Is a Meijer Gardens Membership Worth It? Heck Yeah!
Hands down, a Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park membership is worth the cost. You’re getting access to a world renowned garden and sculpture park for less than the cost of Netflix if you go more than once a month. You’re getting access to expertly-manicured natural beauty that celebrates all of Michigan’s seasons. Fresh air. Butterflies. Chipmunks. Birds singing in the trees. Waterfalls. A farm. The sound of children laughing and playing.
Really, do we even need to have this conversation? Doesn’t everyone already know that if you have kids, a Meijer Garden membership is as important as enrolling that kid in kindergarten? (And homeschool families, I imagine that it’s even more important to you, as the gardens are a giant homeschool resource for science class and more!)
Perhaps you’re new to Grand Rapids, though. Perhaps you just want to see some cool pictures of Meijer Gardens. If so, read on!
Meijer Gardens Captivates the Imaginations of ALL AGES
What I love about Meijer Gardens is that I can bring anyone of my family or out of town friends here and they’ll have a blast. You’re never too young or old for the gardens, which I really appreciate. Kids can age out of other museums around town, or find even other museums to be “over their head” until they reach a certain age. But at the gardens, they’ll benefit forever.
Meijer Gardens is Exciting Year Round
Flagship events like Butterflies are Blooming and the Holidays Around the World/Trains exhibit ensure special fun at the gardens in the winter months.
And their new Japanese Garden was designed to give you a slightly different visit with each season. Their horticulture takes full advantage of every season, so there’s never a month that’s not good to go to the gardens.
Lena Meijer Children’s Garden is a Standalone Destination
The children’s garden will keep kids entertained for hours. I love that this expansive play area is completely fenced in, with only one way in or out. This ensures that even the wiliest children are kept within the confines of the space, which is a great relief to this mom. (Don’t worry, there’s a larger entrance next to this for the big people…)
There’s a tree house, sand area, story time garden, butterfly maze, sensory garden, Great Lakes water land, splash area, log cabin, beaver cave and more.
What You Get for a Meijer Gardens Membership
- Discounts on Classes and Workshops for Kids (and Adults!)
- Reciprocal privileges with other botanical gardens
- Lena Meijer Children’s Garden that will fascinate children for hours
- Sculpture Collection gracing all corners of their 158 acre facility
- Special temporary sculptural exhibits
- Butterflies are Blooming exhibit
- Holidays Around the World exhibit with captivating train display
- Japanese Garden
- Presale for popular Concerts like Lyle Lovett and Of Monsters and Men
- Free Concerts/Picnics
- 10% off at the really nice gift shop
What You Don’t Get With a Membership
…a pony? Really, what don’t you get with this? I guess you don’t get into the summer concert series for free, but you can still enjoy their other free concerts. You still have to pay for classes and workshops, but they come discounted for members. Perhaps the one thing that you don’t get that may disappoint is that you don’t get to live there. Sorry. For squirrels and birds only.
When it Makes Sense to Buy a Membership
As of April 2016, Family memberships (for one or two adults and the children in their household under 18) are $90. You can add a guest for $30, allowing you to bring one extra non-household guest any time you visit.
Individual tickets are $14.50 for adults and $4 for kids aged 3-4 and $7 for kids 5-13 (older students are $11). So if you had a child in each younger age group, a family visit would run $40. A membership would pay for itself in 3 visits, even with an add-on guest.
And I’d say that most families with a membership visit at least 6 times a year, and if you’re my family, it’s more like once a week in the spring and summer and at least once a month the rest of the year.