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Things To Do

Winter Happenings

Last month we showed you how to live like a local during December. As the new year approaches, we have our eyes set on January and February. Do you have any winter favorites in Grand Rapids? Let us know in the comments below! -Happy Holidays from the Holiday Inn Grand Rapids Downtown

Holiday Inn Guide to ArtPrize

ArtPrize 10 starts on Wednesday and we have made our guide to ArtPrize 10 to help you make the most of a trip within our city! The public art show runs from Wednesday, September 19th to Sunday, October 7th. ArtPrize Basics ArtPrize Home Page Dates of ArtPrize: Wednesday, September 19th to Sunday, October 7th Location of Visitors Pavilion: Rosa Parks Circle  Visitor’s Pavilion Hours: Monday-Saturday: 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. Sunday: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Interactive Map: There are 165 participating locations in Grand Rapids, Michigan. This interactive map allows you to manipulate where you would to go as you walk around the city. Filter options also include venues which have public restrooms. Transportation Around the City: Expect travel delays during ArtPrize. We recommend travelling by foot, as parking will be limited while touring the city. If you would like to ride the free DASH bus service, the map is located below. The closest bus stops to our...
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Best Ice Cream in Grand Rapids

Did you know July 15th is National Ice Cream Day? Our guests have told us the best places for ice cream in Grand Rapids, and we agree! While visiting the Holiday Inn Grand Rapids Downtown, we hope you take these local favorites into consideration.   Pearl Street Grill Ready to relax with a movie while enjoying an ice cream treat? Found within our hotel, Pearl Street Grill  offers dessert options ranging from sundaes to brownies topped with ice cream. Grab and go ice cream treats are also found within our Pearl Street Lounge.   Jersey Junction Known as one of the oldest ice cream shops in Grand Rapids, Jersey Junction has served ice cream since 1963. Here one will find local Hudsonville ice cream with flavors varying from Cinnamon Churro to Turtle Sundae. Before leaving, do not forget to make your mark by signing a bench!   Furniture City Creamery Another local...
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World of Winter

Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow, we have six more weeks of winter, and Grand Rapids has the perfect way to celebrate! The first annual World of Winter festival begins on Friday, February 9, 2018. The week-long festival has plenty of events for the whole family. Stop and see one of the 53 ice sculptures at participating venues around the city, including one right outside the Holiday Inn Grand Rapids Downtown! Visit the Downtown Market this weekend for their annual Ice Bar and enjoy winter drinks with an Olympics Winter Games theme. Visit DowntownGR for more information on winter activities such as human Hungry Hungry hippos, ice skating and more!

Gilda’s Laughfest!

Come join us for Gilda’s Laughfest, a community-wide festival of laughter, March 8-18, 2018. This annual festival is put on by the local branch of Gilda’s club, an organization for individuals living with cancer, named after former Saturday Night Live star, Gilda Radner. Now in it’s 7th year, Laughfest offers a variety of hilarious events for the whole family, many of which are completely free! Please visit laughfestgr.org for a complete list of both free and ticketed events. In years past, Laughfest has proudly hosted talented comedians such as Jay Leno, Whoopie Goldberg, Seth Meyers and even Betty White! Among favorites this year is parody song writer, “Weird Al Yankovic”. Shake off the winter weather blues and enjoy a seriously funny night out, right here in downtown Grand Rapids!

Outdoor ArtPrize Fun!

The Holiday Inn Grand Rapids Downtown is proud to host Corey Carpenter as a first time artist participating in ArtPrize 2017. Corey has done a lot of work with laser cut wood as the owner of Brightmark Studio. His piece, Requiem for a Reef, showcases his incredible talent very well on this mural featuring a coral reef. He will be working in collaboration with another one of our artists to turn our front lawn into a sea of fish. Whether you are driving or walking by, please don’t miss out on this beautiful wood and veneer piece! The competition runs from September 20 – October 8, 2017.

ArtPrize…The Next Generation

One of the coolest things about ArtPrize is that it is a great opportunity to get young people interested in creating something of their own. The students at Kent Career Tech Center used photography, illustration, and graphic design to create their collaborative piece, Object Head Portraits. The piece includes photographs of each student, in their favorite outfit, either taken in their favorite place or photo shopped into an illustrated background of an environment that the artist enjoys. Their faces are covered with photo shopped images of objects that represent them as individuals.  Please come and support these young and talented artists and check out their creative graphic design portraits! The competition runs from September 20 – October 8, 2017.

An ArtPrize Descendant

The Holiday Inn Grand Rapids Downtown is so excited to welcome Jed Freels to his second year as an ArtPrize artist! You may have seen his piece, Life, in front of the Van Andel Arena last year. Continuing with his DNA motif, Jed’s piece this year, entitled Descendants, captures the essence of DNA being passed from generation to generation. This 11ft steel sculpture, depicts a mother holding her new born child, standing on top of a double helix. Reaching up into the strand of DNA are the hands from their descendants who possessed the DNA before them. You certainly will not want to miss this stunning depiction of the complexity and beauty of life. The competition runs from September 20 – October 8, 2017.

ArtPrize Will Soon Be In Bloom

Tying in with the music motif of our first featured artist, Carol Foerch’s Music Blooms are sure to be a wonderful addition to our lobby during ArtPrize 2017. Carol’s piece represents how tone and expression in the language we use is very much like bursts of music. Each flower is created with sheet music and has a beaded center. If you are a lover of music, this is a piece worth stopping in to see! The competition runs from September 20 – October 8, 2017.

ArtPrize lands Ashore!

Remember when we said we wanted to showcase Grand Rapids and the beautiful state of Michigan in our lobby during ArtPrize this year? Meanwhile at the Shore by J.S. Edenburn adds to that motif quite well. Taken on 35mm film, these photographs of Michigan’s beautiful shoreline will make you wish summer wasn’t ending soon. From lighthouses to dune grass, the viewer will experience the true beauty that is Pure Michigan. ArtPrize draws in large crowds from all over the world, many of which, may not have ever experienced the Michigan shoreline. If this piece doesn’t make them want to take a side trip to the lake, we don’t know what will! The competition runs from September 20 – October 8, 2017.