugural day and ribbon cutting on June 1, 1985. 

Come out and play!

Iconic “Come Out And Play!” slogan and graphic for the Greyhound Park.

Construction Begins!

Construction begins of the Dubuque Greyhound Park.

First DRA Board

First DRA Board

Back the Track

Concept and scaled model of the Dubuque Racing Association Greyhound Track. Members of the community went door-to-door with this campaign to “Back The Track”.