Photo Essay: Master Suite Transformed into a Luxurious Retreat
Sumptuous Urbandale master suite designed with warm, rich woods, upscale finishes, and a lavish en suite with all the amenities of a spa including a steam room and a soaking tub with fireplace, flat screen and amazing view! ... Read more »

See it for yourself tomorrow: We at dsm magazine are excited about the Tea Room's free public party, celebrating the recent 10th annual Restaurant Week and the long-awaited opening of the landmark


If you've registered for the big party in the Tea Room, don't forget that tomorrow is the day: Wednesday, Sept. 6, from 5 to 7 p.m. with a short program at 6 p.m. We're celebrating an anniversary—the recent 10th annual Restaurant Week—and the debut of the long-awaited, beautifully restored Tea Room.

Great news: It isn't too late to register. Although capacity is limited, we now have room for a few more. Registration is simple and free (and required for admission): Just click here.

You can park in one of the nearby garages, and enter the Tea Room from Eighth Street, on the northwest corner of the building (formerly Younkers, now the Wilkins Building). The gold doors bear the Tea Room logo. We and theTea Room hostsowner Blackbird Investments and managers Katy and Mark Nelsonwill be eager to welcome you and invite you to explore, enjoy some refreshments and envision the many events to come in this finely restored venue. Read more about the Tea Room in this dsm article.

Starring in "Souvenir" at Noce: Gina Gedler as Florence Foster Jenkins and Max Wellman as Cosme McMoon. Photo: Brandon Gedler.


By Michael Morain

Not just anyone can sing as horribly as Gina Gedler does in “Souvenir,” which runs Sept. 8-17 at Noce. You have to be good to sing so bad.

“It takes a lot of concentration,” Gedler says of her role as Florence Foster Jenkins (1868-1944), the New York chanteuse whose, um, unique vocal stylings once sold out a concert at Carnegie Hall. “It’s tough to be really bad in an abstract way, but it’s even harder to be just slightly off”as Jenkins often is in the recordings Gedler has been listening to during the last few weeks.

Gedler starred in the two-person show back in 2009 at Stoner Theater and is eager to revive itfeathered wings and allwith direction from Maxwell Schaeffer, musical guidance from Ben Hagen, and piano backup from Max Wellman as the diva’s long-suffering accompanist. Meryl Streep tackled the leading role in the Hollywood version that lit up theaters last year.

“It’s really, really funny, but it’s so heartfelt at the same time,” says Gedler, who gets to sing one song beautifully at the play’s end. “That’s when you realizeoh my goshthis woman really believed that’s how she sounded, God love her.”

Michael Morain writes about the arts and other topics for dsm magazine.

Marisa Adamson, a partner in the new KIN shop, created rings like these for her Daily Bliss Jewelry Design collection.


A grand opening from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 8, offers the best way to understand KIN, a new East Village shop where merchandise stretches from custom and vintage jewelry to apothecary wares and random household goods. “Rad stuff,” in the words of partners Marisa Adamson and Heather Ann Roe, who promise drinks and giveaways at the opening. Both are jewelry designers who got together at the inaugural Vintage & Made Fair in 2014. They decided on a tradea vintage turquoise Zuni ring from Roe’s Kin Vintage in exchange for a custom wedding band from Adamson’s Daily Bliss Jewelry Design. See where that exchange led them when you visit the new KIN, featuring local and American-made goods at 333 E. Grand, No. 107. In the meantime, read this story from the dsm archives about Adamson and Daily Bliss.

Dining Room Restoration
See how the dining room is in the center of the floor plan of the house? This makes a lot of sense. The dining room is the connection point. It connects food preparation with guests in the living room and with family in the solarium. It connects to entering guests in the foyer. ... Read more»

By Design presents dsmDining —

Rugged old bricks add a classic wine-cellar vibe to Vino209, a new wine bar and cafe in Valley Junction.


