Each month, we highlight the most buzzworthy places and events in Greater Des Moines in a feature we call Des Buzz. It's your “in the know” list of places to go!
Don’t let the name confuse you; though it may be September, Oktoberfest is back in full force this month. (Fun fact: The original festival in Germany was moved from October to September in the late 1800’s because the weather was better.) We’ve gathered all the Oktoberfest celebrations throughout the region here, so you have all your stops in one place. Grab those lederhosen and dirndl dresses and get ready to hoist a heavy glass in the air. Prost!
This popular Waterloo-based brewery has made the trek to Des Moines, with a new spot in the Market District (right across the river from Mullets). SingleSpeed is known for their cool vibes, large beer portfolio, and sustainability efforts. Close out summer chilling on one of their two patios (which include covered picnic tables and firepits), sipping on a Nimble Series beer. When the temperatures drop, head inside and enjoy their spacious dining room and innovative food menu, which includes popular fare like chicken tinga tacos, brussels sprouts and pesto watermelon bites. Pair with a Tip the Cow (Milk Stout) and you’ll be ready to switch gears and finish that bike ride you almost forgot about.
Have you always dreamed of building your own home? Do you just want to explore new builds? Or are you one of those people that count looking at houses on Zillow as a favorite hobby? Either way, the Des Moines Home Builders Association HomeShowExpo is the perfect way to keep up on the latest home trends. Head to Urbandale to tour six brand-new builds full of the latest and greatest house stuff. General admission tickets are $15, and kids ages 6 – 10 are $5. The homes are open the last three weekends in September, starting Saturday, September 16. See the dates and buy tickets here.
School may have started, but that doesn’t mean all festival season is over quite yet. On September 23 and 24, get the fiesta started and come explore Iowa’s Latino Heritage Festival at Western Gateway Park in downtown Des Moines. This is the only two-day Latino Heritage Festival in the state, filled with art exhibits, cultural booths, authentic food, music and dance performances, and kid activities. Adults are $5, kids 12 and under are FREE, and parking is FREE at the Nationwide Parking Ramp.
A new healthy salad restaurant out of Minnesota is opening in West Des Moines. Crisp & Green focuses on salads, grain bowls, acai bowls, and smoothies. Customize your own, try one of their specialty bowls, or sip on a fresh smoothie. Head to 141 S. Jordan Creek Pkwy., West Des Moines on September 23 to give them a try!
Take in Fall Faire the first three weekends in September at Sleepy Hollow Sports Park, Iowa’s only permanent Renaissance Village. The Renaissance Faire brings guests back to a time when Kings and Queens ruled the land. Embrace the theme and come dressed in your Renaissance best; whether that’s as a Knight or even a Viking (or you know, shorts and a T-shirt). Experience entertainment all weekend long including jousting, street dancing, juggling, and so much more. Plus, after hours is 21+ with a special show and beverages from the bar. Tickets are $16 if you purchase in advance, $20 at the gate, or you can get a season pass for $35.
While it’s not technically in Des Moines proper, if you head about 25 miles east to Colfax, you can catch Luke Bryan’s Farm Tour appearance, which marks the fifth time he’s brought his Farm Tour to Iowa since 2017. This year’s stop takes place at Colfax’s Schnell Family Farms, at 9061 N. 19th Avenue. Each year, Bryan tours the country and plays different family farms for a night of “Huntin’, Fishin’, and Lovin’”, rain or shine. Tickets are $65 in advance or $80 at the door.
5 Borough Bagels has been slinging incredible homemade bagels since 2017, and recently opened a brand-new storefront in Urbandale. With a new storefront comes new specials, including After Hours. After Hours happens every Friday and Saturday from 4 to 8 p.m. and features fun new specials like flatbreads and cocktails. Indulge in a s’mores flatbread which features their New York cheesecake cream cheese, and all the fixings of a good quality s’more. Pair that with an espresso martini and you’re set for the perfect afternoon break.