Tag Archives: OneTankTrips

A Hot Air Balloon Ride in January

I know, it may sound nuts, but if you want to do something really adventurous this winter how about a hot-air balloon ride in Ohio’s Hocking Hills?

The good folks who operate A Georgian Manner Bed and Breakfast near Logan, at the entrance to the Hocking Hills offer the hot air balloon ride year-round but owner, B. J. King, told me that most people opt for the balloon ride in the spring summer and autumn.  “They don’t realize that winter-time is a great time to fly hot-air balloons.” 

King went on to point out that hot-air balloons can only operate when the wind is blowing less than ten miles an hour and often on cold, clear winter days, there isn’t even a light breeze making for perfect balloon flying weather.  “The starkness of the countryside seen from a balloon flying 300 feet above the ground is an incredible way to be outside on a winter’s day.”

King said customers must understand that they only fly when the weather is safe.  He also pointed out that what makes ballooning an adventure is you never know just where you are going to land, since the balloon goes whichever way the wind is blowing.  “We usually launch from the Lancaster, Ohio Fairgrounds,” King said, “The flight usually lasts about an hour and we land about ten miles from where we started.”

Their balloon can carry four passengers, in addition to the pilot, depending on weight.  As for what to wear, King says “Just wear what you normally would on a cold winter’s day if you were going hiking.”  Also bring along a camera to catch some photos of this once-in-a-lifetime experience.  You will also get an opportunity for a birds-eye view of wild turkey, deer, coyotes and other residents of the Hocking Hills area.  By the way if you are about to be married and looking for an unusual wedding location King is a licensed clergyman and can perform weddings while the bride and groom float across the countryside in the balloon.

Reservations are a must.  You can visit A Georgian Manner at 29055 Evans Road, Logan or phone them at 800-606-1840 or visit them on their website at http://www.georgiamanner.com

Meet the Man Behind “Interesting Akron”

This week we take a look at another travel blog and the person behind the blog.  “Interesting Akron” tells the story of out-of-the-way places in the Rubber City that are both fun and unique.  The author is Rob Lucas:

How did “Interesting Akron” begin?
I help operate a small film festival and organization and in 2008 was told by one of the attendees that there was finally something “cool” in the Akron area. This struck me, because I think there are a lot of unique places to visit in the Akron area, you just have to spend a little time looking for them. So, the basic idea was to start organizing descriptions of these funky locations so that residents and visitors won’t have to hunt for them individually. Whenever I travel out of town, even if it’s just for a day, I usually run a few Google searches with terms such as “Weird Columbus” or “Underground Columbus” to see if I can find a new restaurant, thrift store, record shop, or quirky location to visit. So, Interesting Akron is supposed to be kind of a one-stop shop for that kind of stuff.

I also have to thank Neil Zurcher for his travel books, particularly Ohio Oddities, for being a major inspiration.

Tell us something about yourself. Do you travel alone to do your research?
I was born in Akron, but I lived in Memphis, TN for most of my childhood. When I eventually moved back to Ohio to attend the University of Akron I thought it was a boring, dreary place and didn’t want to stick around. It took a few years, but Akron changed and so did I. My appreciation for my hometown grew as I discovered the people and places that make it special.

I usually do search for new Interesting Akron locations on my own, but sometimes when friends are visiting from out of town we go together. It’s fun exploring and discovering new things with people who used to live in Akron because they start to realize what they left behind. Every once in a while my wife Sara or my dog Spock serve as willing travel partners.

With all of your other interests when do you find time to research “Interesting Akron?”
I work as a book editor for Gray & Company, Publishers (we publish Neil Zurcher books!), volunteer my time with the organization Akron Film, and I’m in the middle of making a documentary, so I have to budget time carefully for the blog. At first I started posting a new location each week, but I’ve scaled it back to twice a month. I’ve also had a few guest posts by my friend Mike Manges, who recently worked as a writer for a rubber tire publication. How Akron is that?!

What has been your favorite discovery in Akron so far, and why?
A few years ago I was having dinner with my friend Kyle and his parents when his dad mentioned that Thomas Edison was married in a house near downtown Akron. Kyle’s dad likes to tell a lot of wild stories, so I forgot about it for a long time until one day I decided to conduct a little research. It turns out that it’s totally true. The house is still standing and is being used as an apartment complex. There isn’t a plaque and it wasn’t easy to confirm by just running a few Google searches. I was surprised how few of my friends knew about it, which I think makes it a perfect Interesting Akron location.

