5 Fun Kid Dates in Des Moines


boy and man laughing outside. parent-kid date ideas in Des MoinesAs parents, we all want to have a close and healthy relationship with our children. Would it surprise you to learn that building that lasting bond is really quite simple? It comes down to one thing: spending time with them.

You may already be familiar with the concept of “special time” – uninterrupted one-on-one time spent connecting with your child. Parenting experts agree that just five minutes of special time a day can strengthen the parent-child relationship, build attachment, and even increase the likelihood that a child will listen.

While small, daily bursts of special time are important, every now and then it’s fun to take it up a notch and go on special, longer one-on-one dates with your kiddo. Think about what dating is like in the early stages of a relationship: you go out, talk, ask questions, and really get to know the other person. Why not try that with your kids?

5 Fun Dates with your Kids

Here are ideas to try around Des Moines now that the weather is warming up!

1. Go on a breakfast date

What could be better than bonding over a big stack of pancakes and perfectly crisped bacon? Here are some of our favorite breakfast spots (some with patio seating): Hy-Vee, Eggs and Jam, Early Bird, Mahalo’s Mini Donuts, Cinnaholic, The Breakfast Club, Mullets.

2. Go to a farmers’ market

Explore one of the many farmers’ markets around the metro area with your kiddo this spring! Make it an adventure by trying a new food from a vendor or purchasing a fruit or vegetable you’ve never eaten before. Click here for a list of farmers’ markets happening this spring and summer.

3. Take a walk in the skywalk 

Did you know downtown Des Moines is connected by 4 miles of skywalk? Make a date out of navigating the skywalk system and finding different ways to get from one end of downtown to the other. This is perfect for a rainy day when you still want to get out of the house. Find a skywalk navigation map here

4. Explore the Capitol

The State Capitol is an impressive landmark, but there’s so much more to see than just the pretty building with a golden rooftop. A warm day is perfect for exploring the Capitol building itself, but also the Judicial Branch Building and the various monuments, memorials, and statues around the Capitol grounds. Tours and resource information can be found here

5. Pet an alpaca

Just a short drive from Des Moines is a farm that is home to dozens of Alpacas that you can get up close with. Take a trip with your kiddo and spend some quality time with while feeding and petting some really soft and cute alpacas at Rusty Stars in Madison County.

What are your favorite parent-kid dates?

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Eva lives in WDSM with her husband, Zack, and daughter, Kate (2019). She is a prosecutor with the Polk County Attorney's Office where she handles primarily child welfare cases. Outside of work, Eva enjoys recreating Pinterest recipes that are beyond her level of expertise, trying to find the perfect skincare routine, and buying way more on Amazon than she needs to. Eva shares openly about her experiences involving Zack's deployment, her high-risk pregnancy, Kate's NICU stay, and just about anything else you might care to ask about. She's a big fan of podcasts, personality tests, the Shark VacMop, and ordering her coffee "kid temp" at Starbucks. Connect with her on Instagram @evaateresaa


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