Downtown Grand Rapids Inc. (DGRI) today announced that Movies in the Park returns for a 6th season in Downtown Grand Rapids albeit at a new riverfront location, with a new event name and one of the most eclectic film lineups yet.

The popular summer film series, now titled Movies on Monroe, kicks off June 8, 2018 at 555 Monroe Ave NW located along Monroe Avenue just north of Interstate I-196 in the Monroe North neighborhood.

“Ah-Nab-Awen Park capably hosted Movies for 5 years,” said DGRI Chief Outcomes Officer Andy Guy. “However the City’s acquisition of this sizeable riverfront property in Monroe North gives us a new place to gather and relax along the Grand River. Hosting the event at this new location also offers multiple advantages that will enhance an up-and-coming neighborhood and the overall outdoor movie-going experience.”

Those advantages include:

  • Great proximity. The location is adjacent to numerous neighborhood bars and restaurants that will give event goers more dining and entertainment options for their night out.
  • Easy accessibility. The location is easy to get to in a variety of ways, including by car, the DASH downtown circulator and 4 major bus lines with a < 5 min walk. The location also is immediately adjacent to 1,000’s of publicly available parking spaces.
  • Fun experimentation. No permanent changes will happen on the City’s newly acquired property for years, as the land soon will serve as an important construction staging area for the campaign to put the rapids back in the Grand River. So holding Movies on Monroe is one way Downtown placemaking practitioners can start to experiment on a temporary basis with how the space might be utilized in the future.

“The site looks raw and forgotten right now but it has a ton of potential,” Guy said. “Over the next two weeks our public space activation team – working in partnership with the City of Grand Rapids and Michigan State University – will transform the space with public seating areas, greenery, festoon lighting and other features. Our aim is to connect people with the Grand River in new and unexpected ways and achieve a truly unique entertainment experience in Downtown.”

In addition to announcing the new event location, DGRI also announced the 2018 Movies schedule and lineup showcasing six nights of double features:

June 8, 2018

  • The Greatest Showman (PG)
  • Big (PG)

June 22, 2018

  • The Princess Bride (PG)
  • The Big Lebowski (R)

July 6, 2018

  • Major Payne (PG-13)
  • Saving Private Ryan (R)

July 20, 2018

  • West Side Story (G)
  • The Shape of Water (R)

August 3, 2018

  • Shrek (PG)
  • Hidden Figures (PG)

August 17, 2018

  • Wonder Woman (PG-13)
  • Black Panther (PG-13)

Many aspects of the summer outdoor film series remain the same:

  • All events are free and open to the public.
  • Gates open at 6:30 PM with pre-movie entertainment hosted by Gabrielle de la Vega of WYCE’s El Mundo Musical with DJs Adrian Butler, DJ Composition and Ace Marasigan.
  • Showtime starts at 7:30 PM.
  • Movies will play on 400-square foot LED video wall presented in partnership with LiveSpace.
  • Movie goers are encouraged to bring their own chairs, beer, wine and snacks. Rental lawn chairs will be available on site for a minor fee.
  • Food trucks will be on the scene and various snacks will be available for purchase at the event.
  • Alternating nights of English and Spanish subtitles for Spanish-speaking attendees and people with hearing impairments. Spanish subtitles will accompany films played on June 22, July 20 and August 18. English subtitles will accompany films played on June 8, July 6 and August 3.
  • All events are weather dependent. Stay tuned to DGRI channels for updates.

Movie Night Basics

  • All events are held at 555 Monroe Ave NW in the Monroe North neighborhood of Downtown Grand Rapids.
  • Events are free to the public.
  • Pre-movie programming begins at 6:30 PM, first film to start at 7:30 PM followed by the second shortly after the first ends.
  • Bring your own chairs, beer, wine and snacks.
  • Affordable chair rental provided by Friends of Grand Rapids Parks available on-site.
  • Local food vendors will be on-site.

Movie Night Tips

To help movie goers enjoy the night out under the stars, here are a few quick tips:

  • The space fills up fast, so get there early for the best spots.
  • If you choose to drive, plan ahead for parking to avoid wasting time looking for a space. There are 1,000s of public parking spots available in the Monroe North neighborhood within walking distance of Movies on Monroe.
  • Free bike parking is available at the event, sponsored by Driving Change.
  • The DASH North bus drops you off and picks you up right in front of the event. DASH North route runs late on event nights, ensuring you a good park-n-ride experience.
  • 4 Rapid bus routes drop you off within an under 5 minute walk to the event.
  • Costumes are encouraged.
  • Nothing beats an ice cold one on a warm summer night. If you'd like to partake, be sure to bring your own drinks and picture ID.
  • While packing up, you might as well make it a picnic in the lot. If you forget food at home, vendors will have snacks for purchase.
  • You'll be outside for a few hours, so get comfy. We suggest bringing chairs to sit on. Shorter chairs up front, taller chairs in the back. Affordable chair rental provided by Friends of Grand Rapids Parks available on-site.
  • Those under the age of 15 must be accompanied by an adult.
  • You may love your ringtone, but that doesn't mean everyone else does. Please silence your phones.
  • This is a smoke-free event series.
  • If you need to talk during the movie, please keep your voices low.
  • The event is weather dependent. Follow Downtown Grand Rapids Inc. on social media to stay up-to-date.