dsm4kids Events Calendar

Events Calendar

Welcome to dsm4kids’ calendar of family events! 

No matter where you live in the Des Moines metro, you can rely on our calendar to find nearby events and activities your kids will love!

To keep up to date on weekend events and activities be sure to sign up for our Weekend Fun Guide!

Please verify information before heading to an event or activity since information may change. 

Breakfast With Santa @ Johnston Hy-Vee
Dec 7 @ 7:00 am

Your favorite day of the holiday season is here! Breakfast with Santa is back! We will also be having Coffee with a Cop that morning as well! Starting at 7 AM you will be able to get breakfast, drink coffee and converse, and get your picture taken with Santa! Stay tuned for many more fun activities for that day!

A Special Time Just For You @ Get Air Des Moines
Dec 7 @ 8:00 am

Calmer Atmosphere

Saturday – 8 AM to 10 AM
Big Air – $13.99, Little Air – $8.99

We offer a dedicated time just for jumpers with special needs. Music is played at a lower volume and the park’s atmosphere is calmer. One parent or guardian can support jumpers on the trampoline for free. Siblings of jumpers are welcome to jump for the same price, but should be more careful during this time.

We have designed our trampoline parks with special needs as a primary focus, creating inclusive playgrounds where kids of all ages and abilities can come together in an environment that facilitates shared play and fun. Our goal is for Get Air Sports to be a place where kids can just be kids. We hope you’ll join us! When you arrive, or call beforehand, talk to one of our team members and we’ll ensure proper accommodations are made to create a fun and enjoyable experience for all.

Special Time Just For You is for special needs jumpers and their families.

Breakfast with Santa @ Youth Center
Dec 7 @ 8:00 am

Bring your family and have breakfast with Santa, which includes; pancakes, sausage, milk, and juice. Santa will be available for photos and kids can enjoy face painting and a book fair. Event is held from 8 – 11 a.m.

Breakfast with Santa on at Uncle Buck’s Fish Bowl & Grill @ Bass Pro Shops
Dec 7 @ 8:00 am

Enjoy a breakfast buffet, craft, personal visits and reading with Santa the Bass Pro Shops of Altoona. There’s two seatings offered on December 7 and 14, 2019 at 8:00 to 9:30 am. Very limited seating and RESERVATIONS ARE REQUIRED. To make reservations, please call 515-957-5400.

Coffee with a Cop + Milk and Cookies with Santa @ Hy-Vee Market Grille
Dec 7 @ 8:00 am

Join us for Coffee with a Cop + Milk and cookies with Santa on Saturday, Dec. 7 from 8 to 10 a.m. at Hy-Vee, 5750 Merle Hay Road. The goal of Coffee with a Cop is for Johnston police officers to get to know you and for you to get to know our officers. This month, bring your children and they can visit with Santa and enjoy milk and cookies.

We encourage you to come with specific questions or just be ready to share what is on your mind. In a short time, we hope to get to know you and discover mutual goals that will continue to grow and improve our community.

Sensory Friendly Hours @ Science Center of Iowa
Dec 7 @ 8:30 am

Sensory Friendly Hours provide a quieter, less crowded SCI experience for families with children on the autism spectrum.

The Science Center of Iowa is an exciting place, bustling with sights and sounds… but one Saturday morning each month, we provide a quieter, less crowded visit for Sensory Friendly Hours!

Families with children on the autism spectrum or children with sensory processing disorders will enjoy exploring the Science Center of Iowa with the help of Sensory Guide signage, which indicates audio, visual and activity stimuli.

Sensory Friendly Hours are the first Saturday of the month from 8:30–10:00 am, October through May.

Admission is free, and no advance tickets are required. Simply check in at the Box Office when you arrive!


Back to Bethlehem @ Urban Heights Covenant Church
Dec 7 @ 9:00 am

You and your family are invited…Back to Bethlehem! 9:00 am to 12:00 noon

  • Visit the stable and re-live the birth of Jesus.
  • Pet the Camel, donkeys, sheep and other live animals in the barnyard.
  • Explore the shops and meet the shopkeepers of Bethlehem.
  • Participate in fun activities and crafts.
  • Enjoy breakfast among the shephards.

All ages love this morning in Bethlehem!

Brunch with Santa & Rudolph @ Center Grove Orchard
Dec 7 @ 9:00 am


Join us for a festive holiday brunch! It’s great fun for the whole family.

