Santa in Des Moines

Santa in Des Moines

Santa in Des Moines 2020

Santa is coming to Des Moines this holiday season! It may look a little bit different, but there are several opportunities to see Santa in Des Moines. Many of the options listed below require reservations. Please make sure you read closely and plan ahead!


Virtual Visits with Santa

Now through December 27

Make reservations here.

Make this holiday magical with a virtual visit to the North Pole! Santa’s helpers have been working hard decking the halls for you and your family, so don’t be late! Choose from our list of enchanting experiences for a jolly good time.

Visit with Santa 

Live from the North Pole…it’s Santa Claus! Enjoy exciting pre-session entertainment and a live virtual visit with Santa. For extra holiday fun, add storytime with Santa or Mrs. Claus to your session. Invite up to four guests for this experience.

Storytime with The Clauses

Shhhhh, it’s storytime! Choose a session with either Santa Claus or Mrs. Claus and gather the family around as they read you a story. Choose from a selection of stories and invite up to four guests to join. Enchant your family with this unforgettable experience.

Welcome Santa to Bass Pro Shops

November 7

5 to 6 p.m.

Come to welcome Santa back to Bass Pro Shops in this drive-by event! Santa will be in his special Tracker boat in front of the store to wave at families as they drive by! We encourage you and your family to make signs welcoming Santa and telling him what you want for Christmas. NO SANTA PHOTOS OR INDOOR ACTIVITIES WILL TAKE PLACE THIS EVENING. There will be a craft and cookie safely handed out to kids in the cars.

Santa’s Wonderland

Bass Pro Shops

November 7 – December 24

Registrations required.

Bass Pro Shops is proud to invite families to the beloved tradition of visiting Santa Claus in-person this holiday season with a reimagined, contactless FREE Santa’s Wonderland experience.

Santa’s Wonderland will prioritize everyone’s safety while allowing kids and families to share their Christmas wishes directly with Santa Claus.

The contactless visit with Santa includes a comprehensive approach to help ensure everyone’s safety throughout the event. Key elements include:

  • Free Digital Reservations: Advance digital reservations are required for all guests and can be made online. Spots are limited to allow appropriate physical distancing and additional cleaning.
  • Temperature Screening: All families and team members will complete temperature screening with a non-contact thermometer prior to entering Santa’s Wonderland.
  • Magic Santa Shield: An innovative, glare-free clear protective barrier will be in place between Santa and families at all times to allow for a contactless experience. The shield is cleaned and sanitized between each visit.
  • Physical Distancing: Families will standby in a designated area away from other shoppers with fun winter wonderland-themed floor decals and signage to ensure a safe distance.
  • Santa’s Sanitation Squad: Santa’s team of elves will clean all surfaces between each visit and frequently ensure all safety measures are being implemented correctly.
  • Face coverings: All team members throughout the store are required to wear face coverings. Customer requirements vary by location based on local public health guidelines.

Photos with Santa

Jordan Creek Town Center

November 20 – December 24

Monday – Saturday 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Sunday Noon to 6 p.m.

December 24 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

‘Tis the season! If you’re looking for a fun and festive way to celebrate the holiday season, you’re in luck—we’re offering photos with Santa! Reservations are required, so secure your spot today!  

Visit Santa at Valley West Mall

November 23 – December 23

Monday – Saturday 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Sunday Noon to 6 p.m.

Christmas Eve 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Visit with Santa at Valley West Mall. The train will also be operational this season. Please wear a mask, washing or sanitizing hands prior to entering  (sanitizer provided), and Social Distancing – Train EXIT has moved to North side to ensure extra space.

Santa Express

Boone & Scenic Valley Railroad

November 27 – December 20

Take a look at times and purchase tickets. 

This is a yearly tradition at the Boone & Scenic Valley Railroad’s depot. The entire family can enjoy a trip to the “North Pole”. On your way to visit Santa at the North Pole you will sing songs, fun activities, and more! You will also be served hot chocolate and a cookie, and you will get to meet, and receive a special gift from, Santa himself.  Wear your pajamas.

Brunch with Santa & Rudolph

Center Grove Orchard

Saturdays & Sundays between Thanksgiving & Christmas

Join Center Grove Orchard for an old-fashioned holiday brunch! It’s great fun for the whole family. Santa and Rudolph will be there so the children can share their holiday wishes. Brunch with Santa and Rudolph will be a date- and time-specific event. Please purchase a ticket online for the time you wish to arrive.

Christmas in Olde Town

Historic Olde Town Altoona

November 28

2:30 to 5:30 p.m.

Celebrate the holiday season in historic Olde Town Altoona! Santa arrives on a fire truck at 2:30 p.m. and will greet families and pose for photos through the front windows of the Altoona Area Historical Museum. Masks will be required, and “Santatizer” stations will be set up throughout the area providing free hand sanitizer. We also ask that all groups maintain social distancing.


Waukee WinterFest on Wheels

Waukee Public Works

December 4

6 to 8 p.m. 

The typical WinterFest event is being switched up to “WinterFest on Wheels” this year. It will be held Friday, Dec. 4 from 6-8 p.m. at the Waukee Public Works Building. Santa Claus and his helpers will hand out treats and goodies as visitors drive through one of the building’s vehicle bays. Participants will stay in their vehicles.

A virtual tree-lighting, ice sculptor demonstration, book donations, holiday light competition, and a toy/food drive will also be held with modifications. Anyone is welcome to drive through the event. If you want the free kids’ goodie bags, please register in advance!

Santa Photo Experience

Nebraska Furniture Mart

December 12; 12:30 to 3 p.m. and December 13; 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Holidays happen here, and so does…magic! Step into the NFM Santa Experience – a safe and socially distanced way to talk with Santa, share your wish list, and get a FREE photo! Join them for a FREE kids’ craft, hot cocoa, live music, and live reindeer. Don’t forget to drop off letters to Santa before December 13. The NFM Santa Photo Experience is located in the Design Center. Visit https://www.nfm.com/visit-santa for more information. Please bring a camera or smartphone to take your photos with at our in-store holiday experience. One of Santa’s helpers will be there to assist you, if needed, in getting family photos and encouraging smiles from those little ones!

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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