Ignorance to the law is no excuse, and I’m going to make sure you’re an educated, law-abiding citizen. Here are some strange laws in and around the Quad City area.

I reached out to a few online sources and my contacts in the local law enforcement to see what are some weird laws that are unique to Illinois and Iowa. How many of these have you broken?


Illinois' Dumb Laws:

  • Ice skating at Riverside during June and August is illegal.
  • Reptile sellers must advise buyers not to kiss them.
  • It is illegal to mispronounce Joliet as "Jolly-ette."
  • Napping in a cheese factory, bake shop, confectionery, or creamery is illegal under the state’s Sanitary Food Preparation Act.
  • Down in  Normal, it is illegal to make faces at dogs.
  • It is illegal to give a pet a cigar or to give whiskey to your dog.
  • It's illegal to eat in a burning building.
  • You can’t take a French poodle to the opera in Chicago.
  • It's illegal for a man with a moustache to kiss a woman.
  • It's illegal to go fishing in your pajamas.
  • In Ottawa, it is illegal to spit on the sidewalk.
  • In Kenilworth, a rooster must stand 300 feet away from a residence if it wishes to crow.

Iowa's Dumb Laws:

  • In this landlocked state, surfing while drunk is prohibited.
  • Children under ten may not shine shoes.
  • In Des Moines it’s illegal to dance between the hours of 2am and 6am.
  • Boxes used to package hops are supposed to be exactly 36in long.
  • It's illegal for a kiss to last longer than 5 minutes.
  • It's illegal to sell drugs without a drug tax stamp.
  • One-armed piano players must perform for free.
  • Ministers must obtain a permit to carry their liquor across state lines.
  • In Cedar Rapids, it's illegal to read a person's palms in the city limits.
  • In Ottumwa, a man may not wink at any woman he does not know.
  • In Marshalltown, horses are forbidden to eat fire hydrants.
  • In Mount Vernon, one must obtain written permission from the City Council before throwing bricks or stones into a highway.