Photo courtesy of Chagrin FallsSmack dab in the center of town, you'll find a gorgeous waterfall that is the namesake of Chagrin Falls. The falls are perfect for an afternoon picnic, and the water offers an oasis for cooling off if you spend too much time in the sun — people enjoy fishing here, too. Walk down the stairs past the falls for access to all of it!
Photo courtesy of the Ohio Division of State Parks and WatercraftCommonly known as Lake Erie's Emerald Isle, Kelleys Island State Park is a relaxing, waterside retreat with plenty to do. Enjoy hiking on one of the island's many trails, marveling at the unique geological and archeological features, and spending time on the water (of course). You can swim from the 100-foot swimming beach, which is easy to find. Afterward, make camp on the island or stay in a nearby lodge.
Photo courtesy of Jill Jankowski, owner of SUP ClevelandThe calm waters of Lake Erie are popular during the summer months for a variety of exciting water sports — but stand up paddle boarding is one our absolute favorites. Paddle boarding offers the opportunity to work the core, legs and arms while soaking up the sun and enjoying the lake scene! Make it a point this summer to try something it out. SUP Cleveland offers adventurers the chance to try stand up paddle boarding in a fun group environment, including yoga classes and events on the water. Rentals, lessons and a good time are all provided!
Photo courtesy of Great Lakes Brewing CoAfter all that adventuring, why not wind down the day with a pint? There are plenty of breweries in town to choose from if you're just looking to sip a cold one, but taking a tour enriches the experience. Our favorite tour is the option at Great Lakes Brewing Co, which leads you through a major brewery's production facility as well as giving you a glimpse into Cleveland's history. Of course, drinking beer is a quintessential part of the tour, so grab a brew and join in the fun!
Photo courtesy of Cleveland MetroparksIf you ever thought out connections to the outdoors were limited, think again. Cleveland is home to 18 metroparks featuring more than 100 trails to choose from. Some of the parks host fun concerts throughout the summer, and eight of the parks have spectacular lake views perfect for watersports or picnicking. All you have to do is pick one and get ready for a new adventure! Bonus: Don't miss out on the Centennial Fireworks event on July 22, which will celebrate the Cleveland Metroparks' 100th anniversary! Expect live music, food trucks and outdoor recreation activities during the day, concluded with a spectacular fireworks show over the water at Edgewater Beach.
Photo courtesy of SkyDive CincinnatiSure, you think you're tough now. Just wait until the plane door opens at 16,000 feet! For the daredevils among us, skydiving is perhaps the ultimate outdoor experience — offering the chance to see the world from freefall. Tandem skydiving is the most popular option for beginners, allowing you to jump attached to an instructor and simply enjoy the view. If you're looking for something a little more hard core, enroll in a course at SkyDive Cincinnati, and take steps towards earning your skydiving license.
Biking on the road is definitely fun, but why not switch it up a little bit and hit the trails? Mountain biking challenges the mind as well as the body, offering spectacular views and a chance to overcome obstacles on the trail. Whether you're a beginner or an athlete looking for a challenge, the Cincinnati Off-Road Alliance is a spectacular resource for finding groups, trails and gear. Earn your turns!
Photo courtesy of Wake Nation CincinnatiIf you have access to a motor boat, wakeboarding on our nearby lakes and rivers is a must! Wakeboarding is a fun and challenging activity the whole family can enjoy while soaking in the Ohio sun. No boat? No problem. Whether you're a beginner or an expert, Wake Nation Cincinnati will take you on a wakeboarding or waterskiing adventure you will love, all sans motor. Enjoy private lessons or go off on your own, and make sure to check out the Aqua Glide Waterpark when you're done!
Photo courtesy of Cincinnati ParksMount Airy Forest is just as magical as it sounds, with gorgeous scenery and well-maintained trails perfect for hiking or horseback riding. The park includes nearly 1,500 acres with plenty of routes for your chosen activity. After adventuring, take to one of the 23 picnic areas in the park to enjoy a leisurely meal with friends and family.
Photo courtesy of Ohio State Parks and WatercraftSure, Cincy is home to some gorgeous community pools — and we're proud of that! But when the weather warms and you're looking to cool off in the water, switch it up a bit and head out to Caesar Creek State Park. Hike, bike, or ride around the park before hitting the beach — such an oasis so close to home. Campgrounds are available if you feel like making a weekend out of it, and a new swinging bridge has recently been completed in the area. The bridge was funded 100% by donations from people who love the trail, and built by volunteers and partner organizations. Its unique beauty enriches the surrounding area and allows easier access to the nearby scenic waterfall and steep rock gorge.
