The Daily Bulletin

Butter Cow and Cavs

Posted on Jul 26, 2016

If the chance to see the Cleveland Cavaliers’ NBA championship immortalized in butter isn’t reason enough to go to the Ohio State Fair, there’s plenty of other family fun to be had.

The 163rd state fair kicks off today, July 27, and runs through Aug. 7. In addition to the usual midway rides and shows, there are numerous educational (yet fun) events for families, including trips to the milking parlor and animal barns, fishing and lumberjack shows in Natural Resources Park, STEM activities at the Youth Center and more. And, of course, don’t miss the butter sculptures, which include the requisite cow and calf.

Soon-to-be fifth-graders can get free admission for themselves and an adult through the Ag is Cool program. Just show a valid fourth-grade report card at the gate. Pick up a passport and travel through the interactive stations to learn more about agriculture. A related essay contest will award four $500 scholarships.

If your crew gets hungry, food vendors are always in abundance. New items this year include a banana cream pie flavor of Velvet Ice Cream as well as bacon-wrapped deep-fried Oreos and maple bacon salted caramel funnel cakes.

The dog agility show and pig races are always popular with kids. New this year is the Arctic Olympics High Dive Show. Fans of Nickelodeon’s Paw Patrol can meet some of their favorite pups in person July 29-31.

For more information and a list of admission and vendor discounts, go to

Family Concert

Posted on Jul 25, 2016

The wonderful world of Disney is coming to this year’s Lancaster Festival.

The Magical Music of Disney will be performed from 7 to 8 p.m. Thursday, July 28, at the Fairfield Christian Church and Academy Auditorium, 1965 N. Columbus St. The show will feature music from the Lancaster Festival Orchestra accompanied by scenes from popular Disney films.

Tickets are still on sale and range from $5 to $15. For more information, go to

Bounce Houses

Posted on Jul 22, 2016

While many parents instinctively worry about the safety of traveling carnival rides, many don’t think twice about sending their children into bounces houses set up at festivals and parties.

But, a website by the American Academy of Pediatrics, cautions that inflatable bounce houses can be dangerous.

More than 64,000 children were treated in U.S. emergency departments for bounce house-related injuries between 1990 and 2010, according to a study published in the organization’s medical journal. The study also found that between 2008 and 2010, the number of injuries more than doubled to an average of 31 per day. To learn more about the study, visit

The website offers these tips for safer play:

  • Consider limiting bounce house use to ages 6 and older.
  • Take off footwear, eyeglasses and jewelry before jumping.
  • Do not let children of significantly different sizes jump at the same time to avoid collision-related injuries.
  • Follow the maximum height and weight guidelines as well as how many children can bounce at once.
  • Don’t take food, drink, bottles or glasses into the bounce house.
  • An adult should closely supervise the action at all times.
  • Children should not push other children off the inflatable or into the walls, or climb the outside walls.
  • Prohibit flips and rough play.

— Melissa Kossler Dutton


Popcorn Pops

Posted on Jul 19, 2016

Friday is the last chance to catch Columbus Symphony Orchestra resident staff conductor Albert-George Schram before he bids farewell to central Ohio.

Schram, who’s stepping down after 37 years with the CSO, is well-known among devotees of the Picnic with the Pops and Popcorn Pops summer series held at Columbus Commons.

The second (and last) Popcorn Pops concert of the season, Jumpin’ & Jivin’, gets underway at 5:30 p.m. July 22. Pint-size patrons can partake in free popcorn, face painting and art projects, play with musical instruments and burn off some energy in the Columbus Commons Family Fun Zone. The hour-long concert begins at 7 p.m.

The series is geared for children ages 3-12.

For more information or to purchase tickets ($10; free for ages 2 and younger), go to

Read more about Schram and his reflections on the CSO in the August issue of Columbus Parent.

Poisoning Alert

Posted on Jul 18, 2016

Nationwide Children’s Hospital is warning parents about a spike in poisonings related to young children and lamp oil.

