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No One Celebrates Quite Like Ohio
Ohio is always looking for a reason to party, and across the state you’ll find festivals and events large and small year-round.
Winter fests enliven the cold months of January and February, and January is prime time for beer fests around the Buckeye State. The Chardon Tomorrow Winter Fest includes great local food and a huge outdoor bonfire which brings the whole community together. In Loudonville, the Appalachian Music Festival showcases jam sessions and performances – it’s free and open to the public. The Mohican Winter Fest is the spot to see incredible ice carving and fire spinning. In Geauga, Frozen Fest has free snowshoeing, kids’ art projects, and an appearance by the Winter Princess and Winter Snowman.
In Medina County, For the Love Of Chocolate makes keeping your New Year’s resolutions tough work. Medina also hosts an ice festival in February and a candlelight walk in December. Hamilton is home to IceFest, where local and international carvers gather to create incredible ice sculptures. Ice sculpture are also popular at the Buckeye Lake Winterfest. Geneva has an annual Winterfest Snowman Contest – it seems like the whole town turns out for it! In Vermilion, Ice-A-Fair is held in February – you’ll find ice carving and chocolate sampling.
Columbus loves its beer, and the city holds two beer festivals – one in winter and one in summer. Toledo’s BrewFest also occurs in January and usually has more than 50 of the nation’s top brewers. Dayton’s Brew Ha-Ha bills itself as an “Old School Beer Fest.” The Cincy Beerfest takes place at the Duke Energy Convention Center in February and September each year – it also has food trucks and live music.
Thornville is home to the Werk Out, a music and arts festival which draws big name acts. In Bowling Green, the Winterfest includes a winter market, entertainment, craft beer and wine, an ice garden, and carriage rides. February is when Cleveland hosts Donutfest – dozens of donut makers hand out samples of their sweetest. Cleveland celebrates its Slovenian heritage at the Kurentoganje, which has native food and dance. Port Clinton is the site of the annual Burning Snowman Fest.
Music festivals go on year-round in Ohio. The Winter Blues & Heritage Festival takes place in Cincinnati and draws dozens of blues bands to the Duke Convention Center. Cleveland is the site of the Brite Winter festival, a music festival with big names and plenty of workshops for artists.
On Lake Erie, the Sandusky Maritime Museum hosts a boat-themed holiday event, as well as a kid’s “Nautical Gingerbread Workshop.” The Lake Erie Folk Fest in Euclid takes place in February and has workshops, jam sessions, and kids’ events.
As spring ramps up, the Ohio festival and event calendar really ramps up. In March you can visit Toledo’s Spring Festival of Crafts and make pilgrimages to maple syrup festivals in Oxford, Lucas, Bellbrook, Montpelier, and Bath. Cabin fever gets a festival of its own in Hillsboro, while Irish culture gets a party at the Dublin Blarney Bash. Peebles is home to the Serpent Mound Spring Seed and Water Peace Summit while Wilmington is where you’ll find the Southern Ohio Indoor Music Festival.
Spring arrives in style in April, and that is when you can attend the Taste of Clintonville, which showcases the area’s best chefs, and the Easter Eggstravaganza in Cincinnati. Books get their due at the Ohioana Book Festival in Columbus and music rules at the Lotsa Music Festival in Canton. There are major Earth Day festivals held each year in Berea, Columbus, and Wilmot. April is also when you can attend the Dogwood Festival in Piketon and the Wine and Art Festival in Wooster.
In May you can go Mexican at Cincy Cinco or celebrate beer at the Spring Craft Beer Fest in Grove City. Green on the Green takes place in Worthington and the Central Ohio Folk Festival rules Galloway. Cleveland kicks off the month with a festival dedicated to tequila while Mansfield hosts the Ohio Civil Wear and Artillery Show. Cincinnati hosts the Appalachian Festival and Norton is the spot for the Celtic Beltane Festival.
Beginning in June there are literally dozens of festivals going on each day – see the website ohiofestivals.net for a full rundown. Highlights include Homecoming in Genoa, the Back in Time Street Festival in Lynchburg, Pig Mania BBQ in Youngstown, the Gay Pride Festival in Dayton, and the Summer Polish Picnic in Oregon. In July, practically every village, town, and crossroads in the state has a Fourth of July party and parade, and you can also attend the Great Mohican Indian Pow-Wow in Loudonville and the St. Joseph Family Festival in Mogadore. As the summer days begin to shorten and cool in August, Ohio goes into events overdrive. Mt. Orab hosts the Brown County SummerFest and Kirtland has the Vintage Ohio Wine Fest. Zanesville has the popular Y Bridge Arts Festival and Langsville has the Miegs County Rockin’ Rally.
September sees the kickoff to the football season, when every game – be it professional or high school – is cause for a party. Also in September you can visit the West Liberty Labor Day Festival, the Hungarian Scout Festival in Parma, and the St. Jude Parish Festival in Elyria. Columbus has an Egyptian Festival, Lorain has the St. Nicholas Greek Festival, and Sylvania hosts Fiesta. Crestline has a harvest festival and Kirtland has a Slovenian sausage festival.
Fall festivals get going in October – hit one up in Beaver, Massillon, Cincinnati, Grove City, Wyoming, Tallmadge, Aurora, Wooster, Huron, and Chagrin Falls. Millersburg has an antiques festival and Oxford has an apple butter festival.
By November and December Ohio is turning toward Christmas and holiday lights festivals. Akron has a holiday tree fest and Gahanna has a light parade. Columbus hosts the very cool Chinese lantern fest and towns like Canal Fulton, Cleveland, and Mechanicsburg host Christmas fests.
There’s always something to celebrate in Ohio – come join in the fun!
Franklin County Veterans Memorial
Largely considered central Ohio’s premier entertainment venue, the Franklin Country Veterans Memorial Center is home to trade shows, ceremonies, and competitions in Columbus and Pickerington in central Ohio. Guests are encouraged to visit the onsite Veterans Memorial dedicated to the U.S. men and women of the armed forces.
Some major events hosted by the venue include the Columbus Golf Show, Card Kingdom, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration, and much, much more. Every event is fully catered with concessions for formal or casual functions.