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3 Places I Love to Take My Kids in Columbus: Nikki Seeley

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Each month I will be featuring a local parent who will tell us about three places they love to take their kids in Columbus!

Thanks to Nikki for sharing 3 of her favorites with us this month!

I’m excited to share my love of all things Grove City. I wasn’t able to limit the list to my top 3 so I added a bonus spot. Since my blog SweetlyCBUS is all about restaurants and food finds in Columbus, I featured two of my favorite eating spots plus two parks not to miss. Grove City is so much more than these few locations, I invite you to come check out many more spots like the local metro parks, the dog park, and booming downtown Grove City, which is popping up with breweries. Grove City also has the best-hidden patio in Columbus but of course, you must follow me to find out where that is!

1. 3 Brothers Diner


3090 Southwest Blvd., Grove City OH 43123, 614-317-7798

I’m sure this will come as no surprise, but 3 Brothers Diner was opened by 3 brothers. Although it’s much more than the brothers that run my favorite restaurant in Grove City. It’s a whole family affair with many nieces and nephews also working there. Prior to opening this restaurant, the head chef was the chef at Starliner Diner in Hilliard for almost 20 years!!! The experience stems from an even younger age were growing up they learned cooking from being in the kitchen with their mom. 3 Brother’s Diner is a true mix of their home cooking with their restaurant experience.

The menu, which are comprised of delicacies from Mexico, Cuba and America, are made up of many unique dishes, all of which are made from scratch. This includes marinating their meat, making all the dressing and baking all the bread. The food here is delicious beyond imagination. A few menu items not to miss are featured in a full blog post over on SweetlyCBUS: 3 Brother’s Scramble, 3 Brother’s French Toast (made with that house-made bread), the Plantains served with the house-made salsa dressing, Creole Macaroni, and for dessert, you can’t miss the house-made Flan.

 


2. Grove City Splash Pad


3600 Discovery Dr.,  Grove City OH 43123, 614-277-3050

The newest addition to Grove City is our yet opened Splash Pad. The Grand Opening is noon on May 19, 2018, where you can come see the faucets being turned on for the first time. This splash pad is free to the public and is open from 11:00 AM to 8:00 PM through Labor Day. Set up in an adorable space theme, there is a rocket slide and a variety of spray options. This splash pad is on the smaller side and would be best for younger children but is just steps away from Fryer Park which includes a fishing pond, bike paths and a huge outdoor playground.


3. Mirolo Dream Field & Dream Field Playground


3400 Ventura Blvd., Grove City, OH 43123

Next to the Buddy Ball baseball field (Mirolo Dream Field at Mount Carmel Stadium which features a specially designed and built baseball diamond for children of all abilities and also hosts the buddy ball league) is the new baseball theme dream field playground which was designed to meet the needs of all children. Designed to focus around the 7 principles of inclusive playground design this playground includes a group of swings, various slides and climbers, a roller slide and roller table and panels that engage children in activities related to sound, colors and shapes.
Ramps and platforms are installed so that children using mobility devices can reach the higher levels.  It also offers a tremendous amount of shade for users to enjoy and the playground’s shelter house features wheelchair-accessible tables. The playground and dream field baseball diamond are part of Grove City’s ongoing commitment to inclusive play and demonstrate their leadership in providing opportunities for everyone to play together regardless of age and ability.

 


3+. Mona’s Eat and Treats


4362 Broadway, Grove City, OH 43123, 614-957-4027

After spending some time at the parks, we have the perfect spot to cool down with some ice cream. Head on over to Mona’s Eats and Treats which is a local ice cream shop that has been in Grove City for over 70 years. But they are so much more than just sweets and ice cream.
Their menu includes hot dogs, nachos, sandwiches and soups and salads…but of course, you can’t miss the treats. Everything from hard ice cream to sorbet to soft serve. Milkshakes, slushies, snow cones and floats but the specialties like banana splits, dipped frozen bananas, and a tasty Mediterranean desert which takes baklava and tops it with ice cream, whipped cream and a cherry are the real winners. Order your dish in this sweet little shop and head around back to sit in the beautiful gazebos they have built to enjoy your treats.

 


About Nikki:

NYC Girl to Ohio State Buckeye
Wife to Car + Golf Enthusiast
Mama to 3 Bugaboos
Columbus Foodie
Donut Addict
Ice Cream + Sprinkles Fanatic

Why waste life’s precious moments eating veggies when you could be sinking your teeth into a cookie dough cupcake? SweetlyCBUS agrees and demonstrates with her foodie Blog + Instagram account, @sweetlycbus. Nikki Seeley loves her breakfast food, too, but not nearly as much as she <3’s sweet, sweet sugar. Especially donuts. She’s always keeping her followers’ mouths dripping with pics from local bakeries, popsicle stands, coffee shops, and pretty much any place with a dessert menu. Add a sprinkle of sugar to your life.

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ICYMI:  Franklin Park Conservatory’s Children’s Garden is Unlike Anything Else in Columbus


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3 Places I Love to Take My Kids in Columbus: Bethia Woolf

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Each month I will be featuring a local parent who will tell us about three places they love to take their kids in Columbus! Thanks to Bethia for sharing 3 of her favorites with us this month! Bethia is an expert in the ethnic food scene in Columbus so, naturally, she is sharing 3 places she loves to take her daughter to EAT in Columbus!