According to the hospital, the number of phone calls to the Central Ohio Poison Center about oil in lamps such as tiki torches has jumped 180 percent this summer. The calls specifically relate to children 5 and younger. As of mid-July, 14 calls had been received this year compared with 10 at the same time in 2015.

“Lamp oil found in backyard tiki torches looks like apple juice to kids, making it seem safe and kid-friendly,” said Marcel Casavant, MD, chief of Toxicology at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, in the announcement. “Children are naturally curious, and they are drawn to bright colors and pretty packaging, which brings them into contact with poisonous substances.” Casavant also is medical director of the Central Ohio Poison Center.

According to Nationwide Children’s, these liquid fuels contain hydrocarbons, which have physical properties that make them easy to choke on. If even a small amount is swallowed, the hydrocarbons can enter the lungs and cause difficulty breathing, pneumonia, respiratory failure leading to the need for ventilator support, and coma.

Parents are advised to store tiki torch fuel and other products containing hydrocarbons (including furniture oil, waterproofing agents and gasoline additives) in their original containers and out of reach or in a locked cabinet.

If you suspect a child has ingested a poison, call the national Poison Center at 800-222-1222.

Fun at the Fair

Posted on Jul 15, 2016

Summer in Ohio means county fairs, and one of the biggest in central Ohio gets underway this weekend.

The 99th Franklin County Fair kicks off July 16 and runs through July 23. Admission is $6 for ages 2 and older, with a charge for some activities, including rides, though advance discounts are available.

Family activities include a petting zoo, a kids’ tent with agricultural activities, the Zerbini Family Circus, the Junior Fair, appearances by safety characters (including Smokey Bear) and a kiddie tractor pull. For the full schedule of events, go to

New this year is the Franklin County Fair Junior Surveyors Treasure Hunt Adventure for Kids. The Franklin County Engineer’s Office will lead a search through the fairgrounds to locate and collect lost toy treasures. The free event for ages 5-12 will be held at select times July 18-22. Advance registration is required. Sign up here.

For a statewide schedule of Ohio’s county fairs, check out this handy list from the Ohio Department of Agriculture.

National Nod

Posted on Jul 13, 2016


For the Birds

Posted on Jul 11, 2016

Visitors to Lake Hope State Park in Vinton County have the opportunity to hand-feed hummingbirds.

Park Naturalist Dave Sapienza oversees the program. Plans begin in spring, when he places hummingbird feeders around the lake. Once the birds are conditioned to drink nectar at the feeders, visitors can wait at the sites with handheld feeders made from floral tubing and pipe cleaners. Those who stand still are often visited by hungry hummingbirds.

The free program, which takes place from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays, runs through Labor Day. There is no charge, but donations are accepted.

Lake Hope, 27331 state Route 278 in McArthur, is located within Zaleski State Forest. It’s about 70 miles from downtown Columbus. For more information, call 740-596-4938 or go to

— Melissa Kossler Dutton


Junior Jazz

Posted on Jul 8, 2016

Jazz Arts Group will present the second summer PBJ & Jazz concert at noon Saturday at Topiary Park in downtown Columbus.

The free concert follows an 11 a.m. story time at the adjacent Main Library and precedes a 1 p.m. activity with the Columbus Museum of Art. Gahanna’s Jailynn Lake-Noel, an award-winning bassist for the Columbus Youth Jazz Orchestra, will lead a quartet in the performance. Attendees are invited to bring a blanket and picnic lunch.

The remaining summer shows are noon Aug. 13 and Sept. 10 at Topiary Park, 480 E. Town St. Bobby Floyd and Byron Stripling will perform next month, while Kelly McLennan will wrap up the summer series.

This is the eighth season for the hour-long interactive PBJ & Jazz concerts, which are aimed at introducing jazz and live music to young children. The shows are held at Topiary Park from June through September and move indoors to the Lincoln Theatre Ballroom from November through March.

