Home to the world’s largest basket and largest Native American earthworks and celebrating 100 years of ice cream
Since 1808 when Licking County officially became the 29th Ohio County, it’s been welcoming visitors to escape the confines of their everyday lives and spend time exploring nearly 700 square miles of some of the best of the American Heartland.
Whether you live in Central Ohio or are traveling through, a stop in Licking County is recommended. Be prepared, though; there is a lot to choose from. Aside from being home to The Longaberger Company, home to the world’s largest basket building, Licking County features 40 miles of paved hiking and biking trails, indoor and outdoor water parks, sites of major historical significance, arboretums, award-winning golf courses, live theater and educational industrial tours.
Licking County is also home to the largest Native American earthworks anywhere in the United States. Built by the Hopewell culture between 250 AD and 500 AD, the earthworks were used as places of ceremony, social gathering, trade, and worship. The Newark Earthwork site is the largest surviving Hopewell earthwork complex. The culture built many earthen mounds. Over many years, they built the single largest earthwork enclosure complex in the Ohio River Valley. The earthworks cover several square miles. Scholars have demonstrated that the Octagon Earthworks comprise a lunar observatory for tracking the moon’s orbit during its 18.6-year cycle. The Newark Earthworks are a staggering display of ancient human ingenuity and a must see on any travel itinerary.
If there is too much to do in a short visit consider a weekend getaway or family vacation. Overnight accommodations range from the intimacy of bed and breakfasts and county inns to more mainstream hotel options. Many Licking County communities offer unique shopping venues. Shops offer the hard to find as well as handcrafted pieces created by local artisans. Taking home a bit of the county should not be a problem.
Microbreweries, wineries and interesting dining options abound. Sit lakeside at Buckeye Lake while enjoying locally crafted beers or wines. Stroll down the streets of Utica, Johnstown or Granville after a relaxing dinner featuring local products from many farm to table producers.
Fairs and festivals find a home in Licking County and are celebrated all year. The Utica-Sertoma Ice Cream Festival at Ye Olde Mill, Home of Velvet Ice Cream, is over 100 years old. Make sure to visit the Hartford Fair, which has the distinction of being “The Biggest Little Fair in the World”. The Newark Strawberry Festival, MOPAR Nationals and The Flint Ridge Knap-In are great annual summer and fall festivals for the whole family to enjoy.
To help celebrate the season, make plans to enjoy the Licking County Courthouse Holiday Lighting and the Granville Candlelight Walking tour, as well as many New Year’s Eve celebrations, including a unique drag racing event at National Trail Raceway.
Licking County…Four Great Seasons to Escape! Learn more at EscapeToLickingCounty.com to plan your escape today!