Events coming up this week

Please put up a comment if you know of an event I've missed, or e-mail me to let me know about upcoming events: desmoinesdem AT

A bunch of meetups and other events are listed on William Meyers' website (, but I couldn't find details about the time or location for any of those.

I listed the central Iowa events for Bike to Work week, but there are also events taking place in Iowa City and the Quad Cities. Go here to find a link to those event schedules:

Monday, May 12:

Bike with Congressman Leonard Boswell, 7:45 a.m., 39th and Grand Avenue, ride to 300 E. Locust in Des Moines. Federal, state, and city policy makers will ride to kick off the work week. The number of riders demonstrates to them how many of us are watching and listening and demanding safer bicycle facilities.

Becky Greenwald, a Democratic candidate in the IA-04 primary, will be in Decorah from 7-8 p.m. at the Oaks Restaurant to meet and talk with Democratic activists in Winneshiek County.

Tuesday, May 13:

Bike Kollective Breakfast, 6:00 a.m. - 8:30 a.m. • 617 Grand Avenue in Des Moines. Stop down, grab a bite and check out the new space called the Des Moines Bike Kollective (while supplies last).

The Interfaith Alliance of Iowa Annual Award Dinner, Reception at 6 pm, Dinner at 7 pm, Hotel Fort Des Moines, 1000 Walnut Street, Des Moines. The Keynote Speaker will be The Right Reverend Jane Holmes Dixon, retired Episcopal Bishop of Washington; second woman in the United States to be elevated to the office of Bishop. The Interfaith Award will be presented to Rekha Basu. The Des Moines Gay Men's Chorus will perform. Individual reservations are $50. Although reservations for this event were due by May 8, you may be able to squeeze in. For more information, email or call (515) 279-8715.

One Iowa "Happy Hour/Coffee House" at Ritual Cafe, 13th St. between Grand and Locust in downtown Des Moines, 5 pm to 6:45 pm. This is a time to meet like-minded friends and relax in a welcoming atmosphere. If you have never attended, the Happy Hour crowd will put you right at ease. If you are a regular or have attended in the past, we want you to come see how we have grown! On Tuesday, One Iowa has the honor to host Mathew Skuya, one of One Iowa's Regional Organizers at Ritual; he will talk about the all of the Pride events happening around Des Moines and throughout Iowa in June, and discuss how you can become more involved.  Matt's presentation will start at 5:30pm. Ritual Cafe is an LGBT-operated coffee shop and cafe offering "really great coffee and food" in an open and affirming place.

State Representative District 16 Forum and local Democratic candidates, 7 pm at the Decorah City Hall, Council Chambers. For further info contact Lyle Otte, 563-382-3137

House party for Jerry Sullivan, candidate in House district 59, at the home of Kerry Bowen in Windsor Heights, starting at 6:30 pm. Call 274-1877 to RSVP and get address details.

Wednesday, May 14:

This is the last day of the current reporting period for candidates seeking state offices in Iowa. Donate to one or more Democrats facing a tough House or Senate race!

"Helmet Hair Specials" are available at participating businesses all over the state as part of Bike to Work Week. Coffee shops all over the metro are offering those who bike and shop great deals. Show your support, because these businesses support us! After the jump I've put the full list of Des Moines-area businesses offering discounts to bicyclists on Wednesday.

Thursday, May 15:

If you need maintenance done on your bicycle, this is the day to take it to a participating bike shop. Many of them are offering deals on maintenance items as well as maintenance classes on this day. Call your local bike shops for details.

Friday, May 16:

It's the official Bike to Work Day. Go to for a list of free breakfasts, showers and staging locations. Staging locations are for camaraderie, commuting with friends, and creating a group of cyclists for visibility. Today one lucky registered rider will win the grand CASH prize! Awards will also be announced for the top Two Bicycle Clubs and Employers with the most registered riders.

"Potluck" Commuter breakfast in Ames, 6:15 a.m. - 8:00 a.m., Skunk River Cycles. Coffee, juice, and some bagels/bakery goods will be provided. Free to bring something to share with others that stop in. While supplies last.

Afterwork drop-in following Bike to Work day, 5:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m. at the Stomping Grounds in Ames (303 Welch Avenue in Campustown). Stop and share stories of the day and put your name in the drawing for prizes.

Crossroads Luncheon organized by The Interfaith Alliance of Iowa.The Crossroads speaker is Rev. Dr. Jim Ryan, Executive Director of Colorado Council of Churches (formerly Executive Director of Ecumenical Ministries of Iowa & senior minister at First Christian Church, Des Moines). The concept of his new book Doing Justice in a Purple Congregation and of the conversation at Crossroads is there really are no red or blue congregations but a mixture (making purple).  Yet, how do purple congregations really "do" social justice to create change?  It is a very relevant conversation in these times and at the intersection of religion and politics.  Reservations are due by noon this Tuesday, May 13. For more information, email or call (515) 279-8715.

Handlebar Happy Hour celebrating Bike to Work week starts at 5 pm at the El Bait Shop, 200 SW 2nd St, Des Moines. Ed Fallon will ride his bike down to the event and play his accordian.

Saturday, May 17:

Pancake breakfast for Windsor Heights Firefighters, 8 am to 1 pm at the Windsor Heights City Hall (a block south of University on 66th St.). Windsor Heights Mayor Jerry Sullivan, candidate for House district 59, will be there. It's a fun event for families--kids can see and even touch a real fire truck! $5 per person or $10 per family.

The Iowa Chapter of the Sierra Club is having a fundraiser for its Political Action Committee at the Des Moines Botanical Center, 909 Robert D Ray Dr., May 17, 2008 from 3-5 PM. Refreshments will be served. The cost is $50. A presentation by Ty Smeades, nature photographer, called "Things Worth Saving" combines, wildflowers, wildlife, and Iowa scenes, into a 17 minute show set to music. Ty says, "I truly went the quality route with this show". Contact Debbie Neustadt at debbieneu AT if you plan to attend.

Sunday, May 18:

Fourth Congressional District Democratic candidate Forum:

1:00-2:00 p.m. Knights of Columbus Hall, Waukon

2:30-4:00 p.m. at The Oaks Steakhouse, Highway 9 in Decorah

5:00-6:00 p.m. at Mabe's Pizza, Cresco

For further info contact Barb Ettleson 563-382-1469

Ride your bike every Wednesday in May and enjoy various discounts. Watch for the Helmet Hair Special posters in the window and make sure you thank them for participating.

(updated May 5, 2008)

Des Moines

9th Street Deli - 1111 9th Street

Baby Boomer - 313 E. Locust

Black Cat - 3701 Ingersoll

First Cup Café - 2100 East 14th

Friedrichs Coffee - 4126 University

Friedrichs Coffee - 801 Grand

Friedrichs Coffee - 1801 22nd Street

Friedrichs Coffee - 4632 86th Street

Friedrichs Coffee - 699 Walnut

Great Harvest Bread Co. - 543 28th Street

Grounds for Celebration - 2645 Beaver Avenue

Grounds for Celebration - 6601 University Avenue

Gong Fu - 414 East 6th

Java Be Good - 3801 Ingersoll

Java Joe's - 214 4th Street

Mars Café - 2318 University

Ritual Café - 13th and Locust

Village Bean - 400 East Locust

West End Salvage - 22 9th Street

Zanzibars - 2723 Ingersoll

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