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Fall Arts & Entertainment Guide


Your go-to source for all things related to theater, outdoors, music, art and more

RottenTour_1487The summer sun is fading, and Iowa’s brisk autumn winds are whistling closer. The time is ripe to reintroduce yourself to sweaters and jeans while putting the tank tops and swimsuits into storage. Likewise, it’s time to exchange days at the beach with apple-picking, leaf-raking and costume-wearing bonfire parties.

Des Moines has much to offer. Whether you’re looking for one last outdoor run before the treadmill, a memorable stage performance, a breathtaking art gallery, or a bleacher to cheer from, there’s something for everybody in central Iowa. We’ve listed some of the best opportunities to get out of the house in the next few months. Enjoy the fall.


Theatrical performances are happening throughout central Iowa this fall. The traveling Broadway casts of Tony award-winning productions “Something Rotten!” and “The Color Purple” will both take the stage at the Des Moines Civic Center. Local thespians will perform favorites like “Disney’s The Little Mermaid,” “The 25th Annual Putnam Spelling Bee” and “The Glass Menagerie.” Laughs will be in no short supply when The Naked Magicians visit in October; they’ll be wearing little more than a smile and cheering up the metro after their summer show was cancelled. Martin Short and Steve Martin bring back memories of the ’80s as they reunite to the delight of Iowa audiences on Oct. 27. The newly formed Iowa Stage Theater Co., a merger of the Repertory Theater of Iowa and StageWest Theater Company, will host its debut season at the Des Moines Social Club’s Kum & Go Theater. Lights. Laughter. Action. You won’t be able to see everything the city has to offer, but you are sure to find something to make you smile.

*** Denotes traveling Broadway shows

Des Moines Community Playhouse

Prep Iowa

831 42nd St. —

Sept. 8 – Oct. 1 — “A Chorus Line” (Main Stage)

Oct. 13-29 — “Choices” (Main Stage)

Dec. 1-24 — Family Holiday Classic: Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” (Main Stage)

Des Moines Performing Arts

Des Moines Civic Center/Cowles Commons/Stoner Theater — 221 Walnut St.

Temple Theater — 1011 Locust St.

Sept. 23-24 — Des Moines Symphony “Masterworks 1: Season Debut – Invitation to the Dance” (Des Moines Civic Center)

Oct. 10-15 — “Something Rotten!” (Des Moines Civic Center)***

Oct. 12 — “Velvet Caravan” (The Temple Theater)

Oct. 20-22 — “The Naked Magicians” (The Temple Theater, 18 and older)

Oct. 21-22 — Des Moines Symphony “Masterworks 2: Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake” (Des Moines Civic Center)

Oct. 26 — Travis Wall’s “Shaping Sound” (Des Moines Civic Center)

Oct. 27 — “Steve Martin and Martin Short: An Evening You Will Forget for the Rest of Your Lives” (Des Moines Civic Center)

Oct. 29 — Des Moines Symphony “Phantoms of the Orchestra” (Des Moines Civic Center)

Oct. 31 – Nov. 5 — “The Color Purple” (Des Moines Civic Center)***

Nov. 3 — Ruth Moody Band (The Temple Theater)

Nov. 18-19 — Des Moines Symphony “Masterworks 3: Ritual Fire Dance” (Des Moines Civic Center)

Nov. 24 — “Larry Gatlin and the Gatlin Brother’s Hits and Christmas Show with special guest Billy Dean” (Des Moines Civic Center)

Nov. 25-26 — “Lance Burton Master Magician & Friends” (Des Moines Civic Center)

Nov. 28-Jan. 7 — “Dixie’s Tupperware Party” (The Temple Theater, 16 and older)

Nov. 30 — “Shopkins Live! Shop It Up!” (Des Moines Civic Center)

Dec. 2 — “Brain Candy Live!” (Des Moines Civic Center)

Dec. 3 — “Home Free: A Country Christmas” (Des Moines Civic Center)

Dec. 5-10 — “Waitress” (Des Moines Civic Center)

Dec. 12 — “A Charlie Brown Christmas: Live on Stage” (Des Moines Civic Center)

