Hello, summer! We’re welcoming June with open arms here at Des Moines Moms Blog. Our June event guide to fun family events around Des Moines (and surrounding suburbs) has been curated just for you.
Our top event calendar picks for June in central Iowa include Shakespeare on the Lawn (bring a blanket!) and the Des Moines Arts Festival (so much to see!). We threw in a couple date night and ladies night out ideas, too.
Here’s to flip-flops, sunglasses, and no more school!
Not sure what to do in Des Moines this summer? Be sure to check out our just-for-you summer guides:
- 2018 Summer Guide to Farmers Markets
- 2018 Summer Guide to Outdoor Summer Yoga
- 2018 Summer Guide to Pools
- 2018 Summer Bucket List
- 2018 Summer Guide to Berry Picking
June 2018 events and activities
June 1-3 | Wizard World Comic Con Des Moines, Iowa Events Center, Des Moines
Friday 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sunday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Attend this year’s Wizard World Comic Con Des Moines, part of North America’s largest pop-culture touring expo. Fans and celebrities alike will be on hand to celebrate movies, comics, video gaming, and more. The event will also feature live entertainment, gaming, exclusive Q&A sessions, movie screenings, and a kids’ zone. Admissions start at $39.95; kids 10 and under are free. Visit the website for more info.
June 2 | Dam 2 Dam, Saylorville Dam to downtown Des Moines
10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
This is the final year of Dam 2 Dam, a popular race known as “Iowa’s Distance Classic.” It’ll be a 20K to honor the first-ever Dam 2 Dam in 1980. Bring the kids downtown to cheer and enjoy the early summer sunshine.
June 2 | Photos for Fathers, Twisted Vine Brewery, West Des Moines
9 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.
Join Des Moines Moms Blog for our first-ever event with Dad in mind! One $25 family ticket includes: One edited image for electronic download to be ready within 10 days of the event, a fun craft for kids who are in the mini-photoshoot, a Twisted Vine Brewery Beer sample ticket for Dad, snacks for all family members in the mini-photo shoot, and a swag bag for Dad!
June 2 | Celebrate Waukee, Centennial Park and Downtown Triangle, Waukee
11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Kick off summer with the city of Waukee. Events include a 5K run for adults and Warrior Challenge run for kids, food, family-friendly games and activities, a beer garden, and fireworks at night.
June 2 | National Trails Day, Jester Park
12:30 p.m to 8 p.m.
Polk County Conservation, Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation, and REI West Des Moines invite the community to celebrate their 2nd Annual National Trails Day with a day of trail maintenance and community building at Jester Park. No experience necessary, all equipment provided. Kids welcome! Registration required for the meal and camping; please indicate if you will camp that evening at sign-in. Contact Melissa at [email protected] for any questions or concerns.
June 5-10 | Principal Charity Classic, Wakonda Club, Des Moines
Times vary by day – see schedule
Tickets for the Principal Charity Classic are available online. Good-Any-One-Day tickets are $20, and kids 15 and under receive free admission when accompanied by a ticketed adult. Complimentary admission is also provided for all active duty, retired, reserve military personnel and their dependents.
June 6 | Goldie’s Kids Club: History Makers, State Historical Museum of Iowa, Des Moines
2 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Learn about Iowa’s role on the silver screen with a tour through the Hollywood in the Heartland exhibit. Following the tour, try your hand at creating a storyboard. For ages 8-12. Free.
June 7-9 | Governors Days, Grimes
Thursday 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.; Friday 3 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.; Saturday 6:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.
Carnival rides, food vendors, car shows, and a parade featuring Des Moines’ favorite band, the ISISERETTES? Count us in! Celebrate all small-town Iowa has to offer with this three-day event.
June 8 | Principal Sips in the City, Capital Square and Cowles Commons, Des Moines
6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Jumpstart the weekend with Principal Sips in the City, featuring wine and hors-d’oeuvres from a wide variety of local restaurants and wineries and new this year: a beer garden! Get a babysitter and enjoy a night out while enjoying one of Winefest’s most talked about events. You can see the whole Winefest week event schedule here.
June 13-17 | Shakespeare on the Lawn, Salisbury House & Gardens, Des Moines
7:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Performed by the Iowa Stage Theatre Company, the famous tragedy comes to life under the stars with the majestic south terrace and gardens as the backdrop. Filled with some of the greatest poetry of all time, the passionate story finds idealistic young lovers fighting for romance in the midst of a violent and ageless feud between their families. Food, snacks, homemade ice cream, wine, and beer are available for purchase. Tickets are required. Admission for children ages 6-12 is $10. Children five and under are free. Call (515) 274-1777 for tickets.
June 15 | Zoobilation: Blank Park Zoo’s Annual Gala, Blank Park Zoo, Des Moines
Plan an out-of-the-ordinary date night! This annual fundraiser supports educational programs, animal training, conservation efforts, and veterinary care of the Zoo’s extensive animal collection. The event features a cocktail reception, animal encounters, dinner, live music, and auctions. Tickets available online.
June 14-17 | Johnston Green Days, next to the Johnston Public Library
Green Days is an annual community celebration. “The Nature of Johnston” Green Days 2018 activities include a parade, carnival, live entertainment in the beverage garden, Bill Riley Talent Search, 5K run, interactive games for kids, and much more. Click here for the kid-friendly Green Days event calendar.
June 20 | Goldie’s Kids Club: Laura Ingalls Wilder Storytime, State Historical Museum of Iowa, Des Moines
9:30 a.m. to 10:15 a.m.
Listen to a short story, Prairie Day, and then examine the Conestoga wagon in the You Gotta Know the Territory exhibit. This free program is recommended for children 3-7 years old. Each child must be accompanied by an adult for the duration of the program.
June 20 | World Refugee Day Cultural Celebration, Valley Community Center, West Des Moines
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
World Refugee Day Cultural Celebration is a fun, family-friendly event full of music, games, food, and more. The mission of the cultural celebration is to showcase the wonderful refugee and immigrant communities that Des Moines and central Iowa.
June 22-24 | Girls Rock! Des Moines, Kum & Go Theater, Des Moines Social Club
7:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Since 2013, Girls Rock! Des Moines has been empowering girls through music, education, and collaboration. Come support your local rockers! Tickets are $10 in advance, $12 at the door. Kids under 10 are free.
June 22-24 | Des Moines Arts Festival, Western Gateway Park, Des Moines
Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Sunday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
This massive, popular downtown event features tons of art on display, food booths and trucks, more than 25 interactive arts activities, media zones, live music, craft beer tent, and more. Admission is free.
June 23-24 | Artfest Midwest, Varied Industries Building, Iowa State Fairgrounds
Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
ArtFest Midwest is an indoor event (with a few outdoor spaces) held in the rain-free, air-conditioned Varied Industries Building. Around 250 artists will participate, and there will be special kids art activities. Admission and parking are free.
June 27 | Free Movie: Dennis the Menace, Valley Community Center, West Des Moines
10 a.m. to noon
Enjoy a family-friendly movie in the Valley Community Center Café space on the giant projection screen. Movie (and popcorn) are free.
Send us an email if we missed anything, and we’ll add your event to the list.
We work hard to ensure the accuracy of this information. However, you should always call ahead to confirm dates, times, location, and other information before heading to an event or activity, since it may change.