Columbus Nightlife and Entertainment

The fun doesn’t have to stop when the sun goes down, as that’s when the city really comes alive. Check out Shadowbox Live!, America’s largest resident theater company or try your luck at the Hollywood Casino or Scioto Downs.

“It's not a stretch to call Columbus the "Nashville of the Midwest." Beyond a vibrant songwriting community (catch rising stars at Natalie's Coal Fired Pizza), you'll see live acts at many restaurants, jazz clubs, and various venues around town.” Southern Living

The Five on High districts offer endless opportunities for a great night out Entertainment clusters just steps from the convention center and surrounding hotels include the Short North Arts District, Arena District and North Fourth Street, just a block east of High St., all featuring cocktails bars, breweries, gaming opportunities, live music and more.

Columbus CommonsColumbus’ historic theaters offer a range of performances, from Broadway shows, to ballet, opera and more. The Columbus Symphony fills the Columbus Commons with its sweet sound during summer months and laughs can always be found emanating from Funny Bone Comedy Club. As the home to musical greats like Rascal Flatts and Twenty One Pilots, it should come as no surprise that live music of every style can be found any night of the week throughout the city. 

Columbus’ distilleries are an alternative to the popular Columbus Ale Trail, with Brother’s Drake Meadery offering a distinctly different taste from the more traditional Middle West Spirits and Watershed Distillery offerings. Craft cocktails are a science at Denmark and guests at Curio are treated to libations from Annie Williams, the country’s most imaginative bartender according to the United States Bartenders’ Guild (USBG).

walking in German VillageLGBTQ bars and clubs are prominent in the Short North and German Village. Local celebrity drag queen and entertainer Nina West can often be found either performing or just hanging out at Union Café or Axis.

It’s easy to get your game on in Columbus with any number of game bars across the city. Kingmakers Board Game Palace and TableTop Game Café offer traditional gaming experiences, while lovers of arcade games can get a fix at any number of places such as 16-Bit Bar + Arcade, Brewcadia or Old North Arcade, all allowing free play with drink purchases. Pins Mechanical Co. has a variety of different activities such as foosball, duckpin bowling, ping pong and more, while Dueling Axes and Columbus Axe Throwing offer a chance to try one of the hottest new crazes.

Explore more options for entertainment and nightlife.