Vander Mill plans on expansion

Paul Vander Heide, owner of Vander Mill at 14921 Cleveland St., plans to open a second location in northeast Grand Rapids this summer. He also has expansion plans for the Spring Lake Township location — a breezeway and 40-by-50-foot pavilion on the east side of the building for additional seating and event space. Vander Heide hopes to finalize the purchase of the 50,000-square-foot former B & B Distributing Center facility near Michigan and Ball Avenue NE early next month.

Plans are to begin production by July and renovate the building to include a tap kitchen and 4,300-square-foot restaurant by fall. “We really were in need of more production space,” said Vander Heide, who now distributes ciders to multiple locations in Michigan, Indiana, Illinois and Ohio.

He opened the Spring Lake Township location in 2006 and added 3,000 square feet two years ago. “We thought that would be a longer term solution for us than it ended up being,” Vander Heide said.

Vander Heide has received approval for the tap room and restaurant from the Grand Rapids Planning Commission. The property is zoned industrial, so hard cider production can take place without a zoning change.

The taproom is expected to have a 200-person capacity with an outdoor patio that seats an additional 50. The layout of the building will allow customers to view the entire production process.

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