Grand Rapids Coffee Lover Pt. 1

Even though GR is known as Beer City USA, we also have so many awesome local coffee shops and cafes! The list of coffee shops around the city is pretty close to endless and I know there are still lots more that I need to visit and check out. But for now here is Part 1 of coffee shops that I love! 

Outside Coffee Company

Who doesn’t love Outside Coffee Company? Their coffee is amazing but when you add the outside atmosphere that they created for the seating area it is hard to beat! It’s so relaxing and inviting just sipping your coffee outside while the birds sing or enjoying one of their ice cream creations in a hammock, it really reminds you to enjoy the simple things. If you haven’t checked them out yet then add them to your list of places to visit, you’ll be asking yourself why have I waited so long to come here?!

Pa Latte 

I absolutely love Pa Latte, they are definitely one of my favorite coffee shops! They are a coffee shop and an art gallery all in one! When you walk in it’s warm in color and the walls are filled with beautiful artwork from local artists from top to bottom, AND what’s awesome you can buy the art work as well! I am a sweet coffee drinker, I do enjoy strong coffee and love my caffeine spike but I love when it’s sweet and delicious, and that’s why I love Pa Latte. They have a lot of lattes based off of candy bars and my FAVORITE one is their hot Snickers Latte and oh my goodness it is so good! And if you order it and drink it in the cafe they make the prettiest designs on top which of course just make it taste 10x better! 

Madcap Coffee Company 

What’s super nice about Madcap Coffee is one- they have incredibly tasty coffee, two- they have two locations which is super convenient!  They have one right in downtown Grand Rapids and one in Eastown. You know that you are going to get a great cup of coffee from them because of the passion they have behind their coffee creating craft. They take the extra time to make it right, how you want it, and how it should be made. I am a huge fan of Mochas (because coffee and chocolate just belong together) and Madcap is one of my favorite places to get one, everytime is perfection!

FlannelJax’s Grand Rapids

If you are looking for a fun time and to try something new, then look no further – Flannel Jaxs is the Premier Axe Throwing experience! 

I took some friends there to check it out and I can not explain to you how much fun it was! This was our first time throwing an axe, so we were all a little nervous and hesitant to start. At first I didn’t think that I could throw it hard enough to make it onto the board but I did and very successfully! Don’t want to toot my own horn but I got a few bullseye’s and they have these green dots worth 10 points and I was the only one in the group to hit it, and I hit it twice! 

When you first get there they have an instructor go over the rules with you and go over all of the safety protocols. They also go over how to throw the axe properly, which I found super helpful and felt a lot more comfortable when it came my turn to throw! Little did I know that I was a natural. 

After you get a few throws in and have the hang of it they have some fun games that you can play with your group. They have a scoreboard so you can keep track and quite a few different game options. We played TIMBER, that’s where you throw 3 times and whoever gets the highest score gets a letter and whoever spells TIMBER first wins. Of course living in beer city, losers would have to buy the first round (that’s just our rule)! You’ll have to go visit and play one of the other options and let me know what you think! 

I highly recommend checking them out. It’s perfect for group dates, hanging out with friends, parties, really anything! Bored on a Thursday night and want to try something new (that’s what we did!). From my experience I would say 4 people should be the minimum group size. It still would be fun with 2 people but for this kind of activity the more the merrier! 


If you check them out tell them My Grand Rapids Life sent you and then tag me in your photos and let me know what you think! Can’t wait to hear about your bullseye! 


Cheers Friends! 


Grand Rapids Fitness Fest

The first annual GR Fitness Fest featuring over 45 local gyms, studios, and fitness professionals at amazing outdoor venues around the downtown area. Popular areas like the Calder Plaza, The Blue Bridge, Ah-Nab-Awen Park, Rosa Park Circle, and so many more awesome spots!
The fit pass is only $20 or $10 if you are a SweatNet member and it gives you access to all workouts April 30-May 9th! Tickets are on sale now. After you pass has been purchased you will be able to sign up for as many workouts as you want! There is a wide variety of workouts and they are for all levels of fitness!
All events are limited capacity so you will want to make sure you sign up right away for the classes that interest you most. But there are definitely enough options to where you will not miss out!
Click HERE to purchase your pass!
Also if you are interested in joining SweatNet you can read all about them and what they have to offer HERE! You can sign up for only $10.95 a month and if you use code ‘sweatdrop’ it will get your first month for only $1!
Sign up for SweatNet HERE!
I will be attending at least one event everyday so make sure to follow me on social media and if you see me at an event say HI! Use the hashtags #GrFitnessFest and #mygrandrapidslife and your photo could have the chance to be featured!