Fishy Fun

Posted on Jul 6, 2016

Children are invited to “Find Dory” or, more likely, some of her finned friends at Sharon Woods Metro Park this weekend.

Metro Parks is capitalizing on the huge Disney Pixar hit Finding Dory with its event from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. July 10. Youngsters will decorate T-shirts and try to catch a fish in Schrock Lake.

Park staff members will show children how to use a rubber fish and fabric paint to decorate their shirts. A limited amount of bait and fishing poles will be provided. The free program is designed for ages 3-8. Participants should bring a plain shirt and wear old clothing.

Sharon Woods is located at 6911 Cleveland Ave. in Westerville. Meet at the Schrock Lake West bulletin board. For more information, go to

Family Concerts

Posted on Jul 1, 2016

The Westerville Parks and Recreation Department’s annual Family Concert Series continues with a fun lineup this month.

The free family-friendly performances take place at 6:30 p.m. Wednesdays in the amphitheater at Alum Creek Park North, 221 W. Main St.

The July schedule is:

  • July 6: The Great Randini (magic)
  • July 13: Matt Jergens (juggler)
  • July 20: Endless Recess (music for kids)
  • July 27: No Strings Attached (puppet show)

The last concert of the season (storytelling with Candace) will be held Aug. 3.

— Melissa Kossler Dutton

Family Faves

Posted on Jul 1, 2016

Time is running out to cast your ballot in the 2016 Columbus Parent Family Faves survey.

Family Faves is our annual quest to find the best family-friendly businesses, dining, activities and events in central Ohio. There are 33 categories, each of which has multiple nominees and an option to write in your own choice. Listed nominees are those that earned at least 5 percent of the vote in last year’s survey.

Find the ballot at Each person can vote only once. The deadline is noon July 6.

Results will be announced in our September issue, which will list winners, second- and third-place finishers and runners-up (those who receive at least 5 percent of the vote).

Boom Is Back

Posted on Jun 29, 2016

Get ready for the 36th annual Red, White & Boom! to take over downtown Columbus.

The daylong celebration along the Scioto riverfront will be held Friday, July 1. (Boom is never held July 4 to avoid competing with suburban fireworks, and it’s also not held on weekends—hence the early date this year.)

In addition to a high-impact fireworks show, there’s plenty of other activity on tap, including a children’s area, a parade, food vendors and on-stage entertainment.

The Columbus Gas Children’s Park will be open from noon to 8 p.m. at the corner of Neil Avenue and Long Street. For the sixth year, the area will offer interactive activities for all ages, including inflatables, a dunk tank, COSI on Wheels, Columbus Blue Jackets Slap Shot, face painting and more.

Taste of Boom, which features various food vendors, will be held along Arena District streets from 3 to 11 p.m. The parade steps off at 6 p.m. from the Main Street Bridge and follows a one-mile route north on Front Street before ending at Front and Spring streets. Fireworks are scheduled to start at 10 p.m.

For more information, including the entertainment schedule, parade route and road closures, go to

Origami Originals

Posted on Jun 27, 2016

If Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Garden’s latest exhibit, Origami in the Garden, has piqued your youngsters’ curiosity about the ancient Japanese art of paper folding, there are plenty of opportunities to learn more.

Central Ohio is home to the Ohio Paper Folders Club, a group of origami enthusiasts who enjoy sharing their craft. The club will host an origami exhibit July 29 and 30 at the Holiday Inn in Worthington, 7007 N. High St.

The club’s exhibit will be more traditional than the conservatory’s display, which is made up of monumental sculptures and large-scale installations designed to tell the story of origami. The conservatory exhibit runs through Nov. 13.

The Ohio Paper Folders Club also hosts regular meetings on the third Sunday of the month at the Peggy R. McConnell Arts Center of Worthington, 777 Evening St.

For more information, go to or

— Melissa Kossler Dutton