Capturing Grand Rapids Culture in a Box

By Mayra Monroy on March 13th, 2015 / Comments

Missy McCall’s love for Grand Rapids is strong and drives her mission for her Grand Rapids business Boxed GR. Every box is filled with a taste of the rapid city, varying from samples, items and gift certificates from local restaurants and businesses. Through promoting Grand Rapids in every box, McCall is also participating in an interesting concept—subscription boxes.

“Subscription boxes have become quite popular in the last couple of years.  People really like getting a surprise box delivered each month,” says McCall. “It feels like a gift.  I thought it would be cool to take that concept and apply it on a local level.”

Boxed GR captures the essence of Grand Rapids in every box, catering to the city’s centric audience, while promoting local businesses in the process, once a month. Boxed GR serves as a vehicle for local and often on-a-budget vendors to advertise and connect with Grand Rapids citizen and those passionate about supporting small businesses. For the self proclaimed “localists” that are proud of their city, Grand Rapidians near and far are able to purchase a bit of the city every month.

McCall is one of those passionate Grand Rapids natives. An Aquinas College graduate, McCall’s love of Grand Rapids fueled why she wanted to promote it through her business.

“The longer I do what I do, the more I discover about [Grand Rapids],” says McCall. “We have so many clever, creative, and wonderfully talented people in Grand Rapids.  It amazes me on a daily basis.”

Each box includes something different every month. Whether it’s food samples, a gift certificate, or a coupon off a meal, Boxed GR provides a taste of the culture in every cardboard box for $16.95/month. You can also order a gift subscription for others.

“Supporting small businesses in our community helps build our local economy and local businesses bring so much unique character to our city,” says McCall.

An important of aspect of Boxed GR is its involvement in the modern sustainability movement. With her master’s degree concentrated on sustainable business, McCall’s resolution for her business was to positively impact the city and the environment. For the charitable front, Boxed GR recently offered a special themed boxed named the “Boxed GRrr Dog Box”, a box filled with dog treats, grooming supplies, certificates and accessories from local dog driven businesses, donating $10 from each box to Vicky’s Pet Connection, a nonprofit rescue center. On the environmental side, each box, and the tissue paper inside, is made from recycled materials, with the packaging aligning with the most sustainable option it could have.

Through classic networking and connecting with other business owners, McCall sees a positive expansion in the future of Boxed GR. McCall isn’t shy when it comes to asking for help, as she’s currently doing to help fund specialized gift boxes. Through connection with her community, McCall’s successes are on display through the success of Boxed GR.

“I want to be approachable and I want to be someone my customers and other businesses feel comfortable connecting with,” says McCall. “I have been given a ton of advice and support from other small business owners here in Grand Rapids and I try to do the same whenever and however I can.”

In the future, you can see McCall at local fairs and expos. Through her themed boxes, including a hope for a special ArtPrize themed one in the fall, McCall will continue to capture Grand Rapids and its culture in a box.

Visit to order your own box or a subscription

About the Author

Mayra Monroy

Mayra Monroy

Mayra Monroy is studying communication and journalism at Aquinas College. A Texas native, she enjoys studying communication culture and the arts in West Michigan. She currently resides in Grand Rapids and works as a editor-in-chief for Aquinas’ collegiate student newspaper and a freelance journalist.