OHIO TRAVEL & TOURISM GUIDE TO OHIO ATTRACTIONS
The May 2023 Edition ©
Your tour guide to fun!
- Ohio’s War of 1812 Battlefield
- World’s Largest Bobblehead
- Ohio Mountain Bike Trail
- 5 To-do’s in Wayne County
- Brews-N-Vines Trail
- Discover Your Adventure in Mohican
- Bring Out The Best In Your Backyard
- “A Must Visit in 2023”
- Retail Therapy at Diverse Shops
- Relax with History & Nature
- Coshocton’s Corsage: Clary Gardens
- The Ruins at Ariel-Foundation Park
- Cookies, Brownies, And A Runaway
- Ohio Spring Festivals & Events
- This Edition’s Featured Sponsors
OUR ADVERTISERS & CLIENTS
Ohio’s War of 1812 Battlefield
Ohio had key battlefields in the War of 1812. One was Fort Meigs overlooking the Maumee River from a bluff in Perrysburg, south of Toledo. Today, it’s one of the largest reconstructed, wooden-walled forts in the United States.
The museum & visitors’ center is en route to the fort, so a full view doesn’t offer itself until guests walk out of the back door of the museum. There, eyes are met with a great wall of timber between blockhouses made of the same wood. At one corner, a massive weeping willow tree cascades a feeling of peace and serenity, gazing across the grassland, woods, and wide river below. But, as the fort’s inner soul is revealed, there was a time when the grounds were soaked in blood.
Leading to this war, the young American nation was being pushed around by the British, disrespecting its sovereignty as a nation. Faced with trade limitations in Europe and the Impressment (kidnapping/forcing) of US citizens at sea to take up arms in Britain’s Royal Navy in its war with Napoleon Bonaparte and the French forced America’s war hand if it was to survive as a country.
The United States, led by President James Madison, declared war on Great Britain on June 18, 1812, which continued until February 18, 1815, according to the Library of Congress.
Fort Meigs was built in February 1813 at the order of General William Henry Harrison, who later became the ninth President of the United States. Original defensive earthworks remain to this day, although time and erosion have lowered them a bit from their original height of 14 feet. Inside the reconstructed 10-acre fort, these long and high manmade hills create a maze-like interior. The Siege of Fort Meigs in April-May of 1813 was a defining battle in the War of 1812.
The war ended as a draw by most historical accounts, albeit the 1814 Treaty of Ghent. It took a while before the news of the Treaty crossed the Atlantic. In the meantime, the historic Battle of New Orleans was fought in January 2015. The treaty enabled the US to push westward without regard to Native American lands or resistance from the British, all in the name of Manifest Destiny.
“To your posts then, fellow soldiers, and remember that the eyes of your Country are upon you.” ̶ General William Henry Harrison
Several of the fort’s seven blockhouses share parts of the story behind the fort’s construction and defense against sieges. Historical interpreters, dressed in 1812-era clothing, present demonstrations of camp life, weapons, and other activities throughout the summer. Reenactments and special events further highlight America’s rich military history of the time.
The visitors’ center houses a museum. Look at it from afar and see it is designed like a blockhouse. The exhibits and recovered artifacts share what historians and archaeologists have deciphered to have happened at the fort, and the battles waged there. Included are weapons, accouterments, uniforms, and soldiers’ items.
The entire park complex spans 65 acres. It’s a great place to learn about history and relax for a picnic or walk. Click here to view hours, admission, location, and more.
By Frank Rocco Satullo, The OhioTraveler, Your Tour Guide to Fun
Ohio Mountain Bike Trail
Waggoner’s Run Mountain Bike Trail
Welcome to the Waggoner’s Run Mountain Bike Trail, a newer mountain bike trail in Gibsonburg, Ohio (Sandusky County).
This is a moderate ride mainly due to the last mile, which gets more technical with its hilly, root-exposed, and rocky terrain. The natural features with lots of twists and turns around trees are paired with manmade obstacles, bridges, skinnies, tabletops, and rock gardens. The trail’s newest feature is a challenging teeter-totter placed right before one of the biggest drops on the trail. On average, the nearly 6-mile one-way course takes an hour and forty minutes to complete.
