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Community filled with richness

Posted May 22, 2013 in Community Featured, Beaverdale

I am amazed month after month at the richness we have here in the West Side of Des Moines. We are rich in the diversity of our schools, the uniqueness of our businesses and the blessing of our culture and history.

This past month, Chamber members experienced some of this richness, starting with our Business After Hours at Vom Fass in the Roosevelt Cultural District. Vom Fass’ owner, Melissa Bartholomew, gave us a tour, and we were able to sample and purchase their exclusive cask-aged vinegars, exquisite oils and unique spirits and liqueurs direct from cask, as well as their select wines.

Next we connected with our legislators and their goals for this year at our joint Downtown/West Side Legislative Coffee. Thank you to Representative Marti Anderson and Senator Matt McCoy and our members for attending and participating in this event, which took place at the Des Moines Public Library’s downtown location.

Our April 17 Wake Up West Side took place at one of the treasures in Des Moines’ West Side, Salisbury House and Gardens. The historic items in Salisbury House’s library have until recently been locked away for safe keeping and not open to the public. Now, Executive Director J. Eric Smith hosts the Treasures Tour on the fourth Thursday of every month. On these evenings, you can experience rarely viewed precious objects of the Salisbury House collection in a small group setting. Learn more at

Next the West Side Chamber joined with the Downtown Chamber again in celebrating and learning about the diamond we have in the Des Moines Public Schools Central Campus at our Luncheon with the Schools event, when attendees were served a wonderful meal prepared by the culinary arts students at Central Campus and toured the campus that trains our future community leaders.

We closed the month of April by celebrating Earth Day. We appreciated our surroundings and beautified our neighborhoods when we took to the streets during the annual Trash Bash, sponsored by Jessie’s Embers. We want to thank the students from Roosevelt High School for their help each year.

As I close, I pause and think about how grateful I am to live in an amazing and unique community and to be a part of an organization that supports, celebrates and works to enhance and sustain the richness of the Des Moines West Side, its unique businesses, diverse population and its culture and history. Yes, I believe there is no finer place to raise our children, run our businesses or find the goodness in those around us. And, as we share our prayers for those in Boston, let us take a moment to also be thankful for the rich blessing we all share right here in our own community.

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