Today is my last day in Columbus, Ohio, and later this afternoon I will hop on a plane and fly away home. Prior to this trip, Ohio was never on my radar of places to visit. However, sometimes in life some of the sweetest, coolest and most memorable experiences are the ones that are unplanned that take you completely by surprise. My trip here to Columbus turned out to be mostly relaxing, but I did get the chance to enjoy some of the cool things this state has to offer. Here are 5 of the coolest things I did during my 5 days here.
#01 Hung out with The Terminator
In front of the Greater Columbus Convention Center in downtown Columbus, sits an 8-foot-tall brawn bronze statue of Arnold Schwarzenegger. The statue commemorates Arnold’s winning of the title, Mr. World, in 1970 right here in Columbus, Ohio. I hung out with The Terminator for a few minutes while he flexed his muscles and wordlessly agreed to pose for a few pictures.
#02 Visited the “Gates of Hell”
This so-called “Gate of Hell” is actually a drainage tunnel, tucked away behind a Tim Hortons restaurant built to enable a stream to flow from Columbus’ Glen Echo Park River to the Olentangy River. Now there is a scary little story behind our quest to find this creepy little “attraction”, but I’m a little reluctant to tell the story here on this blog. All I’ll say is this, not even the locals I spoke to knew about this ominous “gateway” much less where to find it. However, once we eventually found it, the completely round pitch-black hole in combination with the graffiti adorning its opening and the surrounding walls were enough to scare us into maintaining our distance while capturing this creepy little portal.
#03 Counted on the Numbers
We literally went “back to school” for this one. I found these giant numbers sitting on the lawn in front of the Engineering Building of the Ohio State University campus, quirky and fun. The Garden of Constants, as it is called, has stood there since 1994. The numbers, inspired by art and architecture, are human sized and whimsical and if they do nothing else besides attract attention, they serve as great props for pictures and selfies.
#04 Strolled through the Topiary Garden on a Sunday Afternoon
This garden is a topiary replication of George Seurat’s painting, “Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte.” James T. Mason, a Columbus sculptor, was inspired by this painting to carve a few figures for his own front lawn. Soon the project ballooned outside of the scope of his backyard and into this park with larger-than-life human shaped figures, boats, dogs, a monkey and a cat, all out of yew trees. Believe it or not, this park is the only topiary replication of a painting, in the entire world. For me, it was cool just taking a Sunday evening stroll through a replication of a Sunday evening stroll.
#05 Stopped to Smell the Roses
The Columbus Park of Roses boasts 12,000 roses spread across 13 acres. It was established in 1953 by the Columbus Rose Club and the Central Ohio Rose Society. In addition to the vibrancy of all the shapes, sizes and colors of the roses, without even trying I could smell the sweet perfume scent in the air as I rambled among the roses. There were obvious signs the bees could too.
Please enjoy this collage of my coolest memories of Columbus…Sincerely Jan.