Events, goings-on and happenings all around West Michigan for the month of April.
Collections & Cocktails
Grand Rapids Public Museum
272 Pearl St. NW, Grand Rapids
May 4, 6 p.m.
Join the 2023 Collections & Cocktails fundraiser for an evening to support the Grand Rapids Public Museum and view selections from the Museum’s Rocks, Minerals, Gemstones, and Jewelry Collection, made up of over 5,000 specimens, many of them collected around 1854. The celebration will feature signature cocktails by New Holland Brewing and dinner accompanied by the stories and history of these artifacts.
Nature Makers Market
Blandford Nature Center
1715 HIllburn Ave. NW, Grand Rapids
May 6, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
Join Blandford Nature Center for the annual Spring Nature Makers Market! This market features gifts and goods inspired by nature and created with natural materials. Over 30 vendors will be selling a variety of handcrafted goods including jewelry, textiles, prints and illustrations, stickers, ceramics, and more! Admission to the Nature Makers Market is FREE and open to all ages, no registration required. Shopping includes the Blandford Nature Center gift shop.
Barley, BBQ & Beats
GLC Live at 20 Monroe
11 Ottawa Ave. NW, Grand Rapids
May 6, 4-8 p.m.
Support the Hospice of Michigan with another annual Barley, BBQ & Beats celebration, a unique celebration showcasing barbecue from leading pit masters, hand-crafted cocktails from select Michigan distilleries and live music from hometown favorites. Each ticket includes food, cocktails, games and much more. Plus, the Grand Rapids version of this traveling event includes a special appearance by country pop star Kelsea Ballerini.
Donut & Beer Festival
4500 W. River Dr. NE, Comstock Park
May 6, 2-6 p.m.
In 2017, the world’s first ever Donut and Beer fest was created in Kalamazoo, and it’s grown every year, always selling out. Each attendee gets local doughnut samples, beer and cider samples, a souvenir cup, and access to all kinds of fun, like a mechanical bull, music and more.
Tulip Time Festival
Since 1929, the city of Holland has blossomed with literally hundreds of thousands of tulips — and an equal number of tulip-lovers who attend the annual Tulip Time Festival. But the celebration is so much more than tulips, with national entertainment acts, events and activities for all ages, along with sights of the shores of Lake Michigan and some of the largest parades around. There’s also an Artisan Market with over 200 vendors, along with Dutch Dance performances, on May 6 & 7.
Grand Raggidy Roller Derby
Griff’s Georgetown Ice Arena
8500 48th Ave., Hudsonville
May 13, 4:30 p.m.
The screeching of the skates, the referees’ whistles, the hits, the bruises, the high-fives—it’s roller derby and it’s back! Come check out Grand Rapids’ very own flat-track roller derby teams as they duke it out and race to the finish, with some teammates doing derby since 2006. Still not convinced? Come for the skater names, like Bette Mangler, Buffy the Jampire Skater, Scary Magdelene and more.
Van Andel Arena
130 W. Fulton St., Grand Rapids
May 16, 7 p.m.
Breaking Benjamin are no strangers to the upper echelons of the rock charts. Since bursting onto the scene with 2002’s Saturate, the band has amassed an impressive string of mainstream rock radio hits, with ten songs hitting #1, and numerous platinum and multi-platinum songs and albums. See them at Van Andel with special guest Bush.
The Pyramid Scheme
68 Commerce Ave. SW, Grand Rapids
May 19, 7 p.m.
Bold and outspoken Chicago rapper CupcakKe achieved viral success and critical acclaim with her brazen, unapologetically explicit songs and videos. Her work explores sexuality in graphic detail, and while many of her songs are humorous and playful, she has more serious, introspective material that deals with sexual abuse, racial issues, and LGBTQ empowerment. See her at the Pyramid Scheme this month.
2023 NPC Grand Rapids Bodybuilding Championships
Grandville High School Auditorium
4700 Canal Ave. SW, Grandville
May 20, 5 p.m.
The NPC Grand Rapids Bodybuilding Championships has been growing in size and status since its beginning. Coming into its 17th year, the show is put on by Professional Personal Trainer and Event Promoter, Mike Vruggink. The event itself is an exciting show with top physique athletes from all over putting on spectacular presentations and posing routines—and this year, they’re welcoming special guest and 2021 Mr. Olympia Champion Derek Lunsford. Whether you know a competitor or not, this show is a fun and family-friendly evening in the very clean & classy suburb called Grandville in the city of Grand Rapids.
Roll’N Out Food Truck Festival
May 21, 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Put on some pants with a little stretch in them and head over to this eatables extravaganza—now in its fifth year. Expect as many as 45 participating food trucks and trailers serving up a variety of tastes and treats. It’s one of—if not THE—largest festival of its kind in GR.
Creed Bratton - Cool Beans Tour
133 Cesar E. Chavez SW, Grand Rapids
May 23, 7 p.m.
Mysterious, eccentric, good-hearted, and downright talented are all words that have been used to describe actor and musician Creed Bratton over the years. Creed may be best known for starring as a fictional version of himself on “The Office.” But on his Cool Beans Tour, you’ll see him perform incredible music made with a lifetime of experience, mixed in with a few jokes and stories along the way.
Taylor Tomlinson - The Have It All Tour
DeVos Performance Hall
303 Monroe Ave. NW, Grand Rapids
May 31-June 2
The New York Times opines, comedian Taylor Tomlinson “demonstrates tight joke writing, carefully honed act-outs and a ruthless appetite for laughs” in her second hour-long special, Look At You, now streaming on Netflix. New York Magazine adds, “Watching Tomlinson gives you the same comfort as a Swift concert or a Broadway show that’s been on for years. This is a professional. This performance will be ultra-produced. You do not need to be anxious.” What more do you need to know?