Welcome to my blog! I am the Natural Traveler, living through the lens of a tourist in the Grand Rapids, Minnesota area. My summer has just begun but it has already been crazy. The Grand Rapids area has so much to offer.   I am amazed by how fast my summer schedule is filling. If you are looking for something to do this summer, make sure to check out our calendar of events. There is always something going on!

My first event I attended as The Natural Traveler was Louie Anderson at The Myles Reif Performing Arts Center in Grand Rapids, MN. Louie is a stand-up comedian who has been on The Tonight Show, had a role in several movies and was the host for Family Feud for a while. He was so funny to watch, and I was able to meet Louie backstage for a while. He really likes the Grand Rapids area and all that we have to offer.

Not only was the show great, but The Reif Center is a performing arts center that has been newly remodeled and it turned out just beautiful. When you walk in, the lobby is opened up and it leaves a lot of room for mingling before and after shows. The renovations are absolutely gorgeous and even if you aren’t attending an event, I recommend just stopping in to see the remodels! This summer, The Reif Center has partnered again with the Grand Rapids Area Library to continue their Tuesdays Independent Film Series. These films will be shown at The Reif Center every Tuesday, starting June 28th through August 16th. The films are free and open to the public, starting at 7:30 pm each week. You can watch trailers and see the full schedule online.

This past Friday, I attended the Tweed Ride, put on by Get Fit Itasca and Grow Bovey. There was supposed to be a leisure seven-mile bike ride from the Itasca County Fair Grounds to Bovey, where complimentary appetizers would be served after, at the Red Iron Grill. However, this bike ride was canceled due to bad weather, but there was still food to share at the Red Iron Grill! The Red Iron Grill is located in Annabella’s Antique Mall in the nearby town of Bovey. We were served downstairs in the Speakeasy and even got to see the Escape Tunnel that runs underneath Bovey!

Ashley Runge entering the escape tunnel

Not only was there free food, but all Bovey shops were open as well. Bovey has a lot of new antique stores that are definitely worth checking out. Just be aware, the shops aren’t always open, so make sure you check Grow Bovey’s Facebook page before taking the short drive to Bovey.

Next on my agenda this week, is The First Friday Art Walk, and Open Streets. These events are this weekend so make sure to check them out, and follow me next week on my blog exploring these events!

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