The city outside the city
A year in Rockford
Summer begins with a bang in Rockford. When school lets out, the Start of Summer Celebration begins! The streets of downtown Rockford are transformed into carnival grounds, complete with rides, vendors, performances, and a fireworks show. On any regular summer day in Rockford, you may see fishermen casting their lines at the Rockford Dam, couples kayaking down the Rogue River, or families biking the White Pine Trail, which runs right through the heart of downtown. The summer Sidewalk Sale attracts shoppers from all over Grand Rapids looking to find a deal on high-end boutique clothing or artisan crafts. Rockford’s Famer’s Market—voted America’s favorite in 2011—takes place every Saturday morning May through October. Fresh produce of all kinds, flowers, honey, bread, and lots more make it the perfect place to pick up your regular groceries or even indulge in something special. While you’re shopping, don’t forget to stop by Rocky’s for ice cream, it’s a city favorite!
Rockford is bustling with activity in the summer, but there’s plenty to do in the winter months as well. The Santa Parade is a well-attended event which welcomes the Christmas spirit to Rockford. Trees lining the streets and along the dam are lit up with lights, and Christmas tunes play quietly from the lampposts. Winter is the perfect time to take a stroll through downtown and window-shop. If you have kids, you know kids, or you feel like a kid yourself, check out Aunt Candy’s Toy Company, (but give yourself plenty of time, there is a lot to look at!) Then, step into a local restaurant, like Ramona’s Table or Marinades Pizza for something to eat, or grab a cup of coffee from Sweetland Chocolates & Coffee to warm up. Or, if you’re feeling especially adventurous, you can sign up for the Sweetheart Splash and take an icy plunge into the river for your valentine. Summer, fall, winter, spring—whatever the season, there’s always plenty to do and see in the city of Rockford, MI!
Dining in Rockford
Ramona's and Rockford Brewing
Ramona’s Table relocated to Rockford a few years ago, and locals were glad to add it to the collection of delicious restaurants downtown. Ramona’s menu features gourmet sandwiches and deli salads, along with some of the best desserts. Ever. Their secret? Nearly everything on the menu is made in-house and it’s always fresh. Best of all, Ramona’s patio looks out over the Rockford dam, so you can take in the view while you enjoy lunch, dinner, or cocktails.
Another new addition to Rockford is the Rockford Brewing Company. Their mission is serving quality local brews and promoting community and culture in the area. RBC is a venue for many talented local artists and musicians and a popular gather place for locals. Many of their local beers are offered for a limited time only, so check out their online beer catalog to see the selection before you go! Great beer, amazing art, and live music make Rockford Brewing Co. the perfect atmosphere for a night out!
White Pine Trail
Stretching 92 miles from northern Grand Rapids, through Rockford, and on to Cadillac, the White Pine Trail is Michigan’s longest trail. The section of the trail through Rockford runs along the dam on one side and city-proper on the other. The White Pine Trail is great for running, cycling, roller blading, walking dogs, etc. Whether you’re just getting in a little exercise or you’ve planned a day-trip with your family, the White Pine Trail in Rockford is the perfect place to start!
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