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The Des Moines Arts Festival is committed to strengthening a vibrant and creative community. Dedicated to the principles of collaboration and creative expression, Des Moines Arts Festival inspires engagement with the arts, fosters and celebrates inclusion, values professionalism and quality, and champions new and emerging ideas.

The Des Moines Arts Festival produces an annual outdoor festival celebrating arts and culture, provides programming and support to artists and arts organizations, advocates for a “arts first” leadership model, and inspires individuals to find their creative voice.

The mission of the Des Moines Arts Festival is Impact Lives through the Arts.

2023 dates and times

  • Friday, June 23 - 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.
  • Saturday, June 24 - 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.
  • Sunday, June 25 - 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Note: Creative Zone closes at 7 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.


The Arts Festival is cashless!
This means that the Festival Stores (Official Festival Merchandise), and Beverage locations accept touchless pay or credit/debit card only.

What is Free
  • General Admission to the Festival
  • The Live Music
  • Various Interactive Activities
  • Parking at the Nationwide Garage
  • Our Bike Valet
  • Viewing the Interrobang Film Festival
What Requires Money
  • Art Purchases
  • Food
  • Beverages
  • Festival Merchandise
It is the intent of the Des Moines Arts Festival to implement consistent and relevant protocols that will ensure a safe and comfortable environment for our partners and guests. In line with the guidelines recommended by the City of Des Moines and the CDC, all those attending are encouraged to consider wearing masks, especially in high traffic areas and enclosed spaces, and to practice social distancing when possible. If you are fully vaccinated, facial coverings are optional.


Western Gateway Park, Downtown Des Moines, Iowa

Surrounding the famed John & Mary Pappajohn Sculpture Park.

2022 Festival Map

Download the Map Here

Festival Tips and tricks

Here are a few pro tips for you to have a fabulous Festival experience:

Wear Sturdy Shoes
It is no surprise that you will be walking a lot throughout the Festival as it spans a five block radius. Wear shoes that you know you can be comfortable in, but also give you enough support for all that walking.

Bring Sunscreen and Hand Sanitizer
Sunburns are not fun, so it is helpful to bring sunscreen with you so that you can reapply it throughout the day. There will be hand sanitization stations on-site, but it never hurts to bring your own.

Stay Hydrated
Bottled water will be available for purchase at the Festival so make sure to stay hydrated. Don't wait till you're thirsty to drink. By the time you feel thirsty, you're already slightly dehydrated.

Leave Your Pets at Home
There will be a lot of loud sounds for their little ears, and the streets will be too hot for their paws. Service animals are permitted to be at the Festival.

Create a Game Plan
It is always good to have a plan for your trip to the Festival so that you do not miss anything you would like to see. You can create a game plan a few different ways. Check out our Experience tab and Artist Gallery, download a preview guide, or pick up a Festival guide at one of our information booths during the Festival to help you plan. You can also check out our calendar for a full list of events throughout the three-day Festival.

Don't Forget About the Interrobang Film Festival
The Interrobang Film Festival will be happening each day of the Festival at the Des Moines Public Library. Check out this year's amazing films here. It is also a chance to get off your feet during the Festival and enjoy a bit of air conditioning to cool off.

Be a Good Guest
Never photograph an artist's work without their permission, be patient when lines get a little longer, and leave the bad attitudes at home. Arrive ready to have fun!

Follow the Arts Festival on Social Media
Twitter: @DMArtsFestival
Instagram: @desmoinesartsfestival
or follow the Festival on Facebook and Pinterest

Consider Becoming a Festival Friend/Patron
It only costs $80 to become a Patron, and you get a ton of perks (including access to the Silent Rivers VIP Hospitality Suite). It also comes with the best perk, which is the knowledge that you are supporting the Festival. If you are interested in becoming a Patron, check it out here.


What: The five-time Gold Grand Pinnacle Award and Bravo Encore Award-winning Des Moines Arts Festival presented by Nationwide

  • Juried Art Fair presented by Nationwide featuring 190 of the nation's best artists selected from a competitive jury process
  • Emerging Iowa Artists Program presented by Principal
  • Interrobang Film Festival screening films from around the world
  • Community Outreach Program presented by MidAmerican Energy Company and supporting Central Iowa non-profit organizations
  • Live music on the Hy-Vee Main Stage
  • Green Arts Zero-Waste Sustainability Program presented by Dotdash Meredith
  • Roots Stage
  • Silent Rivers VIP Club
  • BOOM ART! presented by MidAmerican Energy Company
  • Over 800 volunteers
  • Student Art Exhibition presented by GreenState Credit Union
  • Artist Demonstrations
  • Over 25 Interactive Arts Activities
  • Silent Rivers VIP Hospitality Suites
  • Wearable art at two Arts Festival Shops
  • Enjoy cocktails, wine, sangria, domestic and craft beer, and Coca-Cola products
  • Eclectic Food Booths and Food Trucks
  • Sculpture Garden



FREE, thanks to our incredible community of sponsors.

Getting There and Parking

For information on ways to get to the Festival site, parking, and street closures click here.

parking and accessibility

Nationwide Insurance provides FREE parking in their ramp at 1100 Walnut Street (between 10th and 12th St) after 11:00 a.m. on Friday through the weekend. Enter at the South entrance off Mulberry St.

The Festival grounds are handicap accessible. Wheelchairs are available for check out on a first-come, first-served basis at Volunteer Headquarters.

Handicap Parking Designated handicap parking is located on Walnut St., south of the Festival grounds, outside the 12th and Walnut entrance. Parking is limited and on a first-come, first-served basis. Wheelchairs are also available for checkout at the Volunteer Headquarters located on Walnut St. (between 12th and 13th St.) on a first-come, first-served basis.

An accessibility platform is located on the Main Stage lawn next to the sound tent. Guests with special needs and a companion are welcome to the viewing platform for protected viewing of the Hy-Vee Main Stage entertainers.

ADA & handicap accessible porto potties are located in both main restroom areas (12th between Grand and High Streets and Locust between 15th & 16th streets). Indoor restrooms are available at the Interrobang Film Festival located inside the Central Library, Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. - 6 p.m. and Sunday, 11 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Air conditioning can also be found at the Interrobang Film Festival located inside the Central Library.

The VIP Parking Lot is located at 212 Walnut Street, which is approximately at the intersection of 12th St. and Walnut St.

first aid

First Aid is provided by Hawkeye First Aid. Tents are located on the SE corner of Grand & 12th, and the NE corner of 15th & Grand.

hotel information

For complete hotel information and guide to the city, connect with CATCH DES MOINES.

camping information

Adventureland Campground (located 15 miles from downtown Des Moines)

305 34th Ave. NW
Altoona, IA 50009
800.532.1286 for reservations.

Can I Bring My Turtle?

Here is the link to our pesky policies. Here you will find answers to things like "Can I bring my own beverages?" and "Are pets allowed?"

Future dates

June 23 - 25, 2023
June 28 - 30, 2024
June 27 - 29, 2025
June 26 - 28, 2026
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