The latest addition to Millennium Park, “The Meadows” will be the location for the seventh Something’s Grilling Gala to benefit the Kent County Parks Foundation and Millennium Park.

This casual event will be held on September 15, 2016 and will recognize the work of community leaders who have helped preserve Kent County’s natural areas and provide outdoor recreation spaces for the community. This year, Dick & Betsy DeVos, Dan & Pamella DeVos, Cheri DeVos and Doug & Maria DeVos will be honored for their generous contributions to the Kent County Parks.

Honorary event co-chairs Peter Secchia and John Canepa will host the salute to the Devos families for their integral role in the development of Millennium Park.

Something’s Grilling is the Kent County Parks Foundation’s largest fundraiser. Since 2004, the bi-annual event has raised over $900,000 in support of the development and expansion of Kent County parks and trail systems. Half of the proceeds are dedicated specifically to Millennium Park.

“We are so excited to be showcasing The Meadows at this year’s event” explained Kate Meyer, Executive Director of the Kent County Parks Foundation. “This new development, made possible by the generosity of Peter Secchia, will allow us to share with our guests this exciting new phase of the park’s development.”

In preparation for the year 2000, a special task force, The Secchia Millennium Commission, was appointed by Kent County and the City of Grand Rapids to select a major project to benefit future generations of Kent County residents. Millennium Park was the project that the commission selected and through collaboration and the generosity of the Kent County community the park was officially dedicated in 2004.

Today, Millennium Park is one of the nation’s largest urban parks, encompassing almost twice as much land as Central Park in New York City. The 1400 acres along the Grand River that had once been used for gravel, salt, oil, and gypsum mining has been reclaimed and restored for the enjoyment of the entire community. Facilities within the park include a six-acre beach and splash pad, boat rental facilities, nearly 18 miles of trails, accessible fishing platforms, and a myriad of other outdoor recreation opportunities.

The Meadows is a 50-acre addition to the park that includes The William F. Grant Pavilion, The Currie Family Amphitheater and the Employees of Universal Products Boardwalk. The Grant Pavilion can seat 300 people and features a 4,300-square-foot plaza overlooking one of the park’s spring-fed lakes. Money raised from previous Something’s Grilling Galas provided funding for this plaza that will be featured at the event.

Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres will begin at 6p.m., with dinner following at 7:00pm. The program, featuring a salute to The DeVos families will begin at 8:00pm. Tickets can be purchased on the Kent County Parks Foundation website: www.kcpf.org

Questions about the event can be directed to Kate Meyer at kate.meyer@kentcountyparksfoundation.org or (616) 458-2080