38 Best Things to Do in Grand Rapids at Night & Late Afternoon | 2024 (with Photos)

James A. Smith

James A. Smith - Chief Editor

Published: August 3, 2023

Hey! How’s it going? I’m James, and I'm a passionate traveler who has explored the vibrant city of Grand Rapids extensively. With my insider knowledge, I have curated a list of the most incredible activities and attractions to make your visit to Grand Rapids unforgettable.

Best Things to Do in Grand Rapids at Night & Late Afternoon

Grand Rapids, Michigan, is a lively city that transforms into a playground of unique and exciting activities at night.

From exploring illuminated art installations and enjoying live performances to indulging in the vibrant nightlife and uncovering the city's haunted history, Grand Rapids has something for everyone after dark.

Join us as we delve into a list of 38 unique and fun things to enjoy in Grand Rapids at night, guaranteeing an unforgettable experience worth venturing out for.

Most Recommended Thing to Do


Top Choice Hotel

Amway Grand Plaza Hotel

Our Top Choice Restaurant

Our Top Choice Bar for Nightlife

Best Time to Visit

Summertime offers ideal weather for exploring Grand Rapids.

Average Temperature

The average temperature in Grand Rapids, United States, is unpredictable.

Transportation Options

Buses, taxis, rideshares, bikes, walking, scooters, car rentals.

Average Cost ($, $$, $$$)


My Top Recommendation

Immerse yourself in the city's rich art scene by visiting the Grand Rapids Art Museum, which showcases an impressive collection of contemporary art - a must-see for art enthusiasts.

In addition to its artistic side, Grand Rapids is a fantastic destination for nature lovers. Spend a day at the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, where you can marvel at stunning sculptures surrounded by beautifully landscaped gardens - a serene retreat that will leave you feeling inspired and rejuvenated.

What You'll Need to Bring

  1. Passport
  2. Travel adapter
  3. Comfortable walking shoes

What Not to Miss

  1. Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum
  2. Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park
  3. Grand Rapids Public Museum
  4. Downtown Market Grand Rapids
  5. Van Andel Arena

What to Avoid

  1. Rush hour traffic
  2. Unsafe neighborhoods
  3. Leaving valuables unattended

1. Embrace the Electric Atmosphere of Downtown Grand Rapids

Downtown Grand Rapids

The bustling streets of Downtown Grand Rapids come alive with the buzz of activity at dusk, as locals and tourists alike fill the sidewalks, exploring the diverse range of entertainment, dining, and nightlife options.

From trendy bars and cozy cafes to live music venues and theaters, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

The city's iconic landmarks, such as the illuminated Blue Bridge and the stunning DeVos Place Convention Center, create a stunning backdrop against the night sky.

Strolling along the Grand River, indulging in culinary delights, or simply enjoying the vibrant ambiance, the city's downtown area promises an unforgettable experience.

2. Cruise the Grand River

Grand Lady River Boat at Grand River

An evening cruise along the Grand River in Grand Rapids is a captivating experience that effortlessly blends natural beauty with urban charm.

As the gentle waves carry you along the river's meandering path, you'll be enveloped in a serene atmosphere, surrounded by breathtaking scenery.

The cruise offers an opportunity to witness the city's stunning architecture, picturesque bridges, and lush riverside parks from a unique perspective.

3. Watch a Show at the Van Andel Arena

Van Andel Arena

Van Andel Arena has earned a reputation as a premier entertainment destination in West Michigan since the early 2000s.

Conveniently located downtown, Van Andel Arena provides easy access to the area's finest dining establishments, making it a perfect choice for Saturday night outings.

The arena hosts numerous concerts each month, showcasing a diverse range of musical talents, while also serving as the home for the AHL Grand Rapids Griffins hockey team.

4. Take a Stroll along Lake Michigan

Lake Michigan

An evening stroll along Lake Michigan in Grand Rapids is a captivating experience in Michigan that invites visitors to immerse themselves in the serene beauty of nature.

As the sun begins to set, the golden hues paint the sky, casting a mesmerizing glow over the vast expanse of the lake.