Des Moines Social Club

900 Mulberry St. —

Sept. 13, Oct. 11, Nov. 8 — Prototype Presents: comedy shows (The Basement)

Sept. 21, Oct. 19, Nov. 16 — Underground Comedy (The Basement)

Sept. 23, Oct. 21, Nov. 18 — Chowdown Comedy (The Basement)

Sept. 22 – Oct. 8 — Iowa Stage Theatre Co. presents “Company” (Kum & Go Theater)

Oct. 26 — Run DSM SLAM (Kum & Go Theater)

Nov. 10-19 — Iowa Stage Theatre Co. presents “The Flick” (Kum & Go Theater)

View More:

“The Nutcracker” might be the most famous ballet on the planet, and it’ll help start off the Christmas season this December. Photo courtesy of Ballet Des Moines.

Ballet Des Moines

Oct. 20-22 — “A Triple Bill” (Hoyt Sherman Place)

Dec. 8-10 — “The Nutcracker” (Hoyt Sherman Place)

Drake University Theatre Arts

Oct. 5-8 — “The Goat Or, Who Is Sylvia?” (William S.E. Coleman Studio Theatre)

Oct. 27-29 — Student Theatre Production Showcase (William S.E. Coleman Studio Theatre)

Nov. 16-19 — “Runaways” (Performing Arts Hall)

Simpson College Theater

Oct. 13-15 “Tartuffe” (Pote Theatre)

Nov. 16-19 “The Bald Soprano” (Barnum Studio Theatre)

Tall Grass Theater Company

1401 Vine St., West Des Moines

Oct. 27-Nov. 12 — “On Golden Pond”

Iowa State Center

Stephens Auditorium/Fisher Theater/Scheman Building

Sept. 24 — “ArtRAGEous” (Stephens Auditorium)

Oct. 1 — “Flip Fabrique” (Stephens Auditorium)

Oct. 4 — “A Night with Janis Joplin” (Stephens Auditorium)

Oct. 9 — “The Wright Stuff: First In Flight” (Stephens Auditorium)

Oct. 21 — “Dirty Dancing” (Stephens Auditorium)

Oct. 26 — “One Night In Memphis” (Stephens Auditorium)

Nov. 8 — “The Cat in the Hat” (Stephens Auditorium)

Ames Community Theater

120 Abraham Drive, Ames —

Sept. 15-24 — “The Cemetery Club”

Nov. 17-26 — “Forbidden Broadway: Greatest Hits Volume 1”

Ankeny Community Theatre

1932 S.W. Third St., Ankeny

Oct. 6-8, 12-15 — “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee”

Nov. 2-5 — “The God Committee”

Boone Community Theater

106 S. Webster St., Boone

Sept. 8-9, 15-16 — “The Glass Menagerie”

Dec. 1-2, 8-10 — “Story Theatre”

Carousel Theatre of Indianola

Oct. 26-28 — Mystery Dinner Theater: “To Wake the Dead” at La Vida Loca Winery, 7852 Jesup St., Indianola

Union Street Players

712 Union St., Suite 202, Pella

Dec. 1-10 — “It’s A Wonderful Life”

Pella Opera House

611 Franklin St., Pella

Sept. 9 — Play in A Day

Sept. 12 — OperArts Monthly Workshop

Sept. 13 — Celebrity Bartending

Sept. 16 — An Evening with Mark Twain

Valley Church

4343 Fuller Road, West Des Moines

Sept. 17 — Ballet Magnificat! presents: “The Scarlet Cord.” A story of two foreign missionaries working underground within former Communist Soviet Union while facing the challenge of avoiding the Secret Police and remaining undercover.


With approximately 8,000 participants entering races of varying distances, the Des Moines Marathon is among the state’s largest athletic events. Photo courtesy of Des Moines Marathon.

With approximately 8,000 participants entering races of varying distances, the Des Moines Marathon is among the
state’s largest athletic events. Photo courtesy of Des Moines Marathon.

Make the most of the retreating summer weather by getting outside, you will be glad you did. CITYVIEW has picked out some of the best ways to enjoy the autumn and listed them below.

Sept. 8 — This year’s final installment of Thunder Nites in Newton is cruising closer. Rev up your hog and roll along with hundreds of bike enthusiasts in Newton Town Square, starting at 6 p.m.

