From events honoring Black History Month to parties in transformed spaces, Grand Rapids has plenty to do this weekend. You can also hear Mayor Rosalynn Bliss’ plans for the city and enjoy several rounds of the city’s best stouts.
Disco at the Mansion
Paddock Place (formerly Mangiamo’s) and DJ Adrian Butler are bringing sexy back to the mansion at 1033 Lake Drive on Thursday with Disco At The Mansion. Beats will be provided by DJ AB. Enjoy retro cocktails and $12 TV dinners from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Library.
Wear your best retro ’70s threads. Best dressed gets a $100 Gilmore Gift Card. Admission is free. Must be 21+. Disco at the Mansion takes place from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Stout Out @ The B.O.B.
As part of its Beer Month celebrations, B.O.B.’s Brewery hosts Stout Out, a night of stouts. There will be live music, smoked meats, and a tap takeover featuring 12 Michigan made stouts. The event takes place from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Sample tickets are $3 each, with $1 of each ticket sold being donated to Grand Rapids Whitewater (GRWW). Six sample ticket packages are available for purchase in advance and include a souvenir B.O.B.’s Brewery sample glass.
Taste of Soul Sunday @ GR Public Library
Grand Rapids Public Library, 111 Library St NE, is celebrating Black History Month with Taste of Soul Sunday from 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Come enjoy music from Karisa Wilson, Zion Lion, Noel Webley and Jazzy Friends Quintet, and Julius J. Hight featuring Bedrock. Learn about Black history through presentations, “A Team of Her Own: Minnie Forbes & Negro League Baseball,” “The Spirit of South High School,” and “From Jackie Robinson to Kaepernick: A Brief History of Athlete Activism.”
Fable the Poet and The Diatribe will lead a poetry workshop and there will be hands-on crafts for kids. Food will be available throughout the afternoon from NoLos Soul, IRIE Kitchen, Big Ed’s BBQ and Mosbyspopcorn.
This event is free and open to the public.
Mayor Bliss’s State of the City Address
Grand Rapids Mayor Rosalynn Bliss will deliver her third State of the City address during a special event on Thursday, Feb. 15. Her address will reflect on the city’s successes from the past year and include her ideas for the future.
The address is being held from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., with Mayor Bliss taking the stage at 6:15 p.m. Registration is closed but the address will be streamed live on Mayor Bliss’ Facebook page.
“Victors of Character” @ Ford Museum
The Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum presents “Victors of Character” on Thursday in honor of Black History Month. The play, written by Grand Valley State University theatre professor Dr. Allison Manville Metz and directed by Jason James Flannery, tells the story of University of Michigan football players Gerald R. Ford and Willis Ward.
In 1934, Ford, a football player at U of M, threatened to quit the team if the school’s only black player, Ward, was to be benched because of the color of his skin. The Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets were scheduled to play in Ann Arbor, but demanded that Ward sit out. Ford was later convinced by Ward to go out on the field. The experience left an indelible mark on both Ford and Ward as they continued to fight for civil rights throughout their careers.
The Thursday, Feb. 15 performance is sold out so you must have already scored your ticket to attend. (Due to the show’s popularity, a second date has been added. You can also see “Victors of Character” on Thursday, March 1 at Grand Valley State University’s Black Box Theater in Allendale at 8 p.m.)