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BySuzanne Hull

Open Ceremony and Tree Lighting

Join us for the Christkindlmarket Des Moines Opening Ceremony and Tree Lighting. Listen to das Christkind deliver her festive proclamation to open the Christkindlmarket and see the large tree lit. The opening ceremony will begin at 6pm on Friday, November 30.

Joining us to flip the switch this year is Kathryn Kunert, Vice President of Economic Connections and Integration with MidAmerican Energy Company.

St. Nicholas will be accompanying das Christkind during the ceremony and they will both make a tour of the Christkindlmarket after the ceremony. Be sure to visit Christkindlmarket Des Moines on Saturday and Sunday from noon – 2pm for another chance to see the duo in action.


Children Needed for Opening Ceremony Procession

Children are an integral component of any Christkindlmarket opening ceremony. Would your child (children) like to follow das Christkind through Christkindlmarket Des Moines to the stage where they will watch the opening ceremony?

Contact Linda Muller at with questions and interest. We would like at most 50 children to participate.

Children and parents are invited to gather in the East Entrance of Cap Square at 5:45pm on Friday, November 30, 2018, (please be on time) to receive a luminary and battery-operated candle. Please return the luminaries to a volunteer at the end of the opening ceremony if the child does not wish to take it home.

Des Moines European Heritage Association connects Iowans with European traditions, language education and cultural experiences; and it provides resources and tools to other cultural heritage organizations.

BySuzanne Hull

An der Weihnachtsecke: At the Christmas Corner

With just six weeks until Christkindlmarket Des Moines 2018, we’d like to help you get prepared for your visit by reminding you of our holiday store called “An der Weihnachtsecke”. In German, this means, “At the Christmas Corner”. In it, we will feature:

Christkindlmarket Des Moines 2018 Commemorative Mugs


This year’s commemorative mug will be available for sale an der Weihnachtsecke and at the Glühwein/Kinderpunsch points of sale. Be sure to purchase yours before they run out. You can make a donation of $25/mug before November 28th to guarantee your mug and pick it up at the event.

For this year’s mug design, we again collaborated with German designer Sabine Voigt. She previously worked for Rolling Stone Magazine and continues to design mugs for Christmas markets around the world.

Beer Steins and Glassware

From glass to stoneware, from boot to Maß, we’ve got your beer drinking vessels covered. With a variety of price points, you’re sure to find something for the casual drinker or collector in your life. There are also several limited edition pieces available.

Thewalt Steins

Many of the steins sold at Christkindlmarket Des Moines 2017 are original productions from original Thewalt molds. These steins are produced in the same time-honored tradition, entirely made in the Westerwald (“Western Forest”), just a few kilometers from the original Thewalt factory. Several original skilled Thewalt workers are still making these new steins. Established in 1893 and producing steins until 2009, the Thewalt factory earned global recognition with emphasis on unsurpassed quality, using only the best materials and workmanship.






Gerz & Corzelius Steins

These steins were made from molds acquired from the original factory of Paul Werner Corzelius (some of which are over 100 years old!). These steins was made just a few kilometers from the original Gerz Sessenbach and Corzelius Hoehr Grenzhausen factory sites.





European Confections

We will be offering advents calendars, German/Swiss/English chocolate, Baumkuchen, Mozart Kugeln, Asbach chocolate, a variety of marzipan confections, Pannetone, German/Danish/English cookies and stollen.


Glaszauber Lauscha

These individually hand-blown and hand-painted ornaments, lovingly made by a family-owned and operated business in Germany, are truly one of a kind. The first Christmas tree ornaments made of glass originated in their hometown of Lauscha in 1847.

Watch a video of how these ornaments are made.



Christkindlmarket Des Moines Merchandise

We had a great time working with Straub Marketing, to design our Christkindlmarket Des Moines merchandise. We will be offering totes, tumblers, knit caps, beanies, mittens and scarves.

ByMackenzie Dierks

A Passport to Christkindlmarket Des Moines

Creativity and exploration! It’s what being a kid is all about. If you didn’t make it to the Christkindlemarket Des Moines (CDM) KinderKorner last year, you might not have noticed the many free activities we provided to those willing to spare a few minutes. There was activity in particular that we offered all weekend to encourage kids and their families to experience the event.

Anyone that stopped by the KinderKorner was offered a CDM Passport. Though nowhere near as official as one you would use for international travel, it served to document young visitors’ progress in exploring the market.



























