[note] Welcome to our 3-day series on making the most of your visit to Grand Rapids, brought to you by grkids.com reader and guest writer Jenny Baker![/note]
[pullquote_left]by Jenny Baker[/pullquote_left]
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Our final day of your 3-day stint in Grand Rapids is a great plan for any day of the year, rain or shine!

Day Three:

Grand Rapids Children’s Museum

If you have children between three and 12 years old, this museum will be the highlight of their entire vacation. Imagine two stories of stuff they can move, bend, throw, blow, put on, take off, roll, bounce, shake, slide down…you get the picture. What more can we say? Located in the heart of Grand Rapids, plan approximately two hours for this visit.

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Grand Rapids Children's Museum

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  • Hours are Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday from 9:30 am – 5:00 pm; Thursday from 9:30 am – 8:00 pm; Sunday noon – 5:00 pm; closed on Monday.
  • Admission is $7.50, with the exception of senior citizens being $6.50 and children aged 1 and under getting in free. Admission for military families is $5.50.
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Grand Rapids Public Museum

If your kids are older than 12, perhaps a trip to the Grand Rapids Public Museum would be more suited for the entire family. Also located in the heart of Grand Rapids, the Public Museum has permanent exhibits featuring artifacts from the state’s original Native American tribes, Michigan wildlife habitats, entire streets recreated from Grand Rapids as it looked in the 1800s, and a restored 1928 Spillman Carousel that you can still ride today.

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outside

This summer (2013) guest exhibits include artifacts from Great Lakes Shipwrecks and the Titanic. The museum also features a planetarium with laser light shows set to music. Plan  two-three hours for this visit.

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  • Hours are Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm; Tuesday from 9:00 am – 9:00 pm and Sunday from noon – 5:00 pm.
  • Admission ranges from $11-17+ for adults, depending on if you’d like to add extra experiences (like the Titanic exhibit, riding the carousel, visiting the planetarium, etc.), and $3-12+ for children ages 3-18.
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Rivertown Crossings Mall

What trip would be complete without a little retail therapy? Grand Rapids has no shortage of shopping opportunities for every member of the family. For the most “all under one roof” options, Rivertown Crossings Mall in Grandville is the place to go. This two story mall is anchored by five department stores, a variety of retail chains, a large kids’ play land, an indoor carousel, movie theater and food court.

Just across the street is Cabela’s, Grand Rapids’ newest sporting goods establishment that boasts 88,000 square feet of hunting and fishing accessories. The kids will be fascinated with the wildlife displays throughout the store, including a giant aquarium housing fish native to Michigan.

Rivertown Crossings is approximately 10 miles southwest of Grand Rapids. Time allotted for this visit varies depending on your shopping plans.

Craig’s Cruisers Family Fun Center

After shopping, hit up your final destination for true vacation fun that the whole family can enjoy together. Miniature golf, indoor and outdoor go-carts, bumper boats, laser tag, a ropes course, hundreds of video games: Craig’s Cruisers is one huge entertainment center for adults and kids alike!

Add to that a gigantic dinner buffet and really there’s no reason to consider concluding your vacation any other way. Approximately eight miles south of Grand Rapids. Will likely take up your entire evening.

 

Ready to take the “Grand” tour? What places would you add if you were taking friends around town?