Central Iowa is home to the state capital, Des Moines. With an estimated population of more than 207,000, Des Moines is also the most populous city in Iowa. Named after the Des Moines River, it is enhanced with its presence as it flows through downtown. Even presidential hopefuls grace the city. As home to the first caucuses of the presidential primary cycle, many candidates have their campaigns headquartered in Des Moines.
Des Moines was founded in 1843 with the construction of Fort Des Moines, supervised by Captain James Allen. The fort was meant to control the Sauk and Meskwaki Indians, but they were removed from the state and the fort was abandoned in 1846. That May, Des Moines became the county seat of Polk County. Five years later, the Des Moines and Raccoon Rivera flooded and destroyed the town, but that September it was incorporated as a city.
At the beginning of the 1900s, Des Moines began a “City Beautiful” project, erecting large public buildings and fountains along the Des Moines River. Three of these buildings are still standing today as the World Food Prize, the Polk County Administrative Building, and City Hall.
Things to Do in Des Moines:
Every city has its very own collection of great city amenities and Des Moines is no exception. This city has everything you could possibly want and need wrapped with a very exciting bow. There are countless things to do in Des Moines, including hiking, visiting breweries, watching a Broadway musical, ice skating, and so much more.
Just like any tourist, when you move to an apartment in Des Moines, you’ll want to check out all the attractions. Spend your weekends exploring all the wonderful sights there are to see here, such as the Science Center of Iowa where you can see its traveling exhibits and hands-on exhibits. Enjoy the urban oasis filled with gorgeous flora at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden. See the animals that roam the tropical rainforests, the Australian Outback, and Africa at the Blank Park Zoo.
Spend some time in the great outdoors of Des Moines and partake in the many recreational activities available. Head to any of the local parks for a day of fun in the sun. Grab your ice skates and try out some new moves at the Brenton Skating Plaza from November to March. Go camping at the Iowa State Fairgrounds September through October or enjoy a fair from April to July. You can even play 18 holes at one of “America’s Greatest Golf Courses,” the Waveland Golf Course.
Whether you’re a shopaholic or just an occasional shopper, there are plenty of great places for you to purchase some unique finds. Head to the West Glen Town Center or the Jordan Creek Town Center for some awesome retail therapy in the midst of eateries and entertainment venues. Des Moines’ premiere shopping mall is the Valley West Mall, featuring stores such as JCPenney, Von Maur, Gap Kids, and Calypso 968.
What to Consider When Moving to Des Moines:
So you’re moving to an apartment in Des Moines; you’ve looked at all the great attractions, all the fun places to take the kids, and figured out which restaurants you have to try. Have you looked at anything else? Before making that move, it’s important that you consider a few other things about the city, like what neighborhood you want to live in, what the economy is like, where the kids will go to school, and any fun or interesting facts you need to know about Des Moines.
Here’s something fun and interesting: Des Moines hosts a number of nationally-acclaimed cultural events each year. These events include the Des Moines Arts Festival in June, Metro Arts Jazz in July, the Iowa State Fair in August, and the World Food & Music Festival in September. There are many more annual festivals and events taking place in Des Moines, including the 80/35 Music Festival, 515 Alive Music Festival, ArtFest Midwest, Blue Ribbon Bacon Fest, Celebrasian Heritage Festival, Des Moines Pride Festival, Des Moines Renaissance Faire, Festa Italiana, and so many more.
Teachers and students should know that the schools in Des Moines are governed by the Des Moines Public School District. This district has 38 elementary schools, 11 middle schools, five high schools and 10 other schools and programs for those with specific needs or alternative learning. Grand View Christian School is the only private school in the city, but there are three others outside of the city limits which serve some parts of the city as well.
In 2010, Des Moines was ranked as No.1 of the “Best Places for Business and Careers” by Forbes. The reason for this: Des Moines is a center for financial and insurance services, with many large corporations being headquartered here. These companies include Principal Financial Group, EMC Insurance group, Fidelity & Guaranty Life, and more. There are even other companies that have their headquarters outside of the city, but have established a presence in the city as well, such as Wells Fargo and Voya Financial.
Why Des Moines Apartments Are Hot:
The economy is booming, the family fun is never ending, the recreation is thrilling, and the shopping is to die for — why would the Des Moines apartments be anything less than amazing? Every apartment in this city gets you closer to all the action than you are now. You’ll love stepping outside each day in the beautiful city of Des Moines – a place where you can grow and explore new things every day. Whether you’re coming by yourself or you’re bringing a family with you, at least one of our Des Moines apartments is sure to fit your needs. You might even meet the next president.
Why Des Moines?
Great nightlife: bars, dance clubs, concerts, and theaters.
Placing your bets at Prairie Meadow Racetrack and Casino.
Fun: art shows, concerts, festivals, and the Iowa State Fair.
More fun: horseback riding, golfing, skating, hiking, and fishing.
Hot-air balloon rides during the annual National Balloon Classic.
Walkable shopping districts, historic villages, and sleek, modern malls.