Help us celebrate the 20 Latin countries that are represented in Iowa!

  • When

    Saturday, September 22nd, 2018 – 10AM to 11PM

    Sunday, September 23rd, 2018 – 10AM to 6PM

  • Where

    Western Gateway Park in downtown Des Moines

  • Admission

    Adults – $5

    Children 12 and younger – $1

  • Parking

    Free parking is available courtesy of Nationwide in the Nationwide Ramp at 1100 Walnut Street. Free street parking is also available downtown on the weekends.



We are currently working on booking the 2018 Entertainment Schedule

2017 Entertainment Schedule

Saturday, Sept. 23
11 a.m. – DJ FITO
12 p.m – Los niños del Tepeyac
1 p.m. – Opening Ceremony
1:45 p.m. – Brazilian Moves
3 p.m. – Jovenes Embajadores
4:15 p.m. – Mariachi Azteca
5:15 p.m. – Yamir
6 p.m. – Corn eating contest sponsored by DM Metro CU
6:30 p.m. – REVOLUCION DE AMOR (Tribute to Mana)
8 p.m. – La Obra
9:45 p.m. – DJ JULIAN

Sunday, Sept. 24

11 a.m. – DJ Problema
12 p.m. – Los niños del Tepeyac
1 p.m. – Jovenes Embajadores
2:10 p.m. – Son Peru
3:10 p.m. – El Toque
4:30 p.m. – Los Parranderos Latin Combo


The exhibit includes many local Iowa Latino arts and crafts. There is photography, oils, acrylic paintings, sculptures, and performance art.  These artists have come together to  integrate their unique experience as Latino Iowans and which reflects an often-ignored segment of Iowa’s history.  The Iowa Latino Heritage Festival is proud to provide a platform for this creative voice to be heard!

If you wish to exhibit art, please contact Aaron Martinez at


Recognizing that food has been one of the most successful ways of sharing one’s culture, festival organizers have always intended to partner with diverse, quality food vendors representing the culinary traditions of Latin America.  The Iowa Latino Heritage Festival has become a prime selling and marketing opportunity for all businesses involved. Food vendors have easily made back 9 to 10 times their investment and have received invaluable marketing exposure for their small businesses.


Another top draw among festival attendees, the cultural booths have come to represent most Latin American countries, providing audiences with a deeper cultural understanding of the nuance and diversity within the Latino community.  One of the most prevalent comments is “I didn’t know their are so many Latin American people from so many different countries in Iowa!”  It has made us extremely proud to give populations of Latinos a voice and presence to celebrate and share their country’s heritage.  As people visit these cultural booths, they learn about dance, arts and crafts, food, language, customs, politics, demographics, celebrations, and so much more.  It is the type of information that enriches a student’s learning no matter the age, and one which equips all Iowa employees to understand the richness of diversity.


The activities in the children’s area help to accomplish a cultural exchange and affirmation that is not experienced by most children in school. Festival attendees each year say they value and appreciate the family-friendly environment of the festival. Activities range from jumping castles to pinata making. The vision of providing hands-on educational activities for children has guided the festival from the beginning. Last year there were more hands-on children’s activities than ever, and we hope to continue that for the 2018 festival.


The festival has always intended to provide its audience a quality and balanced array of information, products, and services through exhibitors.  Over the years, exhibitors ranging from professional business services, retail, churches, health and social agencies, to political parties have all taken an interest in reaching this untapped market.  We believe that the loyalty we have built with these exhibitors speaks to the value they see in participating in the festival.

Each year, over 90% of exhibitors return to display their products, to roll out a new initiative, to recruit bilingual employees, or simply to build brand awareness.  The demand from exhibitors has become so great in fact, that is has afforded us the luxury of being more selective in our exhibitors such that the best products and services are being presented to festival attendees.  In addition, we have been able to diversify our exhibitors to have a more regional reach.