Sept. 8 — Looking to learn more about what makes Des Moines what it is? The Architecture on the Move Walking Tour is coming up. Knowledgeable tour guides provide in-depth info on the buildings of Des Moines, new and old, helping to provide an understanding of how this city was built. growing city. The tour helps fund the Iowa Architectural Association, which works to preserve and protect some of Iowa’s most significant structures. To make a reservation, call 515-244-1888 or email

Sept. 9 — Cowles Commons will once again host the Touchdown Tailgate event, where sports fans can view the Iowa vs. Iowa State football game on a big screen with adult beverages and food available for purchase. Admission is free and the game kicks off at 11 a.m.

Sept. 12-13 — The Iowa Special Olympics asks you to “Make a ‘Towering’ impact” at Over the Edge day. It’s not a fundraiser for the faint of heart, but it is a monumental experience. Donors are given the opportunity to rappel over the edge of the 345-foot Financial Center, the fourth tallest building in Des Moines. Afraid of heights? Why not Toss Your Boss? If coworkers can raise $1,000, they get the chance to see their boss pushed over the edge — safely secured of course. Registration can be done at with a minimum donation of $1,000.

Sept. 16 — The final Indianola Bike Night of the year hosts bike riders from around the state at the Indianola Town Square. The event, and the Indianola Bike Night season, is scheduled to end with a live concert by Cold Filtered, an ‘80s rock cover band.

Sept. 29 — Prairie Meadows wants you to squeeze in 18 more holes of golf before the snow falls and the course closes for the winter. That’s why it’s starting the Prairie Meadows Heroes Golf Classic this fall. Hosted at Terrace Hills Golf Course in Altoona, the event will raise money for injured veterans. You can sign up at

Sept. 30 — The National Alliance on Mental Illness hosts NAMIWalks around the world to help garner support in the battle with mental illness. NAMIWalks Iowa, a casual and family-friendly 5K, is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 30, starting at Terra Park in Johnston. With a goal of $125,000, support is needed from Iowans to make the fundraiser successful. To register or learn more, go to

Oct. 7 — The Walk to Defeat ALS takes strides that mean more than just a commitment to walk one mile on an autumn morning. The ALS Association is hoping to raise $425,000 with this event, money that will be used to fight the disease that took the life of Lou Gehrig and gave rise to the Ice Bucket Challenge in 2014. The walk is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. at Principal Park. Visit for details.

Oct. 14-15 — Nearly 9,000 runners are expected to race in this year’s Des Moines Marathon. Runners can choose between the half-marathon, full-marathon or team up for the marathon relay, all of which begins on the morning of Oct. 15. For those with less stamina, there will also be the loop 5-mile run and 1-mile walk on Oct. 14. Register online at

Oct. 21 — Building forts and camping out isn’t only for kids, and it can also be for a good cause. Hosted in Drake Stadium, teams participating in Reggie’s Sleepout are asked to raise money for the homeless. It all culminates in a campout on the football field where participants build cardboard tents for the night. The best forts win prizes, and everyone can enjoy free food and entertainment when day becomes night. To learn more or register, go to

Oct. 28 — Susan G. Komen for the Cure has been racing for a cure for breast cancer since 1982. The organization has raised more than $1.5 billion to date with local walk/runs like the 2017 Komen Des Moines Race for the Cure. Starting at the Iowa State Capitol, the gun goes off at 9 a.m. To register, go to

Nov. 17 — Brenton Skate Plaza opens for the winter on November 17. Skate rental is $4.25 and admission starts at $3.75 for kids and $6 for adults.

