Summer is here and the living is easy. July is marked by long days and warm nights. Make the most of the month with our guide to family friendly activities in and around Des Moines. Kick off the month with Fourth of July celebrations and continues with plenty of fun for the whole family including a 31 day tour of Des Moines parks, free outdoor movies, and more
Looking for where to see fireworks? Check out our list of where to see fireworks in Des Moines here.
Send us an email if we missed anything, and we will add it to the list!
July 2017 events and activities
July 1-31 | Tour Des Moines Parks
Celebrate National Parks and Recreation Month and visit 31 local parks. Visit all 31 spots and share a photo with the hashtag #tourdmparks for a chance to win the grand prize of $1,000 courtesy of our sponsor, the Friends of Des Moines Parks.
July 1 | Music in the Park, Jester Park Amphitheater, 11407 NW Jester Park Dr, Granger
6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Free music. Bring lawn chairs and blankets.
July 3 | All Iowa Bash, 5th Street, Valley Junction
3 p.m. to 11 p.m.
July 4 | Des Moines Firecracker 5K, Peace Tree Des Moines Branch
9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
July 4 | Military Day at the Pool
All service men and women who are active duty, retired or veterans of all military branches will receive free individual admission and half-price family admission to any Des Moines Pool or Aquatic Center with military or Veterans Administration ID.
July 4 | Aquatic Center Special, West Des Moines
12 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Holiday and Valley View Acquatic Centers are offering $3 admission per person.
July 4 | Old-Fashioned Fourth, Living History Farms
11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
A historic celebration with activities for the whole family, including an old-fashioned baseball game.
July 4–29 | Jazz in July
Free, live outdoor concerts all month!
July 6 | Free Flicks in the Park, Hoyt Sherman Place – 1501 Woodland Avenue
The Lego Batman Movie
July 6–9 | Ankeny Summerfest: Heroes Unite! near Prairie Ridge Middle School, 1010 Prairie Ridge Drive, Ankeny
Features a carnival, basketball tournament, parade, fireworks, and more!
July 7, 8 | 80/35 Music Festival, Western Gateway Park
Indie music festival with headlining performances from psychedelic favorites MGMT and celebrated alternative staple The Shins.
July 7 | Commons Off the Clock, Cowles Commons 300 Locust St
4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Randy Burk and the Prisoners
Bands, brews, and bites.
July 8 | Road Warriors Foundation 5K Run/Walk, Johnston Public Library 6700 Merle Hay Rd, Johnston
8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Help raise awareness and money to combat Veterans suicide.
July 8 | Des Moines Dunk Fest, IEBTsports, 2425 Hubbell Ave, Des Moines
8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Details: 3 vs 3 youth basketball tournament, hosted by IEBTsports for 3rd grade – 11th grade girls and boys
$75 per team
July 8 | RipRoar West Des Moines Youth Triathalon, Raccoon River Park
July 9 | Des Moines Color Run, State Capitol Grounds
July 13 | Free Flicks in the Park, Witmer Park 1610 34th Street
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
July 13 | Tail Waggin’ Tales, Ames Public Library
July 14 –15 | Polk City Four Season Festival
Featuring a parade, talent show, live music, and more.
July 14 | Family Night at Science Center of Iowa
5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
July 14 through August 6 | The Music Man, The Des Moines Playhouse
July 15 | Polo on the Green, Powder River Ranch – 4504 Adams Street, Cumming, IA
5 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Variety’s 21st annual polo on the green event.
July 15 | Ioway Culture Day, Living History Farms
9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Learn more about the Native American culture that gave Iowa its name.
July 20 | Free Flicks in the Park, Sargent Park – 3530 East Douglas Avenue
Guardians of the Galaxy
July 20–22 | Clive Festival, Clive Aquatic Center, 114th Street between University Avenue and Hickman Road
Featuring the Mayor’s Bike Ride, live music, and fireworks on Saturday July 22.
July 21 | Ladies’ Invitational Golf Tournament, Copper Creek Golf Club – 4825 Copper Creek Drive, Pleasant Hill
8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Hosted by Children & Families of Iowa
July 21 | Commons Off the Clock, Cowles Commons 300 Locust St
4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
The Punching Pandas
Bands, brews, and bites.
July 22 | Beaverdale Bluegrass Festival, Tower Park 4900 Hickman Road
5 p.m. to 10 p.m.
July 22 | Adventure Days Festival, Blank Park Zoo
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Christmas in July with holiday-themed crafts, chat with keepers, and more.
July 23 | Animal Days: Birds, Blank Park Zoo
July 27, 28 | Back 2 School Physicals, North High School – 501 Holcomb Ave
3 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Details: Des Moines University students (with the supervision of licensed clinicians) are offering free physicals for students entering Pre-K through 12th grade who are in need of back-to-school or sports physicals and don’t have an established medical provider.
Preregister online. Walk-ups as time permits.
July 27 | Free Flicks in the Park, Ashfield Park – 720 East 19th Street
July 28–August 5 | National Balloon Classic, 15335 Jewell St., Indianola
Come see more than 100 hot air balloons!
July 28, 29 | Italian American Heritage Festival Iowa, Western Gateway Park
July 29 | Warren Morrow Latin Music Festival, Brenton Skating Plaza 520 Robert D. Ray Dr
A day of music, dancing, and fun.
July 29 | Circuit Court Day, Living History Farms
11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Watch real court cases from 1870s Iowa.