The picturesque shoreline offers a perfect backdrop for leisurely walks, where one can take in breathtaking views of the water and feel the gentle breeze against their skin.

Whether you're seeking a moment of solitude or a romantic atmosphere, an evening stroll along Lake Michigan promises an enchanting experience

5. Explore Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park

Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park

The Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park in Grand Rapids is one of the most innovative museums in the city, seamlessly merging natural beauty with fine art and attracting a big crowd from across Michigan and beyond.

The permanent Sculpture Garden, spanning 30 acres, houses an extraordinary outdoor collection of magnificent sculptures crafted by renowned artists and great temporary exhibits.

Additionally, the park offers a Seasonal Light Experience, where the gardens come alive with mesmerizing light displays, creating a magical ambiance that is perfect for a memorable evening stroll.

6. Check What's On at Broadway Grand Rapids

Broadway Grand Rapids beckons theater enthusiasts and entertainment lovers to experience the magic of live Broadway productions.

From iconic musicals to critically acclaimed plays, Broadway Grand Rapids offers a diverse lineup of world-class productions that cater to all tastes.

Attending a show at Broadway Grand Rapids is an opportunity to witness top-tier talent, awe-inspiring performances, and breathtaking stagecraft. The productions are carefully curated to captivate and transport audiences into unforgettable storytelling realms.

7. See a Performance at The Wealthy Theatre

The Wealthy Theatre

The Wealthy Theater in Grand Rapids is a meticulously restored historic gem that holds a special place in the hearts of locals and visitors alike.

This enchanting theater not only boasts a rich architectural heritage but also serves as a vibrant hub for live theater performances and captivating musical acts.

The Wealthy Theater has become a beloved destination for family entertainment, where everyone can enjoy a wide range of shows suitable for all generations.

8. Enjoy a Wine Tasting at Cascade Winery

Wine Tasting at Cascade Winery

Cascade Winery is a delightful destination for wine enthusiasts seeking a unique tasting experience.

This charming winery produces a variety of wines crafted from locally harvested fruits sourced from nearby orchards and farms.

At the tasting bar, you can indulge in a sampling of six different wines for just USD 5, allowing you to explore and savor the distinct flavors and aromas.

The winery offers a range of award-winning wines to suit every palate, so don't miss the opportunity to take home a few bottles of your favorite selections.

9. Experience the Magic of The Grand Rapids Symphony

The Grand Rapids Symphony

The Grand Rapids Symphony is a world-class ensemble that draws visitors from near and far, offering a captivating musical experience that should not be missed.

This symphony is renowned for its talented and accomplished artists and for offering a variety of exciting events and festivals.

These include the Symphony Youth Choruses, the Bach Festival, the Youth Symphony and Classical Orchestra, and the Symphony Chorus.

Visiting the Grand Rapids Symphony promises a captivating journey through the power of music, with each performance leaving a lasting impression and igniting a passion for the arts.

10. Connect with Nature at Blandford Nature Center

Blandford Nature Center

Blandford Nature Center offers 264 acres of diverse ecosystems, including forests, meadows, and wetlands, providing ample opportunities for exploration and connection with nature.

Visitors can delve into the 4 miles of scenic trails at Blandford Nature Center, meandering through the captivating landscape and discovering hidden gems along the way.

From Spring Break to Summer Camp to Winter Break, children can partake in seasonal activities that encourage hands-on learning and foster a deep appreciation for the environment.

11. Go to Grand Rapids Art Museum for a Special Event

Grand Rapids Art Museum

The Grand Rapids Art Museum (GRAM) is a must-visit destination for art aficionados and cultural explorers alike.

Not only does it house an impressive collection of artwork spanning different periods and styles, but it also offers a dynamic and engaging lineup of events and activities.

"Light the Night" is one of the evening events where visitors can delve into the fascinating world of light celebrations across various cultures.

The museum also offers a thrilling scavenger hunt and offers interactive experiences led by community groups from the Kaufman Interfaith Institute.

12. Have a Tropical Cocktail at Max's South Seas Hideaway

Max's South Seas Hideaway

Max's South Seas Hideaway is a tropical paradise that beckons visitors to escape to a world of exotic delights.

