Take a date. Take your coworkers for a team-building exercise. Go solo. Either way, you’ve got to experience Room Escape Adventures’ Trapped In A Room With A Zombie. Yesterday, I took the red line down to the Fine Arts Building in Chicago to do this thing with three friends (and eight strangers).
Why I’m telling you: the room is coming to The Columbus Idea Foundry in Columbus, Ohio on February 14th, and will run throughout the year.
Downtown Columbus smells like a giant donut today. Go outside and breathe. Zero calories. On a related note (calories fast approaching): that pink frosted Dunkin’ Donut I was obsessed with as a kid? The Red Raspberry Hibiscus from Destination Donuts is my new, grown-up version. As you can see, this sweet thang got a little melty in the pic below, but trust me, it’s an upgrade!
Columbus Food Adventures Alt Eats Ethnic Food Tour
Disclaimer: I put most of my obsessive picture-taking aside to enjoy this food adventure—so worth it!
For as much as I thrive on veering off the well-trodden paths, I tend not to be as ambitious when it comes to seeking out unfamiliar foods. Can you relate? Let me tell you why I loved the Columbus Food Adventures’ Alt Eats Tour, and why you should give it a go. The trip starts with a curious group, a tour van, and a drive on up to the north-east side of the city, where a large number of Columbus’ immigrants have made their homes.
What makes this tour an adventure is that you may be very unfamiliar with the dish in front of you, or the culture from which it came. In fact, you may not know any of the 12-plus other people who are along for the ride. Exploring authentically ethnic flavors in one’s own Midwestern city is rather fantastic; your guides, Bethia Woolf and Andy Dehus, have already put years-worth of taste-testing to work, and can speak to the quality and history of each restaurant—it’s simply up to the tourists to partake and bond over what they think of each new bite. We were all smiling and getting to know each other by the first taste of banh mi (and there wasn’t even a drop of alcohol on the table.) I didn’t expect to emerge a fan of both Vietnamese and West African fare, but here I am…wanting to return for more. I could go on, but as usual, I’d rather you see (and taste) for yourself!
Just visiting Columbus? Got a friend coming into town? Simply bored with your every-day-grind? In addition to Alt Eats, Columbus Food Adventures offers a coffee tour, a dessert tour, a meat-lover’s tour (!), private tours and MORE. Go on, it feels good to play tourist! In this case, it will also taste really good.
I’ll take this opportunity to note that the majority of people in our tour group that day happened to have a food allergy (including, but not limited to: nut, dairy, or gluten sensitivity.) Bethia and Andy could not have been more conscientious in making sure that all involved were safe to indulge.
Dave Kellough, of the University District History said you mentioned our fellow Clintonville resident Billy Cash. Your site is amazing! It's wonderful! As a life-long resident of Columbus, I recognize many of the locations in your images. I used to spend Saturdays with my grandparents at the Westland Mall in the 80's. My wife and I show BMN! at Studio 35. We also used to be photographers, taking polaroids very similar to your images: The Lovely Road. Keep up the good work! -Scott Hammond
Thanks for the message, Scott! Bad Movie Nite has been on my list of things to do in Columbus for a while…and I just love your website. It warms my heart to see the collection, as I’m always just dying to see snapshots that were taken in the years before social media went BOOM.
For anyone who grew up in Columbus, Ohio, or simply moved here before the nineties came to a close, you’ll remember our Center of Science and Industry's old location. In the vein of Forgotten Ohio, this is a website that I hope never gets a facelift. It’s a trip back in time within a trip back in time. And aww, sigh…you’ll see pics of the original Wendy’s (R.I.P., dammit) across Broad Street at the beginning of your tour. Happy browsing!
Visit Flickr user jflauer for a detailed map of the Columbus neighborhoods. It’s an image from 2010, but the accompanying text (with links to each area’s website) was updated in 2011. Happy walking/biking/driving around town!
In 2011, Columbus native, Jess, and Brooklyn native, Rob, began chronicling their quest to go on dates in this city (once a week), AND…stick to a budget. Have a look at their $20 Date Resource Guide, via twentydollardates.com.
How ADORABLE is this couple? I mean, really. Let me tell you—I have been longing to find this Man Who Knits, ever since scoring one of his wool hats about two years ago at a boutique (formerly known as Loot) in the Short North. Nope, no website or email address on the hang tag attached to it; kind of refreshing these days, if you ask me.
The hat in question is my FAVORITE; so naturally, I fangirled a bit after finding The Man Who Knits at a bi-monthly farm & goods market, just west of downtown in Franklinton. Made entirely from salvaged wool goods, each find is unraveled and then knit again into something new. Even the original garment tag is saved—you’ll find it pinned to every one of his pieces, leaving you with another little token of its past life.
To those who knit for themselves, skeins of reclaimed wool yarn are also available at his post for $10. And below: (don’t pay attention to my mug) it’s the hat I love so much.
Catch EJ (The Man Who Knits), and his wife Nancy (whose style I’m nuts about) at the 400 West Rich Market, every 2nd and 4th Saturday of the month. I’ve been going on-and-off since the event’s first tiny incarnation, and am really pleased to have seen it grow so much.
Hey,I'm visiting Columbus next weekend (From Thursday to Sunday). It's my first time there! What are the best places you suggest? any good music? art? awesome food? hehe. Thank you!
Hi! I’ll point you towards a mini-city guide post I wrote for a fellow blogger last year…hopefully it will give you something to start with. For your art fix, I recommend the Wexner Center for the Arts. Most people will tell you to try Jeni’s Ice Cream (and they’re right, it’s a flavor experience). The 400 West Rich Indoor Farmers Market on the west side hosts a random assortment of produce, crafters, and food trucks that you might enjoy on a Saturday. Some other food-related suggestions: Brothers Drake Meadery, Freshstreet Yakitori at Double Happiness, The North Market, Mikey’s Late Night Slice. Music is such a hard topic to touch upon unless I understand your preferences. Google the schedules at Dick’s Den, Kobo Live, Ace of Cups, Carabar, Woodland’s Tavern and Rumba Cafe to name a few places. There’s so much more to do, and so much more I could suggest, but I know there’s only so much you can pack in to four days of travel. Welcome to Columbus in advance!
Side notes: try not to overwhelm yourself. EVERYONE has an opinion about where to go and what to see. Take some attitudes local message boards with a grain of salt (they don’t represent everyone who works, lives and plays here…just as this Tumblr doesn’t). My rule of thumb is to pick three things of interest to check off your list—then leave room for some aimless wandering and happy accidents. The best possible outcome is for you to develop your own personal relationship with the place you’re visiting. Getting lost in an unfamiliar town has always been the best thing to happen to me, but…I guess I’d take that advice with a grain of salt too.
I wrote a feature for Pitchfork about Musicol, one of the last places on earth where bands can have their songs recorded, mixed, mastered and pressed to vinyl under the same roof. It’s a lengthy read, but hopefully you’ll find it worth your time.