Posted in Rider Stories on

Rider Stories: I Didn’t Choose the Bike Life. The Bike Life Chose Me.


The following is written by Ken Miguel Cipriano, a Grand Rapids citizen and Rapid rider.

From biking around Burton Heights with my brother and neighbor in the late 90’s to present day bombing down Division heading downtown on my way to work, biking around town was my first form of alternate mobility. What’s the saying about your first love? You never forget them?

I’ve made it a part of my life to walk, bike, and ride public transit. Sure it saves me a ton, and I mean a ton of money, but that’s not the main reason I do it. I do it in part to relate to my father. Wherever I go I try and retrace my father’s footsteps when he first came to this country, all alone. Whether it’s walking all of Grand Rapids (my father used to walk past 44th street) or walking all of Manhattan. I do it to connect to how my father felt in a foreign land with no money or transportation. I do it to connect to my surroundings.

That’s exactly how it feels when you walk, bike, or take public transit! You see your city with new eyes. You notice the street level features of your block, you notice the different smells certain neighborhoods have, you notice which neighbor is the bravest to start grilling on a 40-degree day in early spring. You start to realize how large your city can be if you literally stop to smell the roses.

So let me drop some knowledge you may or may not know about going carless. When going straight home after work, a rarity, I average about 17 minutes on my bike. That’s Center City to the southside, about three miles in rush hour traffic. Jealous yet? The other nights I have meetings or events to attend I pull out my phone and check the ETA on the bus routes. If I’m going to the westside I like to hop on the DASH and either walk, if I have time, or bring my bike and pedal. Going east is easy so I just hop on the Route 6. Southbound is my favorite because if I miss the Silver Line, I just walk over to the Route 1 and it usually arrives right as I walk up.

Zoning out on the bus is possibly my second favorite thing to do when I’m commuting. Listening to music and just looking out the window or people watching helps me to just unwind and be present. Then there’s jumping on two wheels and going fast!

So you might be thinking to yourself, but Ken how do you bike to work, go to meetings, and do activities? Check the pictures below for my must carry when riding my bike. There is work mode, chill mode, and soccer-mom mode. Also, I’m the captain of a local team for the Grand Rapids Champs League, so I haul all the goodies!

Ken's Bike Bag for Work

Work mode:

   – Converse Chuck’s keep my feet breathing and feel best in my bike’s toe cages.

   – Backpack to keep my laptop, portfolio, and work clothes.

   – Waterproof bag, because getting caught in a downpour really sucks for your gadgets.

   – Boombotix Bluetooth stereo for blasting vibes

   – Gloves to save me from getting road rash again. Never again…never again.

   – Phone holder for checking my phone when friends change plans and send me to the other side of town, thanks, guys…

   – Wallet with my ID, credit card, and 31- day pass, because Division has so much glass that you’re bound to catch flats. Nothing is worse than catching a flat and realizing you either forgot your bus pass or it expired.


Ken's Bike Bag
Chill mode:

   – Converse Chuck’s not getting paid to say this they’re just extra comfortable for riding

   – Backpack usually for a sweatshirt and an extra tee

   – Boombotix for playing better music at the light than the car next to me. People don’t play enough 2pac.

   – Gloves

   – Wallet

   – Phone holder

Ken's Soccer Bike Bag

Soccer Mom mode:

   – 150 Liter Base camp waterproof bag

   – Soccer ball, futsal ball, ball pump

   – Futsal shoes, Soft ground cleats, turf shoes, socks

   – 2 one-gallon Gatorade jugs, because we drink at least that much.

   – First aid kit, cones, extra jerseys

   – Gloves

   – Wallet

   – Phone holder

So now you know why you should ride your bike, and I just let you know what you should bring while on your bike, all that’s left is to tell you how to ride your bike around the city. Spoiler alert…go fast.

You can find two kinds of cyclists, one who usually bikes on trails and country roads or the ones who stick to the city. Since I stay away from all the SUV madness on country roads, here are a few tips for riding in the city:

   1. Say goodbye to Midwest Nice: Your safety is of the utmost importance. So be loud and be seen. If you’re driving recklessly around me you’ll hear a loud and long “AAAAYYYYOOOOO!” or “ YO YO YO”. Either way, I try to make sure to be heard, and I’m not afraid to give a car a love tap when they inch over too much.

