Ohio has been known as “the Heart of it All” due to its location as a central corridor of transportation and trade. The rolling rural lands give way to vast cities, all with warm culture and hospitality. As Bev Rose of the Dayton CVB described it, “Once folks have visited Dayton they are impressed by the big city amenities and culture, the spirit of innovation, and the warm and friendly Midwestern hospitality, and as a result are often eager to return.”
Columbus, situated in almost the exact middle of the state, is growing in all directions. “Columbus is a city on the rise and that means it is constantly changing,” Lexi Sweet, CTA of Explore Columbus stated, “so each time someone visits there is something new to experience. For example, the downtown riverfront was completely transformed in the past two years and now includes 33 new acres of parkland giving visitors access to fresh outdoor energy, exciting riverfront festivals, watersports, outdoor art, and a more dynamic place to wander, explore, and be active.”
The Greater Columbus Convention Center is now more than halfway through a $125-million renovation and expansion project, to be completed in July 2017, which will feature enhanced spaces and curb appeal, while connecting more fully with the vibrant Short North Arts District. Columbus is booming with both local coffee shops and breweries, which lead the way for the Columbus Coffee Trail (started in 2014) and the Columbus Ale Trail (started in 2015) to help visitors best experience these offerings. According to Sweet, “The premise of both trails is simple: Pick up a ‘passport’ from any participating location and after patronizing four of the stops and receiving passport stamps, redeem it for a t-shirt (Coffee Trail) or pint glass (Ale Trail) at any downtown Experience Columbus Visitor Center.” Both trails are tremendously popular and continue to grow. “The Coffee Trail has grown from eight stops to 13 in a span of two years and since its inception has had 2,710 total redemptions, nearly 50% of which are from visitors,” Sweet explained.
Whether you are looking for outdoor retreats, coffee trails, or arts - Ohio has it all, including the hospitality that ensures groups have an outstanding experience.