Scream, Dress Up + Enjoy the Halloween Happenings in Des Moines This Weekend
For most, Halloween means trick-or-treating to neighborhood homes — a night of candy, jokes and fun costumes. To easily find where and when Greater Des Moines (DSM) beggar’s night will take place, check out Des Moines Parent's list of local times so you know when to have the family ready to knock on doors and show off this year’s spooky mask or pop culture ensemble. For ghost-hunting enthusiasts and others who don’t mind a fright at the right time of year, the region offers more than a few creepy spots worth checking out. Did you know the Jordan House in West Des Moines has a history of strange happenings? Or maybe you’ve heard the stories of the haunted Roseman Covered Bridge in Winterset. You can celebrate the holiday by visiting these attractions or attending the Halloween events below.
One of the largest Halloween events for families in DSM is Night Eyes at Blank Park Zoo. Purchase tickets for Oct. 27 – 30, wear your costume and see light displays while supporting wildlife. From 5 - 8 p.m. Oct. 28 – 29, Family Halloween at Living History Farms lets families participate in trick-or-treating at Walnut Hill and pumpkin bowl. Check out Halloween Hikes at Pammel State Park in Madison County Saturday, Oct. 29 from 5 – 8 p.m. where trick-or-treating, a costume contest, the Great Migration hike and Day of the Dead cookie decorating are just some of the activities planned. Also on Saturday, Oct. 29 is Spooky Science at the Science Center of Iowa where the whole family can enjoy some spooky science fun. Halloween at the BOOery is a costume contest taking place at Confluence Brewing Co. on Saturday, Oct. 29. While the brewery’s aimed more to adults, the family-friendly Trick or Trees at Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden offers trick-or-treating for all ages at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 29, while the Downtown DSM Halloween Bar Crawl takes place in the Historic Court District on Saturday, Oct. 29, too!
Visit some of your favorite retailers during the Outlets of Des Moines Halloween Trick or Treat event in Altoona on Thursday, Oct. 27 from 5 – 8 p.m. For tweens and teens in sixth grade and up, a Teen After Hours Halloween Movie Night at the Johnston Public Library will be held from 7 – 8:30 p.m. See a showing of the movie The Nightmare Before Christmas and take part in a scavenger hunt in the dark. Dress up in your costume when you attend Saturday morning’s Downtown Farmers’ Market where vendors will be ready with candy for the kids from 8 a.m. until Noon. On Halloween night, Halloween on the Hill in the Sherman Hill neighborhood is back after a two-year hiatus, welcoming thousands to the event from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. Visit the displays at Hoyt Sherman Place, Mickle Center, 17th Street and Center Street, the UnityPoint parking garage entrance and 15th Street and Center Street. And don’t forget to visit The Pirate Potter House in Des Moines for a Harry Potter and pirates experience!
Check out the haunted houses below for those heart-stopping, panic-inducing, scream-guaranteed moments you wait for every year:
Octoberish Eats + Drinks
Local restaurants are getting in on the Halloween action as well with featured menu items, including spooky drink concoctions and fall-flavored breakfast items. The Bloody Mary bar at Americana is the perfect way to get in the spirit of Halloween. A Halloween Drag Brunch at Fresko on Sunday, Oct. 30 ensures tricks, treats and bottomless mimosas. Try the “Pumpkin Pancakes” or the “Monster Mash Hash” at Gilroy’s Halloween Costume Brunch Oct. 29 – 30. Speaking of pumpkin pancakes, you can find these at the Drake Diner, too, along with “Devil’s Food Cake,” a dessert they’re famous for! At Prairie Meadows, AJ’s Steakhouse is holding an Oktoberfest Celebration Oct. 28 – 30 featuring Iowa breweries during a three-course craft beer pairing dinner. You can also make reservations for Good News, Darling to share in a chilling cocktail experience that runs Thursday through Sunday. Try cocktails like “La Llorona,” “After Dark” or “Red Rum.” Through the end of the month, attend Halloween Wine & Candy Flights at WineStyles The District at Prairie Trail in Ankeny for even more holiday festivities.
There’s so much to see and do this Halloween season in DSM – don’t miss out on your chance to celebrate the holiday through your support of local businesses and events.
The Greater Des Moines Partnership calendar of events is a one-stop resource for activities taking place throughout the region. Find networking information for Greater Des Moines (DSM) businesses or events specific to Downtown DSM.
When dining out — or in — in Greater Des Moines (DSM), locally-owned restaurants, craft breweries, local wineries, coffee shops and more have this foodie scene covered. Find out more about the region’s most popular restaurants and new additions here.