Waggoner’s Run Mountain Bike Trail was a collaborative project between the Flatlanders Bicycle Club and the Sandusky County Park District in 2019 and is located within SCPD’s “White Star Park.” The Flatlanders completed the trail and dedicated it in October 2020. It was named “Waggoner’s Run” to honor local cycling enthusiast and bicycle shop owner Dan Waggoner.
The trail is also open for hiking. No horseback riding, pets, or motorized vehicles are permitted. It is recommended that hikers hike the trail in reverse and stay alert for oncoming bike traffic. The one-way mountain bike trail starts at the parking lot next to the railroad tracks on County Road 65.
The latest trail conditions and timely information is reported on the Waggoner Run Mountain Bike Trail Facebook Page. Leave no trace and practice low-impact hiking and cycling. Riding on a muddy trail damages the trail. It leaves ruts, contributes to erosion & creates an unrideable, hard-to-fix trail surface. If you leave a visible rut, the trail is too muddy to ride. Come prepared. Keep your equipment in good condition and carry the necessary supplies. Helmets are highly recommended for bicyclists using this trail.
The Gibsonburg area offers a small rural northern Ohio farm town in Sandusky County. Outdoor enthusiasts know it well for “White Star Park,” which offers hiking trails, an inland quarry lake for SCUBA diving, and mountain bike trails. Gibsonburg is only two hours from Columbus, Cleveland, and Detroit, so getting there is not part of the challenge! Gibsonburg is also known for “Ideal Bakery,” home to its amazing donuts, pastries, and cinnamon rolls.
While visiting the area, 15 minutes up the road is Fremont and Ghoul Runnings Kayak Adventures. This kayak livery offers guided and self-guided tours along the scenic Sandusky River and the beautiful Fremont Reservoir from May to Fall. The owners, Beth Turner and her husband Bob, have been running it for 33 years. They offer a variety of 2- and 4-hour trips, and specialty adventures include a history tour, singles kayaking group, bird and nature, sunset, moonlight, and more.
Sandusky County has so much to see and do, from kayaking in the Sandusky River to festivals and farmer’s markets. There is always something fun to see and do in the area. For more information about its events and attractions, visit SanduskyCounty.org.
Check Out the New Grand Lake Brews-N-Vines Trail Experience
May is the beginning of patio season, and that is the perfect time to check out the new, enhanced Grand Lake Brews-N-Vines Trail. If there is anything better than hand-crafted coffee creations, locally made wines, and specially brewed craft beers, it may just be enjoying those beverages in the fresh air with lots of sunshine…or moonlight.
Download your free passport at www.seemore.org/cheers and (while supplies last) pick up a free starter kit. Visit the venues along the trail and earn points you can redeem for a Brews-N-Vine t-shirt and/or a Brews-N-Vines ball cap. With 11 months to finish the trail, this can become a wonderful way to spend time with friends and family. You will find that each venue has its own particular charm and hospitality. These are locally owned small businesses that take pride in their products and are genuinely happy to have you stop by for a sip or two.
The trail includes breweries: Moeller Brew Barn, Tailspin Brewery, Lake Rat Brewing, Gongoozlers Brewery, and Second Crossing Brew Co. You will also enjoy the wineries: 5 Vines Winery, The Winery at Versailles, The Vineyard at Evergreen Farm and GR8 Vines Winery. Finally, all you coffee lovers, you’re covered. The coffeehouses on the trail are; Winans Chocolates + Coffee (Wapakoneta and Maria Stein), New Bremen Coffee Company, Hazelnut Coffee, Rooster Joe Coffee & Co., Brew Nation, and Cozy Cabin Café.
Enjoy the Brews-N-Vines Trail quest through the Grand Lake Region, and if you’d like to know more about the area and the other fun and interesting things to see or do, you can check it out at www.Seemore.org
Bring Out The Best In Your Backyard
With A Visit To Ohio’s Amish Country
The days are getting warmer, and that means more time spent outdoors relaxing and enjoying family and friends. In Amish Country, they know a thing or two about slowing down and savoring those moments together. They also know how important a beautiful outdoor space can be to making summer memories.
The good news is that the region has an array of options to help you create your backyard oasis.
Let’s start with construction plans. Want to expand your patio, add a firepit or design a grilling station? Keim Home Center has everything you need to bring your Pinterest-inspired landscape to life. From building materials to home décor and everything in between, Keim is a home improvement paradise. Before you check out, be sure to go upstairs to the Carpenters Café for a sandwich and a birds-eye view of the impressive retail space.
