Top Five Reasons to go to the Des Moines Arts Festival

DSCN1025The Des Moines Arts festival rivals festivals held in much larger cities. The following are reasons why you should make a point of visiting it this year.

  1. It’s Family Friendly- the festival is very family friendly unlike a lot of festivals that strive for more of an adult atmosphere. The Creative Family zone features activities/projects like popsicle stick people, create a cat toy for the shelter cats at the ARL, an obstacle course, canvas painting and a red carpet walk among many other activities.

  2. Free Admission- this is one of the few free festivals of it’s size in the country. To give an idea of how much other cities charge for admission, the Oz Art Festival in Nashville charges $20 for daily admission and New York’s MoCCa Art Festival charges $5 for admission. Our festival is free due to major local sponsors like Prairie Meadows and the Des Moines Register.

  3. Free Live Entertainment- the entertainment choices are unlimited at the festival. The Community Choice Credit Union Performing Arts stage features family friendly performers like Debbie Doo Wop and Dynamite Dan as well as a chance to participate in a cardio dance workout with Nia Des Moines. The Des Moines Sympathy will hold a “Oh Say Can you Sing” contest giving contestants a chance to win the opportunity to sing the National Anthem at the Des Moines Yankee Doodle Pops concert on July 1st. The Hyvee Main stage will feature the Gin Blossoms on Friday night and a Saturday morning yoga class in addition to numerous other performances from both national and local performers.

  4. Meet up and coming artists- you’ll not only get the chance to buy the artist’s creations but you’ll also get to meet them and find out more about how they approach their art and really get to know more about your favorite piece which is something you can’t do when you buy art at the big box stores.  There’s an excellent mix of artists from around the world as well as those from Iowa.

  5. Interrobang Film Festival- this free film festival combines a traditional film production festival with a public screening in the south wing of the downtown library.  The movies featured are incredibly varied so you’ll be able to find something you’ll like and it’s a nice break to be inside especially if the weather is particularly hot out. The films are mostly short films so you if you don’t like it you’ll at least know it’s not going to last more than an hour or so or you can always leave and go to another showing in a different room.


The Des Moines Art Festival Hours/Days for 2017 are June 28th  11am-10pm, June 29th 11am-10pm and June 30th 11am-5pm at the Western Gateway Park.  Be sure to bring cash since not all of the vendors take credit cards.

For more information, click here for the Des Moines Festival website.


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