Do you include Akron Suburbs in your research?  How far would you go for a destination?
I do cover locations outside of the downtown area, in fact I consider anything roughly 20 minutes from West Market and Main to be fair game. I think I might even include a little bit of North Canton, but it depends on what I find. The basic idea is that you can visit many of these places without burning a lot of time and gas.

Have you had any unusual feedback from places you have reviewed?
I do receive some feedback. I’m particularly proud of the posts from former Akronites who say that they have several places to check out when they to come home to visit family. There was one comment from a reader who visited a now-defunct flea market. I guess he exchanged some words with a particularly nasty vendor who pulled a gun out of his jacket. Luckily nobody was hurt, but I post a warning on our page noting that some of the Interesting Akron locations are in high crime areas.

Has anyone ever refused to be interviewed for your stories? Why?
This may go against blogger code, but I don’t usually interview people for my stories. I have found that many store owners are pretty busy trying to operate their business and aren’t interested in answering questions for a blog they have never heard of. Some have expressed a little concern that their location will be labeled as “weird” or “wacky,” so I usually stop by, take a few notes, and informally chat with them as I visit or make a purchase.

How often do you run new entries in “Interesting Akron?”
I try to update the site every two weeks on Sunday nights, but there have been a few periods where I’ve had to take a break. I have a long list of locations I want to cover, but some of them are only open during work hours or by appointment only, so I have to plan for them way in advance or hope that I can hit them on a day off.

What criteria do you use when deciding where to visit in Akron?
I do have a few criteria. All locations must be:

  • Within (roughly) 20 minutes of downtown Akron. I probably won’t cover anything that is farther north than 82 or south of North Canton.
  • Open to the public. I had a friend offer to help me visit the old Akron train station, but it’s only accessible to city employees. It would have made a great history post, but readers wouldn’t be able to visit the location themselves.
  • Free or very cheap. The locations are supposed to be easily accessible, so those that require more than a few bucks or a membership usually don’t make the cut.
  • Fun and/or educational and have some connection to the city. Even if I cover a location that many Akronites routinely visit I try to offer some nugget that they may not know already. For instance, I plan on writing a story about the Italian restaurant Luigi’s, which is pretty popular local haunt. I want to cover the history of the building, which was once a hotel frequented by some of the greatest jazz and blues musicians of the ‘20s and ‘30s. I’ll also give a little background on the music box above the door that features Barbie dolls that move along to music from the jukebox.

How much background research do you do on the places you choose for inclusion in your blog?
For the historical sites I conduct a lot of research. I usually search through the Beacon Journal’s archive through the Summit County library’s Web site to find as much information as I can. Some of the buildings I drive by everyday have their own stories, but unless you do a little digging you won’t know much about their quirky history.

Name three places people should not miss visiting in Akron

  • Luigi’s Restaurant (www.luigisrestaurant.com) in the Northside district has always been my favorite Akron restaurant. The white pizza is awesome and the walls are covered with old photos of the city and of the many bowlers who stopped by when the city was home of the Professional Bowlers Association’s biggest tournaments.
  • The Goodyear Airdock was once the largest single-room structure without internal supports and even though it’s now over 80 years old it’s still a sight to behold.
  • I spend a lot of time in Highland Square, which is a small strip of shops and restaurants just a few minutes from downtown. It has a lot of character and has my favorite record store, Square Records (www.squarerecordsakron.com), which has a wide variety of used vinyl and music by local artists. It’s a great place to hangout and chat about music and is the location where the Akron band the Black Keys have taken many of their publicity photos. I also enjoy a great boutique called Revival (www.revivalresale.com) where you can purchase a variety of a locally made garments, particularly the Akron-based T-shirts designed and hand silk screened by my friends at Campfire Goods. Also, don’t forget to catch a flick at the Highland Theater, a single-screen movie house that still has its 1930s charm.

The first two of these locations haven’t made it to Interesting Akron yet because they are pretty popular and kind of obvious for anyone who lives in Akron, but I plan on doing a little more research and posting them soon. If you’re not from the city they are great places to check out.

* * *

Our thanks to Rob Lucas for taking the time to join us this week and to remind you that you can find his blog at: www.interestingakron.wordpress.com

Or just click on “Interesting Akron” in our list of links.

Unusual Keepsakes of an Ohio President


With the cold days of January looming how about an Ohio Road Trip to see some hidden treasures at the home of a U. S. President?

At the Hayes Presidential Center in Fremont they have searched through their storage rooms and attics and come up with an amazing collection of oddities and artifacts that are usually not on display or missed by visitors to the sprawling estate that was once home to our 19th President.