Nov. 19 — Raise money and burn calories off-road with the 38th annual Living History Farms Race. Battle through creeks, traverse forest terrain and survive the brisk, autumn air by getting dirty in the woods around Living History Farms. For more info, email or go to

Nov. 21-26 — Prep for Christmas cheer with a little pre-Christmas giving. UnityPoint’s Festival of Trees & Lights is a five-day event for the whole family, and it supports Blank’s Children’s Hospital. The money raised helps Child Life and the Center for Advocacy & Outreach programs, which help kids at Blank confront fears resulting from their afflictions. The Festival raised more than $500,000 in 2016. A gala is scheduled for Tuesday, Nov. 21 at the Veterans Memorial Community Choice Credit Union in the Convention Center Ballroom (833 Fifth St., Des Moines). To attend, volunteer or offer to decorate a tree, visit


Sept. 9 — Blues & BBQ returns for its second year. Barbecue masters vie to determine the best griller around while being serenaded by some classic tunes from the Central Iowa Blues Society. Proceeds from the event benefit the Children’s Miracle Network. It all goes down at the Park Fair Ace Hardware. To learn more, visit

Sept. 9-10, 16-17 — The Renaissance Faire at Sleepy Hollow is closing out 2017 with special events for the last two weekends of its season. On Sept. 9 and 10, the theme is Kilts & Lucky Lasses. The final weekend of the season, Sept. 16-17, will feature Pirates & Wenches. The faire will be open from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. Visit for details.

Sept. 10 — All day long in Valley Junction vendors and collectors will be showing their relics at the Fall Antique Jamboree.

Sept. 15-16 — Beaverdale may not be an incorporated town, but it still has its own Beaverdale Fall Festival. Starting at the intersection of Beaver and Urbandale Avenues, the festival features food vendors, rides, music, beer and a parade. Check out to learn more.

Sept. 17 — Hot rods and cool cars aplenty will be shown off at the Henry Gregor Felsen Tribute Car Show in Valley Junction. Registration is $25, and 31 awards will be bestowed on the finest rides.

Blank Park Zoo has its own brand of Oktoberfest fun with Zooktoberfest on Sept. 21. Photo courtesy of Blank Park Zoo.

Blank Park Zoo has its own brand of Oktoberfest fun
with Zooktoberfest on Sept. 21. Photo courtesy of Blank
Park Zoo.

Sept. 21 — The Blank Park Zoo gets in on the Oktoberfest fun with its own twist: Zooktoberfest. There are plenty of food and beverages to enjoy as you wander around the enclosures. Visit for all the details.

Sept. 22-23 — Des Moines’ hoppiest festival since Easter is back for its 14th year: Oktoberfest DSM. Plenty of beer and lederhosen will be on hand in the Historic Court District during this two-day festival. Tickets can be purchased through

Sept. 23-24 — The Latino Heritage Festival is a Latino cultural celebration. The event will be in Western Gateway Park just two days after summer officially ends. The festival’s website can be found at

Sept. 30 — Adventureland isn’t missing out on the Oktoberfest fun. The theme park is locking out the kids — attendees must be 21 years old — so that the adults can squeeze the last ounces out of summer. Gin Blossoms are scheduled to perform at 1 p.m. Just be careful of mixing drinks with spinny-style rides. Visit for more information.

Oct. 14-15 — There’s so much going on at once at the Madison County Covered Bridge Festival. There are quilt and car shows, cowboys, art displays, rural history and continuous family fun. Admission is only $2, and it’s free for kids 11 and under. Go to to plan your visit.

Nov. 30 — Thanksgiving has passed, which means Christmas is nearly here. Ring in the holiday cheer with Jingle in the Junction at Historic Valley Junction in West Des Moines. To find out what it’s all about, go to


Sept. 7-10 — There’s plenty of fun to be had at Boone County’s Pufferbilly Days. It’s named after the pufferbilly, a type of train locomotive, but there’s also a parade, pet show and tournaments ranging from mud volleyball to spelling and photography. Check out the schedule and more at

Sept. 9, 16, 23, Oct. 14 — No need for noisy, gas-guzzling tractors. Living History Farms is offering horse or mule-pulled wagon rides almost every week until mid-October. There are two rides each day, one at 5 p.m. and the other at 7 p.m., every Saturday in September. The last ride is scheduled for 5 p.m. on Oct. 14. For anyone 2 and older, rides cost $15. Members only have to pay $13.50. For more info, go to

Sept. 17 — Blank Park Zoo is celebrating one of the most beloved insects in the animal kingdom with the Monarch Festival. Experience culture inspired by the monarch butterfly and learn about its migration from Canada to Mexico, including the customary Iowan stops. To plan your visit, go to

Guests at Living History Farms interact directly with history on Sept. 23. Attendees of Applefest have the opportunity to crank a cider press or stir an apple butter barrel. Photo courtesy of Iowa Living History.

