Weekender Central Iowa! Pride Fest, Pieces of my Heart, Art Flea Market


Your weekly editor-curated arts compendium

It’s a party all weekend in the greater DSM, as Pride Fest kicks off at 10 a.m. on Friday and spreads joy through Sunday at 5 p.m.! Juneteenth events begin, Pro H2O gathers funds for the Iowa Environmental Council and Reliable Street hosts its first Art Flea Market. This weekend’s can’t-miss event? The premiere of ‘Pieces of My Heart’ at the Stoner Theater: unpublished August Wilson love poems danced into reality.

The River Center

Pro H20

Jun 9 – 5:30pm

Pro H2O is IEC’s biggest fundraiser of the year and we’re excited to celebrate with you again! Join us at the River Center in Des Moines, at satellite locations in Okoboji or Iowa City

More info >>

Jasper Winery

Pianopalooza Band

Jun 9 – 6:00pm

Pianopalooza Band performs at Jasper Winery.

More info >>

Des Moines Botanical Garden

Garden Party

Jun 9 – 6:00pm

Join us for our summer fundraiser, Garden Party as we highlight Iowa landscapes and prairies!

More info >>

Stoner Studio Theater

Pieces of My Heart

Jun 9 – 7:30pm

Pieces of My Heart, a choreopoem set to a blues and jazz score and performed live, portrays August Wilson’s unpublished love poems, bookended by poems from his daughter Azula Wilson.

More info >>

Historic East Village

Capital City Pride Fest

Jun 10 – 10:00am

Join for the annual Pride Fest weekend in DSM!

More info >>

Des Moines Civic Center


Jun 10 – 7:30pm

A powerful and stirring reinvention of this beloved favorite, celebrated the world-over for its Grammy award-winning score and the excitement, energy and dynamism of its Irish and International Dance.

More info >>


Wave Cage ft. Chris Merz and Mike Conrad

Jun 10 – 8:00pm

Wave Cage ft. Chris Merz and Mike Conrad at Noce

More info >>

Living History Farms

Emancipation Day: Juneteenth Event

Jun 11 – 9:00am

Gain a better understanding of the legacy and hope of emancipation and explore the Black experience in Iowa’s history from early farmsteads through the 20th-century fight for civil rights.

More info >>

Saydel High School

Capital City Classic Martial Arts Tournament

Jun 11 – 9:00am

IAMARRS-rated martial arts tournament in DSM

More info >>

Mullets Restaurant

Vintage Fair

Jun 11 – 11:00am

The Vintage Fair presented by Upcycled DSM & Mullets Restaurant. A wide variety of vendors

More info >>

Reliable Street

Art Flea Market

Jun 11 – 4:00pm

The first Art Flea Market @Reliable Street! Live music and food for sale cooked by local food vendors. This event is free for everyone!

More info >>

Jamie Hurd Amphitheater

Juneteenth Jubilee

Jun 11 – 5:00pm

The Jubilee will feature performances by Billy Weathers & Hip-Hope Inc., prizes, free face painting, and food truck vendors.

More info >>


Canadian rapper Cadence Weapon is out to prove ‘the prairie’s got something to say’

by Kembrew McLeod, June 7
“One thing that people maybe don’t know about Canada is that the places above and below the border are similar to each other,” said Rollie Pemberton, a Canadian MC who performs as Cadence Weapon.

Album Review: Mr. Softheart — “Caravaggio”/“Flower of Tomorrow”

by Michael Roeder, June 6
“I suppose the new direction is another pandemic story,” Nick Fisher offers as the impetus for the recent pivot of the band formerly known as Hex Girls.

Album Review: MEKTOUB — ‘Elizabeth’

by Daniel Boscaljon, June 6
In 2019, frequenters of Goosetown Café mingled with friends of John Rapson to delight in the new band he had assembled: MEKTOUB. It was a trio, initially — Rapson on the keys, Ryan Smith on woodwinds and Nielo Gaglione on vocals and mandole. Together, the three produced a distinct style of improvisational music they describe as Mediterranean folk-jazz.

Book Review: ‘Liminal: Shadow Agent’ Parts 1 & 2, by Jon Cone

by Genevieve Trainor, June 8
In the letter that author Jon Cone sent along with the first two volumes of his Liminal: Shadow Agent project (Greying Ghost), he calls the slim books “comic book scripts.”
They are, in a sense.

Oh Say, Can You Sing? Competition is open for submissions

by Lily DeTaeye, June 8
Every year, singers from across the state enter to sing the National Anthem with the Des Moines Symphony during the concert. This year’s Pops concert will be on Friday, July 1 at 8:30 p.m. on the West Terrace of the Iowa State Capital in Des Moines. Attendance is expected to reach around 100,000 in person, with more across the state via Iowa Public Radio and Iowa PBS.

Ballet Des Moines announces six-show free summer tour for ‘Of Gravity and Light’

by Courtney Guein, June 8
Ballet Des Moines has announced a six-stop trip across Iowa for Of Gravity and Light, a deeply immersive, science-packed show that received a standing ovation at its one-night only show on April 22.

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