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2015 Visitors Guide

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Grand Rapids Insider

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Get Ready to be Wowed by the Creativity and Performers in LiveArts

Friday, April 24 at 8:00 p.m., you can experience LiveArts at the Van Andel Arena. It's an incredibly collaborative production filled with creative elements that are sure to inspire you, surprise you,...more

Posted April 23, 2015

 

Grand Rapids Public Museum

Founded in 1845, the Grand Rapids Public Museum is among the oldest history museums in the United States. Not that you'd be able to tell from its sparkling facility, which rises three stories above the downtown riverfront. Inside, a fascinating panorama of permanent collections and temporary exhibits preserve the treasures of the past and the present.

Permanent collections include:
Anishnabek: The People of This Place, exploring Native American contributions to West Michigan.
Collecting A-Z, presenting just some of the million or so objects the Museum has collected.
Furniture City, a history of the city's furniture manufacturing excellence.
Habitats, which transports visitors through the natural environments of Michigan.
Newcomers: The People of This Place, celebrating immigrant groups who helped make Grand Rapids what it is today.
Streets of Old Grand Rapids, a detailed recreation of an 1890s street scene.

Temporary exhibits have ranged from massive touring shows like "Bodies Revealed" to locally curated collections like "All Dressed Up - 1950s Style." One of the biggest shows in the Museum's history was here in 2013 - "Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition."

Check for current shows and events - just click the box next to "Grand Rapids Public Museum."

Spillman Carousel
One of the Museum's most enduring attractions, this 1928 carousel offers rides year-round to visitors old and young. Includes 44 hand-carved, elaborately jeweled wooden horses, two chariots, and a giraffe, lion, deer, goat, tiger and camel.

Chaffee Planetarium
A 145-seat theater under a fifty-foot dome, the planetarium is located on the second floor of the Museum. Open daily with a variety of shows.

 

 
 
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Grand Rapids Public Museum

  • 272 Pearl St. NW
  • Grand Rapids, MI 49504
  • Phone: (616) 456-3977
  • Region: Downtown

This museum offers world-class exhibits on history, nature, cultural heritage and more. Ride a 1928 carousel, catch a show in the planetarium or eat in the cafe overlooking the Grand River. General Admission charged. MORE >>