Friendly, convivial tavern downtown which attracts a interesting mix of beer lovers. I was attracted by the roster of over 90 draught beers, including hard to find rarities from the West Coast and Belgium. People seemed to be very interested in talking about their beer: I fell into a long conversation with a young investment banker from South Dakota who was convinced that he'd found salvation through Pale Ale!
I normally don't like casinos. This one has a racetrack and a variety of gaming attractions.
Unlike a lot of the usual "indian casinos," which to me seem to have terribly tight/sticky slots, you can actually win on these. Please never gamble beyond your budget though. Saw a person win 100,000 Grand in the high roller room one night. Nice atmosphere, though a little crowded on peak nights.
Dress Code: casual
Clive is a suburb where this is a good slew of bars. It is where my older brother goes to hang out usually. There is Mickey's, Drink, Coconut Joe's and a few other big name bars Scattered around. It's in the suburbs so you have to drive from bar to bar if you want to bar hop (a designated driver helps too).
Dress Code: Pretty casual.
Court Ave. is the bar district in downtown Des Moines. There are quite a few bars in this area and they for the most part reasonbly cheap. Three of the bigger clubs(Papa's Planet, The Buzz, and Generations) have a deal were you pay one cover of $5 and get into all three bars. I'm not quite sure but I hear that on Sat. Night you can pay $12 and get all you can drink wells at all three but don't hold me to it. It was all under water in the great floods of 92....don't worry they built a bigger dike around downtown.
Dress Code: The Dress codes are mostly casual to semi-casual. Hats are not allowed in the a few bars and a few other don't allow any kind of hats with sports teams logo's unless they are Iowa teams.
We went to a very cool laser light show, which was in some kind of plenetarium. You wear those 3D glasses and watch the light show above you while they play really loud and cool music (at that time it was The Offspring, Nine Inch Nails, etc.)!