Considered a gateway to Minnesota’s Northwoods, the city of Grand Rapids offers its own community, recreation, and culture. One particular claim to fame for the city is being the place where Judy Garland was born. This famous actress is possibly most well known for playing Dorothy in the iconicThe Wizard of Oz. Visitors to Grand Rapids can tour the Judy Garland Museum and Garland’s adjacent historic home. Other things to do in town include attending a show at The Reif Performing Arts Center. There’s also plenty of recreation to be had at one of the region’s 1,000 lakes. CDC information for travelers. Hours/availability may have changed.


1.The Reif Performing Arts Center, Grand Rapids, MN

The Reif Performing Arts Center, Grand Rapids, MN
© The Reif Performing Arts Center

The Reif Performing Arts Center hosts a wide array of artistic programs, as well as regularly scheduled events like community workshops, cultural seminars, and live performances. Located on the northwestern side of Grand Rapids, connected to the high school, the arts center attracts talent at the local, national, and even international levels to perform on one of its two stages. Both visitors and community members alike fill the audience at The Reif Performing Arts Center for live performances, which vary from contemporary dance to tribute rock bands. The center also offers a Children's Performing Art series during the school year.

720 NW Conifer Dr, Grand Rapids, MN 55744, Phone: 218-327-5780

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2.Things to Do in Grand Rapids, Minnesota: Judy Garland Museum

Things to Do in Grand Rapids, Minnesota: Judy Garland Museum
© Judy Garland Museum


The Judy Garland Museum celebrates the life and career of Judy Garland, better known from her role in The Wizard of Oz as Dorothy. This well known actress was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan in 1922 and visitors today can tour her childhood home, as well as explore her career in Hollywood. Approximately fifteen thousand square feet is dedicated to the beloved movie star at the Judy Garland Museum, including the largest Wizard of Oz collectible collection in the world, which features movie set props among numerous other items. There are also gardens outside for visitors to stroll through.

2727 S Pokegama Ave, Grand Rapids, MN 55744, Phone: 218-327-9276

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3.Sammy's Pizza and Restaurant, Grand Rapids, Minnesota

Sammy's Pizza and Restaurant, Grand Rapids, Minnesota
© Sammy's Pizza and Restaurant

Sammy's Pizza and Restaurant in Grand Rapids is a family tradition that started over sixty years ago with Sam Perrella, also known as “Grandpa Sam,” and has now seen four generations in the pizza business. The restaurant is known for combining artistry in pizza making with quality, fresh ingredients, with the menu at Sammy’s featuring a variety of award-winning pizzas, stromboli, hot appetizers, pastas, salads, soups, and chicken. Sammy's Pizza and Restaurant became a Pizza Hall of Fame Inductee in 2015, and was voted in 2018 as the “Best Pizza in Minnesota” after winning the Pizza Bracket Challenge by Minnesota Monthly Magazine.

802 S Pokegama Ave, Grand Rapids, MN 55744, Phone: 218-326-8551

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3 Best Things to Do in Grand Rapids, Minnesota



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