Your guide to Eastown

This neighborhood offers a lot to do in a few short blocks.
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Eastown is a well-established neighborhood in Grand Rapids with active retail and restaurant corridors along Wealthy Street and Lake Drive. While many of the businesses have been there for years, there always seems to be a new place popping up. So, if you are looking for a fun way to spend an afternoon, here are a few great places to check out in Eastown.

Natural inclinations

First, Eastown is a great place to enjoy nature. You can park along one of the side streets and walk over to Wilcox Park. Enjoy a walk through the snow-covered park and end up at the playground or picnic tables.

Wilcox Park is adjacent to Aquinas College, which offers a trail system through wooded areas that surround the campus and lead you through the heart of the college. Pick up the trail system at the park and enjoy a short walk — you can loop around so you end up back where you started.

Shopping

Eastown has plenty of options for shopping: stock up on books at used bookstore Redux Books, visit Spirit Dreams or Gallery 154 for gifts, or a bit further down you’ll find Rebel, the best place for unique gifts for just about anyone on your shopping list.

Restaurants

When it comes to food options, Eastown packs a lot of options into a few blocks — so many in fact, that we don’t have space here to list them all. A couple of newcomers include Quarantino’s, a Detroit-style pizza place, and Terra Bagels, a new bagel shop open until 3 p.m. most days.

For breakfast, choose from Matchbox, That Early Bird, Wolfgangs and the Brown Butter Creperie. For lunch, you can’t go wrong with
a stop into Yesterdog or The Pita House. If you are looking for
dinner options, our top picks are Caribbean restaurant Chez Olga, pizza place Harmony Brewing or farm-to-table restaurant Terra GR.

Activities

If you are looking for some hands-on fun, visit Wax Poetic to concoct your own scented candle, or sign up for a cooking class at The Local Epicurean. You also can hit the dance floor at Billy’s or enjoy live music.

This story can be found in the January 2021 issue of Grand Rapids Magazine. To get more stories like this delivered to your mailbox each month, subscribe here

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