Road Trip: …Mansfield?


Okay, Bits and Bramblers…for the last couple months, I’ve been encouraging you to enjoy the summer weather and take a Road Trip
(Day Trip. Day Road Trip. You know what I mean,) because Ohio has so many cool things to do and see. But…you know…if you want to stick close to home, let’s not forget all the cool things you can see and do around Mansfield and Richland County.

First of all, there’s the Ohio State Reformatory. You know about the Reformatory, right? I mean, for an old prison, it’s pretty famous. It’s been featured in a bunch of movies–but the most famous is The Shawshank Redemption. In person, the giant gothic building is…um…well, it’s beautiful, but it’s also…scary. Of course, a lot of people say it’s haunted, so…maybe…that’s why it feels scary. You can tour the grounds, even take the Hollywood or Shawshank Tour.

After the Reformatory, you could visit Malabar Farm. It’s where Pulitizer Prize winning author and Mansfield native Louis Bromfield lived–and (FUN FACT) where his friends Humphry Bogart and Lauren Bacall got married in 1945. You can take a few tours, go hiking and spot some wildlife, and even visit the Songbird Aviary.

And don’t forget about lunch–there are tons of awesome places downtown. You can try the Park Avenue Sub at Ed Pickens Cafe on Main, the gyros at the Athens Greek Restaurant, samosas at Saffron Indian Cuisine, or a good old fashioned hot dog at Coney Island Inn. And don’t forget desert–you can head over to the Squirrel’s Den for their handmade chocolates and flavored popcorns. What’s not to love? And–if you’re not too full after lunch–you could visit Richland Carousel Park. After all…you’re never too old to ride the Carousel, are you?!?!

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Okay, so…what am I forgetting? Well, you could always visit your faaaaaaaavorite branch of the Mansfield/Richland County Public Library, for some great books, good music, awesome movies, and more. Because even though it’s cool hit the road? Sometimes it’s nice to visit all the cool stuff that’s close to home. So whether you want to find out if the Reformatory is really haunted, or just have some hand-dipped chocolates, have an awesome time exploring Mansfield!



ROAD TRIP!: Cincinnati Art Museum


Do you ever get that FEELING, Bits and Bramblers? You know…it’s a beautiful summer day, kind of hot and sticky, but…you’re bored. You want to hit the open road, and go somewhere awesome. That means a ROAD TRIP! is in order. A short one. A Day Trip. Day Road Trip. We’ll stick with Road Trip. Luckily, there are tons of cool places in Ohio you can visit just for the day–just grab some friends and family, some good music or books you get at your faaaaaavorite library, hit the open road, and go someplace awesome…like the Cincinnati Art Museum!

Why an art museum? Well…did you know they have 60,000 pieces spanning 6,000 years? And that it hosts traveling collections and exhibits, like In Celebration of Pinocchio? And did you know that admission is free?! What’s not to love?!

Check out this video, which tells you about just some of the cool things you’ll find at the Museum. Then grab some snacks, some music, and hit the road!
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ROAD TRIP!: THE ROCK AND ROLL HALL OF FAME


It’s summer, Bits and Bramblers. And you know what goes good with summer? Road Trips. Climbing in the car, rolling down the windows (or cranking up the AC,) stopping for snacks, and then driving someplace awesome. And you know the cool thing about Ohio? There are lots of awesome road trip destinations. For the day. A day trip. Day Road Trip. Whatever.

Aaaaaaaaanyway, this week we’ll talk about one of my all-time favorite places in Ohio…The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum. Thaaaat’s right, one short drive up to Cleveland, and you can see and hear rock music at it’s finest.

Did you know that the museum officially opened to the public on September 2, 1995, and was followed by a giant concert which included performances by artists like Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, and Johnny Cash? And did you know that admission/membership prices and store purchases raise money to educate the world about music? And did I mention you can see amazing things, like John Lennon’s leather jacket, and Janis Joplin’s car with the psychedelic paint job? And did I mention how incredibly awesome the whole thing is?!

