Des Moines Earns International Recognition for Best Festival City

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DES MOINES, Iowa  --  The World Food and Music festival wraps up on Sunday, but the capitol city will have bragging rights long after it's over.

The city was recently named one of the best festival cities in the world by the International Festivals and Events Association. Colleen Murphy, the city's downtown events director, says that's no surprise.

"We have a collaboration and sense of community that brings us together to produce these events. The community really supports it and comes out and embraces the events," she says.

The award recognizes cities with a tremendous impact on both the community and economy. Festivals like Bacon Fest, The Des Moines Farmers' Market, and the Des Moines Arts Festival have grown as the city grows. Des Moines resident Kellie Kramer says the festival scene was not very strong when she moved here in 2002.

"80/35 and the World Food and Music festival weren't really much of anything at that point, so it's been really exciting watching that grow," she says. "It's been a big part of why I've chosen to stay in Des Moines all this time."

According to the Internal Festivals and Events Association website, other cities that have earned the award include Shanghai, China; Sydney, Australia; and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.