Or...What people think of us.
Dear Chuck and Joy, Thank you for the very enjoyable evening at the Mason House, Saturday evening! It is always a lot of fun and educational too!! Lots of history! The food was wonderful - you do a great job! Thank you again for a lovely evening. David and Vicki, Fairfield, Iowa
Chuck & Joy,
On May 17th 2003 my husband and I were married. I was just about to graduate from college therefore, a typical honeymoon was out of the question and we figured we would settle on a small honeymoon. So, before that big day, we shopped around for the perfect bed and breakfast to stay in for a few nights. We stumbled upon the Mason House Inn, debated the drive, and decided to call for more information. My husband called, spoke with Joy and within a moment he booked us a room. (My husband stated that after talking to Joy he felt that this would be a nice place to stay.)
We have to admit we knew absolutely nothing, except for the information on the Internet, about the place we were planning on staying. As you can tell, we were unprepared for our stay. As we drove into town, my husband and I were in awe. We never imagined what a beautiful, scenic view the inn would have. As we walked up to the inn, we were amazed that the inn was more gorgeous than we ever could have imagined. This was all before we even entered the inn! As we entered the inn we were met by Joy and her youngest daughter and once again we were overwhelmed by the inn's beauty. The inn is very tastefully decorated and the antiques made wonderful finishing touches. There is not a spot within the inn that does not complement it. When we were shown to our room, we were again unprepared. There are no words to express how overjoyed we were!
After we settled into our room we decided to take a walking tour of the town. It was gorgeous. Not only was the town beautiful on its own but the town's people were so friendly that it made the town's beauty illuminate. We were met by friendly faces everywhere. As we headed back, we walked across the Bentonsport Bridge. We stopped in the middle of the bridge and looked at each other. We both agreed that this was a million times better than any other honeymoon we could plan.
In the morning, we were once again surprised. My husband is chef and sometimes hard to please but we both agreed that the term Bed and Breakfast does not give the Mason House Inn justice. It should be Bed and Breakfast, Lunch and a late dinner because the food was so delicious and there was so much that you ate enough to fill you up to a late dinner. In addition, the restaurants in the area were reasonable and the food surpassed all exceptions.
During the day we were able to visit the shops in town and in the neighboring towns. Everyone was once again so friendly. It was also refreshing to see that all the communities worked together to promote each other. In addition, the state park nearby was a great picnic spot. There was so much to do but everything was so peaceful that we never realized how much we did until the car ride home!
Our next night we stayed in the old post office cottage. Once again we were amazed. The cottage was just a beautiful as the inn. We loved the back porch on the cottage because the view was gorgeous and the surroundings were so peaceful. We loved to walk through the rose garden and enjoyed many walks across the bridge.
Finally, there are no words to express how wonderful our hosts and their family were during our stay. The Hanson's two daughters, that were there during our stay, were pleasant, fun and helpful. The older daughter even took professional quality wedding pictures (we brought our attire) of us around town! The younger daughter was friendly and fun loving. As for Chuck and Joy, they are the best inn keepers. They are friendly, thoughtful and compassionate.
There was never a moment of our stay that worried about. In addition, the hand crafted doll and replica kitten made a wonderful gift to bring back to our daughter, Stephanney. Everything about the Mason House Inn made us feel like we were at home.
I am sorry that it has taken so long to write this letter however, we feel that it is very important that you knew how much our stay meant to us. We no longer think about the traditional honeymoon we were looking forward to. The Mason House Inn was our honeymoon. We look forward to returning year after year.
Sincerely, Kim and Troy
Thanks Chuck for the photos you sent by email. They came to us just fine and will send them on to a couple of people we know to show what great fun it is to be senior citizens and have a weekend away from home! We really enjoyed our time with you, your wife and daughter. Our trip home went very well, with some rain and lots of visiting. We enjoyed the B & B and now talking about the next time we can go...... and do something different......
God Bless you and your family as you continue to work with your guests at your B & B and with the things you do for your town of Bentonsport. Paul & Irene, Des Moines, Iowa
Just a brief note to tell you again how much we all enjoyed our stay at your
Mason House Inn. We are the 6 who stayed with you on the 22nd & 23rd of last
month. Your rooms are a delight and the food was fantastic. We will do all
in our power to see that the word gets out that you are one of Iowa's Best
Kept Secrets. Thanks again for a wonderful stay. Our love to your entire
family. Bill & Carol, Eldon & Darlene, Dick & JC
Joy & Chuck, Have heard from several who attended our reunion at Mason House Inn and guess what, it was the best since our beginning in 1948 and if the good Lord is willing, we will return. Thanks and love to both and your family. Gene
Dear Joy, Chuck and daughters,
Thank you for the great vacation at the Inn. It was a truly wonderful
time for all. Again thanks for the hospitality. Have a good season. Sincerely, Dorothy
Hi Chuck and Joy,
Just wanted to drop you a note and thank you for your warm hospitality and wonderful breakfasts.
