M & R Wine Shop, 1553 E Main St, Columbus, OH. The Near East Side can be a bit sketchy for a casual wanderer (depending on the intersection), but the flip side of this building is just as rad. I’d love to know what the neighborhood looked like when these signs were first painted.
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.
This may be a familiar face to Columbus music lovers. Local legend Don Bovee has joined bands (from near and far) up on stage to sing the Batman theme song—for decades. The offbeat songbird…errr…bat turned 71 at the end of May.
Aside from phenomenal people watching, one of the most enjoyable things about Rock on the Range 2013 was, surprisingly, the low number of cell phones up in the air during each set. True, I had my Canon on hand—but it was the first time in a long time that I was inspired by the crowd to take in the sights and sounds without too much buzz. Being in the moment was good enough.
Read more here: Concert review: Party Like It’s 1994 or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Rock on the Range, by Brad Keefe.
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.
Scott Hammond’s Polaroids from the road: The Lovely Road
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!
We live in this wonderful age where it’s easier than ever to connect—to pursue our passions, pay homage to our idols, find others who share in our interests—all in one instantly-gratifying heartbeat. As neighbors, we wake up to a similar view, explore the same streets, and wonder the same things about the city we live in. I can’t express enough (when mindlessly consuming and regurgitating someone else’s content is far too easy) how important it is to also work on developing your voice…to cultivate your own version of the view we share.
Combing Columbus by Mary Jo Bole is a beautifully illustrated example of the artful voice. This book—which is available at the Wexner Center book store and is described as, “a bicentennial project (and part of the city’s Finding Time public art series) that offers Bole’s idiosyncratic vision of the city she calls home”—is a fun, scattered, adventurous little read and an engaging work of art.