Recently for an internal work project, I was asked to write “10 things you need to know about Columbus.” I didn’t mean for this to be a blog post, but I really liked the way the list turned out – so I decided to share it with you!
This is in no way the end-all, be-all list of Columbus. In fact, these are just my opinions on some of the reasons why I think the city is awesome. I also have to give a gigantic shout-out to writehuman.com for their amazing infographic, which totally inspired this list.
1. Columbus is f*cking awesome. Yeah, we know what you all say about us, but guess what – the joke’s on you. Everybody who visits expects a cow town but then falls in love with the city. Don’t take my word for it: 85% of visitors say they’re likely to visit Columbus again! And for the record, there aren’t cows here, so we certainly don’t know how to tip them.
2. Columbus has been called the “test market capital of the world.” We have just the right demographic mix that mirrors that of the United States. If something works in Columbus, it’ll pretty much work anywhere. Is there any wonder why Forbes, Washington Post, and countless other media outlets have recognized Cbus as a “secret foodie city?”
3. Columbus is headquarters to many big businesses, including: Abercrombie & Fitch, Bath & Body Works, Big Lots, DSW, Nationwide Insurance, Red Roof Inn, Wendy’s, Victoria’s Secret, White Castle, and many more. The most recent business taking roots here is Sbarro, which is relocating its headquarters from New York to the heart of the Midwest.
4. Columbus is the largest city in the US that doesn’t have some type of rail system. This is just one of the reasons why we’re thrilled to have car sharing, bike sharing, ride sharing, and a shiny new bus circulator that runs through the heart of the city – completely free for its passengers.
5. Everyone’s an entrepreneur or has an entrepreneurial spirit. We love our scrappy start-ups and the burgeoning neighborhoods. The city rallies behind those who are succeeding and lends a helping hand to those who might be struggling.
6. Speaking of entrepreneurs, two of the biggest in Columbus are women! James Beard award-winning author and president of Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams, Jeni Britton Bauer, has rightfully claimed her spot as creator of the best ice cream in the nation. And restaurateur extraordinaire, Elizabeth Lessner, has had a hand in creating nearly a dozen spots that are local faves and craves.
7. Columbus loves local. No really, we do. From eating local (see #6), to drinking local (hello, award-winning Middle West Spirits), to shopping local in the Short North Arts District – we have some serious Ohio pride.
8. Did somebody say Pride? Columbus is home to one of the largest gay Pride parades in the country. We may be the capital city of a conservative state, but Columbus is the LGBT mecca of the Midwest. According to a study by the William Institute at UCLA Law School, Columbus’ approximately 50,250 gay citizens outnumber the percentage of gay citizens in Chicago.
9. In 2013, Columbus was named one of the top 10 most intelligent cities in the world; in fact, we were the only US city that made the list.
10. Here are a few more fun facts that further prove how awesome Cbus is: #3 most fashion-forward city in the US, 15th largest city in the nation (right behind San Francisco), #4 in craft beer production, and #3 happiest city in the country.