Movies on Monroe – Tips for the Most Fun with Kids at Grand Rapids’ Free Outdoor Movie Venue

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Look for the Bright Blue Lot on Monroe

Are you looking for a FREE family event? Head downtown to 555 Monroe NW for Movies on Monroe –  an outdoor movie experience that is sure to be memorable and a whole lot of fun.


There’s something about watching a movie outside. With drive-in theaters being scarce these days, Downtown Grand Rapids offers a bit of that same fun, only better.

Included in these events are a rock wall, games, food trucks, and a real community feeling with fellow movie-goers.


You’ll know you’re there by the bright aqua blue ground and an entrance tunnel made out of ribbon, which makes for a perfect photo op for your kids.

Movies on Monroe entrance 

Each evening will have a double feature usually with a family-friendly movie starting at 7:30PM followed by a brief intermission. A more “adult” movie will following. Each movie will feature subtitles – alternately in Spanish and also English for those who are hearing impaired.

The event area opens at 6PM, and you will want to find a seat early as space fills up quickly

Movies and ratings for the Summer of 2019 are:

  • Beetlejuice (PG)  &  Bohemian Rhapsody (PG13) | June 7 | English subtitles
  • Spiderman: Into the Spider-Verse (PG) & A Star is Born (R) | June 21 |Spanish subtitles
  • Mathilda (PG) & Crazy Rich Asians (PG13)| July 12 | English subtitles
  • Hotel Transylvania (PG) & A Quiet Place (PG13) | July 26 | Spanish subtitles
  • Mean Girls (PG13) & 10 Things I Hate About You (PG13) | Aug. 9 | English subtitles
  • Space Jam (PG) & Star Wars: The Force Awakens (PG13)  Aug. 23 | Spanish subtitles
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Movies on Monroe Superheroes

Check out the Activities Before the Stars Come Out

It’s not just a movie you’ll be treated to, it’s a whole lot of free family activities that are sure to make the night memorable. Here are few things you’ll need to know:

  • Bring your own lawn chairs, or you can rent them for $2 each.
  • You also might want to bring blankets as it can get chilly at night.

Movies on Monroe

  •  Movies on Monroe will have a variety of food vendors on site.  You are also welcome to bring your own snacks. Alcoholic beverages are also allowed, but make sure you bring a photo ID.
  • Pets are allowed, but smoking is not!
  • Movies on Monroe Food Truck Ice Box Brand
  • Check out the Side Entertainment. Once your spot is staked out, you can walk around with the kids before the movie starts.  Each evening will have different entertainment theme based on what movies are playing that night. Some of the fun includes a mini-rock climbing wall, interactive murals, and many more kid-friendly activities. Check the Downtown Grand Rapids, Inc. Facebook page for details on each night’s fun. 

Grand Rapids outdoor movies

A Few More Thoughts to Make Your Night a Success

  • Bring bug spray!  Being so close to the Grand River, it may be buggy. 
  • If you plan to sit up front near the screen, bring low backed lawn chairs so as to not block those behind you. 
  • If you think your kids will get antsy, pick a spot to sit along the edge of the crowd so you can make a quick exit.
  • There is a parking lot directly across the street.
  • Movies on Monroe is weather dependent, so check Downtown Grand Rapids on Facebook if the weather is iffy.
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  • Grandparent outings around Grand Rapids grandma and granddaughter happy laughing

17 Things to do with Grandkids Around Grand Rapids

Thank Goodness for Grandparents! While we may differ over how much candy or screen-time our children should have, there is no denying that an involved grandparent is a major blessing. They give our kids extra love and attention while also providing parents much needed support and guidance. Not to mention, free babysitting from grandparents can be a huge lifesaver! For those of us fortunate enough to have grandparents around and able to spend time with our children, we thought it would be fun to list a roundup of outing ideas for [...]

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