If you need a safe place for your pets to play, Swiss Valley Fence has you covered. They’ll help you select the right fence and railing and simplify the process with professional installation services. Learn how to customize your fence with a wide range of colors and design features.
Next, look for the perfect outdoor fireplace. A visit to Erb’s Stove Center is a must. The store offers many styles of fireplaces, pits, and grills. Their team guides you and ensures you know how to properly care for and maintain your purchase. While there, you’ll also be able to explore pergolas and sheds that can be customized for your yard. The Amish countryside provides a beautiful backdrop and will have you envisioning new potential for your property.
Perhaps you’ll need more seating to create a place for conversations, lounging, and sharing a meal. Amish Country has many locations for you to find eye-catching outdoor furniture – from rustic porch rockers to Poly furniture in contemporary styles. The furniture builders in the region are known for crafting durable and lasting pieces and want you to love them as much as they do. Kauffman Lawn Furniture, Luxcraft, The Cabin Store, and Homestead Furniture are among the places we recommend visiting. The variety of colors, styles, and fabrics will surely inspire you.
For your project’s finishing touches, head over to the Sheyiah Market campus. The Gardens, an indoor/outdoor garden center, has an endless selection of plants, pots, baskets, decor, and accents that will excite you about the possibilities in your backyard. The friendly and knowledgeable staff will help you learn about all the ways you can transform your landscape.
To add a whimsical element to your property, visit nearby Sol’s in Berlin for lighthouses, wishing wells, and yard terrariums.
No outdoor party is complete without something delicious to eat. Where is it better than in Ohio Amish Country to find bulk meats, cheeses, and sides? Stop by one of the many area markets for local flavors and the freshest options. Walnut Creek Cheese, Troyer Market, Heini’s Cheese Chalet, The Ashery, Guggisberg Cheese, and Winesburg Meats are just a few local favorites.
As you prep for your next outdoor project, visit the traditional hardware stores and modern home centers on your DIY Day Trip when you Visit Amish Country.
Retail Therapy at Diverse Shops
Visit Medina County to Enjoy some
Retail Therapy at Diverse Shops
Whether you’re shopping for a specific event or just enjoying the hunt – you are sure to find truly unique treasures while shopping in Medina County. Strolling the streets of the towns heightens the experience, too – with plenty of places to refuel before continuing to the next shop. From handcrafted home furnishings to novelty gifts, antiques, and so much more – you’ll find items to satisfy any passion.
If you’re a knitter or want to become one, stop by Black Locust Farm at 110 Bank Street in Lodi, Ohio, which stocks every kind of yarn imaginable, along with all the other gear that goes with knitting. And don’t worry if your knitting skills are rusty or nonexistent – the folks at Black Locust Farm will teach you everything you need to know. Like tea and crumpets, good books and great coffee go together, which is the idea behind Second Look Books & Brews, a used bookstore and coffee shop at 119 Wooster Street. Browse the treasured tomes while sipping your favorite caramel macchiato.
Start by painting some pottery at All Fired Up, 233 S. Court Street, then browse the latest jewelry, glass, pottery, and household creations at Bella Moxie at 236 W. Liberty Street. Next, stop by Candyapple & Company, 109 W. Washington Street., a boutique selling – you guessed it – candy apples! In all flavors, from caramel to gourmet chocolate. Or visit the gift shop at Castle Noel, 260 S. Court Street, to catch a little holiday spirit. Looking for something for a particular someone? Stop by J.K. Gift Shop, 207 S. Court Street, and browse through the many collections of jewelry, gifts, spa essentials, and fashion apparel. Or indulge your flair for interior illumination at ROOT Candles, 623 West Liberty Street. Explore the many styles and fragrances of the candles on display.
Christal Kaple Art, at 29 Center Street, lets you indulge your passion for expertly rendered artwork in acrylic, resin, alcohol ink, and other media. Visit Elements at Funky Junk Boutique, 18 West Main Street, a lifestyle boutique featuring home decor, giftware, furniture, vintage finds, baby items, DIY home decor supplies, and women’s clothing and accessories. Or talk to the folks at Velvet’s W. Main Framing, 9 W. Main Street, for advice on framing your latest artistic masterpiece, or purchase some of the already framed watercolors or gifts on display. Then select a beautiful, handcrafted handbag, shoulder bag, cross-body bag, or wallet at Finns Fickle Goods, 30 Center Street.