Photo courtesy of Angela Perley & The Howlin' MoonsThe Rock 'n' Roll beats of Angela Perley & The Howlin' Moons are as danceable as they are enviable. Perley's voice has the perfect balance of edge and clarity, and simply floats over the hard hitting bass and electric guitar. The band credits Tom Perry, Led Zeppelin, Nebula and David Gilmour as influences, but have created a sound that is truly their own. They play in their hometown (Columbus) fairly often, but have also embarked on many tours nation-wide (including the notorious South by South West festival in Austin, Texas).
Photo courtesy of Hillary Jones via All DogsThis pop punk quartet hails from Columbus, but is known to play shows all over Ohio. They released a split cassette with Slouch, another Ohio band, before debuting with a full album, Kicking Every Day in 2015. The music is an impactful collision of soft vocals, rolling drums and snappy guitar, and is the perfect mix to listen to on a "Sunday Morning" with the windows rolled down.
Photo courtesy of Bridgette McCullough via Red Wanting BlueRed Wanting Blue came to life back in 1996, when leader Scott Terry was in school at Ohio University, and was immediate success story. By 1998, the band had already released its second full-length album entitled The Image Trigger, and has since toured the country over two decades, playing an average of 200 shows a year. The band features toe-tapping, finger-snapping beats, as well as deep vocals and lyrics that are sure to stay with you long after the first listen.
Photo courtesy of the New Bomb TurksThe New Bomb Turks are masters of the garage punk genre, featuring a collision of danceable rock 'n' roll beats and the rebellious punk vocals that we know and love. They've been around for awhile, evolving from a college band at Ohio State University in 1990 to a European tour in 2017. Explore their ten full-length albums, two EPs and twenty singles — you won't regret it.
Photo courtesy of Ryan Miller via EarwigEarwig oozes an attitude that is oh-so enviable, and with clear vocals and hard-hitting guitar, they've got everything a great rock band needs. The band has released several full-length albums, each with a unique sound. Gibson Under Mountain was the most recent of these, released in 2014.
Photo courtesy of ShrubIn 2010, Jay Shrub decided that a white-picket fence life didn't sound as rewarding as the life of a musician, and released a reggae/rap album created in his basement studio (to his friends). Luckily the sound took off, and now Shrub has evolved into a seven piece band that performs locally and across the country. Their humor and musical talents are sure to put you in a good mood.
Photo courtesy of Two Cow GarageThe husky vocals and fast-paced beats of this alternative rock band will draw you in immediately. The band was formed in late 2001 by singer and guitarist Micah Schnabel, and has since released seven full-length albums. You'll find them touring the state and capturing the hearts their listeners — with a name as Ohioan as Two Cow Garage, how could they not?
Photo courtesy of RJD2The famed RJD2 now hails from Philly, but his roots are in Columbus. This artist is a master of the psychedelic hip-hop genre, paving the way for this trancy, catchy music with hits like "Ghostwriter" and "A Beautiful Mine" (the theme song for Mad Men). If you're as captivated by these songs as we are, check out his newest album Dame Fortune, which was released last year.
This post was updated on April 9, 2019 to include up-to-date information.When the weather gets warm, Columbus residents know there is no better place to be than outside enjoying the sunshine. While our town is home to a variety of outdoor experiences and patios perfect for soaking up some Vitamin D, we also have a large number of farmers' markets that serve a dual purpose — allowing you to enjoy the day while purchasing locally produced groceries for the week. Sure, supermarkets are fine, but no one can deny that meals just taste better when created with farm-fresh produce and breads you picked out at the market that day. During the summer months, there are a plethora of markets around the city open almost every day of the week (some are even open daily). We've broken them down by day, so pick a time, find the one closest to your neighborhood, and enjoy! Pearl Market May 24 through October 11 Tuesdays and Fridays, 10:30 am-1:30 pm The opening of Pearl Market is highly anticipated every year, and every year, it manages to live up to the hype. Here you'll find all kinds of loot, from hand-crafted clothing and woodwork to delicious food. It's a great place to spend the morning, grab lunch, or simply swing through for a mood-booster. The Hilliard Farm Market May 28 through September 10 Tuesdays 4-7 pm At the Hilliard Farm Market (as with most markets in the area), all of the items sold are grown or made by the vendor. This guarantees a freshness and a quality that you just don't find at the supermarket, as well as wonderful conversations throughout your shopping experience.
