A- A+

Don’t Let These 10 Downtown DSM Events Sail Away

Ten Things to Do

“Come Sail Away” to Downtown Des Moines (DSM), where these 10 can’t-miss events are happening this week only. Did we mention one of the events is an outdoor Styx concert? Look at what’s coming up soon:

Architecture on the Move

Friday, July 14 | Start at Iowa Center for Architecture
For just $20 per person, spend 90 minutes of your evening on a walking tour covering 14 city blocks of Downtown DSM led by local architects and historians. Hear tales of unique downtown buildings and impactful downtown developments and architects, such as the world-renowned German American immigrant builders, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Helmut Jahn, who left their mark on our city. Comfortable shoes are recommended!

Field Daze Music Series: Styx & Whiskey Myers

Friday, July 14 & Thursday, July 20 | Water Works Park
First Fleet Concerts is back at it again with more headlining acts at its Field Daze Music Series taking place this summer at the Lauridsen Amphitheater located in Water Works Park. This Friday, July 14, get ready for memorable tunes by Styx like “Come Sail Away,” with opener Jet Black Roses. And Thursday, July 20 gets ready to jam with Whiskey Myers, along with openers Brent Cobb and Matt Koziol. Purchase your tickets today!


Saturday, July 15 | Hoyt Sherman Place
Real-life besties and comedians Kristin and Jen of the internet sensation “#IMomSoHard” will take to the stage for Ladies Night in Downtown DSM’s historical Hoyt Sherman Place. Their standup comedy platform covers totally relatable and often ridiculous mom-isms that will have you busting up (maybe even crying a little from laughing so hard, too)! Don’t miss this one.

Iowa Barnstormers vs. Frisco Fighters

Saturday, July 15 | Wells Fargo Arena
Iowa’s Indoor Football League (IFL) team, the Iowa Barnstormers, will match up for action on the turf this Saturday kicking off at 7:05 p.m. Doors open at 6 p.m. for a tailgate party to commemorate the final regular season home game of the year! And join the post-game after party at Fuzzy’s Taco Shop to keep the fun going all evening, with appearances from the team’s coaches and players.

DSM Local Fest

Saturday, July 15 | Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden
In our vibrant and thriving community, this FREE festival creates a space for people to come together and to connect with local businesses, musicians, artists and nonprofits, too! The DSM Local Fest was created by DSM Dance Party DJs as a celebration of all things that make Des Moines special, both now and in the future. Donations will benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters and Black Excellence.

BBQ & Brew

Saturday, July 15 | Principal Park
Come hungry! Snag a plate of BBQ pork and sample local beers from around Iowa. And feel the vibe while enjoying live music and entertainment, too! This inaugural backyard BBQ competition will give locals the chance to show off their BBQ smoker skills with the chance to win awesome prizes, and also support local food banks with event proceeds. BBQ & Brew is an event by the Iowa Pork Producers and the Iowa Cubs.

Black Art Mecca

Saturday, July 15 | Wooly’s
Celebrate promising young Black talent from around the state, from artists and performers to culinary arts and other business owners. Akyn is producing this third annual event, open to all ages, to push for cultural change by giving young Black creatives a platform to share their craft. You’ll catch performances from L-Fazo and Gnarly Jevy & FlySpace, and vendors will be on-site including Musa’s Lemonade, Midwest Gemz, AMPLIFY by AP, Nebula Sula, Indigo Moore and Iris Simmons.

Jazz in July

Tuesday, July 18 | Hoyt Sherman Place
This Downtown DSM venue will be transformed, both indoors and outdoors, for a night full of free jazz music as part of the annual Jazz in July series taking place over three weeks this month. The Valley High School Jazz Combo, Aviana Gedler & Co. and Iowa Jazz Composers Orchestra will all be performing, with food and drink vendors available, as well. Don’t forget your lawn chair or blanket to sit on!

American Cheese Society’s 40th Annual Conference

Tuesday, July 18 – Friday, July 21 | Iowa Events Center
The American Cheese Society is the leading organization supporting the understanding, appreciation and promotion of artisan, farmstead and specialty cheeses produced in the Americas. There will be several opportunities to register for tours and sample cheese!

Barbie Party

Thursday, July 20 | Up-Down
If you haven’t heard, the most epic “Barbie” movie is about to drop at movie theaters around the U.S.! This Thursday, embrace your inner doll, grab your favorite Ken and join the party at Up-Down, where you’ll find modern Barbie tunes, themed drinks and a photo booth starting at 7 p.m. The best costumes could win a pair of movie tickets!

P.S. — Find a list of even more free events, things to do and other happenings taking place around Downtown DSM throughout the month of July.

For these upcoming events and more, find tips on Downtown Des Moines (DSM) parking and navigation. For additional upcoming events, visit the Downtown DSM events calendar. Plus, follow @downtownDSMUSA on Instagram for more epic, things-you-just-can’t-miss happening around Downtown.

Greater Des Moines Partnership

DSM USA is the regional identifier for Greater Des Moines (DSM). DSM USA is a bold statement to the world: This is a welcoming, diverse and vibrant community with affordable and accessible amenities for residents and businesses. This regional identifier is the result of significant quantitative and qualitative research. The Partnership will champion the DSM USA message, and encourages its Investors, its more than 6,500 Regional Business Members and DSM USA Ambassadors to help share the region's story with One Voice.