We enjoyed our stay and tour of your Inn and plan on sending other family members your way.
We pray that you will have great success in your INN-deavor. Thank you! Tim & Sue
Dear Joy and Chuck,
We just want you to know what a truly enjoyable time our family of 21 had as your guests at the Mason House. Every single one of us were very pleased with your food, rooms and hospitality. We hope that we were as good guests as you were hosts. The atmosphere of the Inn and town was a perfect fit for what we wanted to experience as a family. It was especially fun for me since I have frequented Bentonsport over the years innumerable times but never had need to stay at the inn living so close in Bonaparte. We are thankful that the weather posed no problem for us like it could have. Again our many thanks and best wishes for your new year and the endeavor you've undertaken as innkeepers! We hope to have occasion to do business with you again. Libby
This is rather late, but I intended to write and tell you again how nice our evening was at the Mason House Inn. I was surprised that my whole group just went on and on about how much they enjoyed that! I have been telling some of the other groups about it, so it's possible you'll be hearing from some more at some point.
Thanks again, Janet, Burlington, Iowa
Dear Joy and Chuck, I am sad to inform you that William E. Mason, III who was a retired lawyer, died in Knoxville Tennessee on 9 December 2004. He was about age 85, and his wife Lynn died in early 2004.
He was Senator William E. Mason's grandson, and is survived by his son William E. Mason, IV (an attorney in Knoxville; Harvard Law School class of about 1973), and his grandson William Ernest Mason, V......who just got married in Tennessee in November 2004 & was born in 1981. Mr Mason is also survived by his siblings, Lowell Blake Mason, Jr (Jerry) of Kalamazoo Michigan (who grew up in Oak Park Illinois), and Bianca Mason Beary (who grew up in Washington DC), and Jimilu Mason (an artist in Italy who grew up in Washington DC).
Vanessa and I very much enjoyed your hospitality at the Mason House Inn last summer. In Oak Park Illinois, I saw the memorial plaque for Lowell B. Mason, Sr (Vanessa's grandfather & Bill III's father) which is on an outside memorial stone of a grey stone Protestant church (Oak Park Church of Christ) that is directly across the street from Frank Lloyd Wright's famous Unitarian church of Oak Park. Warm regards, John, Cincinnati, Ohio
Chuck & Joy, Thank You for the peaceful night. It was a great Birthday surprise! The atmosphere was wonderful as usual. We value your friendship and pray you have continued success here at the Mason House in the years to come. We'll see you again! Marlin & Fran, Ottumwa, Iowa
Dear Chuck & Joy, What a great time we had at your Murder Mystery Dinner and Game! Our whole group is still talking about it. I'll be calling you soon about doing the other game too. The food was great, the rooms are so quaint and comfortable, and you two are wonderful hosts. We can't wait to visit you again! Mike and Deb, Des Moines, Iowa
Dear Chuck and Joy -
Our friends, Cathy and Gerry, have spoken about staying at your Inn for a long time. We finally got our chance on July 14th and 15th. What a wonderful experience! I loved the antiques and decor of the entire Inn. We truly feel like we took a "step back in history". We enjoyed our stay and learning about the history of the area. Joy, I also wanted to thank you for video-taping Cathy and Gerry's wedding. The tape is a keepsake they will cherish for years to come. I was touched by you and your family's attendance at the wedding. We hope to visit you again but until then we will carry with us many fond memories of our visit. God bless - Debby and Paul Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin
Dear Joy and Chuck, We had such fun at our family reunion at the Mason House Inn!! I wanted to write to you and thank you for everything you did to make our reunion go so smoothly. The meals were great, and the games were such fun, and the rooms are so comfy. Your place was the perfect place to gather because we could have the whole place to ourselves and not have to worry about bothering other guests. We can hardly wait till next year!!
Take Care, Lee and Millie, Sacramento, California
Chuck & Joy, My daughter, sister, and I stayed in your caboose cottage over the weekend and we had such fun. It was a fantastic 'girls get-away'. The caboose was so cozy and well laid out. We had such a good time. Next time I come I will bring my husband. He's not a B&B type of person, but I think he will get a kick out of the caboose! Thanks, Cindi from Waverly, Iowa