Photo courtesy of Chill Ice CreamStep into this swanky spot in downtown Akron for heaping portions of ice cream in unique flavors! If you really want to get vanilla here, it'll be one of the best scoops of vanilla you've had, but it would be a shame to pass up the pineapple habañero sorbet, the raspberry chocolate donut, the vegan blueberry cardamom or the sea salt caramel truffle. Make sure to get your own scoop — we doubt your companion will share. Trecaso's Mary Coyle Ice Cream & Italian Foods
Photo courtesy of Trecaso's Mary CoyleThis Akron staple may serve hearty Italian fare, but the real show stopper here is the ice cream. Trecaso's Mary Coyle has been perfecting its rich and buttery ice cream recipes since it opened in 1937, and it certainly shows! Opt for a banana bowl (we recommend the U.S. Mint, with mint chocolate chip ice cream, hot fudge, crushed nuts and fresh bananas), or a perfect peach showboat (with peaches, marshmallows and crushed nuts) — these creations are anything but simple. Once you've chosen, settle into the patio with your dessert and enjoy people watching on the historic Highland Square. Strickland's Frozen Custard
Photo courtesy of Strickland's Frozen CustardBill and Florence Strickland opened Strickland's Frozen Custard in 1936, offering their own simple recipe of cream, eggs, sugar and flavorful ingredients. Shortly afterward, Bill developed a machine to batch freeze the ice cream while limiting the air whipped into the product — the result is rich and satisfying. The location has since expanded into a small chain throughout Ohio and as far as Irvine, California, but this Akron hot spot has not lost any of its character or its flavor. Stop in for a treat and a blast from the past. Biggins' Big Dip
Photo courtesy of Biggins' Big DipLocated just outside of Akron in Portage Lakes, Biggins' Big Dip offers great flavors, hearty portions, and an overall incredible value for your money. Make your choice between a shake, split or sundae, and settle down in the shade outside. You'll enjoy a charming atmosphere, a fantastic view of the lake and friendly service. Pav's Creamery
Photo courtesy of Pav's CreameryPav's Creamery is usually busy (especially on warm summer afternoons), but the desserts are well worth the wait. Indulge in decadent flavors including chocolate-covered strawberry, chocolate peanut butter pretzel, key lime pie and German chocolate cake, but the list doesn't stop there. Whether you're a fruit lover or a chocoholic, you're sure to find something worth loving on the menu. Bonus: Stop in for happy hour and enjoy a boozy adult shake.
Photo courtesy of TaggartsEstablished in 1926, Taggarts has since made a name as a Canton landmark. When you stop in (and you should soon), expect a heavy dose of 1920s' charm, complete with high-backed booths that invite you to stay awhile. Once you're settled, you can enjoy a meal (burgers, reubens and the like), or indulge in a gigantic, smothered sundae or banana split. The loyal customer base and out-of-town clientele is a testament to the quality of the food as well as the service. Almost Heaven Ice Cream
Photo courtesy of Almost Heaven Ice CreamThe ice creams at this charming shop are just as heavenly as the name suggests! Almost Heaven Ice Cream is home to more than 30 homemade flavors, all of which are served in delectable sundaes, blasts, shakes and ice cream sandwiches. You really can't go wrong, but we recommend sampling a flavor of the week — these range from s'mores and key lime pie to blueberry cheesecake and sugar-free moose tracks. Have a great idea for a new flavor? Fill out a form, and your idea could be the next flavor of the month! Milk and Honey
Photo courtesy of Milk and HoneyThe historic Milk and Honey offers an experience and an atmosphere that is almost (read: almost) as incredible as the ice cream itself. Stop in for a decadent sundae or old-fashioned banana split topped with flavorful fruits, candies and sauces, and of course finished with a hefty dollop of whipped cream. After you're done, explore the shop and pick out a few candies to take home with you. Country Cones
Photo courtesy of Country ConesThe colorful exterior and southern charm of Country Cones draws in locals and visitors alike to enjoy a friendly (and delicious) ice cream outing. If you're in the mood for something savory, you can choose between country classics like smothered ribs, macaroni & cheese, and hot dogs, but don't leave without a sweet treat — the homemade ice cream is the perfect way to finish a meal or a sunny day on the town. Scoops Ice Cream & Food
Photo courtesy of Scoops Ice CreamScoops Ice Cream opened in 2009, and while it's one of the newer shops in town, it has still established itself as a town favorite. The no-frills shop offers incredible service, a friendly atmosphere, and just plain delicious ice cream. You'll enjoy bringing the family here on a summer afternoon, or settling down at an outside table with a few friends. If you're in the mood for something more than just ice cream, Scoops offers one of the best Phillys around — just make sure to save room for dessert.
