Warm summer-like temperatures have come to central Ohio, and the Westerville Visitors and Convention Bureau will encourage residents to get outside and get "Back to Nature" during this month's OhioHealth 4th Friday Celebration.
Organized by the visitors and convention bureau, the free block party will take place from 6 to 9 p.m. May 24 throughout Uptown Westerville.
Following the "Back to Nature" theme, the May 4th Friday will include nature-themed displays and children's activities, as well as information on outdoor programming that will be available locally this summer.
"The sports fields are full, the leisure paths are busy. The people of central Ohio are ready for all the fun warm weather brings," said Jeff Hartnell, Visitors and Convention Bureau executive director. "This is the perfect time to focus on ways to be active outdoors."
Attendees can ride their bikes Uptown and store them for free at the Emerald Square Bike Corral, sponsored by the Westerville Bicycle Club and DK Fitness, on West Main Street, behind Emerald Bank, sponsored by the Westerville Bicycle Club and DK Fitness.
The Westerville Department of Parks and Recreation will offer nature-themed crafts for children in the courtyard of the Westerville Municipal Building, 21 S. State St., and naturalists from Sharon Woods Metro Park and Inniswood Metro Gardens will present information on their summer programming.
The Westerville Public Library will read nature-themed stories from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Amish Originals, 38 N. State St..
The Westerville Puppet Posse will perform music-filled puppet shows near the fountain in front of the municipal building.
Entertainment will include live music by Otterbein University's pop group The Anticipations from 6 to 8:30 p.m. on East College Avenue.
Grassahol will perform bluegrass favorites on the AAA Ohio Auto Club Music Stage in the Church of the Messiah parking lot at the northeast corner of State and Home streets, and the pop/rock trio MakeShift will perform on the Arts Council of Westerville Music Stage in front of the Municipal Building.
Generations Performing Arts Center dancers will perform from 6 to 7:30 p.m., and students of Xcel Martial Arts will provide demonstrations from 7:45 to 9 p.m. on West College Avenue.
The Westerville Division of Police will offer free digital fingerprinting in Municipal Building courtyard, and the Westerville Division of Fire will have its rescue vehicles on display in the parking lot of Union Savings Bank, 44 S. State St.
The Arts Council of Westerville will feature local artists in an Arts Alley near Hanby Elementary School.
As always, many Uptown businesses will have extended hours of operation, and hundreds of vendors, offering products, services and food, will set up throughout Uptown.
Westerville's own Pizza Mike Evans, seen on the Food Network's The Great Food Truck Race, will offer pizza from his truck in the Visitors and Convention Bureau parking lot, 20 W. Main St.