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Escape the Office and Unwind at Out to Lunch in DSM

Out to Lunch 2019

May 22, 2019

One of my favorite free events is returning this week in Downtown Des Moines (DSM)!

The Out to Lunch series, which is held every Wednesday in different locations each week in May and June, will bring food trucks and vendors, as well as live music entertainment to the streets. The weekly events last from 11 until 1:30 p.m.

I’ve taken advantage of this time to get out of the office and get my daily dose of vitamin D at past year’s Out to Lunch events. The effects are amazing! When I return to work from an Out to Lunch event, I feel reinvigorated. And it’s not just the benefit for that day that I love. According to Forbes, a little sunlight can help elevate your mood, improve sleep and strengthen your immune system. Just a quick outdoor lunch in the middle of the day — it only takes 5-15 minutes — can have a huge impact!

The best part of these events is the opportunity to get outdoors during the business day and chat with coworkers and/or connect with friends and clients in a new setting. The events move from week to week, making it easy to meet up no matter your place of business. Also, you can take the skywalk or walk outside to get to Out to Lunch locations, and the DART buses make stops near each event as well, making it convenient to get to and from the office.

2019 Event Dates

The first 2019 event is scheduled for Wednesday, May 22 and features the band Royce Johns. Food vendors include Curbin’ Cuisine, Hotsy Totsy, Karam’s Grill, Roadside Tacos, The Outside Scopp and Top Bun. Future events will be held on the following dates: May 29, June 5, June 12, June 19 and June 26.

Events at Cowles Commons bookend the Out to Lunch series, which means you’ll have more than one opportunity in 2019 to eat and listen to tunes near favorite sculptures, the Crusoe Umbrella and Swirl, as well as take in the nearby Lauridsen Fountain. I love the Cowles Commons events because of their open setting and proximity to accessible bike racks. The lush greenery surrounding the “red carpet” leading from Capital Square to the Des Moines Civic Center also provides a bit of shaded area and counters the warming effects of the paved surfaces. Plus, it’s just nice to be somewhere that feels more leisurely in the middle of the Downtown.  

In Iowa, it’s not long before the summer heat will have you wanting to stay indoors over the lunch hour. This is the perfect opportunity to take advantage of spring and early summer temps. If you think your place of business would love Out to Lunch, download a poster and invite the entire office for an out-of-the-building lunch excursion.

Out to Lunch is produced by the Greater Des Moines Partnership. Find more information on the Out to Lunch series.

You can also find out more about other music and entertainment happening in Downtown DSM, as well as restaurants and other festivals and events to enjoy this summer.

Downtown Des Moines (DSM) is a growing, vibrant community that offers the energy, sophistication, housing and attractions of a big city. It’s also easy to visit with plentiful and affordable street and ramp parking options.

Colleen Murphy

Colleen Murphy is former downtown events director at the Greater Des Moines Partnership and blogs about major events in Downtown Des Moines (DSM). Murphy oversaw the World Food & Music Festival, DSM Book Festival, Out to Lunch and Holiday Promenade in the Historic East Village, as well as worked as the sponsorship manager for the Des Moines Arts Festival® and assisted with sponsorship for the Downtown Des Moines Farmers' Market.