Lunch at the Iowa State Penitentiary

Oct 16, 2015

In August, more than 500 of Iowa’s most dangerous offenders were moved into the new $166 million Iowa State Penitentiary in Fort Madison. The new facility is a quantum leap ahead of the “old fort,” as it was known, some of which dated back to the 1830s, before Iowa became a state.

On this River to River segment, host Ben Kieffer takes a tour of the prison’s cafeteria and kitchen, where three meals a day are prepared and served by offenders. Warden Nick Ludwick describes the cooking process, the way service practices reduce contraband and conflict, and why a nutritious, sometimes delicious meal is important in a maximum security facility.

Ben Kieffer and Warden Nick Ludwick inside Iowa State Penitentiary
Credit Emily Woodbury

Next Tuesday, October 20 at noon CT, the entire River to River episode will be dedicated to learning about the new penitentiary. [Listen to the show here]