2017 FREE Outdoor Movies 4 Kids and Families in Des Moines

2017 FREE Outdoor Movies 4 Kids and Families in Des Moines

 Find summer 2019 outdoor movies here.

One of the best things about summer in Des Moines is enjoying a movie … outside under the stars. And what’s better than some outdoor entertainment that’s FREE or low cost? There are several places around Des Moines to enjoy this fun activity or start a new summer tradition. Here’s your guide to FREE outdoor movies for kids and families in Des Moines.


Movie Night at Jack Trice Stadium

What better way to kick off outdoor movie season than by watching one on the JumboTron!?! The Jr. Cyclone Club hosts an annual outdoor movie screening at Jack Trice Stadium. If you choose to sit on the field only blankets are allowed.  You can also sit in the in the east bleachers, or the south end zone and concessions are available. Gates open at 6:00 pm and the movie starts at 7:00 pm.

May 13: Trolls


Movies Under the Stars

Movies Under the Stars is held on Friday nights in June and July in the Band Shell in Wagner Park (410 W 1st Street, Ankeny).  The movies begin at dusk. The movies are FREE and open to the public; bring lawn chairs and blankets for seating.

June 9: Moana
June 16: Secret Life of Pets
June 23: Sing
June 30: Jungle Book
July 14: Finding Dory
July 21: Zootopia
July 28: Little Mermaid


Friday Night Flicks

Watch a free movie under the stars! Bring your blankets and chairs for grass seating. Movies will be shown on an inflatable big screen at three different parks. In the event of bad weather, the movie will be shown indoors at the Special Events Building at the Clive Aquatic Center. FREE popcorn while supplies last.

June 9: The Secret Life of Pets at Wildwood Park – 15166 Wildwood Drive, Clive
July 28: Finding Dory at Campbell Park Shelter – 12385 Woodlands Parkway, Clive
August 4: The Lego Batman Movie at Country Club Glen – 16335 Sheridan Ave, Clive

Des Moines

Free Flicks

Free Flicks is a summer-long series of outdoor movies shown on Thursday nights throughout the Des Moines area. The films are shown on a 25-foot portable screen, and will begin after sunset around 9:00 pm. Admission is FREE, blankets and lawn chairs are encouraged. Feel free to bring your own snacks as concessions are not provided. Movies will not take place in the event of rain. Follow Des Moines Parks and Recreation’s website, Facebook, and Twitter pages for updates or sign up for their text messaging notification service.

June 8: The Secret Life of Pets at Evergreen Park – 2000 Evergreen Avenue, Des Moines
June 15: Rogue One at Ashby Park – 3200 38th Street, Des Moines
June 22: Sing at Waveland Golf Course – 4908 University Avenue, Des Moines
June 29: Kubo and the Two Strings at Martin Luther King Park – 1650 Garfield Avenue, Des Moines
July 6: The Lego Batman Movie at Hoyt Sherman Place – 1501 Woodland Avenue, Des Moines
July 13: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them at Witmer Park – 1610 34th Street, Des Moines
July 20: Guardians of the Galaxy at Sargent Park – 3530 East Douglas Avenue, Des Moines
July 27: Zootopia at Ashfield Park – 720 East 19th Street, Des Moines
August 3: The Lego Batman Movie at Bright Grandview Golf Course – 2401 East 29th Street, Des Moines
August 10: Finding Dory at Brenton Plaza – 520 Robert D. Ray Drive, Des Moines
August 12: Toy Story 3 at Ashley Okland Playground – 5300 Indianola Avenue, Des Moines
August 17: Moana at Cheatom Park – 1100 Day Street, Des Moines
August 26: Beauty and the Beast at Ewing Park Lilac Arboretum – 5300 Indianola Avenue, Des Moines

Free Flicks at the Art Center

Free Flicks will be shown on the first Thursday of each month and you can enjoy dinner and a movie at the Des Moines Art Center. Curbin’ Cuisine will be serving up delicious bites beginning at 6:00 pm until the movie begins. Attendees are encouraged to bring lawn chairs, blankets, and refreshments to view The Art Center’s series of eclectic and cinematic classics outside on the big screen. All films begin at dusk (approximately 9:00 pm); in case of rain, the film will be cancelled. Weather updates can be found on the Art Center’s website.

June 1: Singin’ in the Rain
July 6: Casablanca
August 3: The Wizard of Oz


Movies on Main

Main Street in Grimes serves as the backdrop for the Grimes Governor’s District family friendly flicks on Fridays. Pack a picnic and your own chair and sit back and take in a movie under the summer stars.  Each month different businesses and organizations also provide fun activities before the movie starts. If the skies are unforgiving, movies may be cancelled.

June 2: TBD
July 7: TBD
August 4: TBD


Starlight Cinema Outdoor Movies

Provide your family with unforgettable memories this summer watching FREE family-friendly movies under the stars on the big screen at the Memorial Park Amphitheater. Bring blankets or lawn chairs. FREE popcorn is provided and drinks & candy are also available.

May 27: Finding Dory
June 16: Sing
July 22:  The Secret Life of Pets
August 18: Zootopia
September 8: Beauty and the Beast


FREE Outdoor Movie

Head on over to the Johnston Public Library for a FREE outdoor moive. Bring your yard blankets and lawn chairs; they’ll provide the popcorn! No reservation necessary. Adult Summer Reading participants can earn a prize ticket for attending.

July 8: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story


UCAN Movie Night

Pack a lawn chair or a blanket and head to Urbandale for an outdoor movie shown at Webster Elementary. “Doors” open at 7:00 pm for fun activities and the movie begins at 9:00 pm. In addition to the FREE movie, FREE popcorn and snow cones will be served. If there is inclement weather, the movies will be shown indoors.  Watch UCAN’s Facebook page for updates.

June 16: Trolls
July 14: Up
Aug 11: Diary of a Wimpy Kid
Sept 8: Boss Baby


Movies in the Park

This FREE event is a great way to make memories with your family and neighbors at Centennial Park in Waukee while enjoying Hollywood’s biggest hits under the stars. Don’t forget to bring your lawn chairs and blankets. Fresh popcorn and drinks are sold by the Park Board. Movies start at approximately 8:45 pm.

June 2: Storks
July 21: Trolls

West Des Moines

Cinema Under the Stars

This Friday evening series at West Glen Town Center not only offers great big screen movies for the whole fam, but also live music starting at 7:00 pm. The FREE movie under the stars begins at 9:00 pm. Bring your picnic basket, chairs, blankets; whatever makes you cozy.

June 16: Grease
June 30: Best In Show
July 14: The Simpsons Movie

Windsor Heights

Movies in the Park

The Movies in the Park series is back again this year in Colby Park. Make Friday night “Family Movie Night”! They supply the movie, you bring the family! Get there early, bring a picnic dinner and a blanket, and enjoy quality time with your family in the beautiful park.  Concessions will be available. Movies begin at dusk. For more information, call (515) 645-6821.

June 16: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
June 23: LEGO Batman
July 30: Jason Bourne
July 14: Finding Dory
July 23: Moana



What’s your favorite spot to see a FREE outdoor movie in Des Moines? Let us know if we missed any great spots!

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