Furniture City Creamery

I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream! What’s great about ice cream is that there is never a bad time for it! Even during a Michigan polar vortex; ice cream will still sound good and fuel the soul. From Furniture City Creamery’s website – Ice Cream is not seasonal and neither are we! 

Furniture City Creamery means business when it comes to ice cream. They make each flavor from scratch in their cute shop by their own chemical engineer! Some of their mixes can take up to 3 days to be ready. If you’ve had their ice cream then you now understand why it tastes as amazing as it does. So much love, calculations, and patience goes into crafting their ice cream and you can taste the perfection! 

Since they make their flavors in smaller batches some flavor depending on demand might sell out before you’ve had your chances to taste it. It is recommended “not to hesitate if you see something that is drool-worthy.” What also sets this ice cream shop apart from others is their wide range of vegan offerings! All of their house-made waffle cones and sauces are dairy-free vegan friendly. Tasty options for everyone! 

To try one of their delicious creations you have a few options. 

  1. Order online so when you get there it all set to be devoured 
  2. Walk up and scan their menu with your phone and order in person
  3. Get it DELIVERED through Uber, Doordash, or Grubhub

They are not offering indoor seating at the moment but they have 2 beautiful green houses (that are first come first serve) at the back door where you will pick up your orders. They are so cute and cozy and have their own little heaters in them! 

And for the cherry on top(pun intended) they even have pup cups for our four legged fur babies! I own a dog and I love that we can share a tasty treat together, and he loves it too! 

If I haven’t had you thinking about ordering ice cream yet check out their list of flavors here and I guarantee they will! Don’t forget that their flavors and offerings are changing and not the same everyday so make sure to keep checking so you don’t miss out on any masterpieces. Now I’m about to go wipe off the snow on my car because after talking about how good they are I need some to enjoy!


Pickin Chick

Became a Pickin Chick the other day while visiting Pickin Chick!

This amazing store had so many fun, unique, and beautiful items! I had so much fun looking around in all the rooms. They are actually located right down the street from me! Which is awesome but equally terrifying for my wallet. They are located right on 36th St in Wyoming by the 131 north and south ramps. 

What I love about antique stores is not only do they have the best items for anything and everything you are looking for! They are one of the best places to support small business and local artist/crafters! One, you are supporting the main store by shopping there. Two, a lot of the items that are provided are spaces rented by other small businesses or crafters/artists so they make a profit as well if you buy one of there items! It’s a win win for everyone!

It was so fun when I bought by cute Home Sweet Home sign the owner rang me up and said the person who made my sign gets notified every night on if they sold an item, and then said you just made them very happy! I love that!

Think twice before shopping at the big retailers because we have so much talent in GR and surrounding areas that you will be able to find exactly what you are looking for and more! And a better chance of someone else not having it in there house either! 😉 Check them out and let me know what you think!


Outside Coffee Co.

Grand Rapids may be known as Beer City USA, but we also have the best coffee shops! One of my favorites is the Outside Coffee Co. located on Wealthy St. They are an outside coffee shop if you didn’t get that from the name, in a cozy garden setting. 

I love how relaxed and inviting this coffee shop is, it’s so pretty and I love the fresh air and sunshine I get while visiting. They have gathering tables, benches, hammocks, and a fire fireplace to gather around while enjoying one of their tasty caffeinated or non caffeinated beverages. Even dealing with Michigan winters they are still one of the coziest coffee shops around. When it starts to get into the winter season they put up personal igloos to sit in with little fireplaces in them for extra warmth and comfort. It is one of the most coziest experiences – drinking coffee and watching the snow fall right above me while still keeping toasty. It basically feels like a Hallmark movie!

They have a wide variety of drinks for you to pick from, and I love my coffee as much as the next person but my order is very easy and simple – I’ll have a caramel or mocha latte please! Or I do love my seasonal flavors as well! Outside Coffee Co. had the best pumpkin spice coffee this year and I’m excited to try some of their winter specials as well! But don’t worry they have way more options than just lattes to order from. They have a lot of non coffee drinks as well on their menu including tea, kombucha, and hot coco. And if you need a snack to go with your beverage they have a selection of different toast styles to pick from or they even have ice cream! 

With all the hustle and bustle coming up with the holidays, take a moment to stop, get some fresh air, sip on a hot cup of coffee and enjoy that simple blissful moment! I hope I have talked you into stopping by and checking them out! Remember to stay safe, wear a mask, and be respectful to the people still showing up to serve you that enjoyable moment!

