Grand Rapids Charity Events and Giving Opportunities

This list makes it easy to find Grand Rapids charity events and opportunities to help families give back to the community during the 2018 holiday season.

The holiday season is a time for gratitude and service. And, thanks to a variety of Grand Rapids charity events, families have a bounty of opportunities to give back.

Support organizations that help pets in need, offer mental health assistance and much more at these upcoming functions.

It’s a great time to teach children the importance of giving, and many of these Grand Rapids charity events welcome kids, too.

Note: Some events require you to buy tickets or register ahead of time. Be sure to check and plan ahead.

Raising the Woof

Nov. 16, 2018

  • Where: The Intersection, 133 Grandville Ave. SW, Grand Rapids
  • Hours: 6:30-10 p.m.
  • Cost: $15/person

Come out to support Hearts of Hope Dog Rescue, a nonprofit network of individual fostering dogs. The event will feature a cash bar, hors d’oeuvres, music, a photo booth and a meet-and-greet with dogs in the organization.

Trails to Hope

Nov. 17, 24 and Dec. 1, 2018

  • Where: Cannonsburg Ski Area, 6800 Cannonsburg Road NE, Belmont
  • Hours: 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
  • Cost: $40/person

Each day benefits a different Grand Rapids charity – either Kid’s Food Basket, myTEAM TRIUMPH or the Mental Health Foundation of West Michigan. These races are open to competitive and noncompetitive runners for the trail running series.


Nov. 17, 2018

  • Where: Mulligan’s Pub, 1518 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids
  • Hours: 4-8 p.m.
  • Cost: Donations welcome

Pets, kids and the whole family are welcome to attend this pet social and raffle event. Proceeds will benefit Pet Tales Rescue.

FSC Choice Fund Thanksgiving Pie and Goodies Sale

Nov. 18, 2018

  • Where: Fountain Street Church, 24 Fountain St. NE, Grand Rapids
  • Hours: 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
  • Cost: Free

This sale of baked goods is just before Thanksgiving. Proceeds go to the Fountain Street Church Choice Fund, which aids reproductive freedom and choice.

Caps and Friends Give Back

Nov. 27, 2018

  • Where: Heartside Park, 301 Ionia Ave., Grand Rapids
  • Hours: 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.
  • Cost: Free

Help the Whitecaps Community Foundation with its “pop-up” lunch in the park and distribution of winter gear, deodorant, soap, chapstick and other necessities to community members in need.

Trans-Siberian Orchestra: Ghosts of Christmas Eve

Dec. 2, 2018

  • Where: Van Andel Arena, 130 W. Fulton St., Grand Rapids
  • Hours: 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
  • Cost: varies

As in previous years, the 15 percent of ticket sales go to local charities in the Grand Rapids area. To date, TSO has raised $15 million-plus for worthy charities across the U.S. Prices vary, so purchase tickets ahead of time.

Brushes with Benefits Paint Party

Dec. 11, 2018

  • Where: Uccello’s, 2630 E. Beltline Ave. SE, Grand Rapids
  • Hours: 7-9 p.m.
  • Cost: $35/person

Paint for a cause at this event. For every ticket sold, $5 is donated to both Carol’s Ferals and Hearts of Hope Dog Rescue. This event is for adults only.

Mental Health Benefit Show

Dec. 20, 2018

  • Where: 68 Commerce Ave. SW, Grand Rapids
  • Hours: 7 p.m.-midnight
  • Cost: $10/person

Help Western Michigan University’s Student Occupational Therapy Association support the Mental Health Foundation, a charity that campaigns for mental health. Hosted by the Pyramid Scheme.

Rock 4 Tots Benefit

Dec. 2, 2018

  • Where: Log Cabin Cocktail Lounge, 2401 S. Division Ave., Grand Rapids
  • Hours: 1-8 p.m.
  • Cost: $10 or an unwrapped toy

Local restaurant Log Cabin Cocktail Lounge is throwing its annual benefit event for kids, featuring five live bands and food and drink specials. Ages 21 and older.

Holiday Jubilee

Dec. 6, 2018

  • Where: Paddock Place, 1033 Lake Drive SE, Grand Rapids
  • Hours: 5:30-10 p.m.
  • Cost: $95-plus/nonmembers

This holiday party will benefit the nonprofit charity Well House, which provides safe, affordable housing to the homeless. Festivities at the event include drinks, auctions and more.

Holiday Happy Hour

Dec. 19, 2018

  • Where: The Waldron Public House, 58 Ionia Ave. SW, Grand Rapids
  • Hours: 5-8 p.m.
  • Cost:  $10/person; donations welcome

All proceeds from the event will go to the Kids’ Food Basket, a nonprofit helping to end childhood hunger in west Michigan.

This post is updated regularly.

Amanda Rahn
Amanda Rahn
Amanda Rahn is a freelance journalist, copy editor and proud Detroiter. She is a graduate of Wayne State University’s journalism school and of the Columbia Publishing Course at Oxford University. Amanda is a lover of translated contemporary fiction, wines from Jura and her dog, Lottie.


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