  • Menu: Pancakes, eggs, sausage, milk and juice
  • Cookie decorating
  • Coloring contest
  • Letters to Santa
  • Visits with Santa
  • CGO Express Train rides (weather permitting)
  • Photo opportunities with Santa as well as Santa’s sleigh guided by Rudolph

Look for additional info. at


Butterfly Blizzard @ Reiman Gardens
Dec 7 @ 9:00 am

Come in from the cold to experience a different kind of blizzard – a butterfly blizzard in Reiman Gardens’ Christina Reiman Butterfly Wing! Take advantage of this rare opportunity to release your very own butterfly, just-emerged from its chrysalis, and waiting in a container for its first flight in the Butterfly Wing. An amazing nature moment for young and old alike! While here, partake in fun, themed crafts and sip hot cocoa.



Cowles Holiday Bonanza @ Cowles Elementary
Dec 7 @ 9:00 am

Friday 6:00 to 9:00 pm

Saturday 9:00 am to 1:00 pm

The coolest craft show of the season is back! Unique vendors make for great holiday shopping, while student vendors show off creative wares like homemade ceramics and doggie treats. Friday night, enjoy hot cider and goods from the bake sale and listen to live holiday music while you browse the amazing selection of vendors and our book fair.

On Saturday, plan to spend the day with us and browse the huge assortment of vendors. Coffee and lunch for sale as well as an amazing hot cocoa bar. Enjoy goodies from the bake sale or buy a special tray to take home for your holiday entertaining. Kids will love participating in make and take crafts in our coffee shop. Live music will put you in the holiday spirit. Cowles Holiday Bonanza is presented by the Cowles Montessori Parent Group and sponsored by Windsor Heights Hy-Vee.

Holiday Market @ Central Presbyterian Church
Dec 7 @ 9:00 am

The 2018 Holiday Market will feature over 50 vendors and local artisans, showcasing unique handmade crafts, jewelry, furniture and home decór – including a vintage offering, great food and more! This annual event is held in conjunction with the Holly & Ivy Tour sponsored by Salisbury House & Gardens  of Des Moines.

Home Depot – FREE Kids Workshops @ Home Depot Stores
Dec 7 @ 9:00 am
  • FREE hands-on workshops; designed for children ages 5 – 12
  • All kids get to keep their craft, receive a FREE certificate of achievement, a Workshop Apron, and a commemorative pin while supplies last.
  • Children must be present at the store to participate in the workshop and receive the kit, apron and pin.
  • Kids Workshop activities are scheduled on a first come/first served basis. Please do not arrive before 9:00 a.m.
  • Thank you for registering online to help us better plan our craft kit quantities needed

Other Locations:

3700 University Ave, West Des Moines, IA 50266 (515)221-2233

10850 Plum Drive, Urbandale, IA 50322 (515)251-5819

2335 SE Delaware Ave, Ankeny, IA 50021  (515)963-1890

Public Tour @ The World Food Prize Hall of Laureates
Dec 7 @ 9:00 am

THE WORLD FOOD PRIZE HALL OF LAUREATES tells a story in every room – from the building’s rich history as the Des Moines public library, to the Foundation’s celebrated agricultural and humanitarian pioneers there is something for every visitor.

Built in 1903, this century-old building has been restored into a museum that celebrates those who have dedicated their lives to fighting hunger around the world. The Hall of Laureates is a beautiful space of learning and collaboration, and we welcome you to visit.

The Hall is open to the public on Tuesdays and Saturdays. Admission is free of charge, and visitors have the opportunity to take a guided tour or explore the building on their own. Private and group tours are also available.

Guided tours at 9 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 12 p.m., 1:30 p.m.
Please arrive 10-15 minutes early

9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
There are no guided tours on Saturdays. Docents are stationed in the building to provide information and education.

The Hall of Laureates is closed during all federal holiday weekends, including New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving week and Christmas. The Hall of Laureates is also closed during World Food Prize Week.

Santa’s Wonderland @ Bass Pro Shops
Dec 7 @ 9:00 am

Santa Photos, Crafts, Games & Activities

November 17-31

FREE Photo with Santa (Bass Pass Required) FREE Crafts FREE Games & Activities
Weekdays 5–8PM 5–7PM Open to Close
Saturday 10AM–8PM NOON–5PM Open to Close
Sunday 10AM–5PM NOON–5PM Open to Close

Special Hours – U.S. Locations Only

FREE Photo with Santa (Bass Pass Required) FREE Crafts FREE Games & Activities
Thursday, Nov. 28* 10AM–5PM 3–5PM Open to Close
Friday, Nov. 29 1–8PM 5–7PM Open to Close