Stop by Ruby Moonat, 229 College Street, to examine the refurbished vintage furniture and antique China, or visit Opal Dragonfly Boutique,110 High Street, for the latest fashions, bath and beauty supplies, gifts, and holiday values. And if you need some strings for your Stratocaster or reeds for your saxophone, stop by Wadsworth Music, 133 College Street.
Your retail therapy at diverse shops awaits in Medina County.
Coshocton’s Corsage: Clary Gardens
Cultivating a Botanical Legacy
Whether it’s love at first sight or love everlasting, Clary Gardens is nature’s corsage in Coshocton, Ohio. Its beauty grows in the heart of each visitor and wedding party immersed in the splendid 20-acre hillside at the edge of the restored historic canal town, Roscoe Village.
What started as a tribute garden of roses grew to engage the wedding industry. And the pathway between is a storybook affair. …Click here to see the full multimedia story.
CLICK HERE for the rest of the story
This Multimedia Feature Story
is Sponsored by Visit Coshocton
Cookies, Brownies, And A Runaway
This is part of a series of stories
“Wrong Turns Write Life”
Ah, the early trips! Those first couple of times, I could feel freedom and adventure leaving home without Mom and Dad.
On my first trip, I was sandbox-age. My buddy Eric joined me. It would be a sign of the times ahead of us as we explored the boundaries of independence and our knack for mischief.
It was an early summer morning, and we wanted cookies, but my mom said, “No.”
I knew of another friend, Kyle, down the street, and his mom always had a full cookie jar in her kitchen. So, Eric and I were off to get our fix even though I knew Kyle was at his dad’s for the weekend.
I guess you could say it was our first foodie outing.
The house was locked, and nobody was awake, so we did the natural thing … and slid through the doggy door. We were little tykes, so we staggered the kitchen counter drawers to use as climbing steps.
I was on the counter, hand in the cookie jar, when Ms. E. appeared as a silhouette down the hall leading to the kitchen, “Rocky, is that you?”
My middle name is Rocco. I was named after a saint.
Ms. E. rubbed her eyes in utter disbelief as if she were still dreaming.
The next thing she saw was two tiny butts simultaneously squeezing through that doggy door.
Minutes later, my mom stepped outside to see us in my sandbox and asked, dumbfounded, “Were you in Ms. E’s house just now?”
Tasting chocolate chip on the corner of my mouth, I licked it and said, “No.”
There would be some time I had to chore off before I would get a taste of freedom again.
Three houses down, that was the length of my leash – on a bicycle. Coincidentally, my turnaround spot was in front of Ms. E’s house.
I was a beginner and loved the freedom my new wheels gave me. Our street didn’t have sidewalks, at least not down by my house. Still, it was safe. Sort of. I guess.
The third house was approaching. I was on the edge of the road traveling opposite traffic, just like I was not supposed to do. A car came behind me as I turned into the middle of the road. I was startled when the driver beeped at me. Not a hello beep but an angry one.
Back home, I came to a stop against the side steps. This was the only way I could end a bike ride without crashing. We had a long blacktop driveway. Mom was outside, and I was about to go in for a glass of water when a police car pulled all the way up to the house. This was an incredible sight for me. The officer spoke with my mom, and I didn’t quite understand what it was all about. Finally, he approached me. Mom just stood off to the side.
Mesmerized by the uniform, holster, and all, I didn’t pay one bit of attention to a word he said. But I caught the gist. It was a lecture about bicycling safety. I was intimidated, to say the least. In my mind, when you do something wrong, and the police come, there’s but one conclusion – jail!
“I have to go to the bathroom,” I squeaked out.
The officer paused, looked at my mom, and she said to be quick.
I was quick, all right. I sprinted to my bedroom, grabbed underwear, a shirt, and my favorite stuffed animal (a monkey holding a banana), and then found a towel in the bathroom to wrap it all up. I only had cartoons and kids’ shows as a guide, so in lieu of a stick to tie it to, I improvised and used a yardstick. I slipped out another door and headed for the woods.
My mom saw me.
“What are you doing? Where are you going?”
When I stopped and turned, the yardstick snapped, and my sack flung to the ground.
At this sight, my mom and the officer seemed to burst out something but quickly contained it.