   2. Move fast. This one might feel counterintuitive but once you’re out on Fulton or Division and you’re pedaling at 5 mph it feels scarier as cars zoom past you because of your relative speed to them. 

   3. Helmet and gloves. You don’t want to gash your head or hands up

If you see me and my 150L bag zipping by in the city be sure not to honk, just roll down your window and give me an “AYO” We need to keep these streets friendly, it’s always good to have another friend and set of eyes out there.

See you on the blacktop.


Ken Miguel Cipriano has lived in Grand Rapids since 1990. He works for Silicon Valley-based startup but holds his office here in downtown Grand Rapids. He likes to pull weeds, practice Muay Thai, watch Indie Films, and get in arguments. Ken has slept on a park bench overnight in Boston in the fall and has walked NYC all night because he didn’t have enough money for a hotel. You can see Ken riding down Division on his bike, running around the Southside, or on every bus line across the city.

Learn more about bicycles on The Rapid here.

Posted in Places to Go on

Places to Go: May 2017 Event Guide

Blue bridge grand rapids

April showers bring May flowers, so here’s to hoping for good weather and beautiful blooms all month long. The spring forecast also offers another excuse to catch a ride on The Rapid and let us do the driving to your work and play.

May is jam-packed with a variety of activities that all ages will love. Ride the bus to the John Ball Zoo to celebrate the environment, get in some exercise with yoga or a fun 5k and make time to relax outdoors at lunch at Rosa Parks Circle. Save a bit of cash while riding with us to events throughout our service area by buying a  One-Day Pass or a 10-Ride Ticket. And don’t forget, all rides on the DASH routes and the Silver Line’s No-Fare Zone won’t cost you a penny.

Here are some events we’re looking forward to this month:

1. Party for the Planet at John Ball Zoo

Ride Routes 12 and 50 to visit the John Ball Zoo on Saturday, May 6, for Party for the Planet! This event is a celebration of conservation, recycling and our natural world in honor of Earth Day. Animals that are threatened or endangered will be showcased with ideas on what you can do to help save these valuable species right here in Grand Rapids. Zookeepers will be doing presentations on the conservation field work they are conducting at our local zoo with talks focused on Piping Plovers, Massasauga, Kirtland’s Warbler, Wood turtles and the migratory Monarch butterflies. Click here to learn more about conservation efforts at the Zoo and how you can get involved!This event takes place from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Explore the zoo and meet up with local organizations local organizations that are enabling positive methodologies in the conservation. Admission is $10 for adults, $8 for children 2-13 and children under 2 are free.
BONUS: We’ll be there! Stop by our table. 

2. Free Fridays Yoga with a View The Blue Bridge

Exercise outside on Friday, May 12, at the Blue Bridge! All you need is your own mat and you can join in on this free, fun event. Routes 9, 11, 12 and the Silver Line to near the Blue Bridge. If you’re in for a longer walk, ride any route headed to Rapid Central Station and enjoy the walk over. This event takes place from 6-7 p.m.
Free Fridays Yoga is sponsored by Seva Yoga and the Grand Rapids Parks and Recreation Department. 

3. Relax at Rosa

Rosa Parks Circle

Every Tuesday in May, visit Rosa Parks Circle for free lunchtime entertainment. This season, Downtown Grand Rapids Inc. will once again be highlighting a diverse lineup of local bands and large games to play like chess, shuffleboard and Jenga. Upcoming musicians include Avalon Cutts-Jones and Jesse Ray and the Carolina Catfish. Participating food trucks include Gettin’ Fresh, What The Truck and Daddy Pete’s BBQ. Routes 6, 9, 11, 13 and the Silver Line can get you to Rosa Parks Circle. You can also hop on board a DASH route.

4. Vintage Street Market

On May 14, ride Routes 1, 2 or the Silver Line to shop to your heart’s content at the Grand Rapids Downtown Market monthly Vintage Street Market. Whether you are looking for that perfect couture vintage dress, or a hand painted vintage sideboard, the Vintage Street Market is where you’ll find that exciting treasure to complete your collection. This year’s Vintage Street Market is sure to be bigger and better than ever. Shop from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. and then enjoy food and fun from other Downtown Market vendors.  

