Mabel is snuggled in the southeast corner of Fillmore County, just twenty miles north of Decorah, Iowa. Frank Adams was the chief construction engineer of the Narrow Gauge Railroad that built the first railroad through Mabel. Frank Adams platted the Village of Mabel in the fall of 1879, naming it Mabel in honor of his little daughter.
The Steam Engine Park is located on the south edge of Mabel. The park is open to the public and provides picnic shelters for family get-togethers, new playground equipment, horseshoe pits and one of the best ball diamonds in the area.
The annual 50’s & 60’s Day is held the second Saturday in August. Classic cars line Main Street for all to view on Saturday afternoon. After the car show is the awarding of trophies and a burn-out contest.
One of the biggest events in the area is Hesper-Mabel Steam Engine Days. The annual celebration is held in the park the first weekend after Labor Day. It features threshing machines powered by steam engines; two gigantic parades that start with the old steam engines sounding their whistles down Main Street; arts and crafts; an antique show; and more. On Saturday night there is a tractor pull for the “big” kids. The weekend winds down with drawings held by various community organizations, with the grand prize being a new vehicle.
Mabel’s business community includes a bank, farm store, thrift store, hardware store, medical clinic, flower & gifts store, antique shop, restaurants and other various businesses.