Special Events

Our annual events

Tree Beer started in 2013 when local brewers asked Friends of GR Parks (FGRP) how they could celebrate being named Beer City USA by giving back to our parks and public spaces. Brewers create tree-themed beers that are offered for a limited time with proceeds going directly to FGRP’s Urban Forest Project tree plantings in the Brewer’s Grove.

Mayor’s Greening Initiative, hosted by Mayor Bliss with help from Friends of Grand Rapids Parks and the City’s Forestry Department, brings together community and corporate volunteers to plant hundreds of trees around the City during Arbor Week to bring us closer to the City’s master plan goal of 40 percent tree canopy cover.

BBQ and Beautify is a summer event series that is hosted in the evening encouraging neighbors to come together and help spruce up their community park. The beautification project is followed by a free community BBQ and yard games hosted by Friends of Grand Rapids Parks.

Green Gala is Grand Rapids’ greenest bash of the year. Our signature fundraising event not only raises awareness of the value of great parks but also serves as the catalyst for our ongoing work to protect, enhance, and expand parks and public spaces.

WinterWest is a winter fun series that are free events in collaboration with the City of Grand Rapids Parks and Rec Department and neighborhood associations to encourage outdoor park engagement during the chilly winter months.

Each year we host an event to update our friends on the progress we are making toward our goals, recognize key partners, and to announce upcoming projects and opportunities.