We tasked elementary and middle school students at the Creative Youth Center’s summer programming to become journalists and give Revue readers some unique perspectives on cool (and hot!) spots in GR. The CYC prepares kids for life’s adventures by supporting their writing and amplifying their voices. At the CYC, kids become published authors, leading to a strong sense of identity and an enthusiasm for learning, and programs are free for GRPS students. Here’s what they had to say.
Funky Buddha (1331 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids)
Walter (2nd grade)
Funky Buddha smells like nothing. I did a lot of work. I like upward dog. The people are nice.
Akeelah (4th grade)
Do you want to know some moves from yoga? You do. Okay, great. One move is the downward dog, then here are some more: upward dog, airplane and the crow. The crow is my favorite, because you have to balance your legs on your elbows. Lastly, I think Funky Buddha is the perfect place for yoga, because they have Jolly Ranchers and it’s calming.
Alise (3rd grade)
I took 18 breaths at Funky Buddha. The place looks nice, but it is hot in there. We did a pose, or I can say it is yoga. The hotness can make you stretch well.
Grand Rapids Children’s Museum (11 Sheldon Ave. NE, Grand Rapids)
Anala (5th grade)
The Children’s Museum is a place where your kids can have some free time. They have an area where you can plant and harvest (pretend) stuff. There’s a doctor area where you can pretend to do surgery. We had to help someone because they fell out of a window and broke both of their legs. The grocery is downstairs next to the farm. Me and my friend were pretending that we were in a zombie apocalypse. We had to gather as much food as possible before the zombies came. Once we were done, a zombie came and broke through the door, but my friend fought the zombie.
Cameron (5th grade)
The Children’s Museum is for kids. On the first floor, there’s a gift shop and a counter where you pay to play. Around the first floor, there’s a stage. You can dress up and be a made-up character. Then there’s an old car that you can pretend to drive. There’s also the business area, where you can play as a cashier, banker, sheriff or postman. There’s fake money. I got 1 million dollars and 24 karats. There’s rock climbing for toddlers. There’s a beehive that has a queen bee. Box Land is like Minecraft, but no animals. You should take your children.
Storee (5th grade)
Our trip to the Children’s Museum was the best trip ever. We got to pretend to cook and we pretended to grocery shop too. When we went upstairs, I went to a dentist appointment and someone did surgery on me. Apparently I have a broken leg. Then we went to the treehouse and read books. Then we did a puppet show. I was a turtle. Children’s Museum was super big and kinda cold. In my opinion, the Children’s Museum is a place a kid will love.
Marie Catrib’s (1001-1003 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids)
Storee (5th grade)
The food at Marie Catrib’s was so good! They gave us buckeyes, pudding and chocolate chip cookies. The buckeye was peanut butter dipped in chocolate. The pudding was homemade and had goose eggs and whipped cream. The cookie was gigantic, so we all could split it. When we went inside, it was kinda small, but it was so cool in there. Their lights had different shapes. She sold sandwiches too.
Kenra (3rd grade)
We ate the buckeye. It tasted like peanut butter. The brown butter chocolate chip cookie, it tasted like peanut butter and chocolate. It tasted good. Pudding: I love it and ate it too. My favorite one is the chocolate chip cookie. Would I go back? Yes.
Le Bon Macaron (951 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids)
Mariella (4th grade)
Le Bon Macaron is amazing! When you walk in, you smell a very strong smell of coffee. It is so strong that you’re surprised coffee isn’t being put right in front of your nose. Also, they have really nice workers. They have very pretty paint, vibrant white; how classic and classy. Then, when you sit down, you stop smelling coffee and start smelling mint. That’s from the flowers. The flowers are beautiful. They might be fake, but they’re in water, so I think they’re real. There are chandeliers to light up the room instead of a light bulb. My friends didn’t like it, but I loved the macaron. I had the violet one. So sweet, so tasty.
Storee (5th grade)
We went to Le Bon Macaron. To me, it wasn’t the best food. The treat looked like a mini colorful hamburger. It was kinda hard. When I pressed it, it started breaking. The macaron was chocolate flavored but there were millions of flavors. Le Bon Macaron was a big place. The people who worked there were both girls and they seemed happy when we came in. I don’t suggest Le Bon Macaron, but that’s my opinion, so you can try it for yourself.
D’arts Donuts (1444 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids)
Emma, Mira, Faith, Attyn, Diego (all 6th grade)
We went to D’Arts Donuts, a very unique donut shop. D’arts doesn’t use any artificial ingredients or flavors. They say it’s the only donut shop in GR that uses milk, eggs, butter, flour and vanilla. They don’t waste any ingredients at all! The manager hand-cuts the donuts! Wow!
The donuts were creative while still tasting good. The size of the donut is like any ordinary donut, the perfect size. We even ate a maple donut with a topping of...wait for it...bacon! They even have donut sandwiches where the bread is a donut!
When we went inside D’arts Donuts, we felt welcomed and comfortable. The building itself was built well with brick and wood. D’arts is a place where there can be family outings, a possible date, a birthday and so many more cool events.
D’art is the owner Adam’s dog. We loved how they had donuts for dogs. They might even build a window so people can get donuts while they’re outside with their dogs. Sounds fancy, if you ask us!
The Rapid (Grand Rapids)
Mariella (4th grade)
The bus is a good place to get around. On the bus, you can do tons of stuff. You can sit, stand, go on your phone, listen to music, etc. And it can be fun too. But there is a downside: Once in awhile, you have to wait in the rain or snow. Also, you can be sat next to someone really loud and obnoxious. But it is mostly good stuff, and it’s really easy to use.