Now I really did have to use the bathroom.
Instead, I had to listen to the rest of the safety lecture and then got the bonus lecture on running away. It all seemed so threatening to me.
As the black and white pulled out of the driveway, I remember being very surprised that I wasn’t in cuffs in the backseat.
After my bust, I felt on the lam, always looking over my shoulder.
Okay, one more for the foodie crowd.
I looked up from my chair, which was attached to my desk, and wondered if I had heard my teacher correctly.
Yep! She said it again – “…brownies!”
I put my pencil down from doodling on the desktop and refocused on the classroom.
“…So if you want to stay after school tomorrow for brownies, you’ll need a note from your parents,” she concluded at the bell.
When I got home, I promptly remembered to relay the information to my mom. She didn’t bat an eye, wrote a quick note, and tucked it inside my folder for tomorrow.
At the end of the next day, my mouth was watering. I gazed at the clock three times, and all three times, the long minute hand didn’t budge. One minute to go, and it seemed to take an hour.
Then, finally, brownie time!
“If you’re staying after for brownies, line up here,” my teacher directed.
Bam! I was second in line, eagerly waiting to satisfy my sweet tooth. My focus slowly turned foggy as background noise penetrated my one-track mind. It was laughter.
“Rocky wants to join the Brownies, Rocky wants to join the Brownies …” was the chant gaining volume around me.
I looked around. I was the only boy in line. My teacher looked at me with an expression of …unease.
“Rocky, boys can’t join the Brownies. Brownies are Girl Scouts.”
By Frank Rocco Satullo, The OhioTraveler, Your Tour Guide to Fun
This Edition’s Featured Sponsors
This month’s edition is sponsored by
Grand Lake Region
Soak in the Grand Lake Vibe!
Visit Medina County
Small Town Charm with Big City Flavor
World’s Largest Bobblehead
The World’s Largest Bobblehead is on a hill behind the Buckeye Express Diner at 810 State Route 97 in W. Bellville, Ohio. Watch closely; the head will bobble when the wind blows. The restored 35-foot-tall statue is named Chef Jacques. He spent half a century headless, toppled, and neglected after he first served at a location in nearby Mansfield. He has a close cousin, Handless Jacques, in Marblehead, Ohio. What’s with the severing of body parts for these cousins’ Jacques? 😉 Visit https://www.ohiotraveler.com/ohio-roadside-attractions/ for more fun.
5 To-do’s in Wayne County
Five things to do in Wayne County this summer:
Shop and stroll downtown Wooster with a Dora Drink.
Did you know you can shop and sip downtown Wooster with the designated outdoor refreshment area? All you have to do is stop in a restaurant or bar and pick up your favorite drink in a dora cup! When shopping, some stores don’t allow drinks inside, so look for the door signs to see if your drink is welcome. Visit www.mainstreetwooster.org/dora for times, participating restaurants, boundaries, and more.
Attend an Ohio Light Opera Performance.
If you haven’t seen an Ohio Light Opera performance, now is the time! OLO runs between June and July with six shows for you to enjoy. Shows include “No No Nanette,” “H.M.S Pinafore,” “Arizona Lady,” “Camelot,” and “Orpheus in the Underworld.” Buy your tickets online at ohiolightopera.org, book a hotel, make an overnight stay out of it, and enjoy everything Wayne County has to offer!
Fire in the Sky in Orrville
Head over to Orrville and watch the largest single-aged softball tournament in the county and the 20th annual Fire in the Sky carnival! This event is fun for all ages. Kick-off ‘Fire in the Sky’ with a 4th of July parade full of candy tossing and excitement. Enjoy watching the softball games over at the diamonds, or head over to the carnival and play a few games, ride some rides, and enjoy some delicious carnival food! Once the evening is winding down on the last day, find your spot for the Fireworks to cap off your 4th of July!
Visit www.wccvb.com/events/fire-sky for more information.
