Grand Rapids is a city located in Itasca County, Minnesota. As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 7,764. It is the county seat of Itasca County.
The city of Grand Rapids is named for the local rapids in the Mississippi river, which was the uppermost limit of practical steamboat travel during the late 1800s. Today, those rapids are hidden underneath the dam of the Blandin Paper Mill.
Historically, the local economy was based on timber harvesting, and to this day, Blandin Paper Mill has its papermaking facilities in downtown Grand Rapids, while Potlach is located just outside of the city limits. To the north and northeast of the city are iron mines (part of the Mesabi or Iron Range region of Minnesota) which grew into a leading industry in the early and mid 1900s, but is of declining importance today. The current economy has a large tourist footing, with many local resorts, golf courses, and excellent regional hunting and fishing.
The city of Grand Rapids sits on the junction of US Highway 2 and US Highway 169. Highway 2 runs west towards Bemidji, Minnesota, and east towards Duluth, Minnesota. Highway 169 heads south to Hill City, Minnesota and ultimately towards Minneapolis, Minnesota. In the other direction, Highway 169 heads up the Mesabi Range until it reaches Hibbing, Minnesota, passing through several small towns along the way. Grand Rapids is also the start of US Highway 38, running north towards Bigfork, Minnesota.
Grand Rapids is the birthplace and early childhood home of legendary singer & actress Judy Garland. There is a local museum dedicated to her childhood and career, and Judy's fully restored birthplace is open to the public as well. An annual Judy Garland Festival is held the fourth weekend in June.
Web Sites and Links
Grand Rapids Area Chamber of CommerceWelcome to the Grand Rapids area. Business, attractions, maps.
Grand Rapids Community Media CenterThis prototype Community Media Center provides training in radio, television and information technology, access to all the equipment necessary to produce media, and multimedia transmission options including cable television, broadcast radio and the internet.
Grand Rapids Minnesota PostcardsSmall collection of vintage postcards showing scenes around Grand Rapids.
Itasca Psychiatric ServicesDescribes qualifications and services. Includes a large collection of original articles on mental health, nicotine addiction, medication issues, and related topics.
Sonder Family ChiropracticOffering Gonstead Chiropractic services. Practice information and chiropractic links.