Special Events

Join us for any of these special events by participating, volunteering or making a gift to help us grow our impact.



DMARC’s signature fundraiser is held at the beginning of May and invites members of the community for an evening of food and fun. Join us on April 11, 2024 at Capital Square in downtown Des Moines. All proceeds will benefit the Des Moines Area Religious Council (DMARC), an interfaith organization committed to fighting food insecurity.


The National Association of Letter Carriers’ (NALC) annual Stamp Out Hunger® food drive

On the second Saturday of May, be sure to leave out your donation of healthy, in-date, non-perishable food items to be picked up by your letter carrier. DMARC is the local recipient of the Stamp Out Hunger® food drive in Greater Des Moines. In 2023, over 41,000 pounds of food were contributed through Stamp Out Hunger®. And if you forget to leave out your donation, don’t fret! You can make an online contribution to DMARC that will be credited to the Stamp Out Hunger® food drive.


Meals From the Market

Meals from the Market is a partnership with the Des Moines Downtown Farmers’ Market presented by UnityPoint Health – Des Moines which began in 2009. From April to October, volunteers help canvas and collaborate with vendors to provide donations of unsold produce to support the DMARC Food Pantry Network. Since 2014, Meals From The Market has contributed more than 255,000 pounds of fresh local food to people experiencing hunger and food insecurity in Greater Des Moines. At the end of The Market, volunteers then collect and load donated produce into a truck, and it is then distributed throughout the DMARC Food Pantry Network over the coming days. Those interested in volunteering with Meals From The Market can sign up online at dmarcunited.org/volunteer.

Iowa Cubs Sunday Home Games

Take me out to the ball game! A special partnership with the Iowa Cubs allows baseball fans free admission to any Sunday home game (approx. 1 p.m. start time) with the donation of three food items to the DMARC Food Pantry. Donations can be made at the DMARC booth at Gate B. Games run from April through September and volunteers are needed to help at the booth. Those interested in volunteering can sign up online at dmarcunited.org/volunteer.

Annual Meeting

All are welcome! Spring TBD

For years the Annual Meeting served as an opportunity for members of our voting delegation to help steer DMARC towards the best path forward to meet the basic needs of our community. Today this event serves as an opportunity to celebrate the achievements of the last year while taking a look ahead at the strategic focus of our organization and show what ways we hope to make the biggest impact in the coming year.The event is traditionally held in mid-May.



other events


    DMARC YP is a diverse group of committed young professionals, dedicated to create awareness of food insecurity in our community and support DMARC’s efforts to end it. Throughout the year DMARC YP is active with all DMARC programming and hosts fundraising events of their own to support DMARC. Their signature event, Bike Out Hunger, is a 23 mile fun ride that can be completed on your own time. The event is held in the fall and registration is $25.

    Other DMARC YP events include trivia nights throughout the year, DMARCh Madness,  holiday drives, and other networking events.

  • Halloween on the Hill

    Des Moines’s premier Halloween night event – October 31 from 6:30-8:30 pm. Residents of the historic Sherman Hill neighborhood will be going all out to decorate their homes with spooky scenes while collecting donations for the Des Moines Area Religious Council (DMARC) Food Pantry Network.  Visitors can expect to see lots of creatures roaming the streets, Medieval knights, zombie spiders, Freddy Kruger, a full-size pirate ship, live performances of Thriller, and much more. This is a free event is and attendees are asked to bring contributions of non-perishable food or donations to support the DMARC pantry. This event is all trick, no treat. Visit www.shermanhilldsm.org for more info.

  • Doug M. Woods Memorial Hunger Challenge

    Every single person has the opportunity to make a positive difference in their community. Doug Woods was one such person who found delight in giving and made a lasting difference in his community. DMARC will forever be inspired by and grateful for his spirit of generosity.

    The Doug M. Woods Memorial Hunger Challenge happens over the course of the month of March and is an excellent way to engage your congregation or small group with food insecurity in our community.

    In the ten years since the first challenge, the event has raised a total of over 800k dollars in support of the DMARC Food Pantry Network over ten years. This total included over 2,000 gifts that were donated to DMARC because and as part of his challenge.

  • Souper Bowl of Caring

    The Souper Bowl of Caring is a national campaign that works to mobilize those looking to fight hunger and poverty in their own communities around the time of the big football game. In the weeks leading up to the game you can fundraise or hold a food and funds drive.

  • DMARCh Madness

    Take advantage of the Madness of March and get off the bench in the fight against food insecurity. This online hybrid event is held every year in the days leading up to the madness. Participants compete to win fun prizes by filling out a bracket online and making a $20 donation.