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Places for Parties for Kids in Des Moines

by Zora Hughes

The Midwestern city of Des Moines, Iowa combines a small-town feel with big-city culture and entertainment in the heartland of America. Between the charming boutiques and art galleries in the historic East Village area and the cultural attractions in downtown, this capital city offers much to see and do, including for children. If you are planning your child's birthday in Des Moines, many of the city's biggest attractions and entertainment centers offer birthday party options for you to take advantage of.

Major Attractions

The Science Center of Iowa is an excellent party location for the curious, inquisitive child who loves science-related subjects. The 110,000-square foot educational facility features hands-on, kid friendly science exhibits, a giant planetarium and a six-story IMAX dome theater for a larger-than-life science movie experience. The Science Center offers a party package that includes admission, a private party room, a staff-led science activity and goody bags. For the animal lover, you can celebrate at Des Moines' Blank Park Zoo, a relatively small zoo that is home to a selection of animals from around the world, including African cats like leopards and lions, Asian pandas and Australian wallabies. Party packages at the zoo include a party space in their indoor rainforest area, an animal presentation with a zookeeper and ice cream.

Leisure Activities

Plan a bowling party at Air Lanes, one of the premiere bowling alleys in the area. Air Lanes Bowling includes a snack bar, a game room and a lounging area. It also offers extensive birthday party packages tailored to the age group of the kids. Packages offer 2 hours of unlimited bowling, rental shoes, pizza and soft drinks, birthday tableware, gift bags and a special bowling pin for the birthday child. You could also celebrate your child's birthday at Skate North Incrediroll, if your child enjoys roller skating. The family-friendly roller rink has a snack bar, arcade, live DJ and classic roller skating games. The party packages include skate rentals, pizza, soft drinks, tableware, game tokens and a once-a-month free skating pass for the birthday child for one year.

Indoor High Energy Recreation

Celebrate your child's birthday at Skyzone Trampoline Park, an indoor gym space with the walls and floors covered entirely with trampolines. The kids can jump around to their heart's content and participate in organized games such as jump dodge ball. Choose from a variety of birthday party packages, all of which include an hour of jump time, a private party room, food and drinks and a T-shirt for the birthday child. Another high-energy spot to check out is Urbandale's Incredible Buffet & Fun Center in the Des Moines suburb of Urbandale. This restaurant and entertainment center offers high-energy activities, including go-karts, bumper cars and a ropes course. It also has five-frame bowling, mini golf and an arcade. Birthday party packages include unlimited pizza and other food from the buffet, game cards, unlimited play for young children in the Tiny Town area, a private party room and several treats for the birthday child.

Outdoor Recreation

Sleepy Hollow Sports Park, a year-round outdoor recreation complex offers a host of activities to choose from, including water bumper boats, rock climbing, a large outdoor go-kart course, outdoor laser tag and sand volleyball. In the winter, you can ski and snowboard, as well as go snow tubing on the hills near the recreation complex. It offers different all-access passes for birthdays, allowing the kids to participate in several activities. For the thrill-seeking kid, celebrate at Adventureland, just 15 minutes outside of Des Moines in Altoona. Adventureland has family-friendly rides, a few roller coasters and other thrill rides. It also includes a water park with water rides like Splash Over, which takes riders high in the sky while soaking them with water. Choose from several party packages based on the size of your party, all of which include a private party room in the Main Street Arcade, birthday treats, meal options and a gift bag for the birthday child.

About the Author

Based in Los Angeles, Zora Hughes has been writing travel, parenting, cooking and relationship articles since 2010. Her work includes writing city profiles for Groupon. She also writes screenplays and won the S. Randolph Playwriting Award in 2004. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in television writing/producing and a Master of Arts Management in entertainment media management, both from Columbia College.

Photo Credits

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