Grand Rapids Sport and Social Club: Friends, Fitness, and Frivolity

by Aemelia Tripp


Look no further for your combined game time and social time! 

Grand Rapids Sport and Social Club is legend…wait for it…you might hurt your DARYeire, but you’ll have so much fun doing it (that’s for all those How I Met Your Mother lovers out there)! In 2008, Chris Wessely was in a prime place for making life changes. Having recently been let go from a marketing job, he wanted to start a company that wouldn’t fluctuate so much with the economy. “I wanted something that would stick around,” Chris remembers. “My sister talked about a social sports league in Baltimore. I thought a big city idea like that in Grand Rapids would make people want to stay here.” Grand Rapids Sport and Social Club (GRSSC) has come a long way since their first season of having one sport and 31 players. Now, with over 600 leaguers per season playing sports from “can jam” to “dodge ball”, GRSSC has it made.

So, what exactly is Grand Rapids Sport and Social Club, you ask, besides a bit of a mouthful? It is Grand Rapids’ coolest, funnest (we’ll pretend that’s a word) way to play sports, hang out at bars and meet new people from all over the city. I talked with founder Chris Wessely and Anna Roden of GRSSC. After bombarding me with big red bouncy balls (just kidding; but I wouldn’t put it past them!), they told me about what one can expect from a GRSSC league.  “We stick to the non-traditional sports like kickball, wiffle ball, and dodge ball. We have a new trivia league starting in June,” shares Anna. “All of our sports leagues are co-ed adults with games once a week.” GRSSC partners up with a different bar, usually one close to the playing field, where leaguers can run to after the game for a drink and social time.

In the GRSSC leagues, you’ll find a wide variety of people you’re bound to connect with; people married with kids, single, young professionals, people just trying to get through the rat race, new to Grand Rapids, been here for a lifetime, you name it, you’ll find it. “We try to level the corporate hierarchy. Everyone has the same game shirts. Everyone is just who they are. The focus is on the game and the people. We think it’s a great, organic way of starting friendships.”

To start having the time of your life, pick a league and register online at Here you will pay the registration fee, start a player profile, and browse other GRSSC profiles to find the team you best fit with. Whether you were the all-star of your high school team or you’ve never kicked a ball in your life, you will find friends, fitness, and frivolity in any league you choose at Grand Rapids Sport and Social Club.

To learn more about GRSSC, visit their website at or find them on facebook at

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Aemelia Tripp is the marketing coordinator at Women’s Lifestyle Magazine. She is a graduate of Calvin College with a degree in Strategic Communications. Aemelia enjoys bike rides and singing jazz songs.