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What Should We Do This Weekend? Columbus, Ohio, September 11-13, 2020

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Looking for something to do this Weekend? Try out one of these 10 family-friendly Columbus and Ohiobased events and activities!

Check out this list of events for the upcoming weekend and if you need even more ideas make sure to check out:


A Big THANKS to Olentangy Indian Caverns for Sponsoring this Post!

Olentangy Indian Caverns

Looking for a local field trip to keep the kiddos learning beyond their screens? Just 20 minutes north of Columbus you’ll find an unexpected destination for young explorers: Olentangy Indian Caverns
 
Take a tour through the cave where Native Americans once lived. Mine for gems in the running water sluice. Hunt for treasure in Ohio’s only Treasure Hunt Maze. And visit deer, goats, cows, chickens, pigs, sheep, and bunnies in Columbus’s largest petting zoo.

Visit Olentangy Indian Caverns from 9:30am – 5pm every day through October 31.


1. Sidewalk Doodles at Grandview Heights Public Library

Visit the interactive chalk doodle on the east side of the library building! You can visit all weekend from 8:00 AM – 8:00 PM. Post your picture with the artwork to be entered to win a prize.

2. Ohio Open Doors

From September 11-20, 2020 you can visit Ohio’s historic buildings and landmarks virtually. There will be special virtual events, virtual content to view at any time, and walking, hiking and driving tours!

3. U-Pick Honeycrisp The Orchard and Company

On Friday from 4:00 PM – 7:00 PM and Saturday from 11:00 AM – 6:00 PM you can pick Honeycrisp apples! On Saturday, the market, cafe and farmyard activities will open for the season.

4. Harvest Saturdays at Lawrence Orchards

Pick your own apples, enjoy the Story Stroll, food tucks and other orchard activities! Saturday from 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM.

5. StoryTale Bike Tours: Art & Education

Bike through the city to visit cultural landmarks like Lincoln Theater, King Arts Distrcit, the Long Street Bridge and more! There will be experienced cyclists for guides, and a talk from Malik Moore. You can bring your own bike or borrow a bike for free. Tickets are $25/person and limited. You must register in advance. The ride starts at 10:00 AM on Saturday.

6. Velvet Ice Cream’s Fall Into Fall

This outdoor event on Saturday from 11:00 AM – 5:00 PM features vendors selling homemade crafts, a fishing tournament, and of course, ice cream!

7. September Grown-Up & Me // Apple Pickin’ at Art with Anna

On Saturday from 11:00 AM – 11:45 AM you and your child (age 3 and up) can paint an apple themed project! Let them get messy! $15/couple.

8. Summer Fun Days at Marmon Valley Farm

On Saturday from 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM, admission for the day offers access to hay rides, mini golf, swimming, paddle boating, and pony rides! Trail rides are available at an additional cost. Visit animals and more! Tickets are available in advance and at the door.

9. Columbus Symphony Community Concert at McConnell Arts Center

This outdoor concert takes place outside at the McConnel Arts Center on Sunday at 2:00 PM and lasts about 45 minutes. Free tickets are limited. RSVP online.

10. Columbus Symphony Community Concert at Columbus Museum of Art

This outdoor concert takes place outside at the Columbus Museum of Art on Sunday at 2:00 PM and lasts about 45 minutes. Attendance at this concert is on a first-come, first serve basis.

–>> Need more ideas? Try 5 Cool Outdoor Activities for Kids in the Columbus and Franklin County Metro Parks or one of these 12 Columbus Parks to Try this Summer <<–

Exploring Columbus with Your Kids

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*Please be aware,  information is gathered from multiple community sources.  Times, dates and locations are subject to change. There may be a fee to participate in a featured activity.  Please call ahead or check links to confirm activities. Inclusion of an event on this list is not considered an endorsement. Please use your best judgement when attending public events and consult your doctor if you have questions regarding the safety level of a public event. Read my disclaimer here. Enjoy what you do today!*


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6 Ways to Enjoy Columbus Commons this Summer

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My family has enjoyed many events at the Columbus Commons over the past few years! Many of the events have become traditions, especially the Downtown Live Concerts and Commons for Kids! My son still routinely asks when they are having the Harvest Festival because he remembers “making bread” there a few years ago!

