You don’t have to travel the world to experience an abundance of cultures. Instead, celebrate a variety of cultures in the heart of West Michigan!

Grand Rapids is a melting pot that honors a variety of ethnicities through fun, educational, and entertaining festivals.

Here are seven unique ethnic festivals to add to your calendar:

Grand Rapids Asian-Pacific Festival

When: June 9 from 11 AM to 10 PM
Where: Rosa Parks Circle

Experience various regions of Asia at the Grand Rapids Asian-Pacific Festival. Taste exotic flavors from dozens of food vendors, participate in a luau, and see how the people of India celebrate a wedding with a reenactment featuring traditional garb.

This free, family-friendly event will also have activities for children to enjoy.

39th Annual Homecoming of the Three Fires Traditional Pow Wow

When: June 9 from 1 to 6 PM and June 10 at Noon

Where: Riverside Park

The 39th annual Homecoming of the Three Fires Traditional Pow Wow hosted by the Grand River Bands of Ottawa Indians will feature Anishnebeck (Three Fires American Indian/Native American). This family-friendly event is free to attend will include cultural music, dancing, art, food, and crafts.  

Calder Plaza serves as home base for the annual Hispanic Festival.

Photo Credit: Experience Grand Rapids


Grand Rapids Hispanic Festival

When: August 10-12
Where: Calder Plaza

The Grand Rapids Hispanic Festival will bring another year of musicians, singers, dancing, and mouth watering food like elote (Mexican street corn) and empanadas. Be sure to bring some extra cash as the festival features an outdoor mercado with items for sale including clothing, jewelry, accessories, and Latin art.

Grand Rapids Polish Festival

When: August 24-26
Where: Rosa Parks Circle

Are you ready to polka with the Polish Heritage Society of Grand Rapids?

Enjoy authentic food, live polka music, a Polish beer tent, and more at the 39th annual Grand Rapids Polish Festival! The three-day festival is jam-packed with Polish events, entertainment, and vendors. Visit the Festival’s website for an itinerary.

This Grand Rapids Polish Festival is free to attend, but we recommend bringing money to enjoy the Polish food, beverages, and shopping.

Fact: The Grand Rapids Polish Festival is the longest continuous festival held in Grand Rapids!

A weekend full of authentic Polish food and music await during the Grand Rapids Polish Festival.

Photo Credit: Experience Grand Rapids


Grand Rapids Yassou! Greek Cultural Festival

When: August 17-19
Where: Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church
 

The Greek Orthodox Church welcomes locals and visitors to immerse themselves in Greek culture with traditional Greek dancing, gifts, wine, and food at Grand Rapids Yassou! Greek Cultural Festival. The three-day Festival offers a variety of options for attendees, including:

  • Dance demonstrations
  • Professional dance performances
  • Greek cooking classes
  • Live music
  • Tours of some of Grand Rapids’ oldest Greek Orthodox churches

Grand Valley American Indian Pow Wow

When: September 8 from 10 AM to 9 PM and September 9 from 10 AM to 4 PM
Where: Riverside Park
 

Witness unique and sacred rituals showcased at the 57th annual Grand Valley American Indian Lodge Pow Wow. This family-friendly event is free to attend, and will feature authentic American Indian food, crafts, and entertainment.

Click here to view a recap video from recent Grand Valley American Indian Lodge Pow Wows.

Going to Yassou! Greek Cultural Festival? Bring your dancing shoes.

Photo Credit: (c) Motely Cat Studio; courtesy of Yassou Greek Festival


African American Arts and Music Festival

When: September 21 from 5:30 to 10 PM and September 22 from 10 AM to 10 PM
Where: Calder Plaza

The African American Art and Music Festival is a celebration of local art, live performances, and food that reflects the African American community. This upbeat social outing will feature an outdoor market with an opportunity to shop for local art, jewelry, clothing, natural hair products, and more. This event is free and family-friendly.

Oktoberfest

When: September 28 from 5 to 9 PM and September 29 from Noon to 9 PM
Where: John Ball Park

Celebrate Bavarian culture with a Wienerschnitzel and a Weissbier at Grand Rapids’ Oktoberfest sponsored by the Edelweiss Club. Enjoy live music from alphorn and accordian players, or sign up for the stein-holding contest, among other fun games and activities. Kid-friendly events will also be offered throughout the two-day event.

All proceeds from Grand Rapids’ Oktoberfest are donated to Kids’ Food Basket, which fights childhood hunger throughout West Michigan.

Did we forget an upcoming ethnic festival? If so, let us know in the comments and we’ll add it to our list.

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