Grand Rapids, Michigan


Grand Rapids
City in the United States
State Michigan
County Knows
Coordinates 42°58’N, 85°41’WL
Surface 119.35 km²
– country 117.07 km²
– water 2.28 km²
(April 1, 2020)
(1634 inhabitant/km²)
Grand Rapids collage

According to Existingcountries, Grand Rapids is a city in the US state of Michigan. It is the capital of Kent County and is located 25 miles from Lake Michigan and 150 miles west of Detroit. The city has 188,031 inhabitants (2010), the Muskegon-Holland-Grand Rapids region has approximately 1 million inhabitants.

Grand Rapids is located on the Grand River, which has (small) rapids here. The city was founded in 1826 by the Frenchman Louis Campau. Grand Rapids has a large furniture industry and is known as the furniture capital of the US Close to Grand Rapids is the headquarters of the Amway Corporation. The city is known for its concentration of Christian publishing houses, such as Zondervan, Baker Books, Kregel Publications and Eerdmans Publishing.

In January the average temperature is −5.7 °C, in July it is 22.0 °C. Annual average precipitation falls 915.4 mm (data based on the measurement period 1961-1990).


11.6% of the population is older than 65 and 30.8% consists of single -person households. Unemployment is 4.4 % (census figures 2000).

About 13.1% of Grand Rapids’ population is Hispanic and Hispanic, 20.4% of African descent and 1.6% of Asian descent. The city has a large number of inhabitants with Dutch ancestry (Dutch Americans).

The number of inhabitants increased from 189,673 in 1990 to 197,800 in 2000. In 2018 the number was estimated at 200,217.


Grand Rapids has been the seat of the Roman Catholic Diocese of the same name since 1882. Most striking, however, is the large number of different churches that arose from Dutch migrant communities. The two largest denominations, Reformed Church in America (RCA) and the Christian Reformed Church, each have more than 15 congregations represented. There are also more than ten congregations of the United Reformed Churches in North America, two Reformed Congregations (Netherlands Reformed Congregations), two Protestant Reformed Churches, one Free Reformed Church, oneCanadian and American Reformed Church (sister church of the Reformed Churches Liberated) and a Heritage Reformed Congregation. Dutch conflicts were partly exported to the United States, but new denominations have also emerged in the US itself.


  • Calvin College, Christian liberal arts college of the Christian Reformed Church
  • Calvin Theological Seminary, theological training of the Cristian Reformed Church
  • Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary, theological training of the Heritage Reformed Congregations and Free Reformed Churches

Art and culture

  • Grand Rapids Art Museum, an art museum
  • Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park, a sculpture park
  • Van Andel Museum Center, one of the oldest museums in the United States
  • Gerald R. Ford Museum, the final resting place of the 38th President of the United States and former First Lady Betty Ford

The river and the city on a postcard from ca. 1905


  • Van Andel Arena

City Link

  • Perugia (Italy)

Nearby places

The figure below shows nearby places within a 12 km radius of Grand Rapids.

Grand Rapids

Comstock Park (9 km)

East Grand Rapids (4 km)

Grandville (10 km)

Kentwood (9 miles)

Northview (9 km)

Walker (8 km)

Wyoming (5 miles)

Born in Grand Rapids

  • James Kirkwood (1875-1963), actor
  • Max Kortlander (1890-1961), pianist, arranger and composer
  • Ellen Buckley (1913–2003), military nurse
  • Frank McCabe (1927-2021), basketball player
  • Edmund Casimir Szoka (1927-2014), Cardinal Archbishop of Detroit
  • Budd Udell (1934–2006), composer, music educator and conductor
  • Roger Chaffee (1935-1967), astronaut
  • Jack Lousma (1936), astronaut
  • Kurt Luedtke (1939-2020), screenwriter and journalist
  • Leonard Schrader (1943–2006), film director and screenwriter
  • Tom McEvoy (1944), poker player
  • Paul Schrader (1946), film director and screenwriter (brother of Leonard Schrader)
  • Robert Longfield (1947), composer, music educator, conductor, arranger and saxophonist
  • Jess Walton (1949), actress
  • David L. Wells (1952), composer, conductor and trombonist
  • Anthony Kiedis (1962), lead singer of the Red Hot Chili Peppers
  • Jim Dreyer (1963), ultra-athlete (swimmer)
  • Stacy Haiduk (1968), actress
  • Floyd Mayweather Jr. (1977), boxer
  • Christina Koch (1979), astronaut
  • Ryan Devlin (1980), actor and presenter
  • Paul Walter Hauser (1986), actor and stand-up comedian
  • Taylor Lautner (1992), actor
  • Winter Vinecki (1998), freestyle skier

Grand Rapids, Michigan