1. Sunflower Dim Sum

Sunflower is not only one of our daughter’s favorite restaurants, but also one of our favorite places to take her. During their weekend ‘dim sum’, a wide variety of appetizer-sized dishes are wheeled around on carts and to your table soon after you’re seated – useful since hungry children (and adults) don’t have to wait long for sustinence. You can order dishes in the traditional manner if you know of something specific your child would like, but you can also indulge their curiosity by letting them point and choose dishes on the carts. Dim sum at Sunflower is noisy and bustling, with plenty for the kids to watch, and the din of other diners seems to drown out low-level fussiness. They’re also well equipped with slings and high chairs, and very accommodating with kid’s water cups. A fish tank outside the entrance is a great diversion for restless toddlers.

Good starting dishes for kids new to dim sum are: shu mai, shrimp dumplings, sticky rice in lotus leaf, and silver needle noodles. Also the char siu bao, which comes in both steamed and baked varieties. We recommend the pandan jello and coconut jello on the dessert cart!

Tip: there are some great kids books about dim sum that can introduce the concept and some dishes before you go. We love Dim Sum For Everyone by Grace Lin.

2. Japanese Marketplace

Japanese restaurants in Columbus always seem to be particularly welcoming to children, and at Japan Marketplace you can choose from 4 unique Japanese food establishments offering a wide variety of child-friendly takes on the cuisine. Our daughter loves sushi so we often find ourselves at Sushi Ten where she craves either futomaki or a California roll with miso soup. Sushi Ten also offers appreciated diversions for young ones with their large and well-stocked aquarium and quirky Japanese kids shows on the TV.

Tensuke Express offers a variety of noodle, rice, and snack dishes and also has an overtly kid friendly atmosphere. For a fuller menu and table service there is Akai Hana which provides a distinct kids menu. Belle’s Bread offers sweet and savory pastries, crepes, parfaits and soft serve as well as some prepared sandwiches.

Tips: Japanese Marketplace also houses Tensuke Market where you can buy frozen dumplings, noodles, snacks and other kid-friendly Japanese food to take home. At Belle’s the changing table is conveniently located outside of the restrooms.

3. Menya Ramen

Menya is a uniquely popular destination for our daughter, and in no small part due to their dining room play area replete with a toy stove and kitchen utensils.

Though Menya doesn’t have a dedicated kids menu, their regular menu has proven exceptionally popular with the toddlers in my and my friend’s lives. We steer clear of the traditional ramen dishes for our three year old and instead share dipping noodles with her and order from the sides, including: dumplings, edamame (soy beans), onigiri (rice balls). You can also ask for side orders from the ‘extra topping’ menu, which includes traditional ramen toppings including sliced pork, soft boiled eggs, and extra noodles. Menya features shaved ice, ice cream and almond tofu for dessert. They also eager to please the little ones by providing child sized plastic plates, cups and utensils.

Tip: ask for a table near the play area so when the kids get bored at the table they can play close by while you finish your ramen or chat.


Bethia is the co-founder of Columbus Food Adventures, a business offering guided food tours in Columbus. You can find her on Instagram at @cbusadventures to see what she’s been eating. She lives in Victorian Village with her husband Andy and 3 year old daughter Zoe. They are really passionate about ethnic food and write for Columbus Monthly and blog at alteatscolumbus.com.

Bethia is originally from the UK, has traveled extensively and has lived on this side of the Atlantic for 15 years. Among other things she has worked as a financial regulator, high school teacher and rowing coach. Bethia is one of the founders of both tacotruckscolumbus.com, and streeteatscolumbus.com and is a board member of Slow Food Columbus and Dine Originals Columbus.


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ICYMI: Top 10 Things to do with Kids in Columbus Ohio


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3 Things to do With Your Kids in Pickerington

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1. Blue Monkey Parties & Events

591 Hill Rd N, Pickerington, OH 43147, 614-828-8236

While Blue Monkey is primarily a party and event center, they do have open play hours and Toddler Time. I suggest checking their event calendar before planning your visit! Toddler Time currently takes place on Thursday mornings from 9:30-11:30 and includes a craft time! There is also open play available during certain evenings each week!

Several play areas are available including a sports arena, a dual slide, an inflatable obstacle course and other bounce houses! Blue Monkey hosted my family during open play a few months ago and that was the first time the kids really embraced a tall inflatable slide like that! 🙂 It was fun to watch them enjoy it!

2. Sweet Persuasions Bakery

1260 Hill Rd. N, Pickerington, OH 43147, 614-604-6714

Looking for a sweet treat during your day out? Sweet Persuasions Bakery has just about every kind of sweet treat available! I was doing Whole 30 during our visit so I can’t personally recommend a specific treat, but I can tell you I was very sad I couldn’t try any of them! My kids, of course, picked a donut with sprinkles because: sprinkles. But the brownies looked amazing! The shop is adorable inside and would make a cute spot for a Mommy-Daughter date!

  

3. Pickerington Ponds

4071 Bowen Rd. Canal Winchester, OH 43110, 614-208-4329

So the address for Pickerington Ponds is technically Canal Winchester, but the park is just about 3 miles from Blue Monkey and is called PICKERINGTON Ponds, so I rest my case. 😉 We had packed a lunch the day we visited Blue Monkey, so we stopped here to eat it.

There are two picnic pavilions and 5 trails. We had lunch at the Wood Duck Picnic area and followed the sign to the Wood Duck Viewing Deck which is pictured here. There were lots of birds to be seen! I learned from the website that there is also an observation deck near the other picnic pavilion as well.

There is no Nature Center or playground here, but if you want to get out and walk or ride bikes or just enjoy nature, this is a great stop in the area!

  

Do you have a favorite spot in Pickerington we should visit?

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ICYMI: 6 Central Ohio Metro Park Playgrounds


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