Guests at Living History Farms interact
directly with history on Sept. 23. Attendees
of Applefest have the opportunity to crank
a cider press or stir an apple butter barrel.
Photo courtesy of Iowa Living History.

Sept. 23 — Enjoy fall like it’s 1875. Living History Farms’ annual Applefest celebrates all things apple, but honors the fruits in an old-fashioned way. Try your hand at cranking a cider press, or stir an apple butter barrel. Learn more at

Oct. 7 — Start October the Iowan way while interacting with history at Living History Farm’s Corn Harvest. See firsthand how Iowa’s flagship crop was harvested and prepared 150 years ago. For more info, go to

Oct. 19-22, 26-29 — All of the Halloween staples come together at Living History Farms’ Family Halloween celebration. The event starts at 5:30 p.m. each night. Find out more at

Oct. 19-22, 26-29 — Magical creatures join real ones for Night Eyes at the Blank Park Zoo. You and your little ones might also enjoy taking a ride on the zoo’s train and gathering tasty Halloween sweets. The event runs two weekends in a row from 5-8 p.m. Learn more at

Oct. 29 — Close out October with the Valley Junction Pumpkin Walk. Kids can trick and treat in their Halloween costumes throughout Valley Junction, enjoy a hayride and take home a pumpkin. Best of all, it’s free. The fun starts at 2 p.m. and goes until 5 in Historic Valley Junction. Find more info at


To prepare for the long winter, make sure to indulge in some special food events around town. Enjoy the State Mixology Championships, Exile Brewing Company’s fifth birthday, and who could forget the deluge that is the Beer, Wine and Food Expo? It might not be healthy to attend everything on this list, but it’s OK to taste a couple of them.

Sept. 7 — The State Mixology Championships are to be held at Vivian’s Diner & Drinks on the first Thursday of September. Yes, there is a competition for that. In addition to seeing masters work their craft, a $30 ticket also gets you free samples and the opportunity to vote for the People’s Choice award.

Sept. 15-17 — Cultures collide on the Court Avenue Bridge at the World Food & Music Festival. The event is free to attend, but you should still be ready to spend in order to try samples and entrees from dozens of cultural vendors. There are also plenty of cooking demonstrations if you want to make some of the dishes yourself. Make sure to log on to to prepare for your visit.

There are already more than 50 vendors locked in to share delicacies at the World Food and Music Festival from Sept. 15-17, to be held in the Western Gateway Park. Photo courtesy of the Greater Des Moines Partnership.

There are already more than 50 vendors locked in to share delicacies at the World
Food and Music Festival from Sept. 15-17, to be held in the Western Gateway Park.
Photo courtesy of the Greater Des Moines Partnership.

Sept. 16 — Some may be surprised to hear that one of Iowa’s most well-known breweries, Exile Brewing Company, is only half of a decade old. The maker of brews like Beatnik Sour, Zoltan Session IPA and Sir Moch-A-Lot is turning 5 with a prize-filled, pet- and kid-friendly (until 5 p.m.) party from noon until 10 p.m. outside the brewery at 1514 Walnut St.

Sept. 19 — Vinification, or the art of winemaking, meets visual art with Jasper Winery’s Art Over Wine event. The fundraiser looks to help lower-income homeowners in Des Moines with home repairs. Money is raised through a silent auction and ticket sales. Hors d’oeuvres and wine will be provided.

Sept. 22 — CITYVIEW’s Wine and Whiskey Walk comes to West Glen with more than 14 establishments participating. From 5-9 p.m. and for only $20 you can sample the spirits at West Glen hot spots. Don’t forget to check out the many giveaways along the way, like the ultimate prize of a VIP tour of the Buffalo Trace Distillery in Kentucky.

Sept. 30 — Sometimes running followed by filling your stomach is encouraged. That’s what happens at the Food Truck 5K, anyway. The running and the eating both begin and end at Valley View Aquatic Center in West Des Moines.

