This post is written by Maggie Mecklenborg, membership coordinator for Experience Columbus. You can follow her on Twitter @MaggieMeck.

Columbus is a city where you can stop in at any restaurant and find something that the whole family will enjoy. No, I am not talking about the national chain restaurants; I’m talking about our local food scene that has been growing exponentially over the past few years. Many of Columbus’ local restaurants tend to be very laid-back and casual. You can wear jeans to the most upscale restaurants, and kids are welcome everywhere. Some spots listed below may not have kids menus, but are happy to serve half-portions. Check out a few of these very family-friendly places while you’re here!

family 1Hubbard Grille – This place is HUGE, and the food is great. Think pub fare and seafood elevated with a local twist - and great views into the Short North. After dinner take a stroll down High Street and enjoy the Short North Arts District.

Milestone 229 – This scenic restaurant gives you a great view of the city and is right next to the  Scioto Mile fountains. Grab a patio table if it’s warm out - or enjoy the beautiful views from inside. They have excellent food and the cocktail menu is outstanding, too. Make sure to bring your children’s swim suits so they can burn off some energy after lunch by running around in the (FREE) fountains.

pistaciaPistacia Vera – The staff love kids, and they serve up French patisserie ranging from crayon-colored macarons to spectacular croissants, and even quiche. This café is great for breakfast or lunch, and also has a patio!

Schmidt’s Sausage Haus – Traditional German favorites – not ideal for vegetarians, but there’s a fun beer-hall vibe with live oompah bands most Friday and Saturday evenings.

Katzinger’s Delicatessen – Get some giant sandwiches to share, and don’t miss the pickle barrel. Katzinger’s is a classic deli located in German Village. Eat there, or pack up for a picnic in Schiller Park a short walk down 3rd Street.

Tasi Café – Tucked back in an alley in the Short North, it’s worth seeking out for great breakfasts and lunches. My favorites are the poached eggs with black bean cake and jalapeno butter sauce and the huevos rancheros served with black bean quesadillas. The bloody Marys are amazing, too. Tasi serves delicious classics with a twist such as the cinnamon french toast with bananas and pure maple syrup and buttermilk pancakes with sweet and spicy bacon.

northstarNorthstar Café – You can’t go wrong with healthy, local and delicious. Northstar is known for its veggie burger (which carnivores even rave about.) Their ricotta pancakes and breakfast burritos make an awesome meal. One of my favorites when I go to NorthStar is the Thai Burrito with tofu (or you can get chicken.) Simply scrumptious!