Thrills And Excitement: Nightlife In Des Moines, Iowa

best thing to do in des moines at night

Des Moines is the capital of Iowa and a popular vacation destination, known for its attractions. They have sports such as hockey, race cars, and even bowling to appeal to the sports fans. Theater, ballet, and opera can also be enjoyed in Des Moines for those who love enrichment by culture. For those who want to live it up, there are plenty of nightclubs in town.

Culture & Entertainment:

1. Des Moines Community Playhouse

One more chance to catch the Countdown tonight! Join us as this amazing group of performers takes us on a trip down memory lane! #dmpcountdownto100

Posted by Des Moines Playhouse on Saturday, 22 April 2017

The Des Moines Community Theater, founded in 1919 by members of the press and authors club, has a variety of plays and a children’s theater. The current shows include: The Music Man, A Chorus Line, and Steel Magnolias. Children’s Theater includes: Cinderella, The Little Mermaid, and more. Each show has a fifteen minute intermission. The theater is open year round, but has limited showings in August, November, and December. It is among the six oldest continuously-operating community theaters in the U.S. and is the second largest theater in the country. Visitors can sit in three different areas: center, left, or ride of the stage.

Des Moines Community Playhouse

Address: 831 42nd Street | Des Moines lA

Opening Hours: Main-stage showtimes: Wednesday to Saturday 7:30 pm and Sunday 2 pm; Children’s Theater: Friday 7 pm, Saturday 1 and 4 pm, and Sunday 1 pm.

Ticket Costs: Prices vary depending on the showtime, show, and seat selection.

Website: Des Moines Community Playhouse

2. Des Moines Ballet

The Des Moines Ballet has been performing since 2012 and has two companies of dancers, the first with professional resident artists, trainee dancers, and guest dancers. The second one has trainees and pre professionals included, and both are an integral part of the ballet. The ballet seeks to be an important part of the vibrant arts community by giving outstanding performances to the community of Des Moines. The season is made up of three showings in fall, winter, and spring.

Des Moines Ballet

Address: 121 S. 11th St., Suite 100 West Des Moines, IA

Website: Des Moines Ballet

3. Des Moines Opera

The Des Moines Opera has a main season during the summer months from May to July with 100 performances in the metro area and region. Three operas are performed on fifteen stages during the Summer Opera Festival. Since its start in 1973, the Opera has performed 80 different operas. The performances are sung in original languages and English subtitles are given to deepen the meaning of the opera.

Des Moines Opera

Address: 513 North D Street Indianola, IA 50125

Ticket Costs 40 USD

Website: Des Moines Opera

4. Des Moines Symphony

The Des Moines Symphony celebrates its 80th season this year and is Iowa’s most active and largest year round performing arts production company. They have established a national reputation as one of the country’s leading regional orchestras and are invited to perform elsewhere in the country. There are seven concert events a year each with many performances.

Des Moines Symphony

Address: 1011 Locust Street, Suite 200 Des Moines, IA

Ticket Costs Adults 15 USD; Students 7.50 USD

Website: Des Moines Symphony


5. Iowa Speedway

Iowa Speedway
Source: Photo by user Matt Owen used under CC BY 2.0

Iowa Speedway is a fave place for many drivers and earned its designation based upon practice laps run by IndyCar drivers going over 186 mph (299.3 kph), ten mph (16 kph) faster than recorded at any other short track. It is the only track owned by Nascar and was designed by former Indy driver Rusty Wallace. The track is the only professional sports place in Iowa. Camping is available at the track; visitors need to book their spot in advance. The season starts the end of June and goes till the end of July. There are also other events at the track during the year such as Americrown Job Fair, Hot Rod Power Tour, Nascar World Truck Series, and Napa Auto Parts Concert Series.

Iowa Speedway

Address: 3333 Rusty Wallace Drive, Newton, IA

Website: Iowa Speedway

6. Iowa Wild Hockey

Posted by Iowa Wild on Tuesday, 18 April 2017

The Iowa Wild is a member of the American Hockey League that was formed in 2013 and plays at the Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines, Iowa. They are an affiliate of the NHL Minnesota Wild. Their season goes from October to April and is divided up between home and away games.

Iowa Wild Hockey

Address: 730 Third Street Des Moines, IA

Ticket Cost 10 to 45 USD

Website: Iowa Wild

Nightlife - Bar Crawl:

7. El Bait Shop

A post shared by el Bait Shop (@elbaitshop) on Apr 7, 2017 at 9:41am PDT

El Bait Shop is an offbeat hot spot that has the world’s largest selection of American beers on tap — 222. They also have food and live music available with rustic indoor interior and outdoor seating. It is located in the downtown area near the High Life Lounge and area hotels.

El Bait Shop

Address: 200 SW 2nd Street Des Moines, IA

Open Hours Daily, 11 am to 2 am

Website: El Bait Shop

8. Blue Moon Dueling Piano Bar

A post shared by Jared Freiburg (@jfreiburg) on Apr 9, 2016 at 7:23am PDT

The Blue Moon Dueling Piano Bar provides the entertainment of a different set of musicians each weekend in a 6 hour, fully interactive, take requests entertainment extravaganza, which covers many styles of music. They also offer seven rounds of trivia during the week and have a restaurant on the premises to order food.

Blue Moon Dueling Piano Bar

Address: West Glen Town Center 5485 Mills Civic Parkway, Des Moines, Iowa

Open Hours Thursday to Saturday 4 pm to 2 am; Trivia Tuesday 8 pm

Website: Blue Moon Piano Bar

Be entertained in Des Moines

Let Des Moines entertain you with the many performances and activities to enjoy in this city, which is rich in culture and spirit. This city has hockey, NASCAR, ballet, symphony, theater, opera, and bars.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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