5. Kent County Resource Fair

This free family event to learn about services available in our community at low or no cost. Visit the Kent County Resource Fair at the Boys & Girls Club–located at the corner of Madison and Franklin–on May 18, from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. Attendees can enter to win giveaways,  enjoy light refreshments, resources and connections to community partners. For adults ages 21 and older. This event is made possible with funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention/Hecho posible por Los Centros para El Control y La Prevención de Enfermedades y Kent County Health Connect.

Ride Routes 2 and 3 to get to the Boys and Girls Club of Grand Rapids.

6. KD aLe Book Club: Osgood Brewing

Books and brew come together at the KD aLe Book Club. Bibliophiles ages 21+can gather to enjoy some craft beer from Osgood Brewing while talking about what they’ve been reading on May, 18, from 7-8 p.m. Expert book recommendations from KDL librarians included. Ride to Osgood Brewing on Routes 8, 24 and 28

7. Glow Night at the Adventure Park

Ride Route 15 to visit the Grand Rapids Treetop Adventure Park for Glow Night hosted every Friday and Saturday night beginning in May. The suspended obstacle course will be lit up with LED lights and black lights. Admission for adults and kids over 14 years or older is #39, kids 13 and under at $35, while kids 4-6 are $20. Pricing includes three hours of time in the park. Make your reservation today. 

8. Heritage Hill Home Tour

Get on board and ride with us to Heritage Hill to explore amazing historic homes and buildings. The 48th Annual Heritage Hill Home Tour opens doors to eight restored private houses and four historic public buildings on Saturday, May 20 from 11 a.m.- 5 p.m. and Sunday, May 21 from 12-6 p.m. Tour turn- of-the-century homes owned by prominent early Grand Rapidians, including an elegant prairie-style Frank Lloyd Wright, a quaint Gothic cottage, an Italianate beauty and a simple repurposed 1900 carriage house.

Advance tickets are $18 and available at the Heritage Hill Association office or online. Tickets the weekend of the tour are $25.

9. Westside Stride Free Pub Run

Catch a ride on Route 7 to head to the corner of Summer and Bridge Streets every Wednesday in May for a free weekly community pub run/walk! This is the perfect excuse to get out and enjoy the weather while getting some exercise and meeting new friends. Participants of all fitness levels are invited to this 5k event. After exercise, meet up for beverages and dinner at one of the many local Bridge Street establishments.  Join the Westside Stride Facebook Group

10. Made in Michigan Pop-Up Marketplace

Visit the Downtown Market to shop Michigan-made artisan gifts, local treats and other goodies. This event takes place on May 27 from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.  After you fill your shopping bags, grab some lunch inside the market hall. 

Posted in News on

Ride Casual for Casual Commute Day on Friday, May 5

Casual Commute Day

Everyone loves casual Friday. So why not take it a step further with Casual Commute Day?

Make a plan for next Friday, May 5, take a day off from driving alone. Pledge to hop on board a bus, carpool, walk or bike to work and reduce your carbon footprint! By signing up, you’ll be registered to win one of many great prizes from local sponsors.

Joining in your Casual Commute Day is your chance to tray a new way to get around! Who knows, you may fall in love with biking to work. It also helps reduce ozone pollution in our region. Some other benefits include reducing your stress level by commuting with other people and getting more exercising, as well as saving money. If that isn’t enough to win you over, take a look at the awesome prizes:


  • –   1 winner –  Four (4) tickets to a Grand Rapids Griffins game of your choosing
  • –   2 winners – Admission for two (2) to the Great Escape Room
  • –   26 winners – $10 Biggby Coffee gift card
  • –   Go the extra mile and log your casual commute on West Michigan Rideshare to be entered into a separate drawing for a $100 gift card!

Environmental Benefits of Public Transit

  • –   In the U.S., public transportation saves 4.2 billion gallons of gasoline annually
  • –   Public transportation saves the equivalent of 900,000 tanks of gas every day
  • –   Public transportation is reducing emissions of carbon monoxide (CO) by nearly 745,000 tons annually. This equals nearly 75 percent of the CO emissions by all U.S. chemical manufacturers.

