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Beyond the bar stool: 5 spots for boozy fun

Zoo Brew

If you thought you were too old for the zoo, think again. On Wednesday nights, all throughout the summer, the zoo is open to people 21 and older for a night of animal-watching and booze. The tortoises will remind you to slow down and enjoy a night with friends as you explore, and sip and sample brews. Enjoy live music, plus delish food found at the Safari Grill.

Find it: 7401 S.W. 9th St.

Hours: Wednesdays until August 26th. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. Doors close at 8:30 p.m.



Back then, Des Moines had a number of clubs called Key Clubs that allowed visitors to bring in their own drinks and relax in an open atmosphere of games and chilling with friends. Ricochet is bringing that back to Des Moines by inviting locals to BYOB and play games like darts, pool, ping pong, bags and several other options. It only costs $10 per person for unlimited game play or if you think you’d want to visit more often, monthly memberships are available for $35.

Find it: 502 E. Locust St.

Hours: 6 p.m. - 11 p.m. Thursday, 5 p.m. - 12 a.m. Friday, 7 p.m. - 12 a.m. Saturday


Volley’s Volleyball at Plaza Lanes

There’s nothing like a summer night spent with a cold drink in your hand, sand in your toes and a couple of aces on the volleyball court. Volley’s Volleyball has a great bar and makes you feel like you’re on the beach when really you’re just off of Douglas Avenue. If you’re looking for a fun challenge, register for the 2015 Beverage In Hand tournament.

Find it: 2701 Douglas Ave.



Forty arcade games, pinball machines, three Skee-ball alleys, Nintendo and Sega console gaming, life-sized connect four and much more are in Up-Down. It’s essentially your best friend’s basement with 15 unique craft beers from around Iowa and other well-known craft beer breweries. It’s a hot spot on the weekend and a fun hangout after concerts at Wooly’s. If you attend a concert at Wooly’s be sure to stop down afterward because your ticket can be cashed in for some tokens.

Find it: 500 E. Locust St.

Hours: 5 p.m. - 2 a.m. Monday - Friday, 2 p.m. - 2 a.m. Saturday, 2 p.m. - 2 a.m. Sunday


Pinot's Palette

After a few drinks, some of us can get pretty creative — sometimes in a good way and sometimes not so much. Well, this time you’ll have guidance for creativity from both your glass of wine and patient, creative local painter. Most painting classes start about $35 and can go up to $40. Check out their calendar to see what kind of paintings you’ll be creating. If you and your friends are looking for a relaxing time out, take a sip at Pinot's Palette.

Find it: 900 42nd St., Des Moines

Hours: view online calendar for classes