Cheers Friends!


I am sure you have heard about it by now but if you haven’t let me tell you about IllumiZoo at John Ball Zoo! From their website – At John Ball Zoo a tale of illuminating connections between wildlife and wild places is ready to be told. The illuminating tale of how we are all connected to each other, to the land, the water, the air, the trees, and all animals big and small with the power to make a positive change in our world. You are invited to take a journey through IllumiZoo – A Glenlore Tale at John Ball Zoo.

I have been seeing a lot of pictures and posts from people going and it looked so cool and fun that I had to check it out myself. It did not disappoint! It was so pretty and presented a calmness between the lights and sounds, at least for me. It is a mile long trail and took us about 45 minutes to walk through. We went on a Saturday/Halloween night so it was pretty busy, we still got the full effect but I would recommend going during the week if you can, to avoid the crowds. Added bonus – tickets are cheaper during the week. I highly recommend checking it out though and it is fun and safe for all ages, and a perfect event to attend during the COVID-19 season so you can still have fun with the family or have a date/friends night!

They have a theme night as well! On November 12, between 9pm to midnight the theme is Tropical Calypso Music Night. From their website – Caribbean island-inspired music of Calypso with its highly rhythmic and harmonic vocals will get your body groovin’ for this special evening of IllumiZoo. Enjoy a wide array of music from Rodrigo y Gabriella to Bob Marley and the Wailers. You will make your way through the illuminated journey to the blissful rhythm of the steel pan drums swirling among marimbas and horns, while shakers complement the upbeat percussion and brassy tambourine. 

This event is going until November 15 so make sure you plan to visit before all of the pretty lights get packed up! I would say go this week because the weather has been gorgeous! It’s nice that Michigan is actually getting a nice fall this year. I will link their site here for more information and ticket prices. If you check it out send me a message letting me know what you think and tag @GrandRapidsLife in your photos! I love to see all of the fun that is being had in our awesome city. Also My Grand Rapids Life has a TikTok now so make sure to follow and see fun tours and highlights of places in Grand Rapids!


SweatNet GR

Let me first start off by saying SweatNet is amazing and I am hoping that after you read about everything they have to offer I will see you at the next event! SweatNet is a Grand Rapids health, fitness and wellness community. They put on at least 3-4 free fitness events a month but lately it has been more than that, and they feature different class styles and studios in the surrounding area. It is a $9.95 monthly membership that allows you access to go to all of the events, plus offers membership discounts to studios, and discounts at local restaurants and shops around Grand Rapids. 

SweatNet is all about bringing the community together and welcomes everyone with open arms! I am not a “gym” person, even though I wish I was, treadmill and free weights are just not for me. I love variety in my workouts and I love when workouts can be fun so it doesn’t feel like a chore. That’s how I fell in love with SweatNet GR! The first event that I found was a barre class on the rooftop of 7 Monks Brewery downtown and they offered a happy hour after the workout, I saw that and was like “These are my people!” It is all about balance.

I go to a lot of events by myself and I never feel out of place or awkward, everyone is so friendly and there for the same reason – to get a sweat on and have some fun. All the events that are put on are for all levels of fitness and have advanced moves and modifiers! The energy from the events will keep you coming for more and pushing yourself to new limits!

Like I mentioned in the beginning you get a lot of perks with your monthly membership. 

  1. Free access to monthly fitness events
  2. Drop in discounts to studios
  3. Salon and spa service discounts
  4. One free drink/smoothie from Clean Juice every month
  5. Gym/studio membership discounts
  6. Deals at local apparel shops
  7. Deals at local eateries 

The list is crazy long and keeps growing, it’s ridiculously awesome how many businesses are included. I love that it promotes only Grand Rapids and the surrounding area businesses, especially in times right now where small and local businesses need the community most! It is a great way to support our amazing city and show some extra love while enjoying our perks as well, it is a win win! 

I post all SweatNet events on the Weekly 411 page, and it is updated every Sunday night! I attend about 90% of events so feel free to reach out if you need a buddy to attend an event with you. I would love to show you the ropes and then visit one of our awesome brewery’s for our workout reward! Lace up your sneakers and let’s get our sweat on! 

