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Top Five Destinations of Cincinnati


Only six hours from my hometown, I never visited Cincinnati. Crossing back and forth across the eastern United States, I never even passed through the city. My tires crunched the pavement leading to Louisville, Columbus, and Indianapolis, but never approached the Queen City. It’s a little off the beaten path (i.e. the major east/west interstates 70 and 64) but I can’t believe I never took a detour just to stop by and check it out. Maybe it was the presence of Riverfront Stadium, one of the cookie cutter multipurpose stadiums in the style of Busch Stadium II and Veterans Stadium, so I had no baseball draw. Maybe I looked so forward to my home or road-trip destination that I didn’t want to waste the time with a diversion. No matter why, it sits as a hole in my Midwest explorations. When I head back in that direction, here are five things I’d like to do.

Learn at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center


The Ohio River provided the northern border of the southern slave states and crossing it meant freedom. The National Underground Railroad Freedom Centerchronicles the stories of those men and women that sought freedom and those that helped them along the way.

Try to find a tour of the haunted and unfinished Cincinnati Subway

When I started to research Cincinnati, the stories of the old abandoned Cincinnati Subway had me at “abandoned.” History seen through architecture and how public transportation affects a city provides an interesting look at many a locale. Then the sites added “haunted” to the description and I had to know more. Unfortunately, the Cincinnati Heritage Programs tours of the depths of the city only happen once a year.

Grab a bowl of chili at Camp Washington Chili

I’m a big fan of chili and since Cincinnati is almost synonymous with the delectable meal, I know I have to get a bowl or four. I figure I’ll start with Camp Washington Chili and then go from there.

See history through signs at the American Sign Museum

I like signs. I like lists about signs. There is something cool about finding an old town square on a road trip or just watching the buildings and their ornaments glide by as you drive. So, the American Sign Museum seems like a no-brainer. When I visit, I hope to find plenty of beer signs like the ones you see hanging inside and outside of bars.

See a playoff game at Great American Ballpark

The regular season may be over, but there will still be some baseball played for at least a couple of games at the Great American Ballpark. If you can’t get there in the next couple of weeks, the season opens again on April 1st (in time for a possible haunted subway tour as well) with a game against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and their old Central division nemesis, Albert Pujols.

Any suggestions for things that I missed? Any additional recommendations for the area? Just let me know in the comments.

About Jason McClain

Jason is an aspiring novelist, which means there is a lot of time to put off writing and watch baseball or go fly-fishing, hiking and traveling. By "a lot of time", Jason means "procrastination."

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