What could be better than a Saturday at the farmer’s market? Can’t think of anything! Visit downtown and shop at multiple vendors selling locally-grown produce and other locally-made goods! Grab a bouquet of flowers, some fresh bread, jams, jellies, and more. The farmer’s market is always a fun stop on Saturday mornings, and the best part is that each Saturday is a little different, making it a great weekly shopping spot! www.mainstreetwooster.org/farmers-market
Wayne County has 25+ walking paths, preserves, parks, and trails. Grab your family or some friends and get outside in nature! Stroll along the paths and see what new plants, bugs, and animals you can spot while reconnecting with nature. Once you’re out on the paths, take in all the beautiful sights while hearing the sounds of creeks running, birds chirping, and leaves rustling. Getting outside is free and fun for all ages. Create a scavenger hunt before leaving and see what you can find! Pack a picnic, enjoy a nice sunny day, take a few photos, and breathe in the fresh summer air. www.wccvb.com/listings/outdoors
Wayne County is full of summer fun! Follow on social media or visit www.wccvb.com for dates, times, and more fun things to do this summer.
Discover Your Adventure in Mohican
Everyone is preparing their summer plans, and Mohican is here to help. The Mohican Area will once again be buzzing with visitors from all over. There’s a little something for everyone, whether for kids, couples, friends, sports enthusiasts, animal lovers, or nature admirers.
Mohican State Park and Forest are home to many recreational trails, including the only IMBA EPIC mountain biking trail in Ohio. Whether hiking, biking or by horseback, the Mohican trails are full of scenic views and year-round beauty. Nearby Malabar Farm is one of Ohio’s most unique and interesting State Parks. Home of Pulitzer Prize-winning author, screenwriter, and conservationist Louis Bromfield, Malabar Farm State Park is a true working farm. The area is proud to be home to the Mohican, a state scenic river that runs along the Wally Road Scenic Byway. Known to be “Ohio’s Largest Recreational Complex,” the Wally is the heart of this famous camping and canoeing industry.
Visit downtown historic Loudonville and stop in the unique specialty shops or take a day trip to Amish Country, where you can tour an Amish home and farm. Walk the shopped-lined main streets, and be sure to stop and enjoy some baked goods! Visit area museums or take in a movie or a play in Loudonville’s historic Ohio Theatre. Listen to live entertainment at one of many local wineries.
Whether you stay a week or a weekend, Mohican Country is home to many family-owned and award-winning accommodations. From rustic to royal, there are cabins, cottages, treehouses, a state park lodge, and even a castle ready to welcome you.
It doesn’t matter if you are exploring the outdoors at one of the area’s State Parks, sipping local wines, or enjoying the day on the river; each day is another chance to find yourself in a great place, making memories that last a lifetime!
Enjoy these fun upcoming events:
- June 10: Summer Beach Festival | Pleasant Hill Lake Park
- June 10: International Wine Festival at the Mill Fundraiser | Wolf Creek Grist Mill & Museum
- June 30 & July 1: Antique Festival | Downtown Loudonville
- July 1- 22: Annual Classic Car Show | Downtown Loudonville
- July 4: Fireworks | Downtown Loudonville
- July 15: Christmas in July & Fireworks | Pleasant Hill Lake Park
Plan to stay for the week or weekend. With over 5,000 campsites, private cabins, a castle, a state park lodge, historic bed and breakfasts, and more, there is a place that will welcome overnight visitors to make it the home away from home. Take a stroll through downtown Loudonville for shopping and dining. There is plenty of room to discover the best of Mohican. Visit DiscoverMohican.com for more information, or find them on Facebook- Discover Mohican.
“A Must Visit in 2023”
Few places in the US can claim to be one of the fifty destinations on the planet selected by Forbes Magazine as a must-visit in 2023. Ohio’s Hocking Hills is one of the destinations to make the prestigious list. While growing in popularity in the Midwest, much of the country is not yet aware they are in such close proximity to the remarkable Hocking Hills.
Widely known for its world-class hiking, sparkling waterfalls, and expansive scenic vistas, the Hocking Hills is also known for its serenity and cozy cabins in the woods where travelers reconnect with nature, their loved ones, and themselves. The region is truly the natural crown jewel of Ohio.
Seasoned visitors are often looking for something new while still focusing on nature. The new Hocking Hills Butterfly Trail is just the ticket. Featuring fourteen stops, the self-guided tour takes butterfly enthusiasts around the Hocking Hills, learning about different butterfly species, their habitats, what they like to eat, and their travel plans. Some butterflies, like the Monarch, travel to Mexico and back each year. At each stop, there is a giant pair of butterfly wings of the featured butterfly. They make for great photos, and kids of all ages love them.
