Iowa is excited to host the MARC 2019 annual meeting in Des Moines!




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Join us for an outstanding four days featuring great speakers, fantastic networking opportunities, and some exciting “Blue-Ribbon" fun!

For more exciting things to do and local restaurants in Des Moines - check here!!



The conference will be held at the Hilton Downtown Des Moines hotel.  We will begin with a welcome reception on the evening of Sunday, August 11, at the Hilton.  

In addition to a full agenda for the conference, we’ll have great food and entertainment at the Des Moines Botanical Gardens, and a trip to the Iowa State Fair to explore more than 400 acres that include such features as the famed butter cow, a functioning wind turbine, live entertainment, and hundreds of traditional Iowa fair foods. 


There will be opportunities for guests to attend activities on Sunday, August 11th, Monday, August 12th, and Tuesday, August 13th. Here’s some of what we have in store: 

Sunday, August 11th

Afternoon Activity

Iowa Cubs Baseball Game (Family Activity)

 Iowa Cubs Logo

Image courtesy of Iowa Cubs Website

Minor league baseball provides a great opportunity to see tomorrow’s major league stars in a family-friendly environment.  MARC attendees and their guests may choose to spend Sunday afternoon at Principal Park enjoying a game between the Iowa Cubs (AAA affiliates of the Chicago Cubs) and the visiting Salt Lake Bees (Los Angeles Angels affiliate) with beautiful views of the Des Moines skyline and the Iowa State Capitol building from your seats.  The game begins at 1:08 p.m.   More information can be found here.  

Evening Activity

Welcome Reception

The Welcome Reception, sure to be "Iowa-nice," will be held at the Downtown Des Moines Hilton.  We will experience a taste of what Iowa has to offer.

Monday, August 12th

Guest will experience a day of fun at some of Des Moines’ most popular attractions.

Morning Activity

Blank Park Zoo (Family Activity)


Image courtesy of Blank Park Zoo Website

We will first visit the Blank Park Zoo, “Iowa’s Wildest Adventure!”  See more than 1,000 furry, finned, and feathered friends found in the tropical rainforests, Australian Outback, and Africa

and don’t miss the sea lions as they are being trained.  There are 22 acres of animal exhibits and more than 104 animal species.  For additional nominal fees you can

ride the train, ride a camel, and feed the giraffes and goats.  More information can be found at


Science Center of Iowa (Family Activity)

About SCI

Image courtesy of Science Center of Iowa Website

Experience the Science-Surrounds-Us-All Actuality at this 110,000-square-foot creative lifelong learning center in the heart of Downtown Des Moines.  By placing the power of learning in the hands of the visitor with interactive experiences for all ages, the emphasis at the SCI is less on what to learn and more on how to learn.  More information can be found at

Evening Activity

Botanical Garden Reception

Spectral Liberation, June 2015. Photo by Scott Shigley.

Image courtesy of Des Moines Botanical Garden Website

Enjoy an evening of great food and entertainment at the seven-acre public garden in the heart of downtown Des Moines.

Tuesday, August 13th

Morning Activity

Iowa State Capitol Tour (Family Activity)


Image courtesy of Wikipedia

A tour of the capitol will be repeated for those who visited the Science Center on Monday afternoon.  

Afternoon and Evening Activity

Iowa State Fair (Family Activity)

“Nothing Compares” to Iowa’s most popular summer attraction and we’ll provide transportation and admission to the fair for MARC attendees and family members. Enjoy three thrill parks, hands-on activities, strolling entertainers, and stage performers throughout the day and evening. Join us for a fairgrounds tour or participate in a scavenger hunt, then take a break under the covered Farm Bureau Picnic Shelter reserved for MARC guests with a short evening reception and awards for scavenger hunt participants! Visit the Iowa State Fair website for information about this summertime staple.

What's going on Tuesday at the FAIR, you ask???  Let's find out!

Find out more of what YOU can do when you


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