11 and 12 July 2020
Ever since we moved back to the States from our year in Australia, we’ve been looking forward to our return. Last year we planned a 5 week trip down under for June and July of 2020, then the COVID-19 pandemic hit and all our plans went down the drain. Unable to leave the country and unwilling to fly yet, the Great Lakes Region was an obvious missing piece in our travel history. I had originally envisioned this to be a 2 week trip with flights in and out of Chicago, but like I said we didn’t feel comfortable flying yet, so it became a 3 week road trip.
On Day 1 of the trip, we drove from Raleigh, North Carolina to Columbus, Ohio. We did not plan many stops along the way, the day’s goal was simply to knock out some mileage. We did stop in Charleston, West Virginia’s capital city. Visiting state capitals and major universities are always included in our travel plans. This will be especially evident in the first few days of our itinerary.
Capitol Building in Charleston, West Virginia
On Day 2, we spent the day exploring Columbus, the capital of Ohio and home to Big 10 rival Ohio State University. Columbus is in the center of the state on the Scioto River. Due to recent protests, 2 of 3 statues of Christopher Columbus, the town’s namesake, had been removed. We found the last remaining near the Ohio Statehouse being protected by the State Police. It and the Statehouse were surrounded by signs from the BLM protests. Downtown was nice and we especially enjoyed walking through the German Village neighborhood and along the river on the Scioto Greenway.
Ohio Statehouse, Supreme Court of Ohio, BLM Protect Art, German Village, and Christopher Columbus Statue (clockwise)
In the evening, we got snacks at local favorite Buckeye Donut and walked around The Ohio State University. And yes, it is ‘The’ Ohio State University, the official name given in 1878. The campus was nice enough but it’s no State College, Pennsylvania.
The Ohio State University