Des Moines Family Favorite Awards

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Welcome to the 2023 Official Des Moines Family Favorite Awards!

We have all seen the fun voting that happens around our city to highlight all the amazing businesses and organizations in the Des Moines area. Now is your chance to share your family’s favorite places to shop, play, eat, and service providers in the Des Moines area. 

The results are in! Over 1,300 people voted in 60 categories in our very first year. 

Each organization will be mailed a Winner or Runner-Up sticker to place in their business if they wish. Keep your eyes around the city and see if you can spot the ribbon stickers! Thank you to everyone who participated. The next round of voting will take place in October 2024.

2023 Winners + Runner-Up’s

Best Place for Indoor Play
JouJou Des MoinesWinner
Des Moines Children’s MuseumRunner-Up
Best Park
Raccoon River ParkWinner
Triumph ParkRunner-Up
Best Trampoline Park
Get AirWinner
Urban AirRunner- Up
Best Nature Center
Jester Park Nature CenterWinner
Neal Smith National Wildlife RefugeRunner-Up
Best Splash Pad/Wading Pool
Ashby ParkWinner
Fox CreekRunner-Up
Best Outdoor Aquatics Facility/ Water Park
Clive AquaticsWinner
Cascade FallsRunner-Up
Best Apple Orchard
Center Grove OrchardWinner
Deal’s Orchard Runner-Up
Best Pumpkin Patch
Center Grove OrchardWinner
Howell’s Greenhouse and Pumpkin PatchRunner-Up
Best Museum for Families
Science Center of IowaWinner
Des Moines Children’s Museum Runner-Up
Best Place to Bowl
Spare Time Des MoinesWinner
Warrior LanesRunner-Up
Best Children’s Outdoor Entertainment
Blank Park Zoo Winner
The Brenton Arboretum Runner-Up
Best Family-Friendly Movie Theater
B&B Theatres Ankeny 12 & B-Roll BowlingWinner
The Palms Theatres & IMAXRunner-Up
Best Indoor Play Space for Younger Kids (5 years and younger)
JouJou Des MoinesWinner
Des Moines Children’s Museum Runner-Up
Best Mini Golf Course
Jester ParkWinner
Blank Golf CourseRunner-Up
Best Place to Play Arcade
Spare Time Des MoinesWinner
Game DayRunner-Up
Best Playground
Triumph ParkWinner
Raccoon River Park Runner-Up
Best Local Library
West Des Moines Public LibraryWinner
Franklin Avenue LibraryRunner-Up
Best Place to Roller Skate
Skate SouthRunner-Up
Best Children’s Party Venue
JouJou Des MoinesWinner
Emerge AcademyRunner-Up
Best Christmas Tree Farm
The Christmas Tree Farm, MaxwellRunner-Up
Best Family-Friendly Egg Hunt
Ted Lare Garden CenterWinner
Wauke Parks & Recreation Runner-Up
Best Family Festival or Fair
Iowa State FairWinner
Des Moines Arts FestivalRunner-Up
Best Pet-Friendly Spot
Paws & PintsWinner
Best Iowa Vacation – City
Clear LakeRunner-Up
Best Holiday Experience
Festival of Trees and LightsWinner
Christkindlmarket Des Moines Runner-Up
Best Summer Camp
Girl Scouts of Greater IowaWinner
Living History Farms Runner-Up
Best Children’s Theatre
Des Moines PlayhouseWinner
CAP TheatreRunner-Up
Best Family-Friendly Spot to See a Live Performance
Des Moines Performing ArtsWinner
Des Moines PlayhouseRunner-Up
Best Toy Store
The Learning Post ToysWinner
Janes Des MoinesRunner-Up
Best Arts & Crafts Store
Hobby LobbyWinner
Best Kids Boutique
Janes Des MoinesWinner
Once Upon A ChildRunner-Up
Best Bike Shop
Bike WorldWinner
Kyle’s BikesRunner-Up
Best Shopping Mall or Center
Jordan Creek Town CenterWinner
Merle Hay MallRunner-Up
Best Bookstore
Storyhouse BookpubWinner
Beaverdale BooksRunner-Up
Best Kids Consignment Store or Event
Duck Worth WearingWinner
Once Upon A ChildRunner-Up
Best Place to Purchase Children’s Furniture
Suite DreamsRunner-Up
Best Donut Shop
Hurt’s DonutsWinner
Donut HutRunner-Up
Best Pizza Place
Pagliai’s PizzaWinner
Leaning Tower of PizzaRunner-Up
Best Family Friendly Coffee Shop
Smokey RowWinner
The Slow Down Coffee Co. Runner-Up
Best Kid’s Eat Free Restaurant
Pizza RanchWinner
Paws & PintsRunner-Up
Best Family Friendly Restaurant
Pizza RanchRunner-Up
Best Family Friendly Brewery
Big Grove Brewery Winner
Confluence Brewery Runner-Up
Best Bakery
La MieWinner
ChaCha’s Hiland BakeryRunner-Up
Best Ice Cream Shop
The Outside ScoopWinner
Black Cat Ice CreamRunner-Up
Best Family Chiropractor
Vero Health CenterWinner
True RootsRunner-Up
Best Pediatric Dentistry
Walnut Hills Pediatric DentistryWinner
Pediatric Dentistry of Des Moines – Dr. MollyRunner-Up
Best Place for Swim Lessons
Goldfish Swim SchoolWinner
Foss Swim School Runner-Up
Best Dance Studio
Dance VisionWinner
Studio Bea DanceRunner-Up
Best Gymnastics Studio
Emerge AcademyWinner
Mid Iowa GymnasticsRunner-Up
Best Place to Take Karate Classes
Triumph Martial ArtsWinner
Dojo’s – JohnstonRunner-Up
Best Parks & Recreation Department
West Des Moines Parks & RecreationWinner
Des Moines Parks & RecreationRunner-Up
Best Pediatrician
Dr. Dan PelzerWinner
Be Well PediatricsRunner-Up
Best Children’s/Family Eye Doctor
Urbandale Eye Care – Dr. Melissa KylerWinner
Ankeny Family Vision CenterRunner-Up
Best Family-Friendly Photographer
Wendy Sorensen PhotographyWinner
Jamie Lynne PhotographyRunner-Up
Best Daycare/Child Care Center
New Horizon AcademyWinner
Generation NextRunner-Up
Best Family Bank
Veridian Credit UnionWinner
Bankers TrustRunner-Up
Best Church
Lutheran Church of HopeWinner
Valley ChurchRunner-Up
Best Place for a Child’s Haircut
Shear MadnessWinner
Franklin BarbershopRunner-Up
Best Labor/Delivery/Postpartum Staff
Methodist WestRunner-Up
Best Birth and/or Postpartum Doula
Blessed Births & Beyond – Shannon LeeWinner
Rural Black Doula – Jazzmine BrooksRunner-Up

All winners and runner-ups will receive an email and their ribbon sticker in the mail. If you have any questions please email