Wading Pools, Fountains, Spraygrounds in Des Moines

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Wading Pools, Fountains, Spraygrounds in Des Moines

There are many places around Greater Des Moines to enjoy water play for free! Many days grabbing the entire family to head to the aquatic centers may not be ideal. Aquatic centers offer water slides, tube slides, lazy rivers, and more, but what if you have young kids and just want to cool off for an hour? The Des Moines Parks & Recreation Department and numerous parks departments across the metro offer free splash pads and other spray features in their city parks. Here is a list of wading pools, fountains, and spraygrounds in Des Moines. This makes it accessible and fun for all families. Many of these water features open on Memorial Day Weekend and stay open through Labor Day Weekend.

Note: Please know that we are constantly working to update pictures and reviews. If you see something incorrect or would like to share something, please submit it here.

Fountains & Water Features

​This list consists of fountains and water features in the Des Moines area such as a natural play area, or a place where children can play in the water, but may not get completely wet. I would still recommend bringing towels! 

Barrett Boesen Natural Playscape

Address: Located on the corner of 156th Street & Waterford Road in Urbandale, Iowa

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/barrett-boesen-natural-playscape-urbandale-iowa/

Cowles Commons Lauridsen Fountain

Address: 221 Walnut St, Des Moines, IA 50309 (located in Downtown Des Moines)

Review:  https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/cowles-commons-lauridsen-fountain/ 

Evelyn K. Davis Park and Fountain 

Address: 1400 Forest Ave, Des Moines, IA 50314

Review:  https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/evelyn-davis-park-fountain-des-moines-iowa/

​Prairie Heritage Park

Address: 898 5th Ave SW Altoona, Iowa 50009

Review:  https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/prairie-heritage-park-altoona-iowa/

Sargent Park & Fountain 

Address: 3401 E Douglas Ave, Des Moines, IA 50317


Wading Pools

Wading pools may also be commonly referred to as splash pools. They are a small pool with standing water. This is a great option for young kids just getting used to the water. Many wading pools in the area are in parks that offer playground equipment, open-air shelters, tennis courts, basketball courts, and more. 

Note: Wading pools do have a lifeguard on duty and vary hours of operation. Check with the official park department for hours. Hours may change due to staffing and weather-related issues. I highly recommend checking the local city’s Facebook page for the best up-to-date information. 

Ashby Park & Wading Pool

Address: 3200 38th Street, Des Moines, IA 50310

Review: https://desmoinesparent.com/ashby-park-summer-tradition/

Ashfield Park & Wading Pool

Address: 720 E 19th St, Des Moines, IA 50316


Jester Park  

Address: 11407 NW Jester Park Dr. Granger, IA 50109


Jester Park Natural Playscape

Jordan Park & Wading Pool 

Address: 600 E Wall Ave, Des Moines, IA 50315


Linnan Park Wading Pool

Address: 8500 Alice Avenue Clive Iowa 50325


MLK Park & Wading Pool 

Address: 1650 Garfield Ave, Des Moines, IA 50316


Pete Crivaro Park & Wading Pool

Address: 105 E Railroad Ave, Des Moines, IA 50309

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/pete-crivaro-park-wading-pool-des-moines-iowa/

Sayers Park 

Address: 1300 Linden Ln, Des Moines, IA 50315

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/sayers-park-wading-pool-des-moines-iowa/ 

Stone Park 

Address: 2100 SE 5th St, Des Moines, IA 50315


Tower Park 

Address: 4900 Hickman Rd, Des Moines, IA 50310

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/tower-park-wading-pool-des-moines-iowa/

Tower Park

Union Park 

Address: 725 Thompson Ave, Des Moines, IA 50316

Review: https://desmoinesparent.com/union-park-a-gem-of-des-moines-parks/


Spraygrounds may also be commonly referred to as splash pads. Many parks in Des Moines are adding a new splash pad to existing parks. Some may not open until mid to late summer 2023. Keep your eyes open!  