The passport outlined four tasks and upon completion of each, participants received a stamp. A completed passport earned them a prize from the Information Table. The first task was to add a link to our holiday paper chain, a tradition dating back to the 1900s. Next, our market explorers received a stamp for participating in a KinderKorner lead activity, like marking a felt ornament, coloring a picture or learning a seasonal song. The third task required venturing to the hand painted wooden Christkind and St. Nicholas photo cutout to have a picture taken with friends or family. The final stamp was awarded once our brave explorers gathered the courage to ask a question at the Information Table.

Over the course of the event we had over 200 children take part, resulting in lots of smiles, loads of crafts and some legitimately interesting questions asked at the Information Table. For example, can YOU say “Happy Holidays” in six languages?

If you are considering coming to Christkindlmarket Des Moines 2018, bring the kids! With all of our free performances and activities we are sure to keep you all entertained!

Des Moines European Heritage Association connects Iowans with European traditions, language education and cultural experiences; and it provides resources and tools to other cultural heritage organizations.

BySuzanne Hull

European Cultural Heritage “Meet-Up”

Enjoy the fellowship of a diverse group of European Cultural Heritage Organizations for a “Meet-Up” at Christkindlmarket Des Moines. Meet in Yuletide Hall (an outdoor, forced-air heated entertainment tent) as you sip on Glühwein, enjoy a seasonal craft beer or nosh on bratwurst.



Represent your European Cultural Heritage Organization to the Des Moines community with your traditional attire, beer steins, and Glühwein mugs as you get to know other cultural heritage organizations in Central Iowa.


Des Moines European Heritage Association connects Iowans with European traditions, language education and cultural experiences; and it provides resources and tools to other cultural heritage organizations.

BySuzanne Hull

Volunteer at #CDM2018

Des Moines European Heritage Association (DMEHA) invites you to be a part of something great: Christkindlmarket Des Moines. Volunteers are integral to a successful community event. We need your help and we have several volunteer opportunities to choose from whether you’re looking for just yourself or a group. Be sure to include family members, friends and others who could join you to make it more fun!

After your shift, turn in your credential for: a ticket worth 5% off your purchase in “An der Weihnachtsecke”, a ticket for one free Usinger sausage or one free drink ticket. Christkindlmarket Des Moines Tear Down volunteers will receive a pizza supper while tearing down Sunday night. At the end of the weekend, all volunteers will be entered in a drawing. One lucky winner will get to choose either a piece of DMEHA merchandise or imported food.

NON-PROFITS: If your non-profit signs up and shows up to fill a shift (volunteers need not be directly associated with your non-profit) to serve Glühwein, beer or to serve Usinger sausages, you may put out your own “tip” box for donations for your organization during that shift. Please contact Suzanne at if you’re interested. Must be able to show proof of non-profit status.

No-shows can cause great difficulties for the planning and production of Christkindlmarket Des Moines. We ask that you report on time and remain on task for the duration of your shift(s). All volunteers must be at least 16 years old when they report for their volunteer shift. Those dealing with alcohol must be at least 18 years old when they report for their volunteer shift.




Sign Up Here!


Christkindlmarket Des Moines Setup: Install Christmas trees, assemble signage, hang stringed lights, decorate wooden vendor stalls, etc. **Some lifting may be required**

Vendor Stall Setup: Construct pre-fabricated wooden vendor stalls. **Heavy lifting definitely required**

Waste Removal Elves: Empty the waste receptacles into a large roll-off bin.

Bratwurst Imbiss am Markt: Grill and serve Usinger brats.

DMEHA KinderKorner: Provide a European-centric activity for children. Supplies provided.

DMEHA Information Tent: Answer attendee’s questions, provide information on DMEHA, hand out site maps, entertainment schedules, etc.

Yuletide Hall Volunteer: Assist the Yuletide Hall site leaders to ensure that performers have arrived, are prepared to take the stage and have what they need to perform.

Beer Pourers: Work with the Iowa Beer Bus team to serve beer to attendees.

Glühwein & Kinderpunsch Sales: Serve warm, mulled wine and mulled cider from a tent on Walnut street or Yuletide Hall to eager attendees.

Christkindlmarket Des Moines Tear Down: Remove Christmas trees, disassemble signage, remove stringed lights, remove decorations from wooden vendor stalls. **Some lifting may be required**

Vendor Stall Tear Down: Tear down pre-fabricated wooden vendor stalls. **Heavy lifting definitely required**

Non-Profit Tree Tear Down: Remove ornaments and lights from non-profit trees and help silent auction winners transport these items and possibly the tree to their vehicles.