Chris (3rd grade)
The Rapid is cheap. The seats are soft, probably softer than a car seat. On the Rapid there is a string on the side. If you pull hard enough, the driver stops.
Urban Roots (1316 Madison Ave. SE, Grand Rapids)
Ariana, Zaniah (both 8th grade), Alanna (7th grade)
This week, we visited a local garden, Urban Roots. It is a place where children and adults can learn about food and ways to grow it! Jenny, who led us around the farm, said, “They are trying to give back and help the community.” The food is accessible, with very low prices for those in need of organic fruits and vegetables. We saw all types of fresh foods, such as tomatoes, carrots, green beans, strawberry plants and watermelon plants. The garden also had compost to richen the soil for our food, which is so much better for the food, refilling the nutrients the other crops took out. We had a taste of cucumbers, which tasted super fresh. If you ever want to visit Urban Roots, go to Madison Street. You’ll know you’re there when you see our quotes painted on planter boxes in bright, neon colors.
The Winchester (648 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids)
Nora (6th grade), Alayna (8th grade), Willa (7th grade)
The Winchester is located on Wealthy Street, right by the CYC. The people and the energy in The Winchester were very friendly and welcoming. It had an interesting mixture of modern and classical decorations that, along with the building’s neutral colors, provided an awesome atmosphere.
A lot of their ingredients come from their own garden. Winchester Gardens, a place of many unique plants, vegetables and herbs, is located next to the restaurant that bears its name. It turns out that many of their flowers, including the sweet elysium and nasturtium, are also edible. Sorrel, a plant that tastes like lemon, seems to have an earthy taste (like many of the plants), but then hits you with a tart sourness. Another exotic plant, the cucamelon, is a mix of watermelon, cucumber and grape. During the visit, we were encouraged to eat as many of the plants as we wanted by Brandon, who manages the garden. He even gave us our own basil plant to take home.
The food, to say the least, was delicious. The burger was prepared perfectly and the fries were an excellent mix of crispy and salty. They also have vegetarian burgers and options.
If you are looking for food take-out options or are catering an event, The Winchester also has a food truck: What The Truck. The menu includes hamburgers and burritos and other lunch foods at reasonable prices.
We really hope you enjoy The Winchester as much as we did.
Urban Massage (951 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids)
Qimya (5th grade)
Hi, are you having a tough day? It doesn’t matter, because you can go to Urban Massage. They have so many massages — for example, they give prenatal massages. They’re open every day but Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Fun fact — did you know massage dehydrates the body? Also, did you know that fish eat the dead skin off your body? The fish they have is a goldfish named Bradley. When you go in, you have to silence your phones.
Mazonnah (4th grade)
The massages felt like chopping up food. It felt relaxing. Inside smells scenty — it smells like lemon, oranges, lime and pineapple. They had one bed that goes up and down. The rest don’t. And the best part about Urban Massage is they give you massages.
Chloe (3rd grade)
It looks fancy, like a huge mansion. It is comfortable, like a really soft couch. It smells like a minty flower.
Arianna (3rd grade)
It smells like peppermint. It has to be kinda dark. In the second room, there is a goldfish named Bradley. There are massages to wake people up if they go to sleep.
Wealthy Street Bakery (610 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids)
Omaria (5th grade)
The dessert was the best! I recommend it. What I got was a really big snickerdoodle. I loved it! It tasted like cinnamon, soft and buttery, chewy, the top was rough, and when I broke it in half, it didn’t crumble. Here’s what it looked like in Wealthy Street Bakery: breads, croissants, cupcakes, brownies, blueberry muffins and more. I love it. It’s fresh. It has fancy chairs and tables outside. That is why you should go to Wealthy Street Bakery.
Mazonnah (4th grade)
Inside the bakery, they had food like cinnamon rolls, croissants, and croissants with ham and turkey. They also had strawberry pie. But what I liked the most was the cinnamon rolls.
Rodri (3rd grade)
The Wealthy Street Bakery would be one of my favorite restaurants, because they have super huge and good cinnamon rolls. They also have pretty fast service. I would rate it five stars and come again. All the people there are really nice and they look like they are enjoying their food.
Isaac (4th grade)
At the Wealthy Street Bakery, they only make stuff with bread. Let me tell you what food they have: Croissants, and it tastes like bread, and it feels like bread. And there were blueberry muffins and cinnamons rolls and raspberry danish. And it has water. And they have a lot of birds outside.
Chris (3rd grade)
Wealthy Street Bakery is the best bakery ever. It has an outside place to eat. The food there looks so delicious. The cinnamon roll is huge and delicious.
Mokaya (638 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids)
Chloe (3rd grade)
It looks like a French store. The chocolate is smooth like some sunglasses lenses. It was chocolatey and spicy, and had lots of chocolate on the Oreo. It was good.
Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts (2 W. Fulton St., Grand Rapids)
Arianna (3rd grade), Omaria (5th grade)
The UICA has a soft sofa. There are colorful paintings and a quilt that says “No” at least 20 times. I think the No’s mean everything bad that’s happening in America, like the election and people dying on roller coasters. The quilt has red and white and a blue diamond in the middle. The walls are very plain and white, and there are lots of elevators. It is downtown. There is a painting of a woman in drag makeup. She is pink and has pearls in her hair.