The Grand Rapids Children’s Museum first made its debut as a museum “without walls” in August 1993 at Woodland Mall. The Museum featured two exhibits, Funstruction and Bubbles, Bubbles, Bubbles!, which were a huge success and exposed over 30,000 children and their families to “hands-on” exploration and learning.
Due to the exciting success of the museum “without walls,” Museum founders Georgia Woodrick Gietzen, Alyce Greeson, Carla Morris, Mary Smith, and Aleicia Woodrick, continued their dream to develop
a cultural and educational institution, a children’s Museum, where all programming, exhibits and events would focus on children. By the winter of 1994, the Museum Without Walls had found a home at 11 Sheldon Avenue; a building which had caught fire in August 1980 leaving it vacant until purchased by Bob and Aleicia Woodrick and Jim and Shirley Balk, who donated the building to the Grand Rapids Children’s Museum. A capital campaign was then launched to help fund the renovation of the Museum, exhibits, a two-year operating budget, campaign costs and an endowment. With the help of many generous community contributors, the campaign goal of $4 million was reached as the Museum opened in the summer of 1997. The outpouring of community support has truly made this goal a reality for the children and families of West Michigan. Since then, the Museum has seen more than 3 million guests and over 200,000 visitors annually.
In July 2017, the GRCM celebrated 20 years of learning through play with a special proclamation from Mayor Rosalyn Bliss declaring July 31 "Grand Rapids Day Of Play" in honor of the GRCM.
We are an environment for play.
We advocate for the value of play.
We build minds through play.
Play is essential for healthy development. Play has the power to transform. Play benefits all ages. Everyone has the right to play. Play benefits families.
mission & values
diversity and inclusion affirmation statement:
The Grand Rapids Children’s Museum is affirming of all identities and embraces differences in race, nationality, language, age, culture, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, physical and cognitive ability, religion, marital status, and socio-economic status, and expects our staff members to embrace this affirmation. In order to best serve our community, bilingual and multilingual candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.
Chief Executive Officer email@example.com 616.235.4726
Chief Operating Officer firstname.lastname@example.org 616.235.4726
Director of Partnerships & Events email@example.com 616.446.4070
Development & Administrative Assistant firstname.lastname@example.org 616.235.4726
Director of Programs email@example.com 616.235.4726
Director of Membership, Marketing, & Events firstname.lastname@example.org 616.235.4726
Educational Outreach & Volunteer Manager email@example.com 616.235.4726
Guest Experience Manager firstname.lastname@example.org 616.235.4726
Facilities & Exhibit Maintenance Manager email@example.com 616.235.4726
STEAM Lab Engagement Specialist firstname.lastname@example.org 616.235.4726
Janitorial Manager email@example.com 616.235.4726
Program Coordinator firstname.lastname@example.org 616.235.4726
Membership & Member Events Assistant email@example.com 616.235.4726
Gift Shop & Floor Manager firstname.lastname@example.org 616.235.4726
Floor Manager email@example.com 616.235.4726
join our team
"every child has a different learning style and pace. each child is unique, not only capable of learning but also capable of succeeding."
– robert john meehan
board of directors
Michael Best Strategies
Mary Free Bed
Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band for Pottawatomi Indians (AKA Gun Lake Tribe) Tribal Council Member
& Gun Lake Tribe Gaming Authority
Treasurer & Secretary
Schnelker, Rassi, & McConnell, PLC
Member at Large
Katherine (Katie) Mason Asante
CEO & Lead Agent, Bullrush Sports
Miranda Hillard, MD
HDVCH, Corewell Health
Freedom Construction and Consulting
H & S Companies
Center for Educational Partnerships, GVSU
City of Wyoming Director of Parks and Recreation
Professor Emeritus Margaret Vega
Fine Artist and Founding Director of SiteStudio and Children Designing for Children
Jessica L. Yon
Warner Norcross + Judd LLP