Sign up for Casual Commute Day! 

Posted in Places to Go on

Make the Most of Spring and Ride The Rapid to the John Ball Zoo

John Ball Zoo Tigers

Don’t miss a chance to enjoy the beautiful spring weather! Ride Routes 12 and 50 to get to the John Ball Zoo and explore new exhibits and shows.

The John Ball Zoo opened in March for its 126th season. This year, visitors will be able to see the zoo’s more than 1,500 animals including tigers, chimpanzees, bobcats, grizzly bears and penguins. And thanks to the recently approved zoo and museum millage, new features are coming to life!

Beginning on Memorial Day, John Ball Zoo will launch their new bird show called Realm of Flight. There will be three shows a day with professional handlers showing off 10 exotic birds from around the world. Some other new additions include a beautiful tiger habitat that features two different exhibits connected by a trail through the woods. There are also a continuously changing variety of classes, events and programs for children to participate in.

Before Memorial Day, get in for a reduced price due to the season. Non-member adults can get in for just $7 and children for $6. Since the weather is cooler during spring months, the animals are more active and there are also fewer visitors to compete with for the perfect view of your favorite animals. Spring hours are from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. every day.

Zoo memberships start at $80. With a membership, members get free admission and discounts at the gift shop and on food. Members can also get discounted admission at 150 other zoos across the country.

Thanks to Fox 17 Morning Mix from allowing us to bring you awesome deals every week!

Posted in Rider Stories on

Rider Stories: Exploring the Bus System One Route at a Time

Routes moving along the system map

The following is written by Anthony Wilder Puzzuoli, a Grand Rapids citizen and Rapid rider.

Hi, I’m Anthony Wilder Puzzuoli. In the last few years, my wife and I have done a lot of traveling around the United States. While it’s always fun to visit the major attractions, I’ve found myself more drawn the mundane places. The places where people live their daily lives. The streets they walk down to work, the restaurants they stop at for lunch, and the shops where they buy their groceries. I like to imagine what it would be like to really live there.

Even when we return home to Grand Rapids, I enjoy visiting neighborhoods and walking down streets I’m not familiar with, exploring the city that we live in with fresh eyes and getting a feel for the different neighborhoods.  Sometimes it’s easy to stay within our Heritage Hill neighborhood and hang out in our favorite nearby places. For me, it helps build a sense of community and connection to a place but, it’s important to get outside that bubble. There is so much more to our city to explore!Anthony

While I’ve lived in Grand Rapids for 15 years, I haven’t really utilized the bus system. I’ve taken the Route 50 out to Grand Valley State University a few times, and I used to take the bus to work in the mornings when it was cold and then bike home in the warmer afternoons. That was it. I realized that there was an entire system of transportation I had never explored in my own city! Routes I’d never been on. Ways to see the city I’d never experienced.

So, I made it a goal for 2017 to ride every route of the Rapid, at least once. I wanted to be able to understand our transit system and to use it effectively. I thought it would make me a better citizen, and enable me to see our city from a different perspective. I also thought it would be a fun way to see different neighborhoods and businesses I’m not as familiar with! I work at Local First, a non-profit organization here in town. Through my work there I came into contact with some representatives at the Rapid and they asked me to write a little bit about my experiences. I hope you enjoy it, and if you see me on the bus, please feel free to say hello!


Anthony Wilder Puzzuoli has lived in Grand Rapids since 2002 when he moved here to attend Aquinas College. He’s worked at Local First as Membership Coordinator for the last few years and has recently started riding The Rapid as a way to explore the city. One of his favorite things about living in Grand Rapids is being so close to the lakeshore. 
Posted in News on

The Rapid + The WGVU Morning Show: Moving Forward with E-Fare

E-fare Init Boarding the bus

“One of the big benefits of e-fare is the time savings. At some  stops, people boarding are fumbling with change or their tickets and it can take a long time for the bus to get going again. This should speed up the boarding process and allow for buses to run fasters and more on time. – Kevin Wisselinkg, Senior Planner at The Rapid”

On April 17, we sat down with Shelley Irwin on the WGVU Morning Show to talk transit and about our proposed fare structure changes and our upcoming transition to our new e-fare system.

