"The West Side is the best side," according to the residents and business owners of this venerable neighborhood, which was first connected to downtown Grand Rapids via footbridge in 1842. German, Polish, and Irish immigrants soon populated the area, establishing distinct business districts amidst tree-lined residential streets. Today, a growing Latino population is adding to the neighborhood’s diversity and contributing to a major revitalization of buildings and businesses.
Friendly neighborhood pubs, foodie-forward breweries and authentic Hispanic restaurants add to a diverse dining mix.
Start your shopping at Bridge Street Market – the first urban supermarket from locally headquartered grocery industry titan Meijer. Then explore specialty shops for everything from Michigan apparel to Polish kielbasa.
Explore Bridge Street – the up-and-coming entertainment district is home to Bucher’s Union Meat & Whisky restaurant, Harmony Hall brewery and restaurant, Jolly Pumpkin Pizzeria and Brewery, New Holland Brewing - The Knickerbocker and The Sovengard Scandinavian restaurant. And there’s more to come!
See more than 1,300 animals at John Ball Zoo, one of the nation’s oldest surviving urban zoos and Michigan’s fourth most visited cultural attraction.
See four majestic Catholic churches erected by the area's early immigrants. The Germans built St. Mary's, the Irish built St. James, and the Polish built St. Adalbert and Sacred Heart, all within a few blocks of each other.
See (and buy) gourmet nut and coffee mixes featured on the Home Shopping Network at Ferris Coffee & Nut, a local company that dates back to 1924.
The Bitter End Coffeehouse, popular with neighborhood residents and students from nearby Grand Valley State University, is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Muse GR in an interactive art gallery offering events, classes and workshops.
The West Side of Grand Rapids and its surrounding neighborhoods is growing at an amazing rate. Everywhere you turn there is a new place to eat, drink, and relax with family and friends. Whether you’re
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