The Great Outdoors in Beer City, USA

The HopCatCan you feel that?

The buzz is vibrating so intensely, it’s practically screaming in my ears.
It’s on.
The Beer City, USA vote — where Grand Rapids, MI looks to OWN the title instead of sharing it with Asheville, NC this year.
It’s SO on!
But what does Grand Rapids have that the other Beer City contenders don’t?
I’m sure there are many similar factors in every town vying for this title… but there’s just something special about the Great Beer State. I highlighted many of these unique aspects in my post about 5 Lessons from the Michigan Beer Community.
With spring FINALLY arriving in Michigan, I wanted to highlight another fun aspect of Grand Rapids, outside of the 15 breweries our city boasts.
Yes, let’s go outside!
Sure, Grand Rapids’ winters can be long & painfully cold, but once Michiganders see that first robin on our lawns, we break out our lawn-chairs, coolers & delicious beer and drink… outside.
Several Grand Rapids breweries offer fantastic outdoor seating options, but my list is going to stretch beyond the brewery limits today.
One of the best outdoor patios in downtown Grand Rapids. Not just tables & chairs, but couches & comfortable seating arrangements encouraging patrons to visit with each other.
Other bonuses? This patio is not only family-friendly, but pet-friendly as well. And of course, the beer selection is one of the best in the world.

The Hideout

This is not the easiest brewery to find, but when you do find this hidden gem in NE Grand Rapids, just head out to the oversized beer garden where you can play horseshoes, or chat with friends old or new.


The Meanwhile Bar

The hubs works across the street from this Eastown bar (his fellow employees call it “The Store”). The beer selection is top-notch, the old-school juke-box may intimidate you. The open-air, yet private outdoor seating area is filled with picnic-tables and the building walls are tagged with graffiti. Keep the kiddos at home though. The Meanwhile is 21+ only.

The Winchester

Down the street from The Meanwhile, you can bring the kids to The Winchester. Here you can enjoy a 10oz Michigan craft beer for $2 at lunch! YES! The food here is just as delicious as the beer, and the outdoor brick patio is very welcoming.

The Derby Station

Also on Wealthy Street in Gaslight Village in East Grand Rapids, you can find a pub overflowing with beer options from Michigan and around the world. You can drink them outside on an open brick patio that is not hidden from this charming & bustling shopping district… When you finish your beer & meal, walk across the street to get an ice cream cone at Jersey Junction. Fun for the whole family!
One of the best beer-selections on Michigan, just NE of downtown, Grand Rapids. Logan’s offers a lattice-covered deck that feels so cozy, you forget you’re drinking in a busy-business district. Or maybe that’s just the beer talking.
Notable mentions: Founders, Brewery Vivant, Big Bob’s & Harmony also have fantastic outdoor seating areas. All family-friendly. Harmony offers fun children’s cups with lids + apples for the kids, while Big Bob’s offers a children’s menu, an under-rated array of craft beer + free popcorn! WIN!
The sun is up, the sky is blue… it’s beautiful, you need a brew!
Where do you enjoy drinking this time of year?

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    Kelli Williams

    Kelli Williams

    Keeping up with 2 little girls, writing assignments, music gigs, the house, laundry, ETC, backwards, wearing ass kicking boots and a smile, without spilling my beer. Ok, ok, so I spill my beer, but my floors have never been more germ-free since I started putting a little alcohol on them. Who needs ammonia...

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