It’s the most wonderful time of the year and Grand Rapids is sure in the holiday spirit! Try traveling to the North Pole for an evening, or how about a walk through a winter wonderland?
For those not fully invested in the holiday spirit yet, don’t worry, the city has events for you as well. Enjoy a tribute to the man in purple or watch a performance of “Cabaret” at GVSU’s new Keller Theater. Regardless of the occasion, Grand Rapids has a weekend full of comfort and joy.
Winter Time Walks at FMG
Bundle up and head over to Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park for a Winter Time Walk. The walk goes through the gardens and includes new ways to investigate the art and horticulture. Finish up in front of the hearth in the log cabin, where you’ll learn more about the winter season.
While there, make sure you hang around a see the Christmas and Holiday Traditions Around the World exhibition, which contains over 400,000 lights and over 40 international trees and displays.
The walk begins at 11:15 a.m. at the Children’s Garden. It is included with general admission into FMG and is an activity for all ages.
Christmas Tree Lighting & Ice Skating at Rosa Parks Circle
Join in the holiday festivities downtown with the annual tree lighting and official opening of the ice skating rink at Rosa Parks Circle. This evening will be jam-packed with excitement.
The celebration begins at 5 p.m. with the Good Tidings Caroling Company spreading holiday cheer by “singing loud for all to hear.” The Western Michigan University Synchronized Skating Team will also be on hand to celebrate the recent opening of Rosa Parks Circle skating rink for the season.
A full schedule of the night’s events is available on Facebook.
St. Cecilia’s free concert
What better way to get into the holiday spirit than festive music? Join the St. Cecilia Music Center’s Adult Grand Band and its String Orchestra as they perform a medley of music and holiday sing-alongs with the audience. Some of the pieces include Frank Ticheli’s “Joy,” John Phillip Sousa’s “Manhattan Beach March” and many more.
The two groups are comprised of musicians varying in age from 13 to 94 who come together to perform during the holiday season.
The free concert begins at 7 p.m. on Dec. 3 at St. Cecilia Music Center, at 24 Ransom Ave. NE, in downtown Grand Rapids. For more information contact St. Cecilia Music Center or call 616-459-2224.
Night at the North Pole @ Wheelhouse
Kick off the weekend the way Santa himself would, with a Night at the North Pole. Wheelhouse will provide complimentary appetizers to be shared, specialty cocktails for the holiday season, live entertainment from cover band Brena, and more. The restaurant will feature elaborate holiday decor to get you in the holiday spirit.
The free event takes place from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. No reservation is necessary. For more information and the holiday cocktail list, visit Wheelhouse on Facebook.
The Prince Experience at 20 Monroe Live
Pay tribute to The Purple One with a concert covering Prince’s hits. Food and drinks will be served at the venue. Admission will be general standing floor with reserved seating in the mezzanine with tickets starting at $15. The show will begin at 9 p.m. You must be 18+ to attend.
The Pyramid Scheme 1997 Tribute Show
Travel back in time to 1997 with some of the year’s most popular tunes. A variety of local musicians will be covering full albums such as Spiceworld by The Spice Girls, Radiohead’s OK Computer, Dude Ranch by Blink 182 and more.
Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 the day of, with proceeds benefitting Heart of West Michigan United Way. Doors open at 7 p.m. with music following shortly after at 7:30 p.m. The event is 21+.
Visit Pyramid Scheme for tickets and more information.
GVSU Cabaret show
(Friday – Sunday)
Grand Valley State University students open the first show at the new Keller Theatre with the production of “Cabaret.” This musical focuses on an American novelist, searching for inspiration when he finds lodging in a boarding house above a notorious and racy club in Berlin, Germany years before Adolf Hitler comes to power. Led by a saucy emcee and a sassy showgirl and British singer, the free-wheeling performers at the club turn the novelist’s world upside down while the power of the Nazi party lurks just beyond the club’s doors.
The show starts at 7:30 p.m. with a matinee performance on Sunday at 2 p.m. All performances take place in the Linn Maxwell Keller Black Box Theatre, located in the Thomas J. and Marcia J. Haas Center for Performing Arts.
Ticket prices are $12 for adults, $10 for seniors, Grand Valley alumni, faculty and staff, and $6 for students and groups. To purchase tickets, contact the Louis Armstrong Theatre Box Office at (616) 331-2300 or visit Star Tickets.