  • The City of Des Moines spraygrounds are open from May 1 through September 30. 
  • Hours of operation are 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. 
Johnston Town Center Sprayground

American Legion Park Sprayground

Address: 301 Vine St. West Des Moines, IA 50265

Review: https://desmoinesparent.com/american-legion-park-a-west-des-moines-favorite/

Bates Park Sprayground

Address: 330 Clark St, Des Moines, IA 50314

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/bates-park-wading-pool-des-moines-iowa/

Chesterfield Park & Sprayground

Address: 2719 Scott Ave, Des Moines, IA 50317


Columbus Park Sprayground

Address: 1921 SE 1st St, Des Moines, IA 50315

Review: https://desmoinesparent.com/columbus-park-south-side-treasure/

Crestbruck Park Sprayground

Address: 1028 NE Crestmoor Pl Ankeny, IA 50021

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/crestbruck-park-ankeny-iowa/ 

Dan and Mary Kelly Family Sprayground is located in Ashworth/Greenwood Park 

Address: 100 45th St, Des Moines, IA 50312

Review: https://desmoinesparent.com/greenwoodashworth-splash-park/

Located in Ashworth/Greenwood Park

Dean Park

Address: SW 19th ST and SW College AVE Ankeny, IA 50023

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/dean-park-sprayground-ankeny-iowa/

Doanes Park

Address: 4900 Doanes Park Rd. Pleasant Hill, IA 50327

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/doanes-park-pleasant-hill-iowa/ 

Drake Park 

Address: 2300 Drake Park Ave, Des Moines, IA 50311

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/drake-park-wading-pool-des-moines-iowa/

Fairmont Park 

Address: 2520 E Hull Ave, Des Moines, IA 50317

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/fairmont-park-des-moines-iowa/

Fox Creek Splash Pad + Fox Creek Park

Address: 522 NE Westgate Drive, Waukee, Iowa

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/fox-creek-park-in-waukee-iowa/ 

Fox Creek Sprayground in Des Moines

Good Park 

Address: 1103 17th St, Des Moines, IA 50314

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/good-park-sprayground-des-moines-iowa/ 

Grandview Park 

Address: 3230 Easton Blvd, Des Moines, IA 50317

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/grandview-park-sprayground-des-moines-iowa/

Johnston Town Center 

Address: Merle Hay Road & NW 62nd Avenue 

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/johnston-town-center-splash-pad/

Lions Park & Sprayground {Coming June 2024}

Address: 72nd Street and Aurora Avenue Urbandale, IA 50322


MacRae Park 

Address: 1021 Davis Ave, Des Moines, IA 50315

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/park-visit-macrae-park-des-moines-iowa/ 

McHenry Park

Address: 1012 Oak Park Ave, Des Moines

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/mchenry-park-sprayground-des-moines-iowa/

Prairie Ridge Aquatic Center & Splash Pad 

Address: 1220 NW Prairie Ridge Dr. Ankeny, IA 50023

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/prairie-ridge-aquatic-center-ankeny-iowa/

​Sheridan Park 

Address: 4000 E Hull Ave, Des Moines, IA 50317

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/sheridan-park-wading-pool-des-moines-iowa/

Sunrise Park 

Address: 506 SE Peterson DR Ankeny, IA 50021

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/sunrise-park-ankeny-iowa/ 

Waterworks Park

Address: 100 N James Street right next to the old Grimes Library. It is located North of Highway 44.

Review: https://desmoinesparent.com/waterworks-park-grimes-iowa/

Grimes, Iowa, Waterworks Park, splash pad, Grimes parks
Waterworks Park in Grimes, Iowa

Westown Meadows

Address: 2445 SE Willowbrook Drive, Waukee, Iowa

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/westown-meadows-waukee-iowa/ 

Woodlawn Park

Address: Twana Dr & Lawnwoods Dr, Des Moines, IA 50310

Review: https://outdoorfun.desmoinesparent.com/woodlawn-park-sprayground-des-moines-iowa/

Pools & Aquatic Centers

Bonus! If you are looking for a pool or aquatic center we also have you cover. Many of these pools host special events throughout the Summer, including evening swim lessons, adult lap swims, season passes, and more. 

Grab the entire round-up of pools & aquatic centers here

  • Altoona Aquatics Park
  • Cascade Falls Aquatic Center 
  • Clive Aquatic Center
  • Dallas Center Pool
  • Holiday Aquatic Center
  • Valley View Aquatic Center 


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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