Category Archives: Des Moines

Do not miss the “tape show” at the Des Moines Art Center

It is way cooler than it sounds, this show with giant site specific installations by artists who,use tape as their medium. Check out the photos here for proof. Our long overdue visit happened to coincide with an open house for kids and families from Findley Elementary School who worked with one of the artists on a installation of colorful bouquets taped  onto the gleaming white exterior of the Richard Meier wing. How cool is that? The kids seemed so excited to be the belles of the ball at the art center which threw a reception for the kids complete with servers with trays of delicious looking kid-friendly appetizers including grilled cheese sandwiches. And in the I.M. Pei wing long tunnels made of very strong tape were strung across the galleries, strong enough for kids and even their parents to crawl through. I love that the art center was willing to do that! Continue reading


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Filed under art galleries, Des Moines

for future reference West DSM: The Foundry!

A hall full of food truck fare?
Sounds interesting!

Looking forward to checking out The Foundry which opened recently in West Des Moines’ Valley Junction. See: Details here!

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Regina Spektor at Hoyt Sherman in DSM!

The invigorated Hoyt Sherman continues to offer great performances, most recently one last Monday by one-of-a-kind singer/songwriter Regina Spektor who soldiered her way through 2.5 hours of performing almost completely solo on stage, sometimes accompanying herself on piano or guitar, even singing a Capella, while battling bronchitis. Pretty gutsy and very talented. So pleased that Hoyt Sherman is once again offering phenomenal shows (Elvis Costello, Joe Jackson, Ben Harper, Lucinda Williams, Regina…to name a few)!

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Filed under Des Moines, music

Check out my story in Rails-to-Trails Conservancy’s magazine: the Raccoon River Valley Trail

Here it is!  Click here! (This is the photo taken by my friend Denise…that was used below. And yes, that’s me riding….)

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Filed under bike trails, biking, Des Moines, Iowa

Captain Roy’s – a new spot to stop while biking on the Neal Smith Trail in Des Moines

Good thing Dirck remembered that there is a new place to stop, as we were riding our bikes on the Neal Smith Trail near Birdland Marina  on Des Moines’ East Side Sunday.  We rode right past Captain Roy’s, without noticing it, but backtracked and found a pleasant little clearing with outdoor tables and a deck overlooking the Des Moines River, as well as a food truck serving burgers and chicken and waffles and a small building with a takeout window  for beer and other drinks. We sat in the sunshine, watching the occasional boat go by on the Des Moines River, enjoying a late summer/early fall day.

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Iowa State Fair 2017 – gorgeous weather brings lots of people but doesn’t feel crowded

The weather was so perfect (sunny and almost cool, not hot or humid) last Saturday that I feared the fairgrounds would be uncomfortably crowded. There were tons of people but the fair didn’t feel any more crowded than usual for a Saturday. There was a long line at the Dairy Barn, which is to be expected, and it remains the one place where I always feel sweaty, even in relatively cool temps, because there’s no shade.

But there was hardly any wait to get an egg-on-a-stick from the Iowa Egg Council inthe Ag Building or to get a ticket for the Sky Glider. We sailed right into the Pork Producer’s tent for dinner – maybe because it was relatively late? (about 7 p.m.)

The Midway did look cleaner, brighter and less seedy – as promised with the rebranding as Thrill Park. And I did overhear someone actually ordering a cheesy fried enchilada funnel cake – one of the “new foods” at the fair. No thank you. Other than that, just enjoyed the usual highlights, with the added bonus of having two of our grown kids and their significant others with us!

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Filed under agritourism, Des Moines, Iowa

Real onion bhajis in Des Moines…at a Nepalese Restaurant no less!

I fell in love with onion bhajis in the 1980s when I lived in London and started going to Indian restaurants. But I have rarely found them on menus in Indian restaurants in the U.S. so when I spotted them on the menu at Kathmandu, a new Nepalese restaurant on Des Moines south side, I had to violate my pledge not to eat Indian food at the restaurant (we wanted to stick with Nepalese entrees since we’ve rarely had Nepalese food) and glad I did.

 They were the real deal. crispy clumps of cut onions, battered and fried, served with two sauces. THink Indian onion rings that look more like a sloppy latke. WE also had chicken moma, a Nepalese dumpling and a Nepalese version of saag (spinach) creamed with chunks of potatoes. the restaurant looks like a bodega from the outside, on an uncharming thoroughfare known for ragtag shops, cheap motels, pawn shops, rough bars, used cars and immigrant- owned businesses.

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Filed under Des Moines, Dining