By Wini Moranville

Valley Junction has a dashing new wine bar and cafe—Vino209. The owners are husband-and-wife team Kelly and Denny Sharp; Kelly also owns the Heart of Iowa Market Place boutique next door.

I popped in to look around at a recent soft opening, and I liked what I saw. With its red-brick walls as a major design element, the ambiance taps right into the historic vibe of the neighborhood, and the thoroughly sleek and modern furnishings add sophistication. The storefront windows open wide onto Valley Junction's iconic Fifth Street, a feature that owner Kelly Sharp hopes will allow customers to "feel like you are a part of the district." Denny Sharp and the Sharps’ son, Cory Sharp, designed the space; both work for FEH Design.

In addition to offering 20 wines by the glassand dozens by the bottlethe versatile cafe serves pastries and coffee in the morning as well as salads, sandwiches, cheese boards, small plates and desserts for lunch and dinner. Beer and coffee (including espresso-based beverages) are also available. Hours are 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Wednesday; 7:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday through Saturday; and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

Sharp says that her goal is not only to provide a "comfortable, relaxed and enjoyable" venue, but also to bring traffic and new customers to the district. "We have so many wonderful shops and other restaurants, and I think that my cafe can be a draw for other businesses." She adds that she wanted to appeal to a wide variety of customers, including young adults, neighborhood residents, cyclists and other visitors.

A private tasting room is available for special events; these will include classes by Cooking with Alessandra, wine education classes and adult coloring classes.

While the cafe opened quietly last week, look for the grand opening this week; festivities will include live music, select food specials and giveaways on both Thursday, Sept. 7, and Saturday, Sept. 9.

Vino209 is at 209 Fifth St., West Des Moines; 515-865-6755;

Wini Moranville covers food, wine and dining for dsm. Follow her at All Things Food – DSM Wini Moranville.

Work by featured artists: Zoe Nelson (left), "Meditation in Blue," oil on canvas; Katy Kirbach (right), "Untitled," oil/acrylic on canvas.


Des Moines’ quirky and charming Yellow Door Gallery launches an autumn show with a salon event Saturday evening, Sept. 9. For the inside scoop on the gallery and salon concept and its creators, see this story in the new issue of dsm magazine.

The yellow door at 2121 Wakonda Drive opens at 6 p.m. for the exhibit "From Off to On," a two-person show by Chicago artists Katy Kirbach and Zoe Nelson. Salon performances, starting at 8 p.m., include words by Kyle McCord, music by Odd Pets and comedy by Tim Overton.

Attendance is capped at 65 and the suggested donation per person is $5 (all proceeds benefit the performers). The gallery provides light snacks, wine and beer, but a BYO libation or morsel to share is always commendable. For more information and to register, click here.

This artist's rendering shows the new, larger Ronald McDonald House to be built in just 11 days by crews working 24-7.


Here’s something worth watching: Over the course of just 11 days, starting Sept. 11, crews are going to work around the clock to build a new $3 million Ronald McDonald House at 15th and Pleasant streets. Its long-serving predecessor was demolished in August in preparation for Hubbell Realty Co.’s "Extreme Build" of the replacement. Near health centers around the country, Ronald McDonald houses provide lodging for the families of young hospital patients.

"We've done three builds like this—in 2006, 2009, 2013—and this year's will be by far the largest project we've ever taken on," Hubbell President and CEO Rick Tollakson reported.

Hubbell, along with subcontractors and vendors, will donate the majority of labor and materials. Volunteers are welcome to help in various roles. Click here to sign up for a four-hour shift assisting the project.

The beards are a fine distraction, but the real keys to the ZZ Top look are the hats. The Texas boys will be at the Civic Center Sept. 17.


Peek into the future of Greater Des Moines' arts and cultural events with these calendars. We at 
dsm magazine and the Business Record maintain this calendar with handy filters so you can see just the types of events you're searching for. Looking for even more categories? Check Catch Des Moines.
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