Executive Director of the Hayes Presidential Center, Thomas Culbertson, took me on a tour of the exhibit pointing out a half-dollar with the initials RBH scratched onto one side and the year 1880 on the other.  In his diary President Hayes explained that in 1880, while he was President,  construction work, which had been stalled for over 20 years was finally restarted to  complete the unfinished iconic Washington Monument.  Hayes placed the half-dollar with his initials beneath a new cornerstone marking the beginning of the completion of the tower and kept a similar one as a souvenir of the day.  That coin is now a part of the  new exhibit called, “Hidden Treasures of the Hayes Museum”.

There are several other things pertaining to the Washington Monument including original drawings that include different plans for the structure that were eventually rejected and perhaps one of the more bizarre artifacts, an owl that was living in the uncompleted monument that startled President Hayes and some visitors to the construction site.  The owl later died under suspicious circumstances and was then stuffed and given as a gift to President Hayes wife, Lucy.  The owl is on permanent display at the museum. 

…..You can read the rest of this article in the Saturday, December 25th edition of the Cleveland Plain Dealer or on their website at http://www.cleveland.com

Meet The Man Behind Ohio’s Biggest Travel E-Magazine

This is the second in a series of interviews with people who operate blogs and websites that concern themselves with travel and especially tourist travel in the state of Ohio.  This weeks interview is with Frank R. Satullo who started the wonderful travel site, “Ohio Traveler Magazine” which has become very popular with folks looking for ideas for getaways around the Buckeye State.

Can you give me a brief description of how you came up with the idea for the Ohio Traveler.com?

I was working in the Cleveland area for a company that announced we’d be out of work within a year. In order to gain new skills, I taught myself to create a web site. With my PR background, I was able to get some media interest. The web site was all Cleveland related at the time.

One part of the site focused on free things to do in Northeast Ohio. It was receiving the most traffic so I expanded it to include anywhere in Ohio. When I finally became unemployed, I was fortunate to have a nice severance package and took several months to write a book about free Ohio fun. I used the site to provide updates to the book and they cross promoted each other.

Employment prospects were looking slim so after a while, I had an opportunity that forced me to move my family to Cincinnati. After 18 months on the new job, book sales were going well and the web site traffic was outstanding. So I decided to put the whole book on the web site, change its name and married my promotional background with my new love of Ohio tourism. That is when OhioTraveler.com was born. I have since expanded it to include any destinations in Ohio, not just the freebies. The site today focuses on the roads lesser traveled around the state featuring inexpensive or free things to see and do.

Like me, I assume you have some favorite destinations around Ohio.  What are your top three?

Easy. Cedar Point, Cleveland Metroparks system and Hocking Hills. Well, maybe not as easy at it used to be. These have been my top-3 most of my life but numbers 4 and 5 are not far behind. But you asked for the top-3 so I’ll keep you wondering about 4 and 5.

How would you describe Ohio to a visitor from another state?

You should move here! We have it all: A great Lake, A great river, Appalachian country, big cities, major league sports teams, forest, best amusement park in the world, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Football Hall of Fame, and one-of-a-kind festivals and special events galore.

What would you call Ohio’s best kept secret?

IT’S A TIE: National Museum of The United States Air Force in Dayton. No need to go to the Smithsonian! Plus, it’s totally free! And it includes three retired Air Force One airplanes and other original historic aircraft. The other best kept secret is The Wilds. I’ve been there in winter and summer and absolutely loved the entire experience both times. The conservation effort there is exceptional. Safari in Ohio. Who would have thunk?

If you’re still wondering about 4 and 5 from question #2, wonder no more.

Do you visit every place that you write about?

When I actually write about something for OhioTraveler, it is a place I visited. But I publish articles from freelance writers and press releases in OhioTraveler too. When I wrote my book, the answer is no, I hadn’t been to half of them.

Have you ever visited an attraction and been so disappointed that you refused to write about the place?

Fortunately, I have not had that experience. I guess with the Internet today, you pretty much know what awaits going in. If an attraction doesn’t offer as much as I had hoped, I turn the piece into more of a humorous experiential article and focus less about the place itself and more about the trip and the little things that happen along the way. If you pay attention, there’s no shortage of strange happenings or observations while on the road.
What destination that you have written about (Not necessarily your personal favorite) is the most popular with readers?

