How to show out-of-town guests a damn good Columbus time

There’s a lot of pressure to host a friend from out-of-town—not only do you have to prove you’re still cool, but you also need to show off your city because where you live is a direct reflection of you. Luckily, Columbus is a huge melting pot full of interesting things to eat, drink, and do.

Here’s what we suggest you do when you’re entertaining a non-Cbuser:

For the Drinker

Curio at Harvest 

By definition, Curio means “a rare, unusual, unique or intriguing object.” Call it what you will but this is where to find a top-notch cocktail in Columbus.

The Service Bar

This is a truly inspired beverage program slung across a beautiful marble bar top. The Service Bar opened in early October and is located at 1230 Courtland Ave– attached to Middle West distillery set just off of the 5th Avenue and High Street intersection.

Seventh Son Brewing

There are tons of incredible beer options in this city but when hosting a friend, it’s important to also think about atmosphere and we think Seventh’s Sons indoor and outdoor environments are home runs.

For the Introvert

Close quarters

Close Quarters is a new private e-sports training facility and social club at480 West Town Street in Franklinton. The space will act as a hybrid between improving video game skills and physically interacting with others in the scene.


So technically, you guys would be out of the house but that doesn’t mean you actually have to interact with those weird, awful things called people. Grab a chess board, a few PBRs and do your thing. At least you can say you got off the couch.

For the Creative

400 West Rich Street

The second Friday of every month, 400 West Rich St holds Franklinton Fridays, a time for artists to open up their studios to curious outsiders and really flex their creative muscles. Come explore all that art, science, and the community has to offer.

AR Workshop

AR Workshop is a DIY craft shop and boutique that offer hands-on classes where customers can use raw materials to create home decor like wood signs, trays, throw pills, Lazy Susans, and much more. It’s like those wine and canvas establishments on steroids.

For the Adventurer

Scioto Audubon

Put your sorriest sneakers on because they’re going to be working. Maneuver through tubes, flip tires, hang from rope walls, and to top if off, climb to the top of the rock wall and reach the rewarding view of downtown.

For the Sporto


Sure, you love your friend but who is really willing to drop a couple Benjamin’s to see the Buckeyes live? No one. So instead, tailgate. Click here for the best bars to watch the game for the not-so-college-student.


The Crew is making their finals run right now so if you can get your butts in Mapfre Stadium seats, do it. If not, here are all the best Crew supporter bars around the city.


Get chilly in Nationwide Arena to watch some super athletic guys not only expertly skate around the ice but also pass, shoot, sometimes punch, and score their way to victory. Cheers to talent that far exceeds all of ours.

For the Lover

The Promenade

Photo courtesy

Would you just look at that view. Grab a swing, his/her hand, and pull up a conversation about how happy you two are to be together in one of the greatest cities in the country. **heart eyes**

Franklin Park Conservatory

The plants are fragrant, extraordinary, and beautiful (psst, that’s your pickup line). The ambiance of the Conservatory radiates romance and will give you two a perfect opportunity to literally stop and smell the roses. Perfect for photo ops, as well.

For the Shopper


Columbus’ premier outdoor mall with every store to meet your fancy. Super walkable, plenty of food and libation options, and oh so much shopping potential.

Greater Columbus Antique Mall

Five stories of nothing but stuff. In this massive antique shop, you are guaranteed to find something that will pique your interest—whether it’s a sequence skirt or a vintage Budweiser light.

For the Music Aficionado

Used Kids Records

If this friend of yours has any love for music at all, he or she owns a record player. Hit up Used Kids for new and used vinyl from your classic faves to local newbies.

Natalie’s Coal Fired Pizza

After shoving as much coal fired pizza as humanly possible down your throats, spin your chairs around towards the intimate stage where a dynamic performance will soon unfold.

Rumba Cafe

Sundays are a can’t miss night of music at Rumba. Hoodoo Soul band commandeers the stage late into the night with heartfelt, groove that will send you straight into the crowd with your hips shaking.

For the Foodie

There aren’t enough hours in the day, days in a week, weeks in a year, or years in a life to show someone every bit of the most awesome food Columbus has to offer. But here are some of our favorites where the photos do all the talkin’:


Momo Ghar

Hoyo’s Kitchen

Adriatico’s Pizza



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