Upcoming Events

Spring 2018

April 8, 2 pm, Swagger (French film)
April 29, 3 pm, French book group
May 1, 7 pm, Lecture on current political issues
May 4, 7 pm, Fête du Muguet
July 13, 5-8 pm, Bastille Day Bash


Rare French Film Screening at Drake

Who are the inhabitants of all those huge apartment blocks on the outskirts of Paris? The documentary film Swagger, nominated in 2017 for a César (the French equivalent of an Oscar) as Best Documentary Film, gives us a visually striking and atypical picture of the hopes and dreams of 11 youngsters from some of these most underprivileged neighborhoods of France.

The Alliance Française of Central Iowa and Drake University’s Center for Global Citizenship invite you to a special screening of Swagger on Sunday, April 8, 2018, 2PM in Drake’s Aliber Hall, Room 101 (2847 University Ave, Des Moines, IA 50311.)
The film is in French, with English subtitles; 84 mins.; free and open to the public.
A Paris Match critic had this to say :
“Swagger” nous transporte dans la tête de onze enfants et adolescents aux personnalités surprenantes, qui grandissent au cœur des cités les plus défavorisées de France. Le film nous montre le monde à travers leurs regards singuliers et inattendus, leurs réflexions drôles et percutantes. En déployant une mosaïque de rencontres et en mélangeant les genres, jusqu’à la comédie musicale et la science-fiction, “Swagger” donne vie aux propos et aux fantasmes de ces enfants d’Aulnay et de Sevran.
Trailer: https://youtu.be/HNniWa-uM2E

Lecture on Current Political Issues in France and Europe

Dr. Eleanor Zeff, Associate Professor of Political Science, and students from a course on “Refugees, Immigration and Politics in Europe” will present an evening lecture/discussion on the current crisis of refugees and the incorporation of immigrants in four European Union Member States: France, Germany, Sweden and Poland. They will discuss how the refugee situation is handled in each state and at the EU level, as well as how the recent surge of migrants into Europe has affected societies and political parties in these selected EU states. Discussion will be welcomed after the presentation.
Tuesday, May 1, 2018, 7 pm, Meredith Hall, Drake University. The event is free and open to the public.

La Fête du Muguet
This is our annual hors-d’oeuvre potluck party, a welcome to spring. Muguet is lily-of-the-valley and it can be sold without a license on the streets of Paris on May 1st every year. Will our own spring flowers be in bloom?
Members and their guests are invited to Eleanor Zeff’s on Friday, May 4 at 7 pm. Please bring an appetizer (preferably something French) and your favorite beverage.

Bastille Day Bash

The Alliance Française of Central Iowa and the Des Moines Sister Cities Commission join to invite you and your family and friends to help us all celebrate France’s national holiday on Friday, July 13, 2017, 6-9 PM, at the Birdland Park Ding Darling Shelter, 2100 Saylor Road, Des Moines. (It’s north of Lutheran Hospital.)

The celebration will include a pétanque tournament (sort of like outdoor bowling), music and dancing, a little ceremony and a lot of food. The Alliance will provide roast pork, baguettes, iced tea, soft drinks, water and eating utensils. We hope you’ll bring your enthusiastic selves and a side dish to share. There will be a prize for the best French dish.

Come at 5 to have time to chat with friends. There will be a very brief program and we’ll eat about 5:30.

The shelter is air conditioned and has modern restrooms. You may bring beer or wine  but try to avoid glass containers. Please call 277-5741 to tell us you plan to come, so we’ll be sure to have plenty to eat, but walk-ins will be welcome. Last year we counted more than 100 attendees and had a super good time.


Each member reads a book, any book, in French and comes to tell the rest of us, in French, what it was about and their personal reactions. We meet every three months or so at the West Des Moines Library. Our next meeting is scheduled for April 29, 2018 at 3 pm. We welcome all comers, as long as they are willing to speak French.

Our membership year runs from Bastille Day to Bastille Day, so please plan to re-up at our July 14th celebration or mail your dues to our Treasurer using this form:
Membership application:  Alliance Française of Central Iowa
Name ____________________________________________________________________
Address ___________________________________ City _____________ Zip ___________
Home phone _________________________________ e-mail ________________________
Special interests ____________________________________________________________
Membership category:  ___Individual $25      ___ Family $35     ___Student/Senior $15
Each year’s dues are payable as of July 14.  Please make check payable to Alliance Française of Central Iowa and mail to Dave Moremond, 4627 67th Street, Des Moines, IA 50322.