I am finding my readers like to feel they are riding shotgun with me no matter where I take them. So much has been written about most things out there, readers get a kick out of the personal accounts I litter into the story. More and more, you hear destinations marketing themselves as experiential tourism destinations. When I have the opportunity to write in an experiential style, readers respond to that more than anything else

What do you look for when you first visit a new tourist area?

A rest room. I drink too much coffee on the road. After that, I look for authenticity and originality. I hate cookie-cutter and copy-cat stuff.

Why did you start out writing only about free things?

 Yes. The first travel writing I ever did was for a book I authored, titled, Free Ohio Fun. It featured free attractions, destination, festivals and events. Some places charged admission most of the time but on a certain day and timeframe each month they would open the doors for free, but often did not publicize this very much. When I was out of work looking for free things to do with my children, I was surprised at how many cool places existed. Triple-A told me Ohio has more free tourism attractions than any of the surrounding states and most of the country.

 My book had “FREE” stamped in large red text on the cover which posed a problem at bookstores when customers walked off with it thinking the book was free.

What tips would you pass along about finding interesting places to your readers?

 Even in today’s modern-age where information is abundant and instantly at your fingertips, it’s still a buyer-beware world. A few years ago, I took my family to meet an old friend and his family at a cabin. The online pics didn’t tell the whole story. We were in a cabinette on a culd-a-sac street in the woods with about 100 spring-breakers who had rented every cabin around us, except ours. Going back to question 6, this made for a very humorous experiential article. I never named or will name the place though. My mom taught me if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.

  Is “OhioTraveler.com” aimed at a particular audience?

 I used to think it was most appealing to parents with dependent children but have found over the years it is used by many retirement communities, college students looking for cheap dates, and a growing demographic of grandparents traveling with grandchildren.

When you have free time where in Ohio do you and your family go?

 I grew up in the Cleveland area ( Lorain County) and still have a ton of family there so I love “going home” and to all the hot spots I grew up with such as the ballpark, Metroparks, Little Italy/Murray Hill, West Side Market, downtown, University Circle, out on the lake, a beach in Bay Village and Bearden’s Restaurant in Rocky River.

Tell me about yourself?

 I grew up in Avon Lake and saw it turn from a farm town to full fledged suburb. I spent every Sunday “down at the house” visiting my grandparents in Cleveland where 30 family members would be on any given Sunday. My dad’s family was really big. I grew up cheering for the Cleveland Indians in the 70’s when they couldn’t catch a cold. I once entered an editorial contest by The Plain Dealer in the 80’s about why I liked the Indians. I won. Maybe I was the only entrant. Anyway, the prize was dinner with the Indians and a game.

 The dinner turned out to be lunch at the kick-off of the winter press tour at the old stadium. I was a young kid but old enough where Mom just dropped me and my friend off at the stadium. We went to the restaurant inside and grabbed the most plush booth we saw. In came Gabe Paul (General Manager) and his entourage. A man ran ahead of them ran over to us and said we couldn’t sit there. I said we could because I won the contest. He looked puzzled and tried to shoo us away. By then, Gabe Paul asked what was the problem. The man said we wouldn’t leave. I said I won the contest. Gabe Paul said, “Boys, enjoy yourselves, we’ll find another place to sit.” So they crowded some tables and chairs together. We never ate with a player. We did eat while we watched the manager and one player take questions from reporters.

 How does this tell about myself? I always thought big, worked hard and stood my ground. But in the end, I just want to have fun. Oh, and I learned to check my ego at the door like Gabe Paul did that day. Say what you want about his running of the Indians back then but on that day, I respected the man. It is because of that day, I also became a skeptic and learned to question just about anything that’s sounds too good to be true.


Our thanks to Frank for taking time out of a busy schedule to sit down and talk with us.  Remember you can visit Frank by going to our links on the side of the page and click on Ohio Traveler Magazine.

Meet A Man Eating His Way Across Ohio. Festival by Festival

During the next several months along with our trips we will be doing some interviews with other bloggers and journalists who specialize in travel and tourism here in Ohio.  These are people you should know about if you plan to take the family on a One Tank Trip this summer.  They offer a wealth of ideas and can give you a peek at places and events you may have never dreamed existed here in the Buckeye State.

 We start this week with a Lorain, Ohio, blogger by the name of Kristian Campana who has made it his goal to visit every festival in Ohio.  His title has the unlikely name of www.300poundadventures.blogspot.com

       How did the blog, “Adventures of a trapped 300 pound man” begin?