Sign Up Here!


BySuzanne Hull

Carpenters Local 106 | 2018 In-Kind Sponsor

The organizers of Christkindlmarket Des Moines 2018 are proud to partner with Carpenters Local 106. Fabricated by Waukee and Johnston High Schools and stored at Centennial Warehouse, Carpenters Local 106 will again help us set up our wooden vendor stalls at Christkindlmarket Des Moines 2018. The following is from the Carpenters Local 106:

Why is this partnership Important:

Carpenters Local 106 has been a part of Des Moines Heritage for over 120 years. As Local 106 members, we strive to offer our skills to help build up the city and people of Des Moines. Many of our members have varying heritages and backgrounds including European heritage. Which they also value to continue their traditions.

How is Carpenters 106 involved in our communities:

Our members are very involved in the community in varies ways. Whether it be from coaching our kid’s sports teams or being a PTA member at their schools, or working closely with our church groups. As an organization we offer scholarships, donate to Toys-For-Tots, sponsor Jolly Holiday Lights and Iowa Heart are a few. Any opportunity we can to show off our specific skills and help with community projects like handy cap ramps or just helping out a friend or neighbor you can count on us.

Things people don’t know about Unions:

We are dedicated and fight to make sure the working class is protected, safe and getting what they deserve. Unions have provided very long and reliable sustaining careers, pensions and health benefits for so many people, for many of years. We value productivity, safety and craftsmanship. Our priority is education and providing it at no cost to our members.



Des Moines European Heritage Association connects Iowans with European traditions, language education and cultural experiences; and it provides resources and tools to other cultural heritage organizations.

BySuzanne Hull

Signature Beer to be Brewed for Christkindlmarket Des Moines 2018

Christkindlmarket Des Moines 2018 will again be working with Confluence Brewing Company to brew St. Nick’s Christkindlbier for #CDM2018.

Confluence brews 30 – 40 different beers each year. They often partner with area non-profits to help bring awareness to their cause through a unique and related recipe. Confluence cares about the creativity and craftsmanship that goes into making excellent beer, and knows that excellent beer can bring people together.

Through this partnership, you can look forward to:

  • A Firkin’ tapping of our signature beer at #CDM2018 on Friday, November 30th at 4pm.
  • Our signature beer available at retail locations prior to #CDM2018 and during the holiday season.


Des Moines European Heritage Association connects Iowans with European traditions, language education and cultural experiences; and it provides resources and tools to other cultural heritage organizations.

BySuzanne Hull

Vendor Demonstration Schedule Announced!

With the production of Christkindlmarket Des Moines, we hope to show attendees how the items they purchase are made. To that end, we have six vendors who will also be demonstrating their craft. We hope you’re inspired!

Processed with MOLDIV

Andy Klindt – Chainsaw Carvings, Des Moines, IA | DEMONSTRATION

Andy is an Iowa artisan specializing in chainsaw sculpture and metal design. Fanciful, functional, or a fusion of each…watching Andy craft original pieces will delight people of all ages!

Offering: Chainsaw carvings, wooden ornaments.

Price Range: $5 – $2000


Friday, November 30: 11am – 11:30am, 12:30pm – 1pm, 3:30pm – 4pm, 5:30pm – 6pm, 7pm – 7:30pm

Saturday, December 1: 11:15am – 11:30pm, 12:30pm – 1pm, 3pm – 3:30pm, 5:30pm – 6pm, 7:45pm – 8:15pm

Sunday, December 2: 11:15am – 11:45am, 12:30pm – 1pm, 2pm – 2:30pm, 3:30pm – 3:45pm

Indianola Glass Creations, Indianola, IA | DEMONSTRATION

Step inside the world of glass. Indianola Glass Creations designs and creates one of a kind Stained and Fused Glass ornaments, suncatchers, jewelry and home decor. They will be demonstrating blown glass ornaments.

Offering: Fused Glass pendants, rings, earrings & bracelets, ornaments, suncatchers, platters, bowls, coasters & clocks. Stained Glass ornaments, panels & clocks. Blown glass ornaments. Wine bottle lamps, tealights & wind chimes.

Price Range: $5 – $100


Friday, November 30: 11:45am – 12pm, 1:45pm – 2pm, 4:30pm – 4:45pm, 7:15pm – 7:30pm

Saturday, December 1: 1:30pm – 1:45pm, 3:30pm – 3:45pm, 5:30pm – 5:45pm, 7pm – 7:15p

Sunday, December 2: 12:30pm – 12:45pm, 2:15pm – 2:30pm, 3:30pm – 3:45pm

Dakota Tinworks, Estelline, SD | DEMONSTRATION

Dakota Tinworks is a family-owned business dedicated to making and selling traditional tinware and ornaments, hand-made exclusively by tinsmith Karl-Josef Schmidt, using primarily antique, 19th century tinsmith’s tools and techniques.