One stop along the Hocking Hills Butterfly Trail is Butterfly Ridge, a butterfly conservation center. The initial idea for Butterfly Ridge came into being in early 2014. The idea was to have a garden that would focus on the health and well-being of butterflies native to southeastern Ohio. The garden, which opened on July 1, 2017, is open to the public seasonally to visit and learn about butterflies, moths, and other pollinators.
Hiking is likely the number one activity in the Hocking Hills, but many may not know other activities are offered. Although the Hocking Hills is not home to any PGA golf courses, plenty of unique golf experiences keep you entertained. The region has three disc golf courses. One is located in Hocking Hills State Park. Nine of the eighteen holes are now open and can be found near the new Hocking Hills State Park Lodge & Conference Center. The second and third are located at Logan High School and Hocking College, respectively. Both are eighteen-hole courses, and all are open to the public.
Have you ever heard of Park Golf? At Wormburner Park Golf, one of only two park golf courses in the United States, you’ll find a fun and simple sport that anyone can enjoy. Unlike regular golf, you only need 1 club and 1 ball to play. You hit the ball from a teeing ground towards a hole, counting the number of strokes you take until the ball goes into the cup. The object is to put the ball in the cup with the fewest strokes. Think BIG mini-golf… or smaller regular golf.
For the traditional golfer, there is the Hocking Hills Golf Club, a Par-71 course measuring 5,861 yards. The rolling terrain has been modified into a magnificent layout by designer Jack Kidwell. From the bent-grass tee boxes and the tree-lined fairways to the meticulously manicured greens, every acre of the land is shaped and fitted to blend with the natural landscape while lining you up for the perfect shot.
For the kiddos and kiddos at heart, there’s putt-putt golf. Adventure Golf at Remple’s Grove is a beautifully designed course with a waterfall surrounded by dining, shopping, a petting zoo, and canoe livery. Also located in the midst of shopping, dining, and a flea market is Hocking Hills Mini Golf at the Hocking Hills Market. Eighteen holes of fun and vibrant greenery and water features make you feel like you’re putting your way through Hocking Hills.
The first step to having the best possible Hocking Hills vacation is to pledge to visit responsibly. It’s easy. Go to LoveHockingHills.com and pledge to be a responsible traveler. Everyone who takes the pledge receives a sticker and card so you can let everyone know you are a responsible traveler.
Planning a great getaway to the Hocking Hills is easy. Visit ExploreHockingHills.com to search for lodging, activities, festivals, and more.
Relax with History & Nature
It’s time to start planning your getaway to Coshocton County! Whether you’re interested in history, nature, or just relaxing with family and friends, there’s something for everyone in beautiful Coshocton, Ohio.
For outdoor enthusiasts, there are a variety of options for adventure and relaxation. Exploring the county’s scenic water trails by canoe or kayak is a great way to get some exercise and fresh air and may even offer a glimpse of the many Bald Eagles and Osprey that use the rivers to hunt for fish.
Explore Historic Roscoe Village, a restored 1800s canal town. Stroll down the brick streets while exploring the self-guided Living History Tour exhibits, enjoy the Shops of Roscoe Village, and dine in a local restaurant or pub. The Monticello III Horse-drawn Canal Boat Ride opens Saturday, May 27, and runs throughout the summer on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday afternoons. Visit the Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum, which features a wide range of exhibits, including Native American artifacts, Chinese decorative arts, and Ohio art and history.
Clary Gardens, an emerging botanical garden, is free and open to the public year-round. Its 20 acres of hillside gardens, ponds, rose garden, outdoor amphitheater, and children’s garden create the perfect place for family fun, a romantic stroll, or a picnic. The new open-air pavilion is available for private functions. Clary Gardens hosts annual events, including a Butterfly House and Family Fall Festival and Ohio’s top outdoor wedding destination.
The all-new Sip and Stay Thursday Package is a great way to safely experience local wine and beer in Coshocton County. Available only on Thursdays throughout June, this affordable package includes a standard room and free hot breakfast for two guests at Coshocton Village Inn & Suites, vouchers to four locations, and transportation provided by Cork & Tap Excursions. Guests will visit Wooly Pig Farm Brewery, Raven’s Glenn Winery & Restaurant, Yellow Butterfly Winery, and Rainbow Hills Winery, Brewery, and Pizzeria. Reserve your package; call Coshocton Village Inn & Suites at (740) 622 – 9455. Availability is limited. Details may be found at VisitCoshocton.com.
