What to do in Des Moines in March 2021

This article is sponsored by Just Between Friends.

The birds are chirping and spring is just around the corner. Sigh… We are all ready to get outside and have some fun! From scavenger hunts and virtual spring break camps to family fun nights at Urban Air and even a few date night ideas, there are plenty of things to do in Des Moines this March.

We’re thrilled to partner with Just Between Friends for this guide. Whether you are looking to declutter the excess toys and clothing items in your home or save money on the items your kids need for this spring and summer, Just Between Friends (JBF) can help.
Just Between Friends brings a community of moms and dads together twice a year for a huge pop-up sale of all gently used or new children’s items. When you sell at JBF, you are keeping items out of the landfill and helping your neighbors find affordable clothing for their kids. When you shop at JBF, you are saving money while supporting another family in the community. Good for the earth. Good for the community. Good for you. 
Learn more on their website, Facebook, and Instagram.
Spring Sales Event | March 26-28 | IA State Fairgrounds – 4-H Exhibits Building

Staying in Des Moines over spring break? Here are more Spring Break activity ideas!

Things to do in Des Moines 

March 1-31 | Jester Park Nature Center Reopens
Monday-Friday: 9a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
We love the learning experiences available in the Jester Park Nature Center, and the building is now open to visitors. Plan an outing here, bring a picnic lunch, and enjoy a kid-friendly hike to a nearby pond.

March 1-14 | Stuart Little, Des Moines Playhouse
You can attend this live performance in person or stream it from home. The play is about a mouse living in a human world that’s full of adventures. This performance is intended for ages 5 and up. Tickets are $15.

March 1-7 | Mountain Goat Mountain, Des Moines Performing Arts
Experience a virtual theater adventure from the Australian theater company Threshold that the whole family would enjoy. Tickets start at $10 per device from dmpa.org

March 1 & 15 | Mommy Matters: Breastfeeding Support Group, Broadlawns Medical Center
4:30 p.m.
Share breastfeeding experiences in a safe and supportive environment. Scales will be available for you to weigh your baby and a lactation specialist will be available to answer questions.

March 4, 11, 18, 25 | Family Night at Urban Air, Ankeny
Have some fun jumping together as a family. This event includes four attractions passes, four drinks, and a large pizza.

March 6 | History Mystery: Live from the Museum Vault, Iowa State Historical Society
Join museum staff on Zoom for a virtual version of the History Mystery program. The new virtual format brings the museum and its thousands of objects that capture Iowa’s illustrious history directly into every home. Participants will examine artifacts and historic images to determine how they were used and who might have used them. Event is free, but registration is required.

March 11 | Virtual Trivia Night, Des Moines Parks & Rec
Assemble a team of friends and put your knowledge to the test with a mix of general questions. The event is hosted by The Rook Room and will take place on Zoom. Teams are limited to six or fewer participants. Cost is $20 per team. Register online at https://bit.ly/trivia2021

March 12 | Dueling Fiddles, Magee’s Irish Pub
Looking for a way to celebrate St. Patty’s Day? Plan a parent’s night out at Magee’s Irish Pub to enjoy some Irish fare and drinks while listening to the dueling fiddles perform.

March 13 | Des Moines Quad Con Comic and Toy Show, Merle Hay Mall
10 a.m.-9 p.m.
Do your big kids love comic books, video games, and sci-fi pop culture? This event is a fun way to experience the fun of comic culture.

March 13-21 | Science Center of Iowa  
One of your kids’ favorite places to play is typically open Thursday, Saturdays, and Sundays, but during spring break week it’s open every day. You can snag tickets online for either a morning session (9 a.m. to 12 p.m.) or an afternoon session (1 p.m. to 4 p.m.) Check out their website for more information on masks and social distancing.

March 15-19 | Virtual Spring Break Camp, Des Moines Art Center
Spend spring break with the Art Center from the comfort of your own home. Art camps provide students the opportunity to connect, explore, create, think, and problem-solve through curiosity and experimentation.

March 15-19 | Spring Break Scavenger Hunts, Brenton Arboretum
Gear up for a week full of exciting, educational arboretum adventures! You’ll receive a new themed scavenger hunt in your inbox each morning to be completed at the arboretum at your leisure. This is a self-guided program, so you’re free to do as much or as little as you’d like when it works for you.

March 17 | Shamrocks & Shells, Blank Park Zoo
Parents’ night out! Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with the party animals at Blank Park Zoo. This low-capacity, socially-distanced event is the perfect way to change out of your sweatpants, leave the house, and enjoy a kids-free night out. Enjoy delicious food from Street Eats DSM and live music from South of Society.

March 20 | Jill’s Homestead Pop-up Shop, Blue Bean in Ankeny
10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Shopping trip! One of our favorite local makers is hosting a pop-up shop at Blue Bean in Ankeny. Come grab a delicious cup of Joe and shop in person. Masks required.

March 25-28 | Des Moines Home and Garden Show, Iowa Events Center
We’ve all been home more in the last year, and it has inspired us to make some updates. Connect with home and garden professionals and get lots of inspiration at the Des Moines Home and Garden Show.

March 26 | Family Flashlight Easter Egg Hunt, Indianola
When the sun goes down, the fun begins! Dress for the weather and bring your own flashlight and a basket for eggs that are filled with either candy or prizes. New location this year at the Indianola Activity Center! Register by March 24.  

March 26-28 | Just Between Friends Sale, Iowa State Fairgrounds
Friday: 10 a.m.-8 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Sunday: 9 a.m.-3 p.m. (half-price sale day)
Stock up on shorts and t-shirts for the summer at a deep discount at this huge sale. For new moms, this is also a great place to stock up on baby gear, toys, and books.

March 28 | Family Swim Event, Goldfish Swim School Urbandale
Des Moines Mom readers and their families are invited to a complimentary family swim event at Goldfish Swim School Urbandale. The event includes FREE family swim, facility tours and lots of family fun! Families can reserve one of two different time slots for swimming: 3:00-3:50 p.m. or 4:00-4:50 p.m. Advance RSVPs are required for this event.

March 31 | Barnyard Readers, Living History Farms
Together with your 3, 4, or 5 year old, listen to the tale of Alice in Wonderland, first published in 1865, in the historic setting of the Flynn Mansion. Then tour the house and participate in hands-on crafts and activities relating to the story.

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, as COVID guidelines are changing week to week, you should always call ahead to confirm dates, times, location, and other information before heading to an event or activity, since it may change.

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Content Coordinator Megan doesn’t really fall into any one mom category. With three kids from ages 5 to 12, she’s been a working mom and a stay-at-home mom. She’s breastfed and bottle-fed. She’s kept kids on strict sleeping schedules in their own beds and also embraced the benefits of co-sleeping. She’s a big believer in finding what works for you and your kiddo (and it’s often different for each kid). Megan is an Iowa native and lives in Ankeny with her husband Darren. They love to travel and are often planning their next road trip (even it’s a year away). They also enjoy entertaining and are famous among their friends for throwing big bashes to celebrate the Olympic Games. But her everyday life is mostly comprised of playdates, trips to the park, and trying to stay ahead of the never-ending laundry pile.    


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