This cool tiki bar offers an immersive experience like no other. Step inside and be transported to a Polynesian oasis, complete with lush foliage, vibrant decor, and a warm, inviting ambiance.

Sip on a classic Mai Tai or a unique concoction served in a whimsical tiki mug. Beyond the drinks, Max's South Seas Hideaway offers an eclectic dining experience, featuring dishes inspired by the flavors of the Pacific Islands.

13. Sing and Dance at Mojo's Dueling Piano Bar

Mojo's Dueling Piano Bar in Grand Rapids is one of the city's longest-standing and most iconic nightlife destinations, attracting locals and visitors alike.

The doors of Mojo's open at 6 p.m., kicking off an evening filled with lively entertainment that goes all night long and is perfect for a date night or a fun night out with friends.

The highlight of the place is the dueling piano performances but Mojo's offers more than that. On Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday nights, the second floor transforms into a vibrant space with a DJ spinning tunes, elevating the energy to new heights.

14. Have a Fun Night at Flanagan's Irish Pub

Flanagan's Irish Pub

Flanagan's Irish Pub in Grand Rapids is a beloved establishment that has stood the test of time as a classic downtown Irish pub.

For ages, it has been the go-to local watering hole in the area. During the day, Flanagan's operates as a delightful Irish restaurant, serving up a delectable array of traditional Irish cuisine (and a shepherd's pie to remember).

However, it's when the sun sets that Flanagan's truly comes alive. Like most authentic Irish pubs, this establishment cranks up the fun meter after normal dinner hours.

15. Admire a Performance of the Grand Rapids Ballet

Grand Rapids Ballet

Grand Rapids Ballet is a cultural gem in the heart of the city, and a visit to this esteemed institution promises a captivating display of talent and grace.

As Michigan's only professional ballet company, it stands as a beacon of excellence in the world of dance.

From classical ballets to contemporary works, the repertoire of Grand Rapids Ballet is diverse and offers a range of artistic experiences.

Visiting Grand Rapids Ballet is a chance to immerse yourself in the beauty and artistry of dance, leaving you inspired and captivated by the sheer talent and creativity on display.

16. Have a Night of Laughs and Fun with River City Improv

River City Improv

River City Improv in Grand Rapids is a top destination for those seeking a night filled with laughter and entertainment.

Located at Midtown at Studio Park, this talented improv team delivers side-splitting performances on select Saturday nights.

With their quick wit and comedic timing, the improv team never fails to deliver an entertaining and engaging experience.

17. Have a Legendary Burger at Stella's Lounge

Legendary Burgers of Stella's Lounge

Stella's Lounge in Grand Rapids boasts award-winning burgers, a huge selection of whiskeys, retro arcade games, and vegetarian specialties.

The retro arcade games and TVs featuring classic shows transport guests to a nostalgic era of entertainment.

Don't forget to plan your visit on Thursday Burger Nights, where you can enjoy a $5 discount on their signature sandwiches with the purchase of a drink.

18. Hear Famous Comedians at Dr. Grins Comedy Club

Dr. Grins Comedy Club

Dr. Grins Comedy Club in Grand Rapids has been a legendary destination for comedy lovers since 1997.

This renowned comedy club has hosted some of the most talented and nationally acclaimed performers in the industry, such as Greg Fitzsimmons, Nikki Glaser, Kevin Nealon, Aries Spears, and many others.

Dr. Grins consistently brings top-notch talent to the stage and the intimate setting of the club creates a unique and immersive experience.

19. Pay a Visit to The Mitten Brewing Company

Mitten Brewing Company

Grand Rapids has been called "Beer City USA" and one of the places to explore on the local craft beer scene is the Mitten Brewing Company.

Housed in a beautifully restored Victorian-era firehouse on Grand Rapids' west side, the brewery exudes charm and character. With a vintage baseball theme, it creates a unique and inviting atmosphere for visitors.

Sit back, relax, and soak in the welcoming ambiance while enjoying good food and drinks.

