What to Expect at the 2022 DSM Book Festival

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What to Expect at the 2022 DSM Book Festival

The DSM Book Festival returns as a one-day event in 2022. Connect with acclaimed and local authors, take part in hands-on workshops and find fun activities for the kids from 9 a.m. until 7 p.m. on Saturday, March 26. Thanks to its central location in Capital Square, 400 Locust Street, the DSM Book Festival is easy to get to from any direction. Find parking meters, garages, and lots on surrounding streets in Downtown Des Moines (DSM). You can also take advantage of other downtown ways to get around, including Des Moines BCycle and the Downtown D-Line Shuttle

DSM Book Festival

Headlining Authors

You won’t want to miss the lineup of this year’s headlining authors! Stephanie Land, author of “Maid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother’s Way to Survive,” a book which served as inspiration for the Netflix series “Maid,” chronicles her time in a homeless shelter after fleeing a violent home with no safety net. Land will be joined by New York Times bestseller Imbolo Mbue, author of “Behold the Dreamers” and “How Beautiful We Were,” Dawnie Walton, who earned an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and wrote “The Final Revival of Opal & Nev” and award-winning author of “Fire Keeper’s Daughter, Angeline Boulley, who will simultaneously kick-off the Authors Visiting in Des Moines (AViD) series with the Des Moines Public Library. 

Headlining speakers will take the podium as follows:

  • Imbolo Mbue, 10 a.m.
  • Dawnie Walton, Noon
  • Stephanie Land, 3 p.m.
  • Angeline Boulley, 5 p.m.

Purchase a VIP ticket for event more access during the Festival! A VIP ticket will include perks like an autographed book, premier seating, access to the Bankers Trust VIP Suite, and complimentary beverage(s). Find more info here.



Take part in a Watercolor Workshop with Dainty Knots, learn to make a Cocktail in a Can with Red Boot Distillery, take a walking tour of DSM architecture, create Spring Book and Coffee Pairings with Storyhouse Bookpub and Daisy Chain, and more during DSM Book Festival this year. There will also be Writers Workshops throughout the day for those interested in honing their skills, including the following:

  • Thrill(er) Ride – Lessons Learned on the Journey to Becoming a Novelist  
  • Future of Journalism Panel  
  • Publishing 101 Panel 
  • Published Authors Perspective Panel 
  • Non-Fiction Writer’s Panel. 

Along with these workshops and so many others, you can also bring the kids for storytime with Ruby the Red Reading Panda with Blank Park Zoo, crafts, and other activities. 

You won’t want to miss entertainers on the Dotdash Meredith Main Stage and in the Bankers Trust VIP suite. Check DSMBookFestival.com for the latest on musical talent and performance times. 


Interested in becoming a part of the 2022 DSM Book Festival? Volunteer for any of the following:

  • Packet Pickup
  • Information Office
  • Workshop Assistant
  • Kids’ Kit Pickup 
  • Event Setup and Teardown

Find volunteer registration here

To purchase DSM Book Festival t-shirts, book lights, stickers, and more on-site, so make sure you find the perfect gifts for that book lover in your life.  You can also find a large book selection for purchase with Beaverdale Books at the Festival Information Office.

More information on attending the DSM Book Festival can be found at DSMBookFestival.com.

The Greater Des Moines Partnership calendar of events is a one-stop resource for activities taking place throughout the region. Find networking information for Greater Des Moines (DSM) businesses or events specific to Downtown DSM.


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