Offering: Handmade tinware of all kinds: tin Christmas ornaments, tin tree tinsel, tin tree toppers, tin cookie cutters, tin biscuit cutters, tin candle holders, tin candle sconces, tin cups, and tin candle lanterns.

Price Range: $5 – $150


Friday, November 30: 12pm – 12:15pm, 1pm – 1:15pm, 2pm – 2:15pm, 3pm – 3:15pm, 4pm – 4:15pm, 5pm – 5:15pm, 6pm – 6:15pm, 7pm – 7:15pm, 8pm – 8:15pm

Saturday, December 1: 12:15pm – 12:30pm, 1:15pm – 1:30pm, 2:15pm – 2:30pm, 3:15pm – 3:30pm, 4:15pm – 4:30pm, 5:15pm – 5:30pm, 6:15pm – 6:30pm, 7:15pm – 7:30pm, 8:15pm – 8:30pm

Sunday, December 2: 12pm – 12:15pm, 1pm – 1:15pm, 2pm – 2:15pm, 3pm – 3:15pm, 4pm – 4:15pm

Quilted Gardens & Nursery, Des Moines, IA | DEMONSTRATION

Offering: Sleigh Bells, Glass ornaments, wooden ornaments, Straw ornaments, Fresh made wreaths and kissing balls, Bundles of fresh Greens, Ice Globe Kits, Holiday optic Specs, Table top Christmas trees

Price Range: $2 – $45


Friday, November 30: 11:30am – 11:45am, 1:30pm – 1:45pm, 4:15pm – 4:30pm, 6:30pm – 6:45pm

Saturday, December 1: 12:45pm – 1pm, 2:30pm – 2:45pm, 4:30pm – 4:45pm, 6:30pm – 6:45pm

Sunday, December 2: 12:15pm – 12:30pm, 1:15pm – 1:30pm,

Wild Cherry Spoon Co, Rock Island, IL | DEMONSTRATION

Wild Cherry Spoon Co creates one of a kind handcarved pieces from urban lumber.

Offering: Handcarved wooden spoons, spatulas, kitchen utensils of various styles and purposes, bottle openers, pizza cutters, ice cream scoops, pizza paddles, baguette trays and serving pieces.

Price Range: $3 – $125


Friday, November 30: 11:15am – 11:30am, 12:15pm – 12:30pm, 1:15pm – 1:30pm, 2:15pm – 2:30pm, 3:15pm – 3:30pm, 6pm – 6:15pm

Saturday, December 1: 11am – 11:15pm, 12pm – 12:15pm, 1pm – 1:15pm, 2pm – 2:15pm, 3pm – 3:15pm, 4pm – 4:15pm, 5pm – 5:15pm

Sunday, December 2: 11:45am – 12pm, 12:45pm – 1pm, 1:45pm – 2pm, 2:45pm – 3pm, 3:45pm – 4pm


Lost Planet Forge, Des Moines, IA | DEMONSTRATION


Friday, November 30: 2:30pm – 3pm, 3:30pm – 8pm

Saturday, December 1: 11:30am – 12pm, 2:30pm – 3pm, 6:30pm – 7pm

Sunday, December 2: 12pm – 12:30pm, 2:30pm – 3pm

BySuzanne Hull

DMEHA at World Food & Music Festival – Wrap up!

We really enjoyed getting out and talking about the mission of Des Moines European Heritage Association at the World Food & Music Festival this weekend. The kids had a lot of fun as well:















































































BySuzanne Hull

DMEHA Receives Polk County Board of Supervisors Community Betterment Grant

In August, DMEHA was awarded the Community Betterment Grant Award by the Polk County Board of Supervisors and is happy to have their support. The Polk County Board of Supervisors offers this unique funding opportunity to community service organizations throughout Polk County. The Polk County Community Betterment Grant Program was designed to provide financial support to non-profit organizations that provide cultural, recreational, educational, and human needs services to citizens. Polk County has a rich history of partnering with public and private entities to provide effective programs and services to the community.

Des Moines European Heritage Association connects Iowans with European traditions, language education and cultural experiences; and it provides resources and tools to other cultural heritage organizations.