20. Enjoy Being Pampered at Design 1 Salon Spa

Design 1 Salon Spa

Design 1 Salon Spa in Grand Rapids is the ultimate destination for those seeking an afternoon of pampering and complete relaxation.

Step into this serene oasis and leave the stresses of everyday life behind as you indulge in a wide range of luxurious spa and salon services.

Whether you're looking for a refreshing makeover or simply want to unwind with a tranquil spa experience, Design 1 Salon Spa is the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle.

Immerse yourself in a world of serenity, let go of your worries, and emerge feeling rejuvenated, refreshed, and ready to take on the world.

21. Have a Fun Night Out at Billy's Lounge

Billy's Lounge

Billy's Lounge in Grand Rapids is a go-to destination for those seeking an unforgettable night out with live music and a great crowd.

On weeknights, the bar offers specials inspired by different days of the week, allowing guests to groove to the funky beats on Fridays or revel in the nostalgia of 90s hip-hop on Saturdays.

As the weekend rolls in, the lounge comes alive with the sounds of various live bands and DJs, filling the space with electrifying energy.

22. Visit the Local Children's Museum for a ''Grown Up Play Date''

![](https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/vvS2q2MAF2guDpTt3_28mdMaFhwkA7dfUddbNqxhxgllexNP2pD3D1WdvofZjgsfh7-aSqgJUTLR1IlOElvj1EispeEAcX9rWsulDPFj_77-TGCGX3UN2gB-UC8s3zm6bWq4E7aQExwlMpBU_NmSMsc 'Grand Rapids Children's Museum' Grown Up Play Date')

Established in 1992, the Grand Rapids Children's Museum caters specifically to children aged two to twelve, offering a great environment for hands-on learning and interactive experiences.

Alongside its interesting displays, the museum hosts fun events, such as the annual "Grown Up Play Date," offering a unique opportunity for adults to join in the fun.

After exploring the museum's interactive exhibits, guests can enjoy an adult beverage and participate in life-sized versions of Candy Land and Super Market Sweeps and enjoy thrilling Laser Tag games.

23. Feel the Magical Atmosphere of Great Lakes Glow Golf

Great Lakes Glow Golf

Great Lakes Glow Golf in Grand Rapids is an exciting destination that promises a one-of-a-kind mini-golf experience.

Step into a world of vibrant colors and whimsical glow-in-the-dark decorations as you navigate through challenging courses that are illuminated by neon lights.

The glow-in-the-dark ambiance adds an extra layer of excitement, creating a magical atmosphere that will leave you enchanted.

It's the perfect place to bond with family and friends, celebrate special occasions, or enjoy a memorable date night.

24. Pay a Visit to HopCat


Where better to enjoy a beer than the birthplace of Beer City itself?

HopCat, although it has expanded its reach, remains true to its origins that made it truly remarkable. While it has evolved, the essence of what makes HopCat special persists.

The beer menu continues to impress with a wide variety of exceptional options that are not commonly found in downtown bars.

If you're seeking a distinctive and memorable beer-drinking experience, a visit to HopCat is highly recommended.

25. Invite Your Friends to K-ROK Korean BBQ and Karaoke

K- ROK Korean BBQ and Karaoke

K-Rok, a recent addition to the vibrant dining scene of Grand Rapids, offers a unique and exciting experience combining Korean BBQ and karaoke.

This lively establishment is a really fun place and the perfect destination for unleashing your inner superstar.

Unlike traditional American karaoke, K-Rok embraces the Korean style, providing private rooms for more intimate performances.

26. Hop on the Great Lakes Pub Cruiser

Great Lakes Pub Cruiser

The Great Lakes Pub Cruiser offers a unique and fun way to explore Grand Rapids while enjoying some great drinks.

This pedal-powered vehicle allows you and your friends to embark on a memorable adventure through the city's streets, visiting various bars and breweries along the way.

It's an excellent opportunity to socialize, pedal, and sip on refreshing beverages as you soak in the vibrant atmosphere of Grand Rapids with the convenience of street parking.

The Pub Cruiser adds an element of excitement and camaraderie to your outing, making it a perfect choice for celebrations, team-building events, or simply a lively day out with friends.

