Things to Do

Linh Ta
Jan 14, 2022 - Things to Do

What to watch for in Des Moines music in 2022

Multiple musical notes merging into one
Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

2021 was a strange year for music in Des Moines and 2022 seems like it'll continue that way as Omicron shakes up venues and festivals.

  • Sam Summers, owner of Wooly's and First Fleet Concerts, shared with Axios what to expect from the local scene.
Linh Ta
Jan 14, 2022 - Things to Do

What to do in Des Moines this weekend, including MLK Day events

Illustration of neon signs with the days of the week. Lights go out one by one and "weekend" flashes.
Illustration: Allie Carl/Axios

Don't let the winter slump take ahold of your weekend plans. Here's what's going on in the Des Moines metro.


🛍 Find your favorite thrifted sweater at the Vintage & Sustainable Market at Art Terrarium, starting at 10am.

Pop quiz with a chance to win tickets

A photo of ice in Des Moines.
Photo: Jason Clayworth/Axios

Tell us: Where is this dangerously thin ice?

Your brainiac knowledge of Des Moines parks could score you four free tickets to Brenton Skating Plaza.

What's happening: To enter the drawing, hit reply and send us your answer by noon Thursday.

  • We'll randomly select one person who correctly solves our trivia question.
Jason Clayworth
Jan 10, 2022 - News

Des Moines Public Library shares most popular books of 2021

A photo of Barack Obabma's book.
Photo: Charles Guerin/Abaca Press via Reuters

The most read books in the Des Moines Public Library circulation in 2021:

  1. "A Promised Land" by Barack Obama.
  2. "Braiding Sweetgrass" by Robin Wall Kimmerer.
  3. "Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents" by Isabel Wilkerson.
  4. "Greenlights" by Matthew McConaughey.
  5. "Untamed" by Glennon Doyle.

New literary plaques installed at Des Moines' Easter Lake bridge

A photo of plaques on a Des Moines bridge
Photo courtesy of John Morrissey

A "pithy pomes" competition resulted in the installation of seven new literary plaques on the pedestrian bridge at Easter Lake last month.

  • The contest name is colloquial speak, organizer John Morrissey told Axios. (They're really just prose poems or free verse.)
  • Submissions were limited to 34 characters, or 17 on each line. Talk about Smart Brevity®!

First look: Ricochet, Des Moines' new game lounge

A photo from inside Ricochet in Des Moines.
Brian Lindner, left, and Brad Argo are two of Ricochet’s owners. Photo: Jason Clayworth/Axios

A new game lounge, Ricochet, will open in downtown Des Moines Monday.

State of play: The space features Olympic-sized ping pong tables, a 22-foot-long shuffleboard and an eight-person foosball table.

  • There's a full bar and outside food is welcomed. (Fong's Pizza is just across the street.)

Celebrate Iowa's 175th birthday with these virtual displays

A photo of the Iowa Capitol
A scene from Iowa Statehood Day, Dec. 28, 1996. Photo: Charlie Neibergall/AP

Happy 175, Iowa! President James K. Polk signed legislation making Iowa the nation's 29th state on Dec. 28, 1846.

Worthy of your time: Check out these virtual displays or videos celebrating the state's past.

New leaf sculpture installed at Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden

Two side-by-side photos of a new leaf sculpture being installed at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden.
Not your ordinary leaf. Photo courtesy of the Greater Des Moines Public Art Foundation

The Des Moines metro's newest public art sculpture was installed Wednesday at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden.

Details: Spanish artist Juanjo Novella's "Threshold" is a 16-foot-tall leaf made of steel and commissioned by the Greater Des Moines Public Art Foundation.

  • It is dedicated in memory of Tom Urban, Jr., a former Des Moines mayor who died last year.
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