By Sofia Legaspi Dickens

Baseball, football, soccer, racing — take your pick. Des Moines offers a plethora of opportunities to enjoy professional sporting events. Check websites for the most up-to-date schedules.

Principal Park, 1 Line Drive, Des Moines
Iowa’s minor league baseball team affiliated with the Chicago Cubs. Established as the Iowa Oaks in 1969, they switched over in 1982 and have been the Iowa Cubs ever since. As a Triple-A East team, the Iowa Cubs fall only one grade below Major League Baseball. Enjoy this classic American sport at Principal Park with all the essential fixins: bleachers, popcorn, hot dogs — play ball!

Wells Fargo Arena, 730 Third St., Des Moines
Iowa’s professional indoor football team, the Barnstormers are wrapping up their 2022 season with new head coach Dave Mogensen, former assistant general manager for the Albany Empire. The final home game is July 2 at “The Well.” Check website for full game schedule.

Valley Stadium, 4440 Mills Civic Parkway, West Des Moines
Iowa’s semi-professional soccer league and current champions of United Soccer League (USL) League Two, the fourth tier of the American soccer pyramid. The Des Moines Menace soccer team is considered one of the nation’s top amateur soccer organizations. The team returns after a historic 2021 season.

1 Prairie Meadows Drive, Altoona
On top of endless entertainment and wagering opportunities, Prairie Meadows also offers live and simulcast horse racing. Stake your bet and giddy up at these events this racing season:
  • Fridays, through June 17: Live thoroughbred racing at 6 p.m.
  • Sundays, June 19 - Sept 25: Live thoroughbred and quarter horse racing at 4 p.m.
  • Aug. 20-21: Regional challenge finals
  • Oct. 1: Iowa Classic

Marion County Fairgrounds, 1000 N. Lincoln, Knoxville
Originally used for horse-racing, the Knoxville Raceway now hosts a different type of sport: sprint car racing. Visit the “Sprint Car Capital of the World” at racing events scheduled on most weekends, or at one of the major events below:
  • July 10: Brandt Professional Agriculture Corn Belt Clash
  • Aug. 4-6: 32nd 360 Knoxville Nationals
  • Aug. 7: 11th Annual Capitani Classic
  • Aug. 10-13: 61st NOS Energy Drink Knoxville Nationals
  • Sept. 15-17: 18th Lucas Oil Late Model Knoxville Nationals

1481 223rd Place, Boone
This 1/3-mile high-banked dirt oval is known as “Iowa’s Action Track.” Catch their weekly Saturday night series through Aug. 13, or other special events:
  • July 4: Eve of Destruction
  • July 8-9: Hawkeye 100 World of Outlaws Late Models
  • Aug. 27: ICMA Super Nationals Tune-Up
  • Sept. 3-4: Wild Rose Casino Prelude to the Super Nationals
  • Sept. 5-10: 2022 IMCA Speedway Motors Super Nationals

3333 Rusty Wallace Drive, Newton
More racing — this time, paved. The Iowa Speedway boasts a 7/8-mile track. If you don’t feel like sitting in a regular chair, bring your RV to the multi-tiered viewing area situated along the backstretch. This season’s events include:
  • June 11: ARCA Menards Series Race 150
  • July 22-24: Hy-Vee IndyCar Weekend


Historic baseball at Living History Farms, included in general admission. The Walnut Hill Bluestockings will play by 1876 rules. 11121 Hickman Road, Urbandale; lhf.org
  • May 28 at 3 p.m.
  • June 18 at 3 p.m.
  • July 2 at 3 p.m.
  • Sept. 17 at 3 p.m.