135 Monroe Center St NW Grand Rapids

Experience Grand Rapids
Written By Experience Grand Rapids

Get ready to be wowed - Grand Rapids never fails to surprise visitors with the huge variety of things to see and do here: World-renowned art, museums and historic sites for cultural vacationers. World-class golf, recreation and beaches for nature lovers. Incredible farm-to-table restaurants for foodies and wholesome "playcation" fun for families.

Rosa Parks Circle is the setting for “Ecliptic,” a unique sculpture by Maya Lin. Lin is best known for designing the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., which is considered one of the most influential memorials of the post-World War II era. Ecliptic echoes the city’s relationship to the Grand River by incorporating three forms of water – vapor in a mist fountain, liquid in a tablet of flowing water and solid in a winter ice rink. The sculpture is named for the path of the sun as it appears to cross the sky and 166 fiber optic points of light in the floor of the ice rink mark the configuration of the constellations as they appeared over Grand Rapids on January 1, 2000.

Lin designed Ecliptic as an experiential work of art, and it has become one of the city’s most prominent gathering spaces, hosting concerts, cultural festivals and more. In 2017, Rosa Parks Circle was named one of the top five public spaces in America by the American Planning Association. Ecliptic was installed in 2001 and the park, originally called the Monroe Mall Amphitheater, was renamed. Today, locals interchangeably refer to both the sculpture and the park as Rosa Parks Circle.

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