Arts & Entertainment, Economic Development, and Government

Downtown civic agency creates summer 'experience' programs

April 30, 2015
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Downtown civic agency creates summer 'experience' programs
People stop on the sidewalk to play with the public chessboard installed on Monroe Center Street NW by Downtown Grand Rapids Inc. Photo via

Downtown Grand Rapids Inc., also known as DGRI, will officially launch four new “summer experience programs” tomorrow.

DGRI will introduce the programs at 11:30 a.m. during an event at Rosa Parks Circle, at 135 Monroe Center St. NW.

The organization said the startup initiatives are “designed to continue expanding the range of convivial and meaningful ways people engage and enjoy downtown.”

Play Downtown

Play Downtown is an outdoor games program that will include an oversized Connect Four board, large yard dice, corn hole boards and other activities that will be deployed throughout downtown.

The program builds on the well-received deployment last summer of the oversized public chessboard on Monroe Center Street NW.

Relax at Rosa

Relax at Rosa is a free weekly lunchtime series that will feature local music talent, food trucks and carts and outdoor games at Rosa Parks Circle, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., every Thursday from May 7 through Sept. 17.

Picnic in the Parks

Picnic in the Parks is a free monthly lunchtime series that invites the community to come together at various parks, grab lunch from a food truck, enjoy music and/or take part in pick-up sporting activities or professionally led exercise classes.

There are four Picnic in the Parks dates: May 26 at Rosa Parks Circle; June 30 at Sixth Street Park; July 28 at Ah-Nab-Awen Park; and Aug. 5 at Heartside Park.

Pop-Up Performers Program

Pop-Up Performers Program will showcase dancers, musicians, Hula-Hoopers and other “buskers” or street performers who add an element of fun and entertainment to public places.

Performance schedules will evolve throughout the summer, but performers will deploy often to complement other downtown events and activities.

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