Get Involved with Christkindlmarket Des Moines | Attend

BySuzanne Hull

Get Involved with Christkindlmarket Des Moines | Attend

Christkindlmarket Des Moines will take place in Western Gateway Park (just west of the downtown Des Moines Library) December 2 – 4, 2016. There will be something for everyone, so please mark your calendars and invite your friends to Like the Facebook Fan Page.

Dec 2nd, 2016: 11am – 9pm
Dec 3rd, 2016: 11am – 9pm
Dec 4th, 2016: 11am – 5pm

Christmas Market in Jena, Germany

Christmas Market in Jena, Germany


  • Mission: Educate, entertain and delight the Midwest by producing Iowa’s premiere German-inspired Christmas market
  • 30 vendors (5 food and 15 non food), vending outdoors in stalls
  • Kinder Korner: an indoor area where kids can be exposed to various European languages, sing songs, color pictures, hear traditional stories, etc.
  • Entertainment: high school choirs, church choirs, carolers dressed in period costume, traditional brass bands, blacksmith demonstrations, bell choirs, etc.
  • Google Images of Christmas Markets around the world –


  • A European-style Christmas Market in Des Moines will provide a warm, friendly gathering place for residents and tourists.
  • This experience will provide the perfect field trip opportunity for teachers and professors of European languages and cultures.
  • Children will be exposed to different cultures through crafts, songs and food, creating an awareness of other cultures.
  • Charming Christmas markets are one answer to holiday commercialism. Instead of mass-produced gifts, these markets feature unique, hand-crafted items, purchased from vendors who have often crafted the items themselves.
  • Regional businesses will have the opportunity to showcase their seasonal products.

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21 comments so far

LIsa GardnerPosted on11:16 am - Nov 8, 2015

Have all the Carolers already been booked? I sing with the Glastonbury Revelers. We sing madrigals and period music In costume either victorian or renaissance. We may be interested in caroling at this event… How do we become involved in this?

SarahPosted on5:15 pm - Nov 8, 2015

Is this really not until 2016?

    Suzanne HullPosted on5:20 pm - Nov 8, 2015

    Hi Sarah!

    Yes, the first Christkindlmarket Des Moines will be in 2016. There is quite a bit of planning involved, so we thought we would take our time to do everything just right!

Doug R.Posted on6:00 pm - Nov 8, 2015

Hmm…sure you can’t make this happen THIS year? My wife has been chomping at the bit to go back to Germany over the Christmas season…

    Suzanne HullPosted on6:05 pm - Nov 8, 2015

    Hi Doug! Thanks for your note and enthusiasm. There are quite a few moving parts to these types of events and we’re literally starting from scratch! If you’d like to become involved in helping plan the event, we would love your help! Just let us know! P.S. I’m chomping at the bit as well!

DavidPosted on6:20 pm - Nov 8, 2015

Are there plans to have Glühwein and commemorative mugs?

    Suzanne HullPosted on5:51 am - Nov 9, 2015

    Hi David! It just wouldn’t be a Christkindlmarket/Weihnachtsmarkt without Glühwein and commemorative mugs! Those are definitely two features we will do our best to incorporate into the event…

Christy ForbesPosted on9:44 pm - Nov 8, 2015

I am so happy to see this. We were stationed in Germany with the Army and we really enjoyed Christkindlmarts. I am looking forward to this event!
Would there be a need for guides or information people?
I am part of a VFW Auxiliary and I can ask if they would like to help out.
As time gets closer and details are worked out, can you let me know what your volunteer needs are? I can forward them to the local Auxiliaries to see if we could help. I almost can’t wait for next December to get here!

Also, the high schools in the area have something called the Silver Cord. This is something that high school students can earn by doing community service.
I’m sure you could get a lot of volunteers from the local high schools. 🙂

    Suzanne HullPosted on5:57 am - Nov 9, 2015

    Hi Christy! I LOVE your enthusiasm! I would like to encourage both you and your VFW Auxiliary folks to sign up for our electronic communications and indicate that you would like to “volunteer”. As these needs develop, we will reach out to the volunteers in this manner to let them know of our needs. ​

    I know that Waukee High School has a silver cord program, but I do not know of any others. I’ll have to look into that. Thanks for the reminder.

    And we are offering this event with no admission fees to the general public, so we could definitely use your financial support: Any amount helps and please spread the word!

StefanPosted on8:46 am - Nov 9, 2015

What a great idea. I will try to visit the weihnachsmarkt with our friends from Des Moines next year.
I guess there is a lot of planing before.

Best wishes
Stefan from Germany

Lynne MelssenPosted on11:04 am - Nov 9, 2015

My spouse and I have been booked in past years as “Dickens style” strolling characters – we would be interested in being booked for your Inaugural Christkindlmarket 2016.

    Suzanne HullPosted on11:07 am - Nov 9, 2015

    Hi Lynne! That would be amazing! I’ve got your name and email address and we’ll reach out as we get closer to next year’s event. Thanks!

DougPosted on11:40 am - Nov 9, 2015

I just sent a detailed email to the gmail address offering my help and assistance. My wife and I have visited hundreds of Germany Christmas markets over the years and are so excited about helping get this started in Des Moines. We will be at this year’s markets for almost three weeks again…can’t wait!

    Suzanne HullPosted on11:52 am - Nov 9, 2015

    Hi Doug – I just received your email and will respond to you there. Have fun visiting the German Christmas markets again this year!!!

RachelPosted on5:03 pm - Nov 9, 2015

This sounds incredible!! Although I’m sad that there will not be one this year, I understand that in order to do it justice, there needs to be some planning. As a new resident of Des Moines, what are some other cool Christmas things to visit here??

PamPosted on11:38 am - Nov 10, 2015

I was getting so excited, then saw it was next year!! Can’t wait. This is a fabulous idea.

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