• Mayor's Annual Ride and Run for Trails

    On April 19, join us for the 2014 Mayor's Annual Ride AND Run for Trails. In addition to the ride, a 5k run has been added to the day's events. Fees are: $30 per adult, $5 for children ages 5 - 17, children 4 & younger are free. Participate in both the ride and run for an additional $5.

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    More Info & Registration

  • Early Bird Season Pool Passes Available Online!

    New in 2014, season pool passes are available for purchase online. Purchase yours during the month of April at a discounted early bird rate. Individual - $40, First two in family - $75, First three in family - $100, First four in family - $120, Each additional person over four in family - $5.

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    Purchase Yours Today!

  • Swimming Lesson Registration Now Open!

    Online registration for swimming lessons is now available. Class sizes are restricted and registration is first come first served. In order to get your preferred class, dates and/or times sign up online starting today at 8:00 a.m.

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  • Kite Festival

    Des Moines Parks and Recreation is hosting Kite Fest on May 17 at Gray's Lake from 2:00 - 4:00pm. Register online by May 13. Cost is only $5. Fee includes a kite to assemble, flying instructions and hours of kite flying fun! Click the link below to sign up today!

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    Sign Up Now!

  • Summer Bags League Registration

    Register now for the Summer Des Moines Bags League! The league will play at the Hub Spot. Teams of 2 adults (18+) compete on Wednesday nights for 6 weeks plus a tournament. League play begins June 4. Cost is $35 per team.

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    Register Now!

  • Seasonal Employment Opportunities

    Des Moines Parks and Recreation offers many different seasonal employment opportunities in three divisions: Aquatics, Parks/Buildings and Recreation. To view all current openings please click the link below.

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    Current Openings

Don't Let Them Mark Your Turf

 

The City of Des Moines operates a graffiti removal program to “erase” graffiti that appears in our neighborhoods, on public property and in commercial areas. Graffiti includes undesirable messages, scribbles, and symbols that are usually spray- or hand- painted on fences, buildings, bridges, and other structures, as well as on objects such as trees, trash dumpsters and street signs.  The ugly results can require much work and expense to remove.   The number of incidences of graffiti continues to increase in our city each year; over 90% of them are the result of gangs marking or “tagging” their respective areas of turf and sending messages to rival gangs. 
 

The city’s graffiti program is administered by the Park and Recreation Department, which handles removal, and the Police Department’s Gang Unit, which tracks the locations and messages to monitor for possible gang activity and to create various types of reports.   Parks’ goal is to have HATE graffiti removed within 24 hours or less of its reporting, and GANG graffiti eliminated within three working days.  Although police patrols of the City’s Neighborhood Based Service Delivery (NBSD) Program are constantly on the lookout for and reporting graffiti sightings, the Parks and Police Departments rely on the eyes of the public to help them eliminate graffiti.

 

How to Report Graffiti

 

Anyone, anywhere, anytime can report the location and nature of a graffiti sighting to the Park and Recreation Department via email  or phone (515) 248-6350 or the Police Graffiti Hot Line: (515) 237-1808.   
 

Facts About Grafitti in Des Moines

 

Following are the number of reported graffiti incidences in the past three years:

2007 – 1121
2008 – 1277
2009  - 1392

 

Over 90% of these graffiti cases are  gang-related. 50% of them occur on private property and the other 50% are on public property. Private property includes places of business, houses, garages, fences and other buildings. Public property includes bridges, over- and under-passes, freeway walls on the non-DOT side, utility boxes and poles, trees, sidewalks, park property, etc.  Schools and the DOT take care of their own incidences of graffiti so the numbers cited do not include graffiti on those properties. Also not included are incidences taken care of by private property owners without being reported to police.

 

The City contracts graffiti removal through a bid process; the current contract is for $43.50/hour plus the cost of paint supplies, which is generally around $5,000 annually. White paint is used on the majority of surfaces; when paint is not the solution, a product called Elephant Snot is used for removal on fences, metal buildings, etc.