Oct. 21 — Beautiful clothes, fine wine and a good cause. That’s Wine, Women and Shoes, a fashion show and wine tasting combined in one charitable event. Hosted at Willis Auto Campus in Clive (2121 N.W. 100th St.), Wine, Women and Shoes benefits the Iowa Coalition Against Domestic Violence. For more information visit

Nov. 9 — Every year, the Italian-American Cultural Center of Iowa offers a taste of the homeland with its “An Evening In” series. This year, the theme is “An Evening In Sicily.” The Cultural Center is located at 1961 Indianola Ave. in Des Moines.

Nov. 10-11 — Wells Fargo Arena hosts Iowa’s Premier Beer, Wine and Food Expo. Food and drink is unlimited and included with entry at the exposition’s 120-plus vendors. There will be entertainment as well, including cooking demonstrations, painting and live music. For tickets, go to


Spectator sports and where to see them

Enjoy the high-level sports competitions in central Iowa. Listed below are the highlights of the collegiate, semi-pro and minor league games coming up in the next few months.


Drake University

All home games will be played Drake Stadium at 2719 Forest Ave. Visit

Sept. 2 — vs. University of South Dakota. 6 p.m.

Sept. 9 — vs. Southwestern College. 6 p.m.

Sept. 23 — vs. Valparaiso University. 1 p.m.

Oct. 7 — vs. University of Dayton. 1 p.m.

Oct. 28 — vs. Davidson University. 1 p.m.

Nov. 18 — vs. Jacksonville University. 1 p.m.

Grand View University

All home games will be played at Williams Stadium at 1591 E. University Ave. in Des Moines. Visit

Aug. 24 — vs. Evangel University. 6:30 p.m.

Sept. 2 — vs. Baker University. 11 a.m.

Sept. 23 — vs. Missouri Valley College. Noon

Oct. 14 — vs. Peru State College. 1 p.m.

Oct. 28 — vs. Culver-Stockton College. Noon.

Simpson College

All home games will be played at Bill Buxton Stadium at 701 N. C St. Visit

Sept. 2 — vs. University of Wisconsin-Stout. 1 p.m.

Sept. 9 — vs. Illinois College. 1 p.m.

Sept. 16 — vs. Wartburg College. 1 p.m.

Sept. 30 — vs. Central College. 1 p.m.

Oct. 14 — vs. Luther College (Homecoming). 1 p.m.

Oct. 28 — vs. Buena Vista University. 1 p.m.

JackTriceStadium6Iowa State University

All home games will be played at Jack Trice Stadium at 1800 S. Fourth St., Ames. Visit

Sept. 2 — vs. University of Northern Iowa. 7 p.m.

Sept. 9 — vs. University of Iowa (Iowa Corn Cy-Hawk Series). 11 a.m.

Sept. 28 — vs. University of Texas. 6:30 p.m.

Oct. 14 — vs. Kansas University. TBA

Oct. 28 — vs. Texas Christian University (Homecoming). TBA

Nov. 11 — vs. Oklahoma State University. TBA

University of Iowa

All home games will be played at Kinnick Stadium at 825 Stadium Drive, Iowa City. Visit

Sept. 2 — vs. University of Wyoming (Fryfest). 11 a.m.

Sept. 16 — vs. University of North Texas. 2:30 p.m.

Sept. 23 — vs. Pennsylvania State University. TBA

Oct. 7 — vs. University of Illinois-Champaign (Homecoming). 11 a.m.

Oct. 28 — vs. University of Minnesota-Twin Cities (Floyd of Rosedale). TBA

Nov. 4 — vs. Ohio State University. TBA

Nov. 18 — vs. Purdue University. TBA

University of Northern Iowa

All home games will be played at the UNI-Dome at 2501 Hudson Road, Cedar Falls. Visit

Sept. 9 — vs. California Polytechnic State University. 4 p.m.

Oct. 7 — vs. Western Illinois University (Homecoming). 4 p.m.

Oct. 21 — vs. Youngstown State University (Family Weekend). 1 p.m.

Nov. 4 — vs. University of South Dakota. 1 p.m.

Nov. 18 — vs. Indiana State. 4 p.m.

The Wild’s Mario Lucia battles along the boards against a Milwaukee Admiral player at Wells Fargo Arena. Photo by Ted Sandeen.