Get out your calendars because this summer is packed full of free fun at Columbus Commons. In fact, the Commons has developed a 2017 Summer Checklist to make sure you don’t miss a thing! This year, I am a Columbus Commons Ambassador, so you will definitely see us checking off many of the items on this list!

Download the CHECKLIST here!

Here are 6 ways you can enjoy Columbus Commons with your kids this summer:

1. Food Truck Food Court

Now through October 26 (with the exception of September 14) from 11:00 AM – 2:00 PM, head down to the Commons for a fun lunch date! There will be 8 regular trucks and 2 rotating trucks each week!

2. Commons for Kids

Beginning June 2 through August 18 (with the exception of June 30) from 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM, the Commons hosts a fun Friday morning for kids! The carousel and bounce-houses are FREE during this time and there are other activities like arts and crafts, ball play, Imagination Playground, Art Box and a life-sized chess board! There are different visitors each week and we have seen Ronald McDonald, Columbus Zoo, Daniel Tiger from Visit Pittsburgh, and others!

Other visitors this year include The Great Randini Magic Show, Aha! Children’s Museum, Franklin Park Conservatory and more! If the temperature is 80 degrees or higher there will also be a water slide!

3. Downtown Live Concert Series

For the past few summers we have hit at least a few of these FREE concerts on Thursday nights! We like to pack a picnic dinner and then get ice cream at Jeni’s while we enjoy live music in the background! My kids love watching live bands and this is a relaxed and family-friendly way to do it!

Downtown Live Concerts happen on Thursdays in July from 5:30 PM – 10:30 PM. There are food trucks and an artisan market as well! The bands this year are as follows:

  • July 6: Mojo Flo / Nick D & the Believers
  • July13: Popgun / Forest & the Evergreens
  • July 20: Conspiracy / Reaganomics
  • July 27: Floorwalkers / Spikedrivers

There are other FREE concerts happening at Columbus Commons throughout the summer! See the list here.

4. Free Movie Nights

There are 2 more Free Movie Nights throughout the summer! You can bring your own picnic or purchase food at the park. Each Movie Night has a different time and set of events going on that day. You can see all the details here.

The dates and movies are as follows:

  • July 21: The LEGO Batman Moive
  • September 2: The Jungle Book

5. Family Fundays

Family Fundays are FREE events on select Saturdays with activities for families! There are two more this summer! There will be free carousel rides, arts and crafts, a planting station with Lowe’s and more! A $5 wristband will get your child unlimited access to activities like laster tag, inflatables, face painting and Putt-Putt.

If your child has a sensory sensitivity, you can come one hour early for a low-key atmosphere, thanks to Autism Speaks.

Upcoming Family Fundays this summer include:

  • September 2
  • September 30: Harvest Fair

In addition to the regular activities, the Harvest Fair also includes a pumpkin patch, pumpkin painting, and carving!

6. Open Play

You don’t have to wait for a special event to play at Columbus Commons! Activities like Art Box (a cabinet full of free art supplies), Bocce Ball, the NEOS electronic playground, and the carousel ($1/ride) are open throughout the week! Open Play hours begin May 31 and end on October 2 and are Wednesday through Sunday from 12:00 PM – 5:00 PM, weather permitting.

The carousel is open through October 2 and the hours are as follows:

  • Monday – Friday: 11:00 AM – 8:00 PM
  • Saturday: 12:00 PM – 8:00 PM
  • Sunday: 12:00 PM – 5:00 PM

In addition to Open Play, there are two permanent cafes at the Commons, Jeni’s and Tortilla.

For convenient parking, use the Main Garage at 55 E. Rich St. Parking is usually $5 for special events, but this may vary. That garage is directly across the street from Columbus Commons and takes the stress out of parking. Or you can be me and circle around the one way streets, trying to find a meter in the area. (I recommend arriving very early if you plan to do this!) 😉  There is also an underground parking garage. You can see all the parking info here.

Which Columbus Commons event is your family’s favorite?

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ICYMI: IKEA Columbus Sneak Peek!


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