Des Moines Fall Festivals

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Des Moines Fall Festivals 2023

The leaves will begin changing colors and temperatures will be dropping, which means it is my favorite season of all, Fall! This time of year is a time for fall family fun whether that be taking a drive to take in the fall foliage, heading to the pumpkin patches and picking the perfect pumpkin, taking a bite out of a fresh apple, or horse rides, or any other fun activities. I have created a guide to Des Moines Fall Festivals the whole family will enjoy on an autumn day in the Des Moines area.

Looking for Halloween events? Keep your eyes on the Des Moines Halloween Events Guide which will include corn mazes, haunted houses, and more that will be updated later this season for 2023.

Keep an eye on our FREE events calendar for all these events and more this season. Would you like to add your fall family festival or another event to the calendar? Please fill out this form!

Windsor Heights Fall Fest | 2023 Sponsor

October 6 & 7

Colby Park in Windsor Heights

The City of Windsor Heights is excited to host the Windsor Heights Fall Fest on September October 6 & 7, 2023. Their Fall Festival aims to provide fun and free activities for residents and families across the metro.

Here’s a taste of what you can expect:

Friday, October 6: Join Windsor Heights for a Movie in the Park! They will be showing Hocus Pocus and serving free pizza, popcorn, soda, and cookies.

Saturday, October 7: The Windsor Heights Parade is sponsored by the Windsor Heights Chamber of Commerce and will kick off the afternoon activities starting at 1 p.m.  Do not miss all the fun and free activities in the park at 2 p.m. including inflatable bounce houses, petting zoo, silent disco, food trucks, vendors, live music, and more! At 6 p.m. the community can see Dick Danger and end the night with a fireworks display at 7:30 p.m.

Nearly all events are FREE, pancake breakfast tickets are $5, or $15 for the entire family, and WHAMM registration is $35.


World Food & Music Festival

August 25-27

The 2023 World Food & Music Festival will return to Western Gateway Park for its 19th year. This annual event will host nearly 50 vendors from 27 countries across the globe and provide vibrant live entertainment and interactive culinary opportunities for visitors.


Apple Festival at Penoach Winery 

September 16

10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Enjoy the Fall Festival at Penoach Winery. Horse and wagon rides, face painting and balloon animals, and vendors featuring a variety of crafts, free live music, food, and produce. Take a look at their website for more details as they are announced.

Beaverdale Fall Festival

September 15 & 16

Enjoy a fall festival with the Beaverdale community! More details will be released soon. Please keep an eye on the website for this family-friendly event including the parade which is back!


September 16

9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Living History Farms

Join Living History Farms for a day of family fun celebrating the apple harvest season!

Visit their historic sites to see how past cooks would prepare and serve apple treats, such as apple butter, cake or pie, and cider. Print an apple recipe in the print shop, and purchase apple goodies and tasty treats from local food vendors.

Grow Wild

September 16

10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Jester Park

This year Polk County Conservation’s largest annual event is being re-imagined to bring you even closer to nature in the broadest of daylight. Enjoy live music, catch a butterfly, see a live raptor, study pond ecosystems, investigate prairie insects and flowers, meet a live raptor, learn about sustainability, and so much more in one of Iowa’s most beautiful, wild parks. Come grow wild with us! Purchase ticket here.

Apple & Pumpkin Fest at Will’s Family Orchard 

Saturday, September 16 (9 – 6 p.m.) & Sunday, September 17 (Noon – 6 p.m.)

Saturday, September 23 (9 – 6 p.m.) & Sunday, September 24 (Noon – 6 p.m.)

On-farm Store, u-pick apples, u-pick pumpkins, gourds, beautiful mums, apple cider, cider donuts, orchard-fresh food, & Fun Farm” activities for all ages. Fun Farm activities have a low cost and include hay wagon rides, corn maze, corn pool, slides, water pump duck races, grain wagon hoops (new this year), and toss games. They also have a few barnyard animals to check out!

Vintage and Made Fair

September 23

9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Dallas County Fairgrounds

Support multiple local vendors at this handmade, vintage market. Similar to a flea market, but so much better! Shop vintage home décor, handmade goods, jewelry, outdoor accents, seasonal items, food trucks, live music, and everything you need to create a vintage and handmade lifestyle. Never too early to begin holiday shopping!