27. Enjoy Great Food and Drinks in Style at Knoop


Located on top of a building in Studio Park, Knoop stands as one of the most stylish and sophisticated destinations in Grand Rapids.

Its chic and tastefully decorated interior exudes elegance and refinement, while its great location offers breathtaking views and a vibrant atmosphere.

The menu boasts an array of delectable dishes and good drinks to ensure a great experience.

28. Chill in a Local Dive Bar

Birch Lodge

Birch Lodge, fondly referred to as "The Birch" by its regulars, is a well-known dive bar on Michigan Street.

You'll discover a cozy ambiance, complete with a woodgrain bar top and walls adorned with an eclectic array of knick-knacks that will captivate your gaze.

A popular Michigan Street bar, Duke’s is a favored spot for both happy hour meetups and vibrant nights out on the weekends.

The bar is well-stocked with 20 beers on tap, while a pool table offers entertainment for patrons. Additionally, the kitchen serves a variety of delectable munchies to accompany your drinks.

29. Check Out The Pickwick Tavern

Pickwick Tavern

Nestled in the Uptown neighborhood, The Pickwick Tavern stands as one of the longest-standing bars in Grand Rapids.

This charming establishment offers a delightful opportunity to savor a beer in the company of friends while embarking on a nostalgic journey.

Stepping through its doors, you'll immediately be transported back in time, as much of the interior has remained unchanged for years.

The vintage ambiance evokes a sense of history and adds a unique allure to your experience at The Pickwick Tavern.

30. Go Shopping at Woodland Mall

Woodland Mall

Woodland Mall offers a wide range of products to meet your daily needs, from affordable clothing to high-end fashion, home decor, jewelry, and children's apparel.

With over 100 top brands to explore, you'll find an array of options to suit your style and preferences.

The mall offers great prices and plenty of good on-site dining options.

For a quick bite, head to the convenient Cafe in the Woods food court, and make your visit even more entertaining by catching a movie at Phoenix Theatres.

31. Take a Day Trip to Explore Stunning Nearby Areas

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

Grand Rapids is surrounded by picturesque landscapes and charming destinations that make for great day trips.

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, located along the shores of Lake Michigan, boasts towering sand dunes, scenic hiking trails, and breathtaking vistas.

Saugatuck is a quaint coastal town offering a blend of natural beauty and artistic charm. Take a scenic boat ride along the Kalamazoo River, explore the art galleries and boutiques, and relax on the sandy beaches of Lake Michigan.

32. Go to the Intersection for Live Music and a Great Atmosphere

The Intersection

With its roots firmly planted in the Grand Rapids music scene, The Intersection has garnered a reputation as a must-stop venue for touring bands from all corners of the country.

The Intersection showcases an eclectic range of musical genres, spanning from hip-hop and rock to country and metal.

Boasting five stages of varying capacities, The Intersection offers an ever-changing lineup that caters to diverse musical tastes.

33. Take Your Friends to Battle GR

Battle GR

At BattleGR, prepare yourself for an immersive and interactive adventure that unleashes a world of endless action possibilities.

Engage in thrilling activities such as laser tag, axe throwing, and basketball, where every moment is filled with excitement.

Whether you're battling it out in intense laser tag matches or honing your axe-throwing skills, BattleGR ensures an exhilarating experience that keeps you on your toes.

You can also take a break and enjoy a refreshing craft beer or mixed drink from their concessions.

34. Enjoy Great Live Music at MIDTOWN, Grand Rapids

MIDTOWN, Grand Rapids

Midtown is a premier music venue located in downtown Grand Rapids, offering a compelling reason to visit for music enthusiasts and cocktail connoisseurs alike.

With its intimate setting, this venue provides a unique opportunity to enjoy live music up close and personal.

The talented musicians captivate the audience with their electrifying performances, creating an immersive and unforgettable music experience.

To enhance your evening, Midtown also offers a selection of elevated cocktails that are expertly crafted to complement the vibrant atmosphere.

35. Have Dinner at Grove


Grove is a highly regarded farm-to-table restaurant in Grand Rapids that offers a truly exceptional dining experience.

