Ohio Street Food

Check out www.ohiostreetfood.com.
Founded by some friends of mine I grew up with in, you guessed it, Ohio, these guys are taking on the task of covering Ohio’s mobile food industry. From what we saw on a recent trip to Columbus, it looks as though street food is on the up and up there just as it is down here in ATX. They’re smart guys, smart with impressive senses of humor, smart with impressive senses of humor and fun, too. So support them. The end.

-Elizabeth

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The Anti Tourist on National Geographic: Columbus’ Local Food Scene

Oh my. Oh my, oh my, oh my. We have not told you very many stories lately, have we? We have been eerily quiet over here on The Anti Tourist front. This you must know. But know this as well: our silence can be undeniably credited to our relocation. From New York City to Austin, our headquarters have traveled with us as we’ve migrated and sought a warmer winter for 2010/2011. And warmer, it is. We like it that way. Meanwhile, we’re brainstorming the makeovers for the site we have in mind and we’re making more thrift store shopping trips than Ikea ones in an effort to furnish our office space with more spirit and less cookie-cutter. In the meantime, I put together this piece for National Geographic recently on the local farm-to-table food scene in Columbus. Shockingly, Columbus has got it all over many other cities who try and fail to support each other. Amazed at the success Columbus is having with this movement, I wrote this piece.

Growing up in Marietta, Ohio, Columbus was the “big city.” My mom would force us all into the car on Saturdays and we’d head to the JCPenney outlet store on the outskirts of the town. I remember dozing off to the soothing voices of NPR storytellers on the drive to Columbus. I dozed off on the drive back home usually, too. But that was because my entire family had just binged at the nearest all-you-can-eat buffet. The freshness or origin of the food at these joints wasn’t ever really in question. We were a family of five on a budget and food was food.

As high school graduation neared, most of my peers had already chosen to stay in Columbus and attend Ohio State. I however went to New York City, in step with the “Midwestern Girl Follows Dreams” cliche, and dismissed Columbus as a slow-lane college town, cookie-cut from the same dough as every other town between New York City and Los Angeles. And of course I thought that. I was 18 and uninformed.

The unfortunate thing is that it took me the better part of a decade to blink an eye at the city of Columbus again. After a recent thorough touring of Columbus’ culinary delights, however, I now know there was plenty else to eat. Plenty.

Read the rest of the piece on the National Geographic blog. Read it, comment on it, let the folks over there know you like it when The Anti Tourist’s voice is heard.

Be back soon with content.

By: Elizabeth Seward

Sunset in Marietta, Ohio

Appalachian culture is unique, unlike any other culture in the world. I grew up in the countryside within and around the Appalachians; it is beautiful, and the natural beauty is reflected in the culture of the people who live here.

Marietta, Ohio is where I grew up. A beautiful town through and through, there’s one especially perfect place to watch the sun set in this town. Although it might irritate my friends from back home that I’m in the business of disclosing information about spots that might otherwise be secret, I’m going to tell you the best place to watch the sun set anyhow.

It’s called the Stanleyville Church—at least as far as I know. That’s what everyone in Marietta calls it. If you can actually find it using Google, or by asking kind passers-by, then you deserve the view.

The colors are vivid, thick and contrasting; the sky and clouds light up bright orange against the deep blue green of the surrounding hills; acres of farmland cut into the forests complete with red barns and ancient wooden fences roll with the hills. Behind you as you watch is a decrepit old church and graveyard. The sunset light reflects off some of the newer stones.

By: Elizabeth Seward & Ben Britz

Zip Lining in Ohio: the way to see the Hocking Hills

You can explore the forest on foot. You can also do it while soaring through the canopy of the forest. Travelers visit places like Costa Rica, the reported birthplace of the canopy tour/zip line, to do just that. But they don’t often visit southeastern Ohio for the activity. But they should.

On a recent trip to Hocking Hills State Park in Ohio, not very far from where I grew up, I explored the forests in more depth than I ever had on weekend trips as a child. And by that I mean, I went zip lining (sidenote:  I also rode in a hot air balloon for the first time and as cheesy as that might seem to you, believe me, it is fan-freaking-tabulous. You should do it.). It was my first time going zip lining and I was excited. Hocking Hills Canopy Tours took me out for the adventure and as I ascended higher and higher toward the perfectly blue April sky, I had this “man, everyone should try this” feeling.The guides were sassy and simultaneously thoroughly helpful. The landscape was breathtaking. The lines were long and I sped quickly from tree to tree. The three hour tour felt more like 30 minutes. I can’t wait to do it again.

If you’re one of those people who thinks Ohio is all flat; think again. Southeastern Ohio is, in fact, Appalachia. And it is filled with gorgeous rolling hills. The kind you should eye from above.

By:  Elizabeth Seward, Photos By: Ben Britz