German Village Gazette

Columbus Historical Society

Tour offers a look at city's old and new


Coming off the success of last year's bicentennial theme, the Columbus Historical Society is broadening its annual tour to include stops that also highlight the city's present and future.

"We don't want to pigeonhole it as a historical tour, necessarily. It's more than that," Jeff Lafever, executive director of CHS, said of the two-hour bus ride that wends its way through downtown and some surrounding areas.

The first Vintage + Vision tour date is slated for Saturday, May 18.

Reservations are required for the tours, which kickoff at 10 a.m. at COSI, 333 W. Broad St., where the historical society's offices are located.

Guests are asked to arrive at 9:30 a.m. Normal parking rates will apply.

Additional tour dates are June 15, July 20, Aug. 17, Sept. 21 and Oct. 19.

Tickets are $30 per person, $27 for seniors and $24 for Columbus Historical Society members. Advanced registration and payment are required.

For reservations, call 614-224-0822 or visit the Historical Society website at

Lafever said the society had a triumphant 2012, when Columbus was celebrating its 200th anniversary.

The historical society had half a dozen regular tours and several private tours that attracted 800 people.

This year's tour will include many new attractions downtown, such as the Scioto Mile, a riverfront destination along Civic Center Drive and Columbus Commons, a new park that replaced City Center mall.

Also, the tour will point out some future endeavors, such as the HighPoint on Columbus Commons, a 300-unit apartment complex adjacent to the park.

Even some of the destinations, deeply rooted in the city's past, have big plans for the future.

For example, the Columbus Metropolitan Library will extend the buildng to the east and create an outdoor terrace area overlooking Topiary Park.

Gregg Dodd, director of marketing for the library, said library officials are honored to be part of this year's tour.

"The idea of this historic 1907 Andrew Carnegie building matching up with what will soon be a modern, contemporary east side of the building will provide library customers of all ages a new opportunity to connect with the services we offer in a whole new way," Dodd said.

"That's what we do, blend the old with the new. It will just offer a unique view."