Our e-fare system will consist of smart cards and mobile ticketing. You’ll be able to purchase fares or add funds to your e-fare account (linked to your smart card or mobile ticketing smartphone app) by visiting the e-fare website online via your smartphone or desktop, at ticket vending machines, or at the Information Center at Rapid Central Station. There will also be a retail network where smart cards will be sold at a variety of locations throughout our service area including supermarkets, convenience stores and pharmacies. You even had the option to set up auto-load to have your account add funds from a linked debit or credit card when funds are low!

Using e-fare will make riding The Rapid faster, easier and more convenient. Just tap your smart card or scan your mobile ticketing smartphone app as you board the bus to pay your fare. There will be a validator located near the farebox to do this.

However, to successfully transition to e-fare, we’re proposing a few changes to our current fare structure to fully utilize the new technology, expedite the boarding process and better accommodate passengers. We’re holding public meetings to in various locations through April 27 to gather feedback.

Proposed Changes

–  Elimination of 10-Ride Tickets

–  Implementation of a pay-as-you-go way to purchase a pass

–  Implementation of more convenient reloadable account options through e-fare

–  Elimination of the sale of tickets on the bus

–  Implementation of new 90-minute, paper-free transfer time frame with e-fare

–  Elimination of paper transfers with cash fare

–  Discontinuation of change cards

Learn more about e-fare by listening to our chat with Shelley here. If you have questions about e-fare, join us at one of our public meetings.

Posted in News on

Moving on After 20 Years at The Rapid

Peter Varga CEO of The Rapid

By now you’ve probably heard the news. I will be leaving The Rapid at the end of my current contract, which is in effect through September 30, 2018.

This decision was made with my wife, who recently retired, and my family. At this point in my life, I am looking for more flexibility in work commitments and want to explore new ways to use my skills and experience.

This is a bittersweet time for me, as I look back with pride on my years at The Rapid and also look to new opportunities, which, I hope, will keep me engaged in the work of public transportation.

Where it all Began

I started my transit career 36 years ago as a bus driver for Santa Cruz Metro in Santa Cruz, CA. At the time I took the job, a career in transit was not on my agenda. But as so often happens, we are led to the place we are supposed to be. I quickly grew to love the industry, primarily for the people, both those that I served and those who worked alongside me. I was also fascinated by the workings of transit–all of the pieces and parts that need to come together to provide safe, reliable, timely service on a daily basis. As I advanced and learned other aspects of the business, it was clear that transit was not just a career for me, but a calling.

In 1993, I started working for the Grand Rapids Area Transit Authority (GRATA) as the Director of Operations. In the fall of 1997, I was appointed as interim Executive Director before accepting the permanent position a few months later. Then-Board Chair George Heartwell and I made a pact to create a better transit authority to serve the people of the greater Grand Rapids area. With the passage of the millage in the six cities in April 2000, my contract with GRATA was transferred to The Rapid and I became CEO.

Transforming Transit in the Six Cities

Looking back over the many changes that have come about since 1997, I can’t help but be grateful for the opportunity to lead this organization, the many supports who have been instrumental in The Rapid’s success, and the outstanding staff who have work with me in this endeavor. We started with a system that stopped running at 6:15 p.m. on weekdays and had no Sunday service. most routes ran only once an hour and there were many places that had no service at all.

Today, ridership has more than tripled, growing from 3.4 million annual trips to 11.9 million annual trips. revenue service hours have grown 157 percent and we went from 17 routes to 23 routes, increasing coverage, access, and opportunity across the region. Service frequency has improved too, with more than half of the route at 15-minute peak service.

To accomplish this, we needed to expand and upgrade our equipment and facilities. We doubled the number of buses operating at peak service from 64 to 133, at the same time improving the average age of the fleet from 11.2 years to 6.1 years.

With the expansion of the number of buses and the construction and renovation of various facilities, we increased the assets more than fivefold from $27.5 million to $139.3 million, far outpacing the growth in the operating budget which doubled to $42 million.

With the launch of the Silver Line in 2014, we were able to open the first bus rapid transit (BRT) line in Michigan, on time and under budget. I admit this is among my favorite projects because it has shown what attractive, efficient, public transportation can do for a community’s economic vitality and sustainability, and quality of life. I am excited about the potential to build on this success with additional lines.


