It’s that time of the year. The snow is falling. The Christmas trees are going up. The malls are jammed with lemmings pursuing the annual capitalistic orgy. (*Ahem*)
So what’s a sophisticated holiday reveler supposed to do at Christmas in Cincinnati?
Glad you asked that.
The Duke Energy Train Display
Every year at Duke Energy headquarters, the company puts an elaborate model railroad on display in the lobby. It’s an annual tradition that began in 1946. Throughout the year, Duke employees and retirees repair parts and setup new model trains that go on display after Halloween. The display runs daily through New Year’s Eve and is free to the public.
The Krohn Conservatory
This used to be free, but budget cuts have brought small admissions fees. The Christmas show now features model trains similar to Duke Energy. Many of the plant displays are designed around the holidays, and some years feature a live nativity scene. Plus, the Conservatory is near Mt. Adams, a great place to go for lunch or to bar hop in the evening.
This photo is from 2008 when my then-new bride and I went on an afternoon date.
Festival of Lights
Why would you go to the zoo in the winter? Because the whole place is decked out for the holidays. From November 1 to January 1, the Cincinnati Zoo is lit up and turned into a holiday party. Normal admission rates apply, but this event, now sponsored by PNC Bank, is also an annual tradition.
Playhouse in the Park: A Christmas Carol
Every year, Playhouse in the Park in Eden Park (hence the name) puts on A Christmas Carol. It’s the local theater’s best-known production. The above ad is almost as popular as the play itself.
Thanksgiving brings the skating rink to Fountain Square downtown. It lasts until February, assuming February is more like Ohio and less like Seattle, as often happens.
But if you’re looking to ring in the new year with 10,000 of your closest friends, and Times Square isn’t doable, you can’t go wrong with making your way downtown to Fountain Square. You can party at Cadillac Ranch, Mynt Martini, Rock Bottom Brewery, or watch the new year come in Macy’s largest big screen TV in the Tri-State.
More at the My Town Monday blog.