With a frosty nip in the air and fresh white snow on the ground, winter is the perfect season to experience outdoor thrilling adventures and tranquil nature scenes. Grab your winter gear, bundle up, and embrace the snow for an altogether outdoor adventure. Once you’re done playing outdoors there’s always a place to warm up inside. Whether you’re seeking adrenaline pumping adventures, peaceful winter hikes, or a cozy space to enjoy a mug of hot cocoa, you’ll find all that and more this winter in Grove City!
Start your weekend adventure at Grove City Guide + Gear inside the Visitors Center. You’ll get insider knowledge on the best spots in town and find gear for your upcoming adventures. After seeking advice from the friendly staff of the Grove City Visitors Center, take a short walk to Transcend Coffee + Roastery. Order a latte, espresso, or hot cocoa and nibble on a freshly made pastry while plotting your weekend winter escapades.
Wintertime outdoor fun awaits nature enthusiasts at Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park. Featuring more than 7,000 acres of forests, prairies, and wetlands, the park expands along 13 miles of the Big and Little Darby Creeks, so lovely that is has the designation as a State and National Scenic River. Within the park, 1,600 acres of restored wetlands and prairies invite numerous species of flora and fauna to make the park their home. Start at the park’s 18,000 square-foot Nature Center to learn about the microcosm of the Big Darby Creek ecosystem and watch native fish in the 53-foot living stream that runs inside the center. Behind the Nature Center bison graze in the Winter Bison Pasture. Although the well-insulated mammals are easy to spot in the crisp white snow, the Nature Center offers two viewing platforms with unobstructed views and mounted binoculars for a closer look.
Even though the bison are the main attraction at Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park, nature lovers can hike, snowshoe and cross-country ski on miles of trails throughout the park. Bring your skis when there’s snow on the ground; the 3.2-mile Dyer Mill Trail is reserved for cross-country skiing. Hike part or all of the 8.3-mile Darby Creek Greenway to see prairie and woods, along with the two bison pastures.
You’ve spent the cold morning taking in the dreamy winter scenes at Battelle Darby Creek, now warmup with heart pumping fun at the Big Bounce trampoline park. The locally owned one-of-a-kind indoor park offers jumping excitement for kids of all ages. You won’t be able to stop smiling as you literally bounce off the walls!
Chow down on a coney dog, fried bologna sandwich, or gyro at the Central Ohio staple since 1948, George’s Coneys & Gyros. If coney dogs or gyros won’t satisfy your palate, grab a slice of delicious pizza from Tammy’s Pizza, Grandstand Pizza Shop, or Zamarelli’s Pizza Palace in Grove City Town Center. Grab a Pizza Trek book, enjoy a pie from one of 10 participating restaurants and receive your first stamp on the trek. Get four stamps during your visit to earn a free commemorative tee!
After lunch, take a leisurely stroll along Broadway in Grove City Town Center to spot colorful art murals and shop at local boutiques. You’ll find unique souvenirs and treasures galore at Country Hearth Primitives, Zassy’s Tap Room and Home Décor, The Farm Table on 62, Sommer House Gallery and Co., The Look on Broadway, Grace & 62 Boutique, Skylark’s Toys and Comics, and The Honey House.
Once you’ve shopped till you’ve dropped, take a break