Blank Park Zoo
Blank Park Zoo

Open Daily, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
$18 adults, $12 children

View All Rates ›

Open Daily, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
$18 adults, $12 children

View All Rates ›

UPCYCLE Stewards

Des Moines Parks and Recreation, Blank Park Zoo, Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation, and Trees Forever invite you join us for UPCYCLE this summer! Come help restore Gray’s Lake’s woodlands, provide browse for the Zoo’s animals, and connect with your community at this unique event. No experience necessary, you do not need to fill out a volunteer application.

Removing invasive plants creates space for native plants to thrive, improves water quality and provides food for pollinators. Metro volunteers can make a big dent in our invasive species problem, and knowing that the invasive plants will be enjoyed by the zoo animals makes our hard work even more rewarding!

Our great friends and fellow conservationists at Confluence Brewing Company have offered to give one free beer... to the first 30 UPCYCLE volunteers over 21! Confluence is a local Iowa brewery with a variety of craft beers on tap. Their taproom is located at 1235 Thomas Beck Road, or accessible via the Meredith Trail on the south east end of Gray’s Lake. If you want to learn more about Confluence, feel free to check out their website:

BONUS: Volunteers who attend all three UPCYCLE events will be entered to win a Blank Park Zoo family four pack and feed bundle, which includes food to feed the parakeets, giraffes, kid's kingdom animals and fish!

What to bring:

  • Water bottle
  • Sturdy boots or shoes that can get muddy
  • Hat, gloves, long pants, long-sleeved shirt
  • Sunscreen, bug spray


  • No experience necessary
  • Children age 14+ welcomed
  • You will be asked to sign a liability waiver
  • Port-a-pot on site

2023 Dates:

  • June 15
  • July 20
  • August 17

Time: 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. at Gray's Lake 

Signup Link for 2023:

For questions or more information contact the Zoo's Volunteer Manager at,

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