*Foxborough, MA, Berlin, MA, and Scarborough ME locations are closed on Nov 28

December 1–7

FREE Photo with Santa (Bass Pass Required) FREE Crafts FREE Games & Activities
Weekdays 3–8PM 5–7PM Open to Close
Saturday 10AM–8PM NOON–5PM Open to Close
Sunday 10AM–5PM NOON–5PM Open to Close

December 8–23

FREE Photo with Santa (Bass Pass Required) FREE Crafts FREE Games & Activities
Weekdays 10AM–8PM 5–7PM Open to Close
Saturday 10AM–8PM NOON–5PM Open to Close
Sunday 10AM–5PM NOON–5PM Open to Close

December 24

FREE Photo with Santa FREE Crafts FREE Games & Activities
Sunday, Dec. 24 10AM–5PM 3–5PM Open to Close

*While supplies last. Styles may vary. See store for details.

Tail Waggin’ Readers @ Grimes Public Library
Dec 7 @ 9:00 am

Improve your reading skills and make a new friend by reading aloud to a therapy dog! Students in 2nd, 3rd, or 4th grade may sign up for a 20 minute time slot to read to a therapy dog partner. Please call the library to register for an available time!

Windsor Wonderland @ Windsor Heights Hy-Vee
Dec 7 @ 9:00 am

Join us at Windsor Wonderland at the Windsor Heights Hy-Vee on Saturday, December 7th! 9:00 am to 12:00 noon there will be live reindeer and a sleigh. Get in the holiday spirit with the following activities!
* Pictures with Santa
* Cookie decorating
* Hot chocolate
* Letters to Santa

Breakfast with Santa & Cookie Walk @ Eastview Community Center
Dec 7 @ 9:30 am

Come join us for our annual Breakfast With Santa. There will be a FREE pancake and sausage breakfast. Bring your camera and take pictures with Santa. There will also be a Cookie Walk where you can stock up on all your Holiday treats! Lot’s of fun, crafts, and balloon animals. Bring your whole family!

Cookies for Santa @ Giovannetti Community Shelter
Dec 7 @ 10:00 am

Everyone knows that Santa loves COOKIES!! Join us as we decorate cookies for Santa. Please bring a container to take treats home. Parental supervision required. Fee is for child only, parents are free. Please register child only. Staff Instructor.
Registration Deadline: December 2

Ages 3-8.

Gingerbread House Workshop @ Altoona Public Library
Dec 7 @ 10:00 am

Come construct your very own gingerbread house at our seventh annual gingerbread decorating program. Come alone or bring the whole family for some festive holiday fun. We provide the supplies, you provide the creativity! You will have two hours to construct your creation.  Will you build a traditional cottage, or go with something completely unique? It’s up to you! You may enter your house into our annual contest, or take it home to enjoy right away.

Registration required.

Goldie’s Kids Club @ The State Historical Museum
Dec 7 @ 10:00 am

Join Goldie the Goldfinch on the first Saturday of every month to learn about Iowa history and solve some of its mysteries! Through hands-on activities, artifact examinations, exhibit tours and more, children (ages 8-12) and their families can explore the past… like never before.

“History Mystery” programs encourage participants to examine historic artifacts to determine how they were used and who might have used them.

“Innovative Iowans” programs involve interactive activities that connect history with STEAM education – science, technology, engineering, art and math.

All of the programs are free, but advance registration is required for the hour-long programs. Each child must be accompanied by an adult for the duration of the program.

Upcoming Programs

Sep. 7, 2019 – Innovative Iowans: Echoes from the Past 1

Oct. 5, 2019  – History Mystery: Old School

Nov. 2, 2019 – Innovative Iowans: Cannons and Catapults

Dec. 7, 2019 – History Mystery: Toy Stories Dec. 7, 2019

Jan. 4, 2020 – Innovative Iowans: Electric Horseless Carriages Jan. 4, 2020

Feb. 1, 2020 – History Mystery: Whatchamacallits & Thingamajigs Feb. 1, 2020

Mar. 7, 2020 – Innovative Iowans: Civil War Spies





Events considered for inclusion onto the dsm4kids calendar include those at local venues, including free and low-cost events, as well as special events that may require paid admission.  Events are posted to the online calendar in a timely manner throughout the month.  

While all submissions are considered, inclusion is based on event relevance. Events occurring outside of Central Iowa or events primarily geared toward adults will not be listed.

If you are a business or organization and would like to submit an event listing, please click on Submit Event.