Town Featured: Grand Rapids, MN
With only living in the Grand Rapids area for the past 2 ½ years, I still have a lot to see and learn in the town that I live and work in. Mia, my 11-week-old pup, is also new to the area, so what could be better than exploring what Grand Rapids has to offer together.
History About Grand Rapids
Grand Rapids became a village June 9th, 1891. The city got its name from the 3.5-mile-long rapids location on the Mississippi River, that is not covered by Blandin Paper Mill. Grand Rapids was a logging town, and the Mississippi River provided excellent means for log shipments.
The Judy Garland Museum
Mia & I, our first stop was the Judy Garland Museum. Judy Garland was born June 10th, 1922 in Grand Rapids, Minnesota. Judy Garland lived in the house that you can tour from 1922 to 1926. The Museum was founded in 1975, in 2003 the museum built a new building where you can see the largest collection of Wizard of Oz collectables, along with the acting career Judy had as a kid and young adult. Replicated Ruby Slippers are on display at the museum as well, sadly back in the year 2005, someone broke into the museum and stole the original pair of slippers that Judy wore during filming the Wizard of Oz movie. The museum is open daily from 10am – 5pm.
Old Central School
The School is located right in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids. The school was built in the year 1895. The school served as an elementary school from 1895-1972. The school was restored in 1984 and is now filled with locally owned and operated stores.
The Forest History Center
Our last stop of our Grand Rapids tour ended at the Forest History Center which was a 1900’s logging camp. Here you can see bunk houses, black smith shops, and the general store. You can go up in a 100-foot fire tower and walk along the many trails they have to offer. You also can take tours and see draft horses do demonstrations. Throughout the year, the forest history center holds different events and, in the winter, you can enjoy snow shoeing on the trail.
Many of these attractions can be found on www.visitgrandrapids.com
Mia & I will be on the road again soon, so until next time, enjoy your Minnesota travels!