The Rapidian Home


Keeping local news local since 2009

Since our launch on September 15, 2009, The Rapidian has been more than a hyper-local news source; we empower neighborhood residents to report the news from the inside out. We're not just reporting news; we're fostering a community where residents are the storytellers. By equipping Grand Rapidians with the tools, training, platforms, and support to create local news that actually tells the story of our city, we make sure that local news stays local in Grand Rapids.

Want to get involved?

Be a Rapidian Reporter: Have a story to tell? An event to share? An interesting neighbor whose story you want to write? The Rapidian invites you to become a citizen journalist through our Rapidian Reporter program. Interested in learning more about how to join? Email The Rapidian Program Manager Allison Donahue at [email protected] with the subject line Rapidian Reporter Recruit.

Grand Rapids Documenters Program: In 2023, The Rapidian became a part of the nationwide Documenters Network, reinforcing our dedication to community-focused journalism. Documenters is a collective of civic contributors trained to cover local government meetings and events, increasing transparency and civic coverage in Grand Rapids. Join the Grand Rapids Documenters program and be a vital part of keeping our community informed and accountable. Sign up here.

Subscribe to our newsletter to stay connected with the goings on of Grand Rapids. Be the first to receive weekly updates, highlights, and opportunities from the Rapidian straight to your inbox. Sign up here.

Editorial Independence Policy & Donor Transparency

We subscribe to standards of editorial independence adopted by the Institute for Nonprofit News:

Our organization retains full authority over editorial content to protect the best journalistic and business interests of our organization. We maintain a firewall between news coverage decisions and sources of all revenue. Acceptance of financial support does not constitute implied or actual endorsement of donors or their products, services or opinions.

We are committed to transparency in every aspect of funding our organization. Accepting financial support does not mean we endorse donors or their products, services or opinions.

We accept gifts, grants and sponsorships from individuals, organizations and foundations to help with our general operations, coverage of specific topics, and special projects. Our news judgments are made independently – not based on or influenced by donors. We do not give supporters the rights to assign, review or edit content. Our organization may consider donations to support the coverage of particular topics, but our organization maintains editorial control of the coverage. We will cede no right of review or influence of editorial content, nor of unauthorized distribution of editorial content.

Our organization will make public all donors who give a total of $5,000 or more per year. As a nonprofit, we will avoid accepting donations from anonymous sources, and we will not accept donations from government entities, political parties, elected officials or candidates actively seeking public office. We will accept anonymous donations for general support only if it is clear that sufficient safeguards have been put into place that the expenditure of that donation is made independently by our organization and in compliance with INN's Membership Standards. We will not accept donations from sources who, deemed by our board of directors, present a conflict of interest with our work or compromise our independence.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Who can write on the Rapidian?

Community members and 501(c)(3) non-profits are welcome to come and publish on our website. For-profit businesses and PR companies cannot publish advertorial pieces about their business or clients. 

Essentially, if you could stand to financially benefit from reporting a story or are getting paid to do it, it won’t be accepted on our platform.

What is your coverage area?

Our coverage area is metro Grand Rapids, the immediate surrounding cities of Cascade, Comstock Park, East Grand Rapids, Grandville, Grand Rapids Township, Kentwood, Plainfield Township, Walker, Wyoming and Ada. We do not cover or run stories on anything outside of these parameters.

You should write about _______! Can one of your reporters cover _______?

Because we are citizen-powered, it is up to community members to decide the stories that get covered and the articles that are written. Our job is to help facilitate the community in learning how to write and report news and stories about their communities. We only occasionally write or report ourselves. We also do not have a team of paid reporters or reporters on beats that can consistently cover pitches or press releases that come our way.

I have a press release for you. Can you cover this story?

We accept press releases and article ideas but we cannot guarantee that those will be covered. It is up to community journalists to write those stories.

Can I publish press releases?

We do not publish press releases. Instead, we ask that community journalists and nonprofits learn about crafting stories and reporting news and write compelling pieces that will interest and inform the community and our readers about your work.

There’s a typo/inaccuracy/something that needs to be clarified on this piece!

You can either leave a comment on the article or email us at [email protected] and we’ll fix it ASAP.

I’d like to get in touch with the reporter/author of an article?

Email us at [email protected] if you want more information regarding getting in contact with a community journalist.

Could I meet with someone to learn more about community journalism and publishing on The Rapidian/Can you come speak to my class, non-profit, etc:

Absolutely! You can email our Program Manager Allison Donahue at for more information on a possible training or to meet and talk.

I forgot my login/An old intern or employee has our account log in/Can’t access my account!

Email us at [email protected] and we’ll get you back into your account in no time. Once you are back in your account, be sure to remember to update all of your information to your most current contact and organizational info and new password.