Robert D. Ray Asian Gardens reopen after renovation and repairs


DES MOINES, Iowa — One of Des Moines’ most peaceful riverfront parks is back to its former glory.

The Robert D. Ray Asian Gardens reopened Sunday afternoon. The park had been under reconstruction since the summer of 2020, after a person vandalized several sculptures in 2017.

The Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden now operates and maintains the park. CEO Kim Perez said she is looking forward to keeping the park in prime condition.

“The beauty that this garden and the rest of the Botanical Gardens represents is something that we take very seriously,” Perez said. “We have a role to better the community and we’re excited to bring that joy to our neighbors.”

The Asian Gardens opened in 2009 to commemorate former Governor Ray’s work to welcome Vietnamese refugees to Iowa after the Vietnam War.

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