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Downtown DSM Adventure Stories

  • For DSM Visitors and Residents Who Love to Explore Downtown
  • Various Locations Around Downtown DSM
  • Admission: Free and Open to the Public
DSM Adventure Stories

In 2021, the Downtown DSM Adventure Stories brought both young and old to Downtown Des Moines (DSM) to read five stories and travel throughout Downtown neighborhoods as part of the Glad You're Here | Love Downtown DSM series and was sponsored by MidAmerican Energy Company. Released weekly for five weeks, Downtown DSM Adventure Stories brought to life stories and experiences throughout Downtown — just like the Choose Your Own Adventure stories you may remember from your childhood.  

Downtown DSM Adventure Stories featured more than 20 activated locations and story themes including Nature Adventure, Travel Adventure, Undersea Adventure, Western Adventure and Fairytale Adventure. Adventurers discovered new nooks and crannies of Downtown DSM as they dove into an immersive world, with each story featuring four to six chapters hidden near well-known spaces and marked on-site with visuals that included a special QR code. Adventurers used their smartphone to scan each QR code and read the corresponding chapter. Every chapter included an interactive Adventure Challenge activity, like sketching a faraway planet or capturing a photo of a slithering reptile, allowing adventurers to engage even further with each story. Each chapter included a clue that would lead adventurers to the next stop on their journey. This interactive activation brought additional engagement on social media with adventurers sharing their experiences using the hashtag #downtownDSM.