COLUMBUS, Ohio—Experience Columbus, the destination marketing organization for Ohio’s capital city, is inviting visitors and locals to “Live to Holiday Your Way” with the launch of its new holiday campaign that highlights all the ways to celebrate the season, start new traditions, gift locally and explore the city’s unique festivities.
“Columbus is a city defined by its diversity of people, food and cultures, and we want to show visitors how they can create a holiday experience that not only embraces long-standing traditions, but also helps them explore new holiday adventures with their loved ones,” said Sarah Townes, CTA, Chief Marketing and Innovation Officer for Experience Columbus. “With tools like our Columbus Gift Guide, we serve as a resource for people looking to have an unforgettable experience in Columbus this season.”
Here are some of the numerous ways to celebrate the holidays in Columbus this year:
2022 Columbus Gift Guide
Returning for the third holiday season is the Columbus Gift Guide, presented by COSI. This is the perfect resource for those seeking locally made and artisan-produced gifts unique to Columbus. Seventy-five local businesses are featured in the guide, which highlights a curated selection of gifts, from food to fashion and from art to one-of-a-kind experiences. Celebrate Small Business Saturday on Nov. 26 by using the Columbus Gift Guide to discover local businesses.
New Holiday Lights Pass
Beginning Nov. 22, visitors and locals can purchase Experience Columbus’ new Holiday Lights Pass to enjoy single-ticket admission and discounts to two of the city’s most dazzling lights displays—Wildlights at the Columbus Zoo & Aquarium, and Conservatory Aglow at Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens (exhibit only). You can also choose to add on discounted admission to the new Magic of Lights experience at Historic Crew Stadium and Columbus City Adventures’ Holiday Lights Tour.
To see downtown aglow, visitors are also invited to Columbus Commons’ free Holiday Lights experience where they can marvel at nearly half a million lights Nov. 18 through Jan. 1, 2023. Nearby, the Scioto Mile sparkles with holiday lights along the riverfront Nov. 23 to Jan. 2, 2023.
Citywide Holiday Shopping
In addition to the Columbus Gift Guide, Columbus makes holiday shopping easy with numerous retail districts whether you’re looking to buy from your favorite national brands or shop small at one-of-a-kind boutiques. Easton Town Center, named the No. 1 retail experience in the country for three years in a row by Chain Store Age, is the Midwest’s premier shopping dining and entertainment district, home to more than 200 retailers, including Ohio’s only Gucci store and a new Amazon Style store, the second of its kind in the country. Their holiday events, includes a grand illumination of their 56-foot tree, Menorah lighting, horse drawn carriage rides and photos with Santa at the North Pole.
Open just in time for the holidays is a new fashion and retail district in Downtown Columbus, Common Thread. Seven new stores feature local and national labels that were incubated and launched in Columbus and will have products that include contemporary men’s and women’s apparel, accessories, homeware, lifestyle, giftables and more.
Nearby, the Short North Arts District has long been a destination for the best boutique shopping in the region. Throughout Columbus’ charming neighborhoods, local shopping experiences abound with a variety of holiday markets throughout the season. On Saturday, Dec. 3, enjoy special holiday shopping experiences throughout Columbus like the Short North Arts District’s Holiday Hop and the Discovery District’s Holiday Trolley Hop. On Sunday, Dec. 4, follow luminaries down brick streets to local shops in historic German Village during Village Lights, which features extended hours and holiday specials at local businesses, StrietzelMarkt, festive surprises and storytelling and photos with Santa and his elves at the Actors’ Theatre Schiller Amphitheater stage.
Festive Holiday Experiences
On stage, Columbus theaters will offer a range of traditional and modern takes on classic holiday performances. Downtown, the iconic Ohio Theatre will host Columbus Symphony’s “Holiday Pops” concert and BalletMet’s “The Nutcracker” while the Palace Theater is the place to catch “The Hip Hop Nutcracker,” which blends hip hop dance with Tchaikovsky’s timeless music. For more traditional holiday classics, visitors can catch the Short North Stage’s rendition of Irving Berlin’s “White Christmas.” At the Southern Theatre, Jazz Arts Group presents “Home for the Holidays.” For musical comedy, check out “The Happy Elf” at Lincoln Theatre.
Experience a truly old-fashioned holiday at “Dickens of a Christmas,” a Charles Dickens-themed holiday experience in Columbus’ historic Ohio Village. Visitors can learn about 19th century traditions, play parlor games and enjoy period dancing while interacting with classic holiday characters, including Santa Claus, St. Nicholas, Jacob Marley, Ebenezer Scrooge, Krampus and others.
Gift Experiences with Travel Packages and Tours
With so many festivities to choose from, Experience Columbus has created an easy way to give the gift of travel with curated travel packages and experiential tours that can be purchased for friends and family. Options include build-your-own experiences, with everything from museum tickets to themed walking and food tours to free experiential tours. Make it a fun holiday weekend or mid-week trip with special rates on hotel stays that come with extra perks like Lyft credits or free attraction tickets. Book a stay in Columbus for yourself or as a gift at www.experiencecolumbus.com/hotels and discover experiences at www.experiencecolumbus.com/marketplace.
Learn more about how to enjoy the holidays in Columbus at experiencecolumbus.com/holidays. Share your experiences online by using #LiveForwardCbus and #HolidaysInCbus.
About Columbus, Ohio
Columbus is a city unlike any other. Vibrant and alive, Ohio’s capital is known for its open attitude, smart style and entrepreneurial spirit. Columbus' blend of neighborhoods, dynamic nightlife, noteworthy music scene, arts and culinary experiences, events, attractions and accommodations are all made unforgettable by the diversity of its outgoing locals who eagerly await and warmly welcome visitors. Columbus is proud to be selected as the host city for 2023 PCMA Convening Leaders, which brings together the world's business events professionals, and the 2023 U.S. Conference of Mayors Annual Meeting. Free travel guides, maps, online booking and detailed information are available at www.ExperienceColumbus.com. Visitor information is also available on Facebook: Facebook.com/ExperienceColumbus, Twitter: @ExpCols and Instagram: @ExperienceColumbus.
Leah Berger, APR, CTA, Experience Columbus: email@example.com | 614-222-6145