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DOWNTOWN FARMERS MARKET 2021 FAQS

The Downtown Farmers’ Market will look and feel different than what patrons are used to at the beginning of the 2021 season. The Market will follow COVID-19 rules and regulations including social distancing guidelines and required mask-wearing.

Additionally, those who have had a fever in the last three days, been ill or are visibly showing signs of illness (i.e., coughing and sneezing) are highly encouraged to not attend The Market. The Market will continuously reevaluate protocols and programming throughout the season in response to the fluctuating COVID-19 virus infection levels and vaccination rates.

What are The Market hours?

The Market will be open every Saturday from May 1 – Oct. 30, with hours from 7 a.m. – Noon; in October only, The Market’s hours are 8 a.m. – Noon.

Where is The Market located?

The Market is located in the Historic Court District in Downtown Des Moines (DSM).

What vendors and products will be at The Market?

Participating vendors at The Market will continue to provide fresh produce, meat, cheese, eggs, baked goods, plants, flowers and artisan packaged food such as granola, jam, honey and salsa. Beginning Saturday, May 22, The Market will feature vendors selling ready-to-eat prepared foods. Beginning Saturday, May 29, additional vendors will be added including those offering handmade art, health and beauty items.

Will there be music and live entertainment at The Market?

Beginning Saturday, May 29, The Market will host three-to-four entertainment groups to perform in open areas (down from the typical amount of seven), and phase in limited family and children's activities as the season progresses.

Will The Market provide additional seating options?

Beginning Saturday, May 29, The Market will offer two limited seating and eating areas, one in the courtyard located at 100 Court Ave. and another on Court Ave. near Fifth Street.

Are masks required?

Per the latest CDC guidelines, masks will be voluntary for Downtown Farmers' Market attendees. 

Will there be social distancing protocols in place?

Yes. Vendors will be spaced to allow for distancing between participating vendors. Attendees will be encouraged to adhere to the 6-feet social distancing guideline while shopping at The Market.

What vendors and products WILL be at The Market?

We will begin the season in a more scaled back fashion. The Market season will start with approx. 115 vendors offering fresh produce, meat, cheese, eggs, baked goods, flowers and artisan packaged food such as granola, jam, honey and salsa.

What vendors and products will NOT be at The Market?

There will not be artists, health and beauty items or ready-to-eat food or drink at The Market to start the season. We are hopeful we can phase in our loyal artists, prepared food vendors and other small businesses throughout The Market season.

Will there be music and live entertainment at The Market?

There will not be any music or live entertainment at The Market to start the season, however we are hopeful we can phase in our local musicians, artists and entertainers throughout The Market season.

Where can I find the latest updates as the situation surrounding the pandemic evolves?

The Market will continuously reevaluate protocols and programming throughout the season in response to the fluctuating COVID-19 virus infection levels and vaccination rates. Find updates on the status of The Market’s guidelines and modifications by visiting desmoinesfarmersmarket.com.

Will The Market provide additional seating options?

In an effort to limit gatherings and help maintain distancing, The Market will not offer seating. Limited benches will remain available for seating in the Court Avenue District.

Will there be hand washing and/or sanitizing stations at The Market?

Yes, there will be multiple hand sanitizer and hand washing stations easily accessible throughout The Market. In addition, hand sanitizer will be available at the UnityPoint Health – Des Moines Health Hub located inside the blue tent at the corner of Third Street and Court Avenue.

How will customers be asked to walk through The Market to encourage social distancing?

The Market is pleased to be back in the Historic Court District in Downtown DSM. Customer walking traffic will be asked to “keep right” when shopping throughout the open-air Market to ensure a safe, streamlined purchasing process and further support social distancing.

Will cash payments still be allowed?

Cash is accepted by all vendors. However, The Market team encourages all patrons to consider using touchless or card payments, when possible.

Are dogs allowed at The Market?

The Market takes place in the Historic Court District, which is the neighborhood of many Downtown residents.

Market management encourages pet owners to leave their dog at home. If patrons do choose to bring their dogs, they are expected to act in a responsible pet-owner manner and adhere to these six rules to ensure a pleasant Market experience for all:

  • Dogs must be under control on a short leash (max. three-foot leash), and by the owner’s side always. Dogs need to be kept away from produce, plants and food products.
  • Dogs need to be courteous and able to socialize with people and other dogs.
  • Be understanding. Not everyone loves dogs, and some fear dogs.
  • The Market operates under the City of Des Moines’ laws regarding pets, which include a leash law, cleanup of droppings, current tags and a current rabies certificate.
  • Bring doggy cleanup bags or use bags provided around The Market located in dispensers on various light poles.

Additionally, make sure to keep walkways clear and keep engagement with other patrons to a minimum to adhere to social distancing guidelines.

If I have a question at The Market, where can I find someone to ask?

Market staff members will be available at the Information Booth at Third Street and Court Avenue to answer Market related questions.

How can I pre-order or shop online from participating Market vendors?

Many participating Market vendors sell online through their business websites and social media. There will be an Online Marketplace coming soon where customers will be able to preorder items to pick up at The Market, and purchase items from vendors not currently at The Market. When available, this information can be found on our website, desmoinesfarmersmarket.com.

Where should I park?

Visitors have numerous options available adjacent to The Market. Several free and paid parking meters, lots and garages are available on streets surrounding The Market.

Patrons are also encouraged to use a free bike valet service or park along the Downtown Farmers' Market DART D-Line route. Please visit the Parking and Directions webpage here.

Are you planning to make a large or heavy purchase at The Market?

The Market offers a free wagon lending program to help patrons tote cumbersome purchases. to their vehicles! Wagon availability is limited and available on a first come, first served basis. If interested, stop by the Information Booth at Third Street and Court Avenue for more details or to borrow a wagon.