Grove takes pride in delivering dishes that are fresh, flavorful, and sustainably sourced, making it one of the best local restaurants to enjoy.

Guests can expect to be pleasantly surprised with new and exciting flavors, as well as beautifully presented plates.

Whether you're looking for an intimate dinner or a special occasion celebration, Grove offers an upscale and memorable dining experience that is perfect for a date night.

36. Head to The B.O.B for a Fun-Filled Night

The B.O.B. Big Old Building

The B.O.B. (Big Old Building) is a must-visit destination in Grand Rapid's downtown area.

Housed in a historic building, this multi-level entertainment complex offers a unique and diverse experience for visitors.

With multiple restaurants, bars, and nightclubs, The B.O.B. has something for everyone.

The vibrant atmosphere, live music performances, and a wide range of entertainment options make The B.O.B. a go-to spot for a fun-filled evening with friends or a memorable night out on the town.

37. Attend a Concert at 20 Monroe Live

Concert at 20 Monroe Live

If you're looking for an exceptional live music experience in Grand Rapids, 20 Monroe Live is the place to be.

This state-of-the-art concert venue showcases a wide array of music genres and hosts famous artists from around the world.

With a capacity of over 2,500, 20 Monroe Live allows you to get up close and personal with your favorite performers.

Whether you're a fan of rock, pop, hip-hop, or alternative music, this venue consistently delivers outstanding performances.

38. Grab a Bite at The Ritz Koney Bar & Grille

The Ritz Koney Bar & Grille

Open 24/7, The Ritz Koney Bar & Grille is a classic diner-style restaurant in the downtown area, perfect for a late-night bite and enjoying a relaxed atmosphere.

The bar is a local favorite that offers mouthwatering coney dogs and classic American comfort food.

Whether you're grabbing a quick bite or enjoying a leisurely meal with friends and family, The Ritz Koney Bar & Grille is a must-visit destination in Grand Rapids for a taste of comforting and tasty American cuisine.

FAQs relating to Things to Do in Grand Rapids at Night

Let's also look at some frequently asked questions, and their answers, regarding the best things to do in Grand Rapids at night and late afternoon.

Does Grand Rapids have nightlife?

Yes, Grand Rapids has a vibrant nightlife scene. You can find numerous clubs, live music venues, sports bars, and theaters where you can enjoy entertainment and socialize with friends.

From comedy clubs to breweries and music festivals, Grand Rapids offers a diverse range of nighttime activities for everyone

What are some things Grand Rapids is known for?

Grand Rapids has a rich history of furniture manufacturing, earning it the nickname "Furniture City."

The city is also renowned for its craft beer scene and is home to the internationally recognized ArtPrize.

You can also admire the stunning Frederick Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, as well as buildings designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.

Does Grand Rapids have a downtown?

Yes, Grand Rapids has a vibrant downtown area. Downtown Grand Rapids is the city's central business district and cultural hub.

Downtown Grand Rapids is known for its lively atmosphere, with events, festivals, and austling nightlife.

It is also home to several iconic landmarks, including the Grand Rapids Public Museum and the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum.

Is Grand Rapids good for kids?

Yes, Grand Rapids, MI, is a family-friendly city with plenty of activities and attractions suitable for kids.

Families can visit the John Ball Zoo or explore the Grand Rapids Children's Museum, offering hands-on exhibits for learning and play.

The city also has several parks, splash pads, and playgrounds for outdoor fun, as well as family-friendly events and festivals throughout the year.

Summing Up: Best Things to Do in Grand Rapids at Night & Late Afternoon

Grand Rapids, MI, is a city that truly comes alive after dark, offering an array of unique and fun activities for visitors to enjoy.

From enjoying the vibrant nightlife with a local band and a good drink to exploring cultural spots and discovering the local breweries, there is no shortage of entertainment options.

So, while visiting Grand Rapids, be sure to take advantage of the exciting after-dark experiences that this city has to offer.

Discover the hidden gems, support the local businesses, and create lasting memories in this vibrant and dynamic city.