Where is Des Moines?

Des Moines is located in Central Iowa. It is also the most populated city in Iowa, with a population of 214,133.

Des Moines’s location is 41.35’27” N latitude and 93.37’15” W longitude. Des Moines’ neighboring cities include Johnston, Altoona, Clive, and Ankeny.

Des Moines is a must-visit destination for those visiting Iowa. The area’s major attractions include the Des Moines Art Center, Iowa State Capitol, Jordan House, and the Wells Fargo Arena.

What Attractions are in Des Moines?

Des Moines Art Center

The Des Moines Art Center is free to the public and is full of modern and contemporary art. Within the museum there is also a restaurant, gift shop, and art studio for education. Established in 1948, there is an extensive collection of paintings, sculptures, modern art, and mixed media.

Iowa State Capitol

Tours of the Iowa State Capitol building are offered Monday through Saturday. The building houses the Iowa Senate, Iowa House of Representatives, and the Offices for the Governor, Attorney General, Auditor, Treasurer, and Secretary of State. During tours, you will get to see the Legislative Committee Rooms.

Iowa State Capitol building with a blue sky with clouds in the background.

Jordan House

The Jordan House is a historic Des Moines home and was an underground railroad station during the antebellum period. You can now take guided public tours through the house on Fridays and Sundays, where you will learn about the Underground Railroad in Iowa and early life in Central Iowa.

Wells Fargo Arena

Wells Fargo Arena is a multipurpose arena that hosts many events weekly. You can find something to attend at Wells Fargo any time of year. Hosting sporting events, conferences, concerts, etc. Wells Fargo is something someone visiting Iowa should definitely look into.

Des Moines Information and History

Des Moines is the county seat of Polk County, and a small portion of the city extends into Warren County. It is located on and named after the Des Moines River, and in 1851 the town was named Fort Des Moines, which was later shortened to Des Moines.

Des Moines lies in the heart of the Corn Belt and, from 1910-1920, expanded rapidly as local coal deposits were developed. The city is also a significant center for the United State Insurance Industry. Also it is well-established in the retail and manufacturing sectors as well. Des Moines also host the Iowa Caucuses and is a great place to learn and experience a political environment.

The city is also home to Drake University, Des Moines Community College, Des Moines University, Grand View University, Mercy College of Health Science, and Vatterott College.

Des Moines is a very family-friendly area and a great place to visit.

Des Moines Farmers Market to Return Early May

Get ready for a fun activity full of food, shopping, entertainment, and more as the Des Moines’ Downtown Farmers Market will return for the season on May 6, 2023. The farmers market is a lovely tradition of Des Moines, Iowa as it offers a fun family-friendly atmosphere in the heart of the city. 

About the Market

When in season, the Des Moines’ farmers market is located in the city’s historic court district, near the Polk County courthouse. Parking is offered nearby, but the streets are closed to cars and limited to pedestrians, making a safe and easy to navigate environment.

The market is perfect to enjoy with family and friends, and is suitable for all ages. It is also pet-friendly. The market is open 7 am to noon on weekends, offering a great morning experience. The season runs from May to October, making sure visitors will have enjoyable weather to experience and take full advantage of all that the farmers market has to offer.

What is Offered?

Food and Drink

The Des Moines farmers market offers a variety of options for goers. Enjoy ready-made food and drinks from multiple vendors, as well as fresh produce, poultry, and other food and drink items. Many local restaurants often have a stand at the market, allowing visitors to enjoy all of the favorite foods of Des Moines in one place. Being open early in the morning, the farmers market is best known for its multitude of delicious breakfast options from freshly prepared meals such as breakfast bowls or sandwiches to baked goods.

Many vendors also offer delicious drink options, including smoothies, juices, teas, boba, and more. The market truly does offer options for everyone. Even more exciting, vendors at the market change occasionally throughout the season, offering visitors to the market to continuously enjoy new food and drinks.

Art & Handmade Goods

Other than food, the farmers market has vendors that sell plants and flowers, art, and many other handmade goods. Take home a beautiful new plant or piece of art and have a piece of Des Moines in your home, or find gift options for the special people in your life. Most importantly, vendors at the Des Moines farmers market are all local, meaning visitors to the farmers market not only have a great experience, but are supporting local businesses and sharing in the pride of Des Moines.

Beyond the vendors, live entertainment is also offered at the farmers market as well as occasional activities. With such a great combination of food, goods, and activities, it’s no wonder the Des Moines farmers market was voted second on both Daily Meal’s “Best Farmers Market in America” and Shape Magazine’s “Top Farmers Market in the U.S.”.

To learn more and stay updated on the Des Moines farmers market during its 2023 season, visit the Downtown Farmers’ Market website.

Meet the Des Moines City Council

Who are the members of the Des Moines City Council?

Des Moines is the capital city of Iowa and is home to over 200,000 residents. The city is governed by the Des Moines City Council, which is responsible for setting policies and regulations that govern the city. The council is made up of seven members, including the mayor and six council members. Here we will take a closer look at who is on the Des Moines City Council.

Mayor of Des Moines

  • T.M. Franklin Cownie

Council Members At Large

  • Carl Voss 
  • Connie Boesen

Ward 1: Indira Sheumaker

Ward 2: Linda Westergaard

Ward 3: Josh Mandelbaum

Ward 4: Joe Gatto

Mayor Frank Cownie

T.M. Franklin Cowie has served as the Des Moines mayor since 2004. He grew up in the city, attending Theodore Roosevelt High School and Iowa State University. In addition to serving as the city’s mayor, Cowie also owns and operates Cownie Furs, a shop that has been in his family for generations. Before being elected as mayor, he served as an at-large member of the city council.

At-Large Council Members

The Des Moines City Council has two at-large council members who represent the entire city. The current at-large council members are Carl Voss and Connie Boesen. Boesen has been serving on the council since 2016 and is focused on improving economic development and creating job opportunities for residents. Voss won in a runoff election in December 2019.

Ward Council Members

In addition to the at-large council members, the Des Moines City Council also has four council members who represent specific wards within the city. The current ward council members are:

  • Ward 1 Council Member Indira Sheumaker: Sheumaker has been serving on the council since 2021 and she is the youngest member of the city council.
  • Ward 2 Council Member Linda Westergaard: Westergaard was elected to the council in 2018.
  • Ward 3 Council Member Josh Mandelbaum: Mandelbaum has been serving on the council since 2020 and has recently announced a bid for Des Moines mayor.
  • Ward 4 Council Member Joe Gatto: Gatto has been serving on the council since 2015.


The Des Moines City Council meeting happen every other Monday at 5pm at City Hall, Council Chambers, 400 Robert D. Ray Drive, 2nd Floor, Des Moines, IA 50309. If you want to attend a meeting or learn more, visit dsm.city/government/council_meetings_and_agendas/index.php