This picturesque area has been a favorite of those planning Minnesota family vacations, fishing trips, and couple’s getaways for over 100 years. The area is known for its distinguished fishing lakes and forests, as well as its convenient location to the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro area. Located in NE Minnesota, an easy 3-hour or 180 mile drive, Grand Rapids is an ideal setting to host your next business trip, meeting or convention. The location of Grand Rapids makes it close enough to be convenient, but far enough to provide you with a real escape.
The City of Grand Rapids is named for the 3 ½ mile long rapids in the Mississippi River, which was the uppermost limit of practical steamboat travel during the late 19th century. Today those rapids are hidden underneath the dam of the Blandin Paper Mill.
Still surrounded by towering trees, Grand Rapids was originally founded as a logging town, utilizing its location along the banks of the Mississippi River for shipping of the logs. The area later took advantage of those same trees and location to open the predecessor to the Blandin paper mill in 1902.
Besides being well known for its beauty and welcoming nature, Grand Rapids is also known for being the birth place of Judy Garland, who was born Frances Ethel Gumm. Family pictures of the Gumms are still on display for visitors and the area is home to the annual Wizard of Oz Festival. Other festivals throughout the year include the monthly First Friday Art Walk, August’s Tall Timber Days, and the Itasca County Fair.
Grand Rapids has a population of 10,869 and its residents are proud to call the area home. The city offers the perfect mix of small town atmosphere and access to services, while providing a safe environment where people feel connected to their neighborhoods. Small town living meets innovation with new and exciting business opportunities coming to Grand Rapids every day. Individuals and businesses alike can find a great home in Grand Rapids – It’s in Minnesota’s Nature.