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What’s New at Christkindlmarket Des Moines 2023

Christkindlmarket Des Moines

October 18, 2023

Since 2016, Christkindlmarket Des Moines has brought a bit of European culture to Central Iowa. Happening annually the first weekend in December at Principal Park in Downtown Des Moines (DSM), the market boasts European cultural craft vendors from all over the Midwest. At the free, volunteer-lead festival, you’ll find delicious food, warm mugs of Glühwein and plenty of live, musical performances. There’s something for all ages and you may find yourself wanting to come multiple times. Here’s what’s new this year.

Photo Credit: Catherine Cagle

Three New Things at Christkindlmarket Des Moines

1. There’s something for everyone!

Christkindlmarket Des Moines has something for all ages. New this year in the Beverages tent, grab a coffee or hot cocoa along with your mulled wine. Bring the kids and check out the kid’s crafts in the KinderKorner presented by MidAmerican Energy Company. Have a date night (or day) with some craft beer in the Biergarten. Or kick back and relax with live music and a warm cup or festive mug of Glühwein (mulled, spiced wine) in Yuletide Hall.

2. You can get your holiday gifts all in one place!

Besides plenty of food and drinks, there are many arts and specialty gift vendors at the market! We have 11 new vendors from all over the Midwest to sell traditional European-style goods. A full list of the craft vendors can be found on the website. Specialty gift vendors also do demonstrations of how their wares are created; you can find the schedule of the demonstrations on the website.

3. You can participate!

Throughout the weekend there are several opportunities to get involved with the festivities. At 6 p.m. on Friday evening the opening ceremony features a parade around the venue with St. Nicholas and the Christkind. Kids of all ages are invited to join the procession and see the lighting of the tree! At 6:30 p.m. on Saturday watch or join in the Krampuslauf (Running of the Krampuses). All weekend long cut loose in Yuletide Hall as you enjoy the many musical performances.

Photo Credit: Dronography Iowa

Come experience the magic of Christkindlmarket Des Moines, Thursday, Nov. 30 – Sunday, Dec. 3. See the full schedule on the website. For more information about Christkindlmarket Des Moines organized by the Iowa European Cultural Connection (IECC) or to volunteer check out the website and get a full list of vendors, events and more!

Mission of the Iowa European Cultural Connection (IECC): To connect all Iowans with European traditions, language learning and cultural experiences. Header image provided by Dronography Iowa.

The holiday season is the perfect time to shop local in Greater Des Moines (DSM). Support local businesses, creators and makers across the region. You can find ideas on where to shop using the Greater Des Moines Partnership’s #DSMlocal Guides and other regional business directories listed here.

Downtown Des Moines (DSM) is a growing, vibrant community that offers the energy, sophistication, housing and attractions of a burgeoning city with a brilliant future. It’s also easy to visit with plentiful and affordable street and ramp parking options. Find event information and follow @downtownDSMUSA on Facebook and Instagram for other news, tips and events happening downtown.

Suzanne Hull

Suzanne Hull is the Director of Christkindlmarket Des Moines, a German-inspired Christmas Market at Principal Park.