Over the next 18 months, I will be focused on working with staff to finish up projects are in the FY17 work plan, as well as developing and executing the FY18 work plan. I am committed to leave The Rapid well-positioned to meet the opportunities and challenges of the future. At the Board’s discretion, I will be available to assist in the search for a new CEO and develop a transition plan.

I have every confidence that the Board and employees share my commitment to the long-term success of The Rapid and are dedicated to continuing this work long after my time here.

Public transportation changes people’s live for the better. It has been my honor and privilege to do this work.

Posted in News on

Public Information Meetings to be held for Proposed Fare Structure Change

Ticket being used at farebox

Our new electronic fare (e-fare) system is coming soon!

E-fare, which features smart cards and a mobile ticketing smartphone app, will make riding the bus faster, easier, and more convenient. Features will include the ability to purchase fares or add funds online, at ticket vending machines or at Rapid Central Station. Using e-fare to ride is as simple as a “tap” of the smart card at the validator or a scan of the mobile ticketing smartphone app to pay your fare.

As we prepare to transition, we are proposing a few changes to our current fare structure to fully use the new e-fare technology, expedite the boarding process, and give you more options for fare payment.

This proposal does not include a fare increase.  If approved, changes to the fare structure will be in effect when the e-fare system launches in early 2018.

Proposed changes

  • Elimination of 10-Ride tickets
  • Implementation of a pay-as-you-go way to purchase a pass
  • Implementation of more convenient reloadable account options through e-fare
  • Elimination of the sale of tickets on the bus
  • Implementation of new 90-minute, paper-free transfer time frame with e-fare
  • Elimination of paper transfers with cash fare

Public Meetings

  • Fare Structure Change Meeting #1 at Rapid Central Station
    Tuesday, April 18, 2017
    3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
    Central Station, Second Floor Community Room
    250 Grandville Ave SW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
  • Fare Structure Change Meeting #2 at Rapid Central Station
    Wednesday, April 19, 2017
    7:00 a.m. – 8:00 a.m.
    Central Station, Second Floor Community Room
    250 Grandville Ave SW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
  • Fare Structure Change Meeting at Kentwood City Hall
    Thursday, April 20, 2017
    4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m..
    Kentwood City Hall, City Chamber
    4900 Breton Ave SE, Kentwood, MI 49508
  • Fare Structure Change Meeting at Grandville Library
    Monday, April 24, 2017
    7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
    Kent District Library – Grandville Branch
    4055 Maple St SW, Grandville, MI 49418
  • Fare Structure Change Meeting at Walker City Hall
    Tuesday, April 25, 2017
    10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
    Walker City Hall, Commission Chambers
    4243 Remembrance Rd NW, Walker, MI 49534
  • Fare Structure Change Meeting at Wyoming Library
    Wednesday, April 26, 2017
    6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
    Kent District Library – Wyoming Branch, Library Meeting Room B
    3350 Michael Ave SW, Wyoming, MI 49509
  • Fare Structure Change Meeting at East Grand Rapids Community Center
    Thursday, April 27, 2017
    1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
    East Grand Rapids Community Center
    750 Lakeside Dr. SE, East Grand Rapids, MI 49506

Can’t make it to a meeting? Send us your feedback!

Posted in News on

How the Federal Transportation Administration Supports Public Transportation Across America

Silver Line in Grand Rapids

In 2016, 10.2 billion trips were taken on public transportation, connecting people to work, school, health care and activities that are vital to people’s lives. Public transportation provides a foundation for economic development — as well as better health and opportunity for all Americans. As transit ridership continues to go throughout the country, find out how the Federal Transportation Administration (FTA) is working to improve and support transit in communities across the country.

The Rapid’s Silver Line, Michigan’s first bus rapid transit system, is featured as an important new piece of transit infrastructure. We’re honored to have the Silver Line highlighted in this video!

Posted in Events on

Celebrate Easter with Egg Hunts, Brunch and more

Basket of Easter eggs

Nothing says Easter quite like a good old-fashioned egg hunt or a delicious meal with your family and friends. This year, Easter Sunday falls on April 16. Let us help you plan an extra special way for you to celebrate this holiday with your family. Get on board The Rapid to catch a ride to a number of family-friendly Easter events throughout the Grand Rapids area.

