Two Michigan Locations Once Again Up For Title of Best Sculpture Park

Two Michigan Locations Once Again Up For Title of Best Sculpture Park

Frederik Meijer Gardens Gazelle Fountain

A new round of USA Today 10best Reader’s Choice polls are up, and we could almost just cut and paste an article from last year to tell you about two more nominees for awards. The current contests are centered around art, and we once again get to see two Michigan sculpture parks in the running to be named Best Sculpture Park in the U.S. Last year saw Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park in Grand Rapids bring home the award for Best Sculpture Park, while the Michigan Legacy Art Park in Thompsonville managed a fifth place finish. This year both of those sculpture parks find themselves nominated for the same award, and we will take a look at the case for each and provide links for voting (which runs through February 19th). Will Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park defend its crown or will Michigan Legacy Art Park build on last year’s momentum and make a push to dethrone the champ? We’re always thrilled to see Michigan well represented in these contests, so here’s why we’ll be rooting for both of these parks:

Frederik Meijer Gardens Bears Statue

Frederik Meijer Gardens beat out some strong competition last year to take home the top spot. From USA Today: “Spanning 158 acres in Grand Rapids, Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park hosts outdoor gardens and a five-floor, 15,000-square-foot Tropical Conservatory. The permanent sculpture collection features more than 200 works, many of which are displayed across the 30-acre sculpture park.” We love visiting Meijer Gardens, and you can check out the photo gallery from our visit as well as a look at the annual Butterflies are Blooming exhibit that draws in thousands of visitors from all over the country. As of this writing, Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park is in third place, only trailing Brookgreen Gardens in South Carolina and Grounds For Sculpture in New Jersey. You can vote for Meijer Gardens once per day until February 19th.

Michigan Legacy Art Park Unravel Sculpture Thompsonville

We had a chance to visit Michigan Legacy Art Park in Thompsonville back in 2022 and loved seeing how many of the pieces were tied in to Michigan and set up in a way that made them seem like part of the natural landscape. From 10best: “This 30-acre wooded preserve at Michigan Legacy Art Park features a collection of more than 50 sculptures, as well as rotating exhibits. Guided hikes, tours, and special offerings encourage connection with art, nature, and history.” It has been great to see this sculpture park get more attention in recent years, and we encourage anyone heading to northern Michigan to add it to a trip to Crystal Mountain or other nearby attractions. As of this writing, Michigan Legacy Art Park has quite the uphill battle as it sits in 10th place out of 20 nominees. You can cast your vote to help it out once per day now through February 19th.