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How to Navigate the 2022 World Food & Music Festival + Support Local This Fall (Ahead of the Holiday Season!)

World Food and Music Festival

September 9, 2022

Experience the World Food & Music Festival with ease in 2022. To create space for Festival attendees to explore the entirety of the Western Gateway neighborhood, motor vehicles will be rerouted to ensure enough space for the more than 90,000 attendees arriving in Downtown Des Moines (DSM) to explore The Festival. This will make it easier for them to discover the programming, entertainment and more that will be taking place at The Festival, while also putting them in ideal proximity to take notice of the many local restaurants that line Western Gateway Park. Use of certain roads will be suspended on the following locations and dates and reopen at The Festival’s completion:

Wednesday, Sept. 14

  • Locust Street from 10th Street to 13th Street
    • Street Transitions to Festival Site: 9 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 14
    • Opens for Vehicles: 6 a.m. Monday, Sept. 19
  • 12th Street from Walnut Street to Grand Avenue
    • Street Transforms to Festival Site: 9 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 14
    • Opens for Vehicles: 6 a.m. Monday, Sept. 19

Thursday, Sept. 14

  • Grand Avenue from 12th Street to 14th Street
    • Street Transitions to Festival Site: 9 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 15
    • Opens for Vehicles: 6 a.m. Monday, Sept. 19
  • 13th Street from Locust Street to Grand Avenue
    • Street Transitions to Festival Site: 9 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 15
    • Opens for Vehicles: 6 a.m. Monday Sept. 19

Several meters along 13th Street from Locust to Walnut Streets and Locust west of The Festival site will be bagged with signs for restaurant and retail customers to use from Sept. 14 – 18. Half of the south corner of Locust and 13th Street will also be reserved for restaurant and retail staff parking from Thursday, Sept. 15 – Sunday, Sept. 18.

Support Local Businesses Now + Later

September marks the beginning of fall and the leadup to the holiday season, making it the perfect time to support local businesses who will start ramping up for holiday shoppers. According to Salesforce, 37% more U.S. shoppers will start buying earlier this year. That means restaurants, bars and other dining establishments are in the perfect position right now to promote their establishments and capture those retail shoppers. For World Food & Music Festival attendees, seeing promotional opportunities, like spotlight social media posts of culturally diverse menu items, is sure to heighten awareness of which local businesses in the Western Gateway neighborhood are there to welcome them during The Festival and once it’s complete and once the holiday season is officially in full swing, including for Small Business Saturday on Saturday, Nov. 26!

Make plans to attend The Festival in 2022 and visit 22 new food vendors for authentic eats and treats in Downtown DSM. While there, take note of permanent restaurants to visit at a later date. There’s no better way to celebrate cultural diversity and support local than attending the World Food & Music Festival this year.

Western Gateway in Downtown Des Moines (DSM) is home to the World Food & Music Festival, where diverse cuisine, live music, cooking demonstrations and other performances offer a place to experience culture every September.

Amelia Klatt

Amelia Klatt is the Special Events and Project Manager for the Greater Des Moines Partnership. Her background working with nonprofit organizations has led to skills as a relationship builder and events professional. Klatt received her MPA from Drake University in 2019.