Click here for the link to their website for more details and to sign up as a member


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Ed Dunneback & Girls Farm

It is fall time in Michigan and I think it is safe to say that if you are a Michigander fall is your favorite season. The weather finally cools down, football is on TV (Go Lions), everything pumpkin spice is on the shelfs, and of course the first holiday is coming up – Halloween! Fall activities are something I look forward to every year! This year I checked out a new place(to me that is)! It is called Ed Dunneback and Girls Farm, located at 3025 6 Mile Rd NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49544. 

Ed Dunneback & Girls Farm has all of the fall experiences in a one stop shop! They have apple picking, hay rides, pumpkins, a fresh produce market, cider/beers, amazing food, animals to pet, playground, and donuts! Did I miss anything? OH and they have a beautiful sunflower patch to walk in and have fun photo ops placed around to get the perfect picture. I’m telling you this is the place to visit this fall. 

I went early in the season so I didn’t get my pumpkin just yet, but I did have a field day in the sunflower patch! This was actually my first time being sunflower patch, I’ve always seen pictures but it is more beautiful in person. I felt like a kid again running through in the dirt and taking silly photos with the flowers. We even got to take one home with us! 

After our mini photoshoot in the flowers we headed back to the barn and explored the fun items that were on display and to get a bite to eat. They have fresh produce items, fun hand crafted gifts, books, and fun toys for kids. I dared my husband to eat a fresh jalapenos but he was too big of a chicken! We decided to split their apple bbq pulled pork sandwich and we were so hungry and it was so good that I forgot to take a picture of it before it was gone. One thing we didn’t try when we were there is any of their beers or ciders. We stuck with fresh apple cider this time around but plan on going back and sitting out on their patio in the fall breeze with most likely a sample of all of them. 

Ed Dunneback & Girls Farm is the perfect place for all of your fall activities and it is for all ages which is the best part! Fun for the kids, teenagers, young adults, parents, and grandparents, it is for everyone! Fall is also the quickest season in Michigan so I hope you get the chance and make the time to visit here for some fall fun! As also always let me know what you think! 


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Butcher’s Union

Two words: Meat & Whiskey! That is what you will find at Butcher’s Union located at 438 Bridge St Downtown Grand Rapids. The deliciously fancy cocktails, super tasty food, and comfortable outdoor seating all make it the perfect place to be. Their mission is  – “to offer delicious food, inspired cocktails and an unrivaled whiskey collection while creating a culture of warmth and belonging, where everyone is welcome. We exist to create experiences where passion, purpose and a good time come together.” ( I can say from experience they succeed! Butcher’s Union also supports the community by trying to source all of their products from local farmers and partners around the area. Which of course is awesome and we love that!

Before I dive into their delicious drinks and food, I have to admit that I am not a whiskey drinker. However, they do have other amazing cocktails available for non-whiskey drinkers so there’s something for everyone! Showing an example with my white peach sangria!

I am a huge sangria fan so I was very excited to see that this was an option. They also have a red sangria and offer a mixture of the two for the best of both worlds!

They are not known for Meat & Sangria though, so let’s get into the whiskeys, bourbons, and ryes. My husband ordered THE SQUIRMING COIL which is – Old Overholt rye & Amaro Montenegro stirred with BU simple syrup, Fee Brothers aztec chocolate bitters & Angostura bitters, served up in a smoked glass with a flamed orange peel.

The smoke aspect of this drink really drew him in to the intense flavors offering a new twist to an Old Fashion for him. He ended up ordering two!  He is looking forward to going back there and trying some of their other whiskey options while sitting out on the street patio in the cooler fall crisp air; creating a whole vibe there for you! Check out their full list of whiskey, bourbons, and ryes at Butcher’s Union or on their website, the list is very impressive even for someone who does not drink it. 

Onto these mouth watering sandwiches… They tasted just as good as they looked and were huge! We honestly could have split either one and still been stuffed! We ordered their pulled pork sandwich and the fried chicken sandwich and each  came with a pile of fries.

The chicken sandwich had a cucumber slaw on it and despite not being a huge fan of cucumbers, I thought it was delicious ! By the end I was just picking the cucumbers off to eat them !  I stole a few forkfuls of Tyler’s pulled pork (you know like wives  do) and it was so tender and flavorful. Highly recommend both of these sandwiches! As we waited for our food passing orders for other tables had us creating a list of things to try on future visits. ! There wasn’t one meal that came out that didn’t look delicious! 

Whether you are wanting cocktails with friends and/or family, date night, a delicious meal, or all of the above Butcher’s Union  is the perfect spot! There is something for everyone and you have to take advantage of the patio seating while it lasts. I hope you guys love it as much as we do, even though I know you probably will!