Green Gala soars to new heights for annual fundraiser

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Courtesy Friends of Grand Rapids Parks

Balloon rides, live entertainment and more will help raise funds for Grand Rapids parks. 

Friends of Grand Rapids Parks is hosting its annual fundraiser and adding a new element to this year’s festivities: hot air balloon rides. 

The nonprofit’s 2022 Green Gala will be held from 6-9 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 11, at Richmond Park, 963 Richmond St. NW in Grand Rapids.

Friends will have food on site from local eateries Sixth Street Polish Hall, El Granjero, Daddy Pete’s BBQ and Pochis Sweet Designs. Beverages will be provided by Brewery Vivant, Farmhaus Cider Co., Art of the Table, Long Road Distillers and Proper Soda. 

Entertainment will be provided by DJ Venus Flyytrap, Gerry Kaminski’s Polka Network, Michael the Accordionist, Les Creatif, Bedrock the Collective and DJ Tony Banks. 

Hot air balloon rides are $25 and will give guests a breathtaking view of Richmond Park and the surrounding area from above. 

This year’s event will be the organization’s 11th annual fundraiser. Friends Executive Director Stacy Bare will give remarks on the nonprofit’s mission and vision for the future of Grand Rapids’ green spaces. 

“The past few years of the pandemic have highlighted the importance of outstanding outdoor public spaces,” said Anna Baetan, vice chair of the Friends of Grand Rapids Parks board of directors. “We invite everyone to a celebration of all the people and organizations that have kept our parks and urban forest one of the best green systems in the nation.”

Tickets for the fundraiser are $75 and are available here.

Friends of Grand Rapids Parks is an independent, citizen-led nonprofit founded in 2008 with the mission to cultivate vibrant parks, green spaces and trees in Grand Rapids.

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