The Wild’s Mario Lucia battles along the boards against a Milwaukee Admiral player at Wells Fargo Arena. Photo by Ted Sandeen.

Iowa Wild

All home games will be played Wells Fargo Arena at 233 Center St., in Des Moines. Visit purchased at All games start at 7 p.m. unless otherwise noted.

Oct. 7 — vs. Milwaukee Admirals Oct. 8 — vs. Milwaukee Admirals (5 p.m.) Oct. 13 — vs. Ontario Reign Oct. 20 — vs. Manitoba Moose

Oct. 21 — vs. Manitoba Moose Oct. 25 — vs. Rockford Icehogs Nov. 2 — vs. San Antonio Rampage Nov. 3 — vs. San Antonio Rampage Nov. 9 — vs. Rockford Icehogs Nov. 11 — vs. Cleveland Monsters Nov. 12 — vs. Cleveland Monsters Nov. 17 — vs. Grand Rapids Griffins Nov. 28 — vs. Milwaukee Admirals

Des Moines Buccaneers

All home games will be played at Buccaneer Arena at 7201 Hickman Road, Urbandale. Visit All games listed start at 7:05 p.m.

Oct. 7 — vs. Muskegon Lumberjacks

Oct. 14 — vs. Lincoln Stars

Oct. 28 — vs. Fargo Force

Nov. 3 — vs. Madison Capitols

Nov. 18 — vs. Tri-City Storm

Nov. 24 — vs. Fargo Force

Nov. 25 — vs. Fargo Force


ZZ Top has been rockin’ for 48 years and counting. This legendary trio will be in Des Moines at the Civic Center on Sept. 17. Photo courtesy of ZZ Top.

ZZ Top has been rockin’ for 48 years and counting. This
legendary trio will be in Des Moines at the Civic Center
on Sept. 17. Photo courtesy of ZZ Top.

The music scene in Iowa, and especially in Des Moines, is thriving. Bigger acts are making pit stops in The Hawkeye State, from the blues legends of TajMo to the bearded rockers of ZZ Top. We’ve compiled one list with the shows you won’t want to miss, and another list with the Des Moines music venues that have onlookers gushing about the live-music experience.

Sept. 12 — The four divine voices of Il Divo have crossed the Atlantic from their British home to bring their classical prowess to the Des Moines Civic Center.

Sept. 13 — The blues is far from dead, and it isn’t trapped on the ice in St. Louis either. Blues greats Taj Majal and Keb’ Mo’, together going by the name TajMo, will share the Hoyt Sherman Place stage, a concert that’s been advertised as “a once-in-a-lifetime night of music.”

Sept. 17 — Not enough beards in your life? ZZ Top has enough facial hair to go around. Witness some of the most famous beards in rock ‘n’ roll at the Des Moines Civic Center.

Sept. 23 — Fresh Fest Hip Hop Festival returns as Iowa’s second yearly hip-hop music festival along with August’s 515 Alive. Held at Brenton Skating Plaza, the daylong event features local and regional hip-hop acts as well as freestyle and b-boy battles. In addition to the music check out the more than 25 vendors offering art, fashion, food and beer. For more information and tickets visit

Sept. 22-24 — The Maximum Ames Music Festival is all about local artists. Every performer is regional, most are Iowan. One of its founders is Chris Ford, aka Christopher the Conquered, an Iowan and a rising star. The festival begins on Friday and runs through Sunday night. Headliners include Diane Cluck, Jack Grelle, Gaelynn Lea and Gloom Balloon. Find the full lineup at

Sept. 23 — Hometown heroes and alt-rockers Holy White Hounds return to melt faces at the Gas Lamp. Sparkle Sparkle.

Sept. 26 — Canadian Indie rockers Broken Social Scene bring more band members than anyone can keep up with to Hoyt Sherman Place.

Sept. 27 — The Melvins are one of the few Seattle bands from the 1980’s that is still touring. Drummer Dale Crover and frontman Buzz Osborne have been continuous members since 1984 and helped pioneer the grunge craze, a sound they plan to bring to Wooly’s.

Oct. 3 — How often do classic video games become live orchestras? The Des Moines Civic Center is hosting The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses, an audiovisual tribute to the melodies and misadventures of Nintendo’s Hero of Time.

