Ten Reasons to Visit Ohio this Fall


COLUMBUS, Ohio, Oct. 17 /PRNewswire/ — As the seasons change, autumn brings a variety of activities to every state. But what makes Ohio the best choice for a fall getaway? Below are just a few of the most compelling reasons to plan your fall excursion in the Buckeye State.

1. New Travel Resources at DiscoverOhio.com include podcasts of fall
color updates
This autumn, DiscoverOhio.com offers a new fall foliage section
featuring weekly fall color updates from the Ohio Department of
Natural Resources on the Web site now available via podcast.
Additional resources to put fall travelers on the road to fun in Ohio
include: 19 fall foliage driving tours, autumn harvest events, a
digital leaf collection, haunted happenings and plenty more.

2. 125 Varieties of Trees yield a dazzling array of fall color
Due to its unique location at the overlapping intersection of the
northern and southern tree ranges, Ohio’s forests have approximately
125 different tree species, which is considerably more than eastern
states.

3. 99th Annual Circleville Pumpkin Show to Feature one of the World’s
Fastest Pumpkin Carvers (Oct. 19-22)
Ohio’s Jerry Ayers, who held the record as world’s fastest pumpkin
carver until 2001, will be sharing his skills with visitors to this
year’s Pumpkin Show. Known to draw nearly 300,000 people from all 50
states, the Pumpkin Show is the sixth largest festival in the country
and has been dubbed the “Greatest Free Show on Earth.” Don’t miss the
world’s largest pumpkin pie weighing in at more than 400 pounds,
pumpkin burgers, pumpkin chili, pumpkin fudge and plenty of
entertainment amidst a backdrop of giant pumpkins weighing in at
nearly 1,000 pounds.

4. 74 State Parks, 20 State Forests, 125 State Nature Preserves and a
National Park
Ohio’s thousands of acres of free, public parks, forests and
preserves offer plenty of opportunities to enjoy autumn’s colors
while hiking, boating, canoeing, floating in a hot air balloon, road
or off-road bicycling, taking a driving tour of covered bridges or
enjoying the tranquility of a secluded cabin or cozy state park
lodge.

5. Maize Valley Pumpkin Cannon, Corn Maze, and More
See how far pumpkins can fly when jettisoned from a pumpkin breathing
fire truck! Located in Hartville, Ohio, Maize Valley also offers a
corn maze in celebration of Ohio’s rich heritage in grape, grape
juice and wine production (the maze is full of fun grape facts and
trivia). Additional activities include wagon rides; plenty of
pumpkins and produce; bakery goods and plenty more.

6. The Haunted Ohio State Reformatory
Visitors who brave the imprisoned ghosts of the Ohio State
Reformatory in Mansfield are in for the scare of their lives. The
1898 Reformatory is said to be the unrestful home of numerous
disgruntled former inmates. Don’t think it’s scary? Try spending the
night. Make your reservation now for an overnight ghost hunt in 2006.
This time of year, the imposing 250,000 square-foot castle-like
structure hosts one of the eeriest haunted house experiences
anywhere. Visitors who tour the Reformatory in daylight may recognize
the structure from films including, “The Shawshank Redemption,” “Air
Force One,” and “Tango & Cash.”

7. Ohio is close to home yet away from it all
Located within a day’s drive (600 miles) of 60 percent of the U.S.
population, Ohio is nearby, but offers enough variety to keep every
member of your traveling party happily engaged.

8. Scenic Railroads offering spectacular fall foliage and haunted
adventures
What better way to enjoy Ohio’s spectacular autumn color than with a
slow-moving journey aboard one of many scenic train rides. For those
who want more spook factor, some lines also offer haunted rides.

9. Whitetail Deer Hunting
Each year, the Ohio hunting season draws nearly 500,000 hunters to
the state, and experts agree this fall will be no exception.
According to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, there has not
been a greater bounty of wildlife in Ohio in the last 100 years,
including deer, wild turkey squirrel and duck. Archery Season -
Oct. 1 – Jan. 31; Youth Gun Season – Nov. 19 – 20; Gun Season -
Nov. 28 – Dec. 4.

10. Ohio Farm Markets & Corn Mazes
The abundance of Ohio farm markets and U-Pick farms is never more
obvious than in the fall, as the countryside takes on golden and red
hues signaling that the harvest is underway. Almost half of all land
in Ohio is prime farmland and approximately 99 percent of farms in
Ohio are family farms. Stop along a scenic country road for fresh
picked apples, pumpkins, squash, fresh baked goods, and more. More
and more of these markets are creating intricate corn mazes that are
fun and provide excellent information about the state and its
history.

For additional information about visiting Ohio this autumn, please visit DiscoverOhio.com and click on the Fall Foliage icon. Free Discover Ohio Travel Planners and the Fall/Winter Discover Ohio Calendar of Events can be ordered online or with a call to 1-800-BUCKEYE. Travel counselors are available to assist callers weekdays from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., and weekends 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

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