Checking Out The West Side of Grand Rapids


The West Side of Grand Rapids, Michigan, is a neighborhood brimming with character, from its lush parks to its bustling culinary scene. This area, beloved by residents and visitors alike, offers a blend of outdoor beauty and gastronomic delights. Join us on a journey through some of the West Side’s most cherished spots, including Richmond Park, Sandy’s Donuts, Bestside, Long Road Distillers, Gino’s Pizza, and Westside Social.

Richmond Park: The Heart of the West Side

Our tour begins at Richmond Park, often considered the heart of the West Side. This expansive park is a haven for nature lovers and families, featuring rolling hills, old hardwoods, and trails perfect for hiking and biking. With a community pool, splash pad, baseball diamonds, and basketball courts, Richmond Park is a hub of activity year-round. In winter, the park transforms into a snowy playground with sledding hills and ice skating opportunities.

Sandy’s Donuts: A Sweet Legacy

No visit to the West Side is complete without a stop at Sandy’s Donuts. For over 50 years, this iconic doughnut shop has been serving up a dizzying array of sweet treats. With 75 varieties of doughnuts made daily, Sandy’s is a place where sweet memories are baked fresh every day.

Bestside: Culinary Creativity on Leonard Street

Next, we explore Bestside, a culinary jewel on Leonard Street. Chef David’s innovative dishes have made Bestside a neighborhood favorite, known for its amazing service and hearty, delicious fare. From brunch delights to savory hamburgers and pizzas, Bestside offers a menu that caters to all tastes.

Long Road Distillers: Spirits of Excellence

Long Road Distillers invites you to experience more than just spirits; it’s a journey into the heart of craft distillation. With a commitment to using honest, locally-sourced ingredients, they produce world-class spirits like Long Road Vodka and their Original Aquavit. The distillery also serves a variety of shareables, salads, sandwiches, and entrees, making it a perfect spot for a meal paired with handcrafted cocktails.

Gino’s Pizza: Over 50 Years of Flavor

For a late-night treat, Gino’s Pizza is the place to be. This family-operated and owned restaurant has been a staple for over 50 years, offering a wide range of pizzas, lasagna, spaghetti and meatballs, and gluten-free options. Open until midnight on weekdays and 1:00 A.M. on weekends, Gino’s is ideal for those after-hours cravings.

Westside Social: A Friendly Culinary Stop

Don’t miss out on Westside Social, a welcoming spot on Lake Michigan Drive. Known for its friendly service and clean environment, it’s a great place to enjoy a meal like chicken and waffles. The combination of great food and a warm atmosphere makes Westside Social a must-visit on the West Side.


The West Side of Grand Rapids is a mosaic of parks, doughnut shops, restaurants, and distilleries, each adding its unique flavor to the neighborhood. From the natural beauty of Richmond Park to the culinary delights of Bestside and Long Road Distillers, there’s something for everyone. These highlights are just a taste of what the West Side has to offer, so be sure to explore this vibrant area of Grand Rapids for yourself.

Make sure to check out the video below for a closer look at some of the favorites on the West Side!