Oct. 6 — The perpetually unshaven, two-time Grammy Award-winner Chris Stapleton will bring his gravelly voice and guitar chops to Wells Fargo Arena. Who knows, maybe he’ll bring a little Tennessee Whiskey, too.

Oct. 15 — One of worship music’s most famous performers, Chris Tomlin, will share his talents at Wells Fargo Arena — he’ll be accompanied by special guest Matt Maher.

Oct. 17 — Alt-country band and Texas boys Old 97’s roll through Wooly’s for a night that’s sure to get your boots stomping.

Oct. 26 — Jam band extraordinaire Yonder Mountain String Band are still kicking after 17 years. Dance to the music all night at Wooly’s and soak up the good vibes.

Oct. 26 — On the other side of the river, check out indie-dream-pop sensation Cults at the Vaudeville Mews. These upbeat, catchy tunes will be stuck your head for days.

Oct. 27 — Gogol Bordello puts on one of those performances that leave the audience thinking, “I don’t know what just happened, but it was awesome.” The eight-piece, multi-lingual gypsy band will play Wooly’s on the last Friday of October.

Oct. 28 — Minnesota native Sean Tillmann is Har Mar Superstar, and he’s coming to the Vaudeville Mews. Known for putting on vivacious live performances, the genre-bending solo singer is an act you don’t want to sleep on.

Oct. 30 — Originally born in the U.S.S.R. before moving to NYC as a child, singer-songwriter Regina Spektor blends several genres and languages into one performance. She’ll be playing a special solo show at Hoyt Sherman Place.

Nov. 1— Cross this one off the bucket list. Infamous singer-songwriter David Crosby stops by Hoyt Sherman Place for his Sky Trails tour with his latest act David Crosby & Friends.

Nov. 10 — The Foo Fighters might be Des Moines’ hottest ticket of 2017. The band is fronted by one of the most prolific rock stars ever — Dave Grohl — and it has sold more than 12 million albums and been nominated for 27 Grammys, winning 11.


Valley Junction’s Fall Gallery Night features artists’ and their work in the galleries lining the historic shopping district on Oct. 6. Photo submitted.

Valley Junction’s Fall Gallery Night features artists’ and their work in the galleries lining the historic shopping
district on Oct. 6. Photo submitted.

Don’t neglect the right side of your brain. Get in touch with the art, history and culture of central Iowa by attending some of the fun art events below.

Sept. 14 — The Waterbury Gardens on Polk Boulevard and Ingersoll Avenue need some help. Years of rough weather and inadequate care have left the garden under-bloomed. To get it growing again, a gala was hosted last year. It raised $6,000, and Waterbury is hoping to surpass that again in 2017. The staples of a community gala — cocktails, live music, hors d’oeuvres and a silent auction — will be present, and entry is only $40 per person. West End Salvage is the venue, and it’s scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at Also, if you’re an artist, Waterbury is seeking pieces to be sold in the auction, if you’re feeling generous with your works.

Sept. 24 — The Octagon Art Festival is nearly a century old and still draws crowds of nearly 15,000 people. Vendors display art on Main Street in Ames’ Cultural District for connoisseurs to peruse. Check out to find out more information.

Oct. 4-7 — It can sometimes take months to sew a beautiful quilt, but Quilt Week is only four days long. Still, there’s plenty to learn and do throughout the short week. Exhibits, classes, contests and sales will fill the Iowa Events Center. Put down your needles and go to to learn more.

Oct. 6 — Valley Junction gets artsy on Fall Gallery Night. Artists’ work of all levels will be shown up and down Fifth Street in West Des Moines, supporting the artists themselves and local businesses.

Nov. 17-19 — The aptly named Iowa’s Largest Arts & Crafts Show will occupy the Iowa State Fair’s William C. Knapp Varied Industries Building, with more than 300 vendors and craftspeople showing their wares. Check out for more information.

Nov. 24 — Market Day Iowa is a special kind of pop-up market inside at the atrium at Capital Square. The event features regional collectors and artists who are displaying their wares. Help Iowans become aware of their neighbors’ skills and talents. To learn more, check out ♦

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