So head to your faaaavorite library and check out some good music, then head up to the lake and visit the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum!
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Road Trip!: Red, White, and Boom


It’s been a crazy week, hasn’t it, Bits and Bramblers? What with the insane heat, crazy storms, and power outages. So…maybe it’s the perfect time to grab some snacks, listen to some good music, and hit the road! After all, there are lots of awesome places in Ohio you can road trip to…for the day. Day Trip, I guess. Day Road Trip?

Okay, today’s Day Road Trip is a little last minute, but no less awesome. Because in Columbus, it’s Red, White, and Boom! Now, not only is it one of the most impressive fireworks displays in the entire Midwest, but there are lots of events, a Children’s Park, and tons of food. It’s all day festival, ending in a massive fireworks display.

We mentioned the fireworks, right? Because there are fireworks. Tons of very, very impressive fireworks. So jump in the car, grab some music or books from your faaaaavorite library, and head to Red, White, and Boom! Did I mention there are fireworks?
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ROAD TRIP!: COSI


The days are long, and you’ve got a lot of time on your hands, Bits and Bramblers. I mean, you’ve already finished the Teen Summer Reading Program (right? RIGHT?!) Why not grab some snacks, climb in the car, and head out on a ROAD TRIP! For the day. Maybe not so much of a road trip. A Day Trip, I guess. Which is cool, because there are a lot of places here in Ohio you should visit.

Like, for instance, the Center of Science and Industry…which you may know as COSI. Okay, okay…so you may be thinking “That place is for kids,” but…I think you’re seriously underestimating the amount of awesome that’s located in that building. I mean…who wouldn’t want to use ” one of three interactive simulator stations” to “bring Space Shuttle Discovery in for a smooth landing, guide a lunar module down to the moon’s cratered surface, or walk in space to retrieve an ailing Hubble Space Telescope?” or “Make high-tech industrial robots disco dance?” Or watch a movie on something called the Extreme Screen Theater?!

See what I mean? How is that not awesome? Who says when you get older science has to be all…you know…forming a hypothesis, and…erosion, and…other boring stuff? And if we’ve learned anything from Sheldon Cooper, it’s that science is awesome. So grab some books or music from your faaaaaavorite library, and head to COSI. Oh, and did I mention there are rats that play basketball? Because there are rats playing basketball
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Road Trip!: Columbus Zoo and Aquarium


It’s hot out there, Bits and Bramblers. It’s that unbearable, humid, sizzling kind of hot that makes you forget why you hate snow so much. So what can you do when it’s so hot outside? Well…how about climbing in the car with some snacks and cool drinks and taking a ROAD TRIP?! A mini-road trip. A day trip, I guess, because there are a ton of cool places around Ohio you can visit.

Like the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium. Did you know that the Zoo opened in 1927? And that “Jungle” Jack Hannah started as the Zoo Director in 1978? And that the Zoo has different zones or regions, like the African Forest, Asia Quest, and North America? And they also have what might be the best thing in the entire world on a hot and sticky day: a water park, called Zoombezi Bay.

What’s not to love? Grab some books or music from your faaaaaavorite library, escape from the heat at the zoo…and see some amazing animals! (Like the sting ray. Check out this cool new exhibit at the zoo. Not only can you touch a real sting ray…you can even feed one!)
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Road Trip!: Cedar Point


You know what, Bits and Bramblers? I’m a fan of road trips. Grab some good music, a pair of sunglasses…then all you have to do is make a quick stop for gas, and grab some snacks and sodas. Come on…it’s pretty much perfect. And you know what’s great about living in Ohio? If you want to do a mini-road trip—like a day trip? There are tons of super cool places you can go.

Like…Cedar Point. A lot of people say it’s the Best Amusement Park in the World, and it’s about an hour and a half from us. How cool is that?!

Did you know there are sixteen roller coasters, like the Top Thrill Dragster, which goes from 0 to 120 MPH in less than 4 seconds?! And if you’re…let’s say…not into roller coasters that go 120 MPH, there are plenty of calmer ones, along with other awesome rides, like the Skyhawk. Not to mention all the shows, and the food, and…well, let’s just say it’s totally worth the mini-road trip.

So…stop by your faaaaavorite library, check out some good music (or even some awesome books, if you’re not the driving type,) and hit the road. After all, riding the Maverick seems like a good day to spend the day, right?!
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