The Flint Ridge Knap-In is coming to Coshocton County Fairgrounds May 26 – 29, 2023! This popular event attracts skilled flintknappers from around the country. During the weekend, attendees can watch flintknapping demonstrations, participate in workshops and classes, and browse vendors selling flint and related supplies. The Flint Ridge Knap-In is a great opportunity to learn more about the ancient art of flintknapping, see skilled artisans at work, and connect with others interested in archaeology, history, and primitive skills. For more information, visit Flint Knappers.
Upcoming events include the Coshocton Hot Air Balloon Festival (June 8 – 10, 2023), Corvette Cruise In (June 11, 2023), and Our Town Coshocton’s Summer Concert Series (June 24, July 15, August 4, September 9, 2023). Find all the details at VisitCoshocton.com.
Outdoor opportunities are abundant in Ohio, and Coshocton is fortunate to have so many excellent attractions, so it is easy to spend several days here! Request a free visitor packet today at VisitCoshocton.com.
The Ruins at Ariel-Foundation Park
Ariel-Foundation Park is a fascinating 250-acre park in Mount Vernon, Ohio, that blends industrial ruins with reflecting ponds and landscaped terraces. It makes for a wondrous walk through an eclectic scene of beauty and art mixed with a working town’s history and its ruins dating back to the industrial revolution.
This was formerly the site of the Pittsburg Plate Glass (PPG) manufacturing plant. The complex was one of the largest of its kind in the world. Now, it’s a wonder of Ohio, and it’s free to roam daily from April to November.
The Ruins include the 1900 Coxey Building, an adjoining clay storage building, the 1945 carpenter shop, the 1951 smokestack, an event center, three stair/elevator towers, and the clock house. The PPG ruins spread across a vast grassland of rolling hills so visitors may appreciate the large-scale glassworks operation of Yesteryear. Its preservation and enhancements together pay homage to the town’s industrial legacy.
These ruins are an Americana complex of preserved and modified structures. Among them are the vestiges of the late 19th century Coxey Building pylons. A plaque, plenty describes the sites, and claims that historians report that the structural steel that sat atop the brick pylons was salvaged from the 1893 World’s Columbian Exhibition in Chicago. That repurposed steel found re-use once again over 125 years later. This time, it was used to create sculptures within Ariel-Foundation Park.
There are stunning landforms that surround visitors at Ariel-Foundation Park. They are reminiscent of the ancient burial mound-building traditions of the Adena and Hopewell cultures, who once populated the ancient Central Ohio landscape. That said, the purpose of these terraced mounds is to create sweeping vistas that invite visitors to enjoy an assent to their summits.
Another plaque on-site explains that the contemporary inspiration for The Terraces in the park comes from the work of American landscape architect Charles Jencks. His works are located principally in the British Isles and are monumental in scale, measuring 1,200 feet wide by 100 feet tall with miles of walkways. Ridge trusses salvaged in 1893 from the World’s Columbian Exhibition and in 2013 from the Coxey Building stand guard in a canyon formed by the terraces. Climb to the summit of the park’s highest terrace to experience a dramatic view of the reflecting pools, ruins, terraces, and sculptures crafted of steel salvaged from the historic PPG Glassworks.
No doubt, the most interesting and captivating feature of the park is its surviving 280 feet high chimney. It served PPG from 1951 to the time of the plant’s shuttering in 1976. It was constructed of reinforced concrete by the slip form method. To preserve it as part of The Ruins, it was transformed into an observation tower. The tower is free to climb its 224 steps to the observation deck at 140 feet high. But the tower stands 280 feet high. It’s all open grate, so every step is like climbing the sky. At the top, the view is breathtaking…in more ways than one. This historic chimney is the highest structure in Knox County, Ohio.
Meander every nook and cranny of the park’s ruins and beyond. There are so many angles of view that create “wow” after “wow.” After venturing through the labyrinth of ruins and climbing the vantage points at each end for vast views, cut through the tree line and find hiking trails, lakes, and even a little island to wander, paddle, and picnic. The park also offers pavilions for groups and plenty of grassy areas for Frisbee tossing and kite flying.
Learn more about this fascinating newer Ohio park at https://www.arielfoundationpark.org/.
By Frank Rocco Satullo, The OhioTraveler, Your Tour Guide to Fun
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