Kid-Friendly Fun

Hoppy Easter Toddle Time at Sky Zone

Friday, April 14, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Sky Zone, 3636 29th St SE, Kentwood, Michigan 49512
This Easter event for toddlers will feature the Easter Bunny, face painting and a coloring station! Bring your children ages five and under for a few hours of fun. Tickets are $10/toddler.

Route 17 & 28

Easter Bunny Painting Class at Wine and Canvas

Saturday, April 15, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Wine and Canvas, 2883 Sanford Ave SW, Grandville, MI 49418
Forget the wine. This Easter event features cookies! Cookies and Canvas are kid and teen-inspired classes recommended for ages five and up. Parents are welcome to register themselves to paint with their children or just come along to hang out.
Routes 24 & 28

Brunch Locations

Brunch with the Bunnies

Saturday, April 15, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Post Petals, 806 Bridge St NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504
Visit Posh Petals for fun and brunch with your little ones. The resident shop rabbits will be there to visit with. Attendees can also decorate bunny headbands, get photos taken and enjoy delicious baked goods from Little Lucy’s Café. The cost is $15 per person with no additional fees for activities.

Route 9

Easter Brunch Bites at the Downtown Market

Sunday, April 16, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Downtown Market, 435 Ionia Ave SW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
Visit the Downtown Market Market Hall to taste unique Easter menu items. Once you’re done eating, visit the greenhouse for a variety of fun activities for your kids.

Routes 1, 2 & the Silver Line

Easter Brunch at in the JW Marriott

Sunday, April 16, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., 235 Louis St. NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
Looking for an upscale and locally inspired Easter brunch experience? Visit at the JW Marriott this Easter Sunday. They’re serving up an artisan brunch menu that includes sirloin, ham, leg of lamb, and other mouth-watering options. The price is $40 for adults and $15 for children ages four through 12.

The Silver Line, Routes 9 & 11

Easter Brunch at CityFlatsHotel

Sunday, April 16, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.
CityFlatsHotel, 77 Monroe Center St. NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
Love buffets? Don’t miss Easter Brunch at the Ballroom. Enjoy carving stations, a chef omelet station, delectable buffet items and much more. Seating times: 11 a.m., 12 p.m., 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. Prices: adults (age 12-60): $29.95, seniors (age 60+): $24.95; kids (age 5-12): $12.95, age four and below: free.

Route 1, 4, 6, 13, 15

Easter Bunny Brunch at Wheelhouse

Sunday, April 16, 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Wheelhouse Kitchen & Cocktails, 67 Ottawa Ave. SW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
We invite you to join us for Easter Brunch! The Easter Bunny is hopping over to Wheelhouse for a tasty brunch special. There will be chef Features, kid’s activities and more to enjoy. The regular menu will be available, as well as special brunch features and $5 kids menus. Make your reservation now!

Routes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 +; walking distance from Rapid Central Station.

Easter Egg Hunts

Midtown Egg Hunt

Saturday, April 8, 10 a.m. – 11 p.m.
Midtown Green, 753 Fountain St NE, Grand Rapids, Michigan 49503
Grab a basket and come over to the Green Park for a free Easter Egg hunt! It’s a great chance to meet your neighbors. All ages are welcome

Route 6 & 14

John Ball Park Easter Egg Hunt

Saturday, April 15, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.
John Ball Park Zoo, 1300 Fulton St W, Grand Rapids, MI 49504
Bring your children ages one-10 to this free Easter egg hunt. Donations toward next year’s event are encouraged.

Route 12 & 50

Kentwood Easter Egg Hunt

Saturday, April 15, 10 a.m.
Kentwood City Hall Lawn, 4900 Breton Rd SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49508
Hunt for children ages 10 and younger. Bring a bag to collect eggs and get your photo taken with the Easter Bunny afterward.

Route 2 & 44

Walker Easter Egg Hunt

Saturday, April 8, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Walker Ice & Fitness Center, 4151 Remembrance Rd NW, Walker, MI 49534

There will be an egg and wrapped-candy hunt for children ages two through eight. The Easter Bunny will also be available for pictures.

Route 7