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Special Events


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Des Moines Parks and Recreation provides a variety of special events that allow community members to participate in safe and organized leisure activities in an outdoor setting, recreation center or other locations throughout Des Moines. Most of these events have a minimal cost or are free.

 

Take a peek at the events below and discover ways to get involved! 
Can't seem to find what you're looking for? Email events@dmgov.org.

Special Events

Trivia Night (Virtual)
2021 Trivia Nights (Virtual)
Thanks to all who joined us this year for Trivia Night (Virtual)!
A big shout out to The Rook Room for being awesome and hosting! 

January Winner = Team Powell
February Winner = Kicking Assets
March Winner = Donnor Party Fun Academy
31 Miles Your Way and More - March
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Congrats to those who completed the March challenge!

Des Moines Parks and Recreation is excited to continue the virtual fitness fun with 31 Miles Your Way and More. This time we are turning it up a notch, and you can set a goal to complete a 50K (31 miles), 100K (62 miles) or 150K (93 miles). We invite you to complete 31 miles your way and more in 31 days.
Rec Packs
2021 Rec Packs
We are excited to announce Des Moines Parks and Recreation Rec Packs: recreation fun in a bag! Designed for ages 5 – 12, the quarterly Rec Packs include fun-filled activities centered around a particular theme. Supplies will be provided, along with directions on how to stay active.

Visit 2021 Rec Packs for all the details!

Fee: $20 per Rec Pack
Ages: 5 - 12 

Rec Pack #2: Water Warrior
Available for Purchase: April 1 - 30; click here to purchase
Pick Up Date: Wednesday, May 5
Pick Up Location/Time: Pioneer Columbus Community Recreation Center from 3 - 8 p.m.


Rec Pack #3: Bird Watcher
Available for Purchase: August 1 - 31; click here to purchase
Pick Up Date: Wednesday, September 8
Pick Up Location/Time: Pioneer Columbus Community Recreation Center from 3 - 8 p.m.


Rec Pack #4: Basketball Pro
Available for Purchase: September 1 - 30; click here to purchase
Pick Up Date: Wednesday, October 6
Pick Up Location/Time: Pioneer Columbus Community Recreation Center from 3 - 8 p.m.
Yoga in the Park - Saturday Mornings in June - September

2021 Yoga in the Park
Watch for updates and the list of instructors that will lead our free classes!

Des Moines Parks and Recreation and UnityPoint Health - Des Moines invite you to start off your Saturday with free yoga at Gray’s Lake Park. Join us every week from June 5 - September 25 from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. for free classes led by volunteers from around the metro. These classes, taught by volunteer instructors from around the metro, are perfect for all skill levels, from curious beginner to advanced yogi.

Please note: Classes will not take place in the event of rain. Class will not be held on Saturday, June 19. 

For the 2020 Yoga from the Park playlist, visit Yoga in the Park. To keep our community safe, we brought yoga to you in 2020! Enjoy past yoga practices from Gray's Lake Park on Facebook and YouTube. 

Free Flicks - July
2021 Free Flicks
For all the details, visit the event-specific page: 2021 Free Flicks

Free Flicks is a Thursday night series in July of outdoor movies in neighborhood parks. The films will be shown on a 25-foot portable screen and begin after sunset. Admission is free for all. Blankets and lawn chairs are encouraged. Movies will not take place in the event of rain. A decision will be made by 5 p.m. day-of movie.  Watch our websiteFacebook and Twitter for updates. 

Fee: Free 
Ages: All ages
Time: Sundown
Dates, Movies & Locations:

Thursday, July 1: Sonic the Hedgehog (PG)
Witmer Park | 1610 34th St, Des Moines, IA 50310

Thursday, July 8: Abominable (PG)
Fourmile Community Recreation Center | 3711 Easton Blvd, Des Moines, IA 50317

Thursday, July 15: Trolls World Tour (PG)
Greenwood Park - Clare and Mile Mills Rose Garden | 4800 Grand Ave, Des Moines, IA 50312

Thursday, July 22: The Addams Family (PG)
Weeks Middle School Park | 901 E Park Ave, Des Moines, IA 50315

Thursday, July 29: Arctic Dogs (PG)
Riverview Park | 710 Corning Ave, Des Moines, IA 50313
Bike Back to School
2021 Bike Back to School
Watch for updates!

Bike Back to School  is presented in partnership by the Des Moines Street Collective, Des Moines Police Department and Des Moines Parks and Recreation. A big thanks to Blank Children's Hospital for donating helmets to Bike Back to School. To donate a bike or to learn on how to get involved with providing bikes to our community, visit Des Moines Street Collective.


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Nature Trail Running Series - Wednesdays in September
2021 Nature Trail Running Series
Presented by Des Moines Parks and Recreation, Fleet Feet, and Capital Striders

Runners of all levels explore nature trails in our park system, guided by volunteers from Fleet Feet and Capital Striders! Each Wednesday in September at 6 p.m., participants are invited to join the three or six mile guided runs. In the event trail conditions are not ideal, runs will be on paved surfaces. For updates, visit Des Moines Parks and Recreation Facebook page: click here.

Please note: All participants must sign a waiver for both Des Moines Parks and Recreation and Fleet Feet once per season, so be sure that the first evening you join, you come a few minutes early.

Time: 6 p.m.
Cost: Free

Dates and Locations:
Wednesday, Sept. 1:  Greenwood/Ashworth Park
Address: 102 45th St, Des Moines, IA 50320

Wednesday, Sept. 8: Ewing Park
Address: 5300 Indianola Ave, Des Moines, IA 50315

Wednesday, Sept. 15: Grandview Park
Address: 3230 Easton Blvd, Des Moines, IA 50317

Wednesday, Sept. 22: Greenwood/Ashworth Park
Address: 102 45th St, Des Moines, IA 50320

Wednesday, Sept. 29: Ashby Park
Address: 3200 38th St, Des Moines, IA 50310
Mayor's Annual Ride and Run
2021 MARR: Mayor's Annual Ride and Run
For all the details and to register, visit the event-specific page: 2021 Mayor's Annual Ride and Run

On Saturday, September 18, join Des Moines Parks and Recreation for the 2021 Mayor's Annual Ride and Run (MARR)! In addition to the bike ride, Des Moines Parks and Recreation will offer a 4-Mile Run and Family Fun Walk to the day's events.

The 20-Mile Bike Ride will start at Principal Park (1 Line Drive) and will go Lake to Lake - traveling from Gray's Lake to Easter Lake prior to ending back at the stadium. The 4-Mile Run and the 1-Mile Family Fun Walk will start at Principal Park (1 Line Drive) with the route consisting of downtown trails. The run will begin at 8 a.m., allowing time to hop on a bike for the ride for just an additional $5.
Letters to Santa
2021 Letters to Santa
Watch for updates!

Santa and his elves are always ready to write hundreds of letters! There are two ways to let Santa Claus know you've been good through Des Moines Parks and Recreation. As the holidays approach, check back here for updates.
Jingle Bell Stroll

2021 Jingle Bell Stroll
Watch for updates!

Toys for Tots
2021 Toys For Tots
Watch for updates!

Des Moines Parks and Recreation partners with the U.S. Marine Corps to distribute toys to the community. Check the Des Moines Toys for Tots Request Toy Page for a list of distribution locations next holiday season. Click here for the Des Moines Toys for Tots Frequently Asked Questions page. 

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