 I had just returned from a wonderful trip in Ireland where I was driving all around the country and staying in various small towns.  When I got back, the travel bug never went away and I started checking out area festivals on weekends.  A festival here or there was typical for me, especially since there are so many in Lorain and Cuyahoga counties.  But I found myself venturing a little further out and going to them more frequently. 

 During all of this, I’m telling my friends about my experiences and they’re telling me to write it all down.  By the time I got to 14 festivals, I decided to start my blog.  But I wanted to write about more than only festivals, especially since I wasn’t sure how deep I wanted to go with it.  So I decided to incorporate all my adventures with food, including recipes, strange dishes I came across, and my methods to burn the calories off.

 I titled the blog “Adventures of a trapped 300 pound man” after something a friend said to me after I shared one of my food-related stories.  Apparently, to the belief of my friend, there must have been a 300 pound man inside of me trying to get out.

   When did it start?

 In 2009.
  How many festivals in Ohio have you attended?  How many counties are represented?

Since last year, I’ve been to 117 different Ohio festivals in 42 counties.  This year alone, I should have about 102 festivals or so by year end.

   What do you look for most in a festival?

Since there are so many different types of festivals, this can be a bit complex.  Overall, though, I would say that I look for unique qualities in each festival.  Sometimes this can refer to the actual theme of the festival, like the Skunk Festival or the Twins Day Festival.  For others, it may be how the festival’s theme item (ie pumpkin) is utilized as decor, gift ideas, food items, and even clothing. 

 I want that uniqueness to give some new awareness to the festival goer, whether through teaching or showing a new or different way to celebrate a theme/item/idea.

  What was your favorite festival?  Why?

 I would have to say Com Fest in Columbus.  It’s really unlike most of the other festivals I’ve attended.  It exists solely on the assistance of volunteers and local support and its objectives focus on eliminating prejudice and strengthening the community.  As a result, more than 70,000 people from varied lifestyles come together to celebrate the same thing.

 And since these people are so varied, the booths and entertainment that cater to them is also varied, meaning a great selection.

 There’s also a particular feeling at Com Fest that makes you feel welcome. I think that’s really special.
  What was the most disappointing event?  Why?

 In general, my disappointment comes from my own expectations.  For some festivals, I thought they could have done more with the theme.  Sometimes I got an idea from the website, only to find the festival to be something completely different.

 But if I did have to name a specific festival, I’d say the Potato Festival in Mantua.  I tried to get into the town from three different directions/roads and, each time, I was waved away by police.  The third time, I asked the officer what was going on and she responded that the city didn’t allow any entry during the parade.  Since the parade had just started, I decided to leave to another festival.
  For a family how expensive are the average festivals?  Do you have a limit on what you will spend?

For a family of 4, I would imagine around $25-30 for food and drink.  Many items are around $5 and bottle water is usually $1.  If each member wants a dessert, add another $5 per person.  Of course, this doesn’t include games, rides or souvenirs, so it can get costly if you don’t watch it.

 For myself, I don’t have a limit, but I’m usually very mindful of my spending.  If I really like a festival, I may buy a souvenir or two.  And more often than not, I’ll spend some money to try a strange new food that I come across.  But there are many festivals where I didn’t purchase anything.

   Your most memorable experience at a festival?

Participating in the Meatball Eating Contest at the Dean Martin Festival in Steubenville.  I had just come from a Greek festival down the road where I ate lunch, so I wasn’t even hungry.  But not many people were signing up and I thought, “Why not?”

 On that particular day, it was roasting hot and the competition was under the sun.  We couldn’t use our hands or drink water, so getting the meatballs down became really difficult.  I just kept chewing and chewing.

 I didn’t win it, but I was the only one to walk away with my bowl of meatballs and finish them off at my own pace.

   Where do you get your information about festivals?  How far ahead do you plan your trips?

I look everywhere.  DiscoverOhio.com is a great resource, as is ofea.org (Ohio Festivals and Events Association).  After that, I grab whatever travel brochures I can get from tourism offices and turnpike plazas, I get some great tips from friends, and I put Google alerts out there so I can stay current on new festivals.

  It has been said that Ohio has more festivals than any other state.  How do you feel about that statement?

Based on my own experiences, I would like to say that this is true.  We definitely have the perfect state for different types of festivals.  Our industry has brought waves of immigration, which has brought us cultural festivals.  Our agriculture has led to various festivals dealing with our crops.  And there are also many historical festivals that pay homage to events, trails, or ways of life.

 But it’s so difficult to get an accurate count of how many festivals Ohio actually has.  I still hear about festivals that are new to me, even after all of my research and resources.  Therefore, I can’t help but remain uncertain without having a better sense of number of festivals in other states.