September 23; 4 to 9 p.m.

WDM City Campus

Illumifest kicks off at 4:00 pm, enjoy fare for purchase from on-site food vendors as well as a wide array of FREE festival activities, including:

  • Hot air balloon rides
  • Airbrush tattoos
  • Balloon artist
  • Inflatables
  • Circus performances
  • WDM Community Band performance
  • Bingo
  • Paper lantern painting

At 7:00 pm Faculty Lounge will take the Jamie Hurd Amphitheater stage for a free concert. Be sure to stick around until the end to enjoy a fireworks display to close out the evening.

Middlebrook Farm Fall Fest

September 30

10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Save the date for this year’s Fall Fest! Come and celebrate with on September 30 as we mark another successful season at the farm and begin the pumpkin season. Enjoy music by Joshua Sinclair, food trucks (TBD), farmers’ markets, pumpkin picking and decorating, and so much more!


Apple & Pumpkin Fest at Will’s Family Orchard

Saturday, October 30 (9 – 6 p.m.) & Sunday, October 1 (Noon – 6 p.m.)

Saturday, October 7 (9 – 6 p.m.) & Sunday, October 8 (Noon – 6 p.m.)

Saturday, October 14 (9 – 6 p.m.) & Sunday, October 15 (Noon – 6 p.m.)

Saturday, October 21 (9 – 6 p.m.) & Sunday, October 22 (Noon – 6 p.m.)

On-farm Store, u-pick apples, u-pick pumpkins, gourds, beautiful mums, apple cider, cider donuts, orchard-fresh food, & Fun Farm” activities for all ages. Fun Farm activities have a low cost and include hay wagon rides, corn maze, corn pool, slides, water pump duck races, grain wagon hoops (new this year), and toss games. They also have a few barnyard animals to check out!

Fall Fest

September 30

3 to 7 p.m.

Polk City

Come join the family fun at The Square for the 2nd Annual Fall Fest!

Prior to this event will be the Friends of Polk City Park’s Biketober bike ride event, and afterward will be a Movie in the Park. Fenders will also be hosting their Oktoberfest event during this time.

Polk County Sheriff’s Office Candy Crawl

October 7

10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Grimes South Sports Complex

Join the Polk County Sheriff’s Office at the Grimes Fall Festival for the Polk County Sheriff’s Office Candy Crawl and the Grimes Parks and Recreation City Patch. The Polk County Sheriff’s Office will have many displays and demonstrations, bounce houses, clowns and balloons, and other fun activities for all ages!

The Grimes Parks and Recreation is organizing the City Grimes Patch to include vendors and food trucks. This family-friendly event will be held at the Grimes South Sports Complex on October 7th, from 10 AM – 2 PM. Sensory-friendly time will be 10 AM – 10:30 AM, with no lights or sirens used.

Be sure to wear your costumes and bring a bag to gather candy and swag!

*In case of spooky weather, we have set a make-up day of 10/14*

Raccoon River Rally

October 14

11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Raccoon River Park

The West Des Moines Chamber of Commerce and the City of West Des Moines are ready to host another year of the Raccoon River Rally. Free admission for the community. Details will be released soon!

Covered Bridge Festival in Madison County 

October 14 & 15

9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Help celebrate the bridges at the Covered Bridge Festival. Crafts, food, a parade, activities, entertainment, antiques, and guided tours of the famous covered bridges. This festival is for everyone.

Deal’s Orchard Fall Festival

October 14 & 15

10 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

Celebrate Deal’s Orchard’s 41st anniversary! Live entertainment, apple pie, dumplings, corn pit, animals, jumping pillow, horse-drawn hayrides, pumpkin patch, paint pumpkins, spin art, giant slides, and so much more. Pony rides $4.


Erin Huiatt

Erin is a reliable resource and stepping stone for women and families to find support and make connections within our community. She wants families to feel confident to reach out and ask for help and advice to get pointed in the right direction. She enjoys traveling and exploring with her two children in tow!

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