GR|MAG’s Top Weekend Picks


If we had to choose one word to describe our top picks for this weekend, it would be “unique.” From John Ball Zoo’s annual fundraiser to Funky Buddha’s take on the triathlon, there’s nothing ordinary about this weekend in Grand Rapids. You can also take in the work of Grand Rapids’ emerging playwrights, whose work is being produced this weekend by Actor’s Theatre.

RendeZoo at John Ball Zoo

The zoo will be roaring on Friday night, but the noise won’t be due to the tigers. John Ball Zoo is hosting its annual fundraiser, RendeZoo.

This outdoor party includes food, music, silent auction, and animal encounters. Tickets are $75 for general admission (7 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.) or $175 for VIP (6 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.)

Proceeds from RendeZoo are dedicated to implementing projects outlined in the zoo’s Master Facilities Plan. These projects will support the zoo’s efforts to save endangered species, provide educational opportunities to children and families, and celebrate wildlife and the community.

Funky Buddha Triathlon

Putting its own unique spin on the triathlon, Funky Buddha is offering a morning of yoga, biking and bourbon.

Participants will spend one-hour doing yoga at Lincoln Park, at 398 Garfield Ave., followed by a group bike ride led by The Spoke Folks, and culminating with brunch at One Bourbon.

This event runs from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tickets are $49 per person, with proceeds going to The Spoke Folks. There will be four triathlon events total this summer and packages run $160 per person for all four events.

Visit Your Favorite Splash Pad or Public Pool
(Friday – Sunday)

Aberdeen Park Splash Pad
Aberdeen Park Splash Pad

Grab your swimsuit and towel this weekend. All of the city’s splash pads and public pools open June 8 for the summer season.

Entry fees are $1 for youth (17 & under) $2 for adults (18+) who are Grand Rapids residents. Nonresidents can enter for $4.

Visit the Grand Rapids Parks & Recreation Aquatics page for hours, locations and more information.

Living on the Edge @ Actors’ Theatre

Winners of Actors’ Theatre’s Living on the Edge playwrighting competition see their work come to life this weekend. Actors’ Theatre stages the top five entries throughout the 90-minute performance on Saturday night. The production also includes one piece commissioned by Actors’ Theatre.

A panel of judges narrowed down the submitted scripts (based on how well the script draws on the theme, if it is 10 minutes, and quality of writing) and the top 10-15 scripts receive a public read. From there the top five scripts are selected and receive full performance.

The final performance takes place at Spectrum Theater in the Lab Theater on June 9 at 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. Tickets are $10. Scripts include: “Cliff Dwellers” by David Haddad; “The Wrong Jen Harper” by Steven Hayet; “Blue Renewal” by Kristin Hirsch; “The Call” by Teri Jourdan; “Two Minutes” by James Bell; and “Rules” by Kristin Hanratty (commissioned work).

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