This 1979 steel sculpture is the work of Claus Oldenburg and his partner Coosje van Brugeen.
Another one of their monumental pieces - a giant spade! - can be seen in front of the headquarters of the Meredith Corporation just west of downtown.
Favorite thing: People in Des Moines are fairly nice and people seem very sociable. Des Moines seems like it is really going to be a nice place someday . Des Moines seems to have an unusually high number of tall buildings for a city of 200,000 people(the construction all over the place). Des Moines seems to have a fairly low crime rate, I walked by the public housing in Des Moines and found it to be kept-up and nice looking. If the public housing in Des Moines isnt bad looking, than common sense says the rest of the city most not be bad either. I think if somebody wants to travel to look for a job (especially insurance related) Des Moines is a very nice place.
Terrace Hill is the now official residence of the Governors of Iowa. However, it was built as a private mansion in the 1870s by one of Iowa's trade millionaires. The house was designed in full Victorian glory by a noted Chicago architect, William Boyington. Boyington also was responsible for the Old Water Tower (on Michigan Avenue) in Chicago, as well as the Hegeler-Carus Mansion in La Salle, IL (which I also visited in summer 2004 - see my page for La Salle).
In order to see the interior of Terrace Hill, it's necessary to take a guided tour, but I wanted to get back on the road so I passed on it. Maybe next time. . .
Greyhound travelers: if on a lay-over in des moines thats more than an hour, go down keosequa street to court street they have many resturants, a very nice skywalk system also with many good resturants
Des Moines is small (city 150,000, metro area around half a million) but has a very unusual skyline for a city its size because of all the insurance companies
Des Moines is very good place too look for employment and also has many good universities you can tour, Drake is one at 44th and ingersoll
Des Moines is buiding a riverwalk thats suppose too be nice..
Fondest memory: I've only been there a few times but there is a large russian population for some reason and its more diverse then what you would expect, pretty progressive people also
Saylorville Lake, Grays Lake, The Capital of Iowa, The Blank Park Zoo, Living History Farms, Red Rock Lake, Jazz in July (and free Jazz concert everyday in the month of July) Nolan Plaza at lunch. These are just a few of my favorites.
Fondest memory: The best steak the US. hands down to no other!!
Favorite thing: Iowa is a land of cornfields. We certainly saw a lot of corn while we were there. Instead of a cornfield photo I am adding this photo of trees in Autumn because it was that time of year when we were in Des Moines.
The state capitol is an exceptional architectural gem. The Des Moines Art Center has a very nice and accessible collection for a city this size. Living History Farms shows period farms in operation including homelife from the periods.
Fondest memory: Des Moines is full of parks, lots of water (lakes, rivers) and very friendly people. Active cultural life including Asian, Eastern European, gay....
Favorite thing: As I was driving around on Labor Day, I found the World War II memorial behind the capitol building. The memorial itself is quite amazing, with a timeline on events in the concrete on the ground, the eternal flame, and this memorial about Pearl Harbor. See the travelogue for more pics!
Favorite thing: Des Moines is a great small city. There aren't any reasons I can think of that a person would go there for, but if you find yourself anywhere in IA it is usually a pleasant, and generally laid back experience where you encouter friendly people.
Favorite thing: St. Ambrose, the seat of the local R.C. diocese, is centrally located in Des Moines at 607 High Street. This attractive Romanesque pile was built with local stone, and was dedicated in 1891.
This is Iowa's largest theatre, capable of seating an audience of 2735. The Civic Center is used for touring Broadway shows and major community events. 221 W. Walnut:
Favorite thing: The Ruan Center - opened in 1975 - is the second tallest building in Des Moines (and Iowa). It boast 36 floors reaching 457 feet high.
Favorite thing: The Tallest Building in all of Iowa is the 801 Grand Tower. Topping out at 630 feet, with 44 floors, the office structure was designed by the prestigious firm of Helmuth Obata and Kassebaum.
Favorite thing: A nifty old building, on the Des Moines River (at Locust Street) downtown. They're building a brand new library just a few blocks away - which is good, but I hope they find a good use for this place.
Favorite thing: The downtown area of Des Moines has an extensive "Skywalk" system. Many cities in cold areas have these now, but this is a good one.