  Who usually accompanies you to a festival?

My fiancé has accompanied me to nearly half of them.  My mom, uncle, and aunt have also come along to a few.  The rest of the festivals I’ve attended alone, especially during big festival weekends where I keep a stricter schedule.  This way, no one wants to kill me by the end of the day.

   What do you do in the winter months when there are not as many festivals?

Well, this winter I’ll probably get back to oil painting a bit and work on the website.  Otherwise, I still find activities out there in the community, even if they’re not necessarily festivals.  Maybe I’m just a restless spirit.

   Do you have some tips on how a family can get the most out of visiting a festival?

Do some research.  Almost all festival websites have a schedule.  Find what activities are most appealing to you and go around that time.  For bigger festivals, it wouldn’t hurt to print out a map and see what foods sound good so you’re not walking back and forth fifteen times before you figure what’s for lunch.  And share, especially if you go to an ethnic festival.  Get a bunch of little dishes and share with each other to get as much varied experience as possible.

  Tell me a bit about yourself.

 I was born and raised in Lorain, but have lived in New York City and Italy.  I do IT related work for the family business while also proofreading/translating for a school in Italy.

I went to the University of Findlay for my BA (English and Communications) and Bowling Green State University for my MFA (Creative Writing).

I speak Italian fluently, paint (oil), cook and travel.

I’m 36 (turning 37 this month) and I’m getting married next year to the girl I was with at the Romanian festival (good thing I didn’t take her to those big festival weekends!). :-)

Again, you can visit Kris’s blog at http://www. 300poundadventures.blogspot.com

 Remember festivals can sometimes be affected by the weather and it’s always a good idea to check the festival website to discover any last minute changes or additions to their program.  Also remember, check the dates, don’t be like the viewer who watched my report on Fox 8 about a rural festival that had run six months before.  They didn’t listen and drove several hours to get there only to find they were six months late and the only thing they found as they put it, “was a dog sleeping in the middle of the street.”

Roscoe Village Candle Lighting Warms the Night

It was a cold night, Saturday, December 4th, when Historic Roscoe Village in Coshocton, Ohio kicked off its holiday season with the first of three candle-lighting ceremonies in the center of the old canal town.

I was privileged to be asked to be this year’s honorary candle-lighter.

It was a beautiful ceremony that can’t help but put you in the holiday mood. 

It started with a book signing at the Welcome Center at Roscoe Village.  I got to meet several of the people who run this village filled with some living Ohio History.  It was also a chance to greet folks from all over Ohio as well as Pennsylvania and Indiana.

At 6PM we moved to a stage set up on the main street near a hillside where a huge Christmas Tree had been erected.  Following some Christmas Carols sung by a small choir I was introduced and lit the first candle.  I then turned and lighted the candles held by the choir members and then all of us moved to the edge of the stage and started lighting candles of people surrounding the stage.  the pinpoints of light started to spread down the street while the choir softly sang “Silent Night”.  In moments there were hundreds of candles glowing in the darkened street.  As I said it was a memorable vision on a cold December night.

Following the ceremony there were candle-lit tours of the village and venders had hot cider and other holiday goodies available to the crowd.  It was a great way to start the season.

For more information about candle lighting ceremonies at Roscoe Village check out their website at: http://www.roscoevillage.com

A Dickens of a Christmas in Ashtabula County


Would you and your family like to share a holiday dinner with Ebenezer Scrooge?  You can do it this holiday season in Geneva-on-the-lake at the Christmas Carol Dinner Theater.

A local thespian group, Noble Entertainment, with a cast of twelve, is presenting this unusual take on Dickens immortal “A Christmas Carol” at the historic Oak Room at 5479 Lake Road on the Geneva-on-the-lake strip.

It works this way:  Guests sit down for a six-course Christmas feast and find among the folks gathered in the restaurant  Ebenezer Scrooge who begins the story which then unfolds between dinner courses all around the diners.

It is an interactive play in which the diners also become part of the plot as well as participate in some of the festivities like dancing at the party given by Mr. Fezziwig, Scrooge’s boy-hood employer.  Or, playing games when the ghosts of Christmas take Scrooge to a party at his nephew Fred’s home……You can read the rest of the story and also learn about a train ride for the kids to the North Pole to ride with Santa back to Ashtabula County.  My story is in the Saturday, November 27 edition of the Cleveland Plain Dealer or you can read it online at www.Cleveland.com