A group of people stand outside a modern building cutting a ribbon with scissors.

New Laker Store opens in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids

Lakers and community members gathered on March 22 to celebrate the grand opening of the new Laker Store in the Grand Rapids Art Museum in downtown Grand Rapids. 

The Laker Dance Team and Louie the Laker joined the gathering at the new location, which overlooks Rosa Parks Circle and aims to expand GVSU’s presence in Grand Rapids while contributing to the community by enhancing the retail space on Monroe Center. 

Two professionally dressed women sit at a table together laughing.
Mayor Bliss and President Mantella laugh together at a table before remarks begin.
Image credit - Amanda Pitts
Laker Mascot Louie the Laker stands in a window flexing his biceps for passersby.
Mascot Louie the Laker Stands in the window during the Laker Store Grand Opening Celebration.
Image credit - Amanda Pitts

“Grand Valley students and alumni animate the city of Grand Rapids,” said President Philomena V. Mantella. “This location, right in the heart of downtown, is literally and figuratively at the center of so much that takes place in Grand Rapids.

“It is much more than just a merchandise store. We have plans to make this a place for entry and access to all things GVSU. We will activate the space, just as our students do every evening downtown.”

Community leaders who spoke at the event welcomed the opportunity to bring new energy and patrons to this central area of downtown. 

A women in a GVSU sweatshirt, and a woman in a suit jacket pose together looking toward a camera that is to the left out of frame.
GVSU alum and current student Isabella Ordonez poses for a photo with President Mantella in the new Laker Store on Monroe.
Image credit - Amanda Pitts

“We’ve put a lot of effort into the creation and growth of Rosa Parks Circle and the space around it,” said Grand Rapids Mayor Rosalynn Bliss. “GVSU is a perfect choice to help this area become an even more popular place to gather, learn and celebrate.”

Also at the ribbon cutting were representatives from the GVSU Admissions Office, who were ready to fulfill that promise of making the storefront more than just a place to sell merchandise. They were fielding questions about GVSU admittance, and will have a presence in the downtown location in the future.

The Laker Store on Monroe will be open four days a week. The hours are:

  • Monday: Closed
  • Tuesday: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Wednesday: Closed
  • Thursday: 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.
  • Friday: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Saturday: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
  • Sunday: Closed
Two women in professional attire, pose together wearing baseball caps inside a store.
Mayor Bliss and President Mantella sport merchandise at the newly opened Laker Store on Monroe after its opening.
Image credit - Amanda Pitts


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