This home is for sale at: 5791 Fitzgibbon Ct, DublinThere's plenty of room to relax and play in the expansive backyard of this property in Dublin. You'll enjoy the privacy of a secluded, cul de sac neighborhood, and gorgeous landscaping to boot. After the night's festivities are over, cozy around the fireplace with your family.
Photo courtesy of Nathan Ward via Seventh Son Brewing CompanyTucked into a charming corner of Columbus's Italian Village lies Seventh Son Brewing Company — a collaboration between childhood friends and a stellar spot to enjoy a beer. Stop in for a unique brew in a range of flavors and varieties, and be sure to accompany your choice with a bite from the food truck of the day. Beer to try: The Humulus Nimbus This strong pale ale toes the line between an IPA and a pale, and includes berry-piney hops and light malts. Mmm mm good! ABV: 6%
Photo courtesy of Sideswipe BreweryThis small-operation brewery focuses on quality, not quantity — and that might be why a pint here is so dang delicious. The cozy taproom is located mere steps from downtown Columbus, and offers a no-frills experience with a friendly atmosphere, fun games and great company. Beer to try: The Coop Looter This American-style saison is made with whole white wheat and aromatic Belgian malts, and is packed with effervescent flavors, thanks to the hints of grapefruit and cracked pepper. ABV: 6%
Photo courtesy of Pigskin BreweryThis friendly brewery in Gahanna offers excellent brews created and served with love — and excellent food to boot! Stop in for Won off Wednesdays, during which the company will share a unique weekly small batch brew for one time only. Once it's gone, it's gone for good! Proof that the best things in life are fleeting. Beer to try: Autumn Wind Russian Imperial Stout An intensely roasty, dark brew with complex malts and hops. Look for notes of chocolate and coffee. ABV: 10.5%
Photo courtesy of Wolf's Ridge BrewingWolf's Ridge Brewing is where elegance meets adventure. Stop in at either the tap room or the more formal dining room to get a taste of incredible beer and delectable bites. In the tap room, you'll find bar snacks, shareables and sandwiches, and in the dining room you'll find more upscale fare. Look out for the Hudson Valley foie gras, the shrimp and grits, the scallops, and the New Zealand lamb rack — and make sure to chase down your choice with a house-made beer. Beer to try: Clear Sky Cream Ale This easy-drinking, crisp ale took home first place in the 2017 Beer Army Beer Wars. Pick up a bottle or a pint on draft, and we're sure you'll taste the winning quality. ABV: 5%
Photo courtesy of North High BrewingNorth High Brewing, located on (surprise!) North High Street, offers a new kind of experience — one that focuses on the actual brewing of the beer! While you can stop in anytime to enjoy a signature brew on draft (and we highly recommend that you do), you can also "Schedule a Kettle" and brew your own beer with the help of the owners using a North High recipe. Beer to try: The North High Pale Ale The North High Pale Ale is an easy-drinking brew with plenty of hops and caramel malt to balance the flavor. You might feel like a champ for drinking it, as this winning beer has secured a gold medal at Beer Wars, a silver at the 2016 World Beer Cup, and a bronze at the Best of Craft Beer Awards in Bend, Oregon. Look out for notes of tropical fruit, citrus and herbs. ABV: 5.5%
Photo courtesy of Chris Heidel via ZauberThis brewery offers traditional German and Belgian beers served in a quirky, low-key environment that is 100% American. Zauber initially opened as a small alley-side growler fill station in 2012, but is now a lively, full-service bar and taproom nestled on 5th avenue. Stop in on Wednesday for board game night, or on weekend morning to catch the EPL soccer games. Beer to try: Wunderland A Belgian strong dark ale brewed in the traditional way, with only yeast, malt and hops. Still, the flavor is rich, complex and strong. ABV: 8.7%
Photo courtesy of Cheryl Harrison via Smokehouse BrewingSmokehouse Brewing is the spot to settle if you're looking for a bit of barbecue with your beer. While the juicy wings, sauerkraut balls and messy ribs are certainly delightful, the refreshing beers are certainly the main event. The tart IPAs and bold stouts pair well with the sauces, and always leave you wanting another. Beer to try: The Woody Haze Barrel Aged Scotch Ale Brewed every Valentine's Day, this dark, amber ale is a celebrated staple of Smokehouse Brewing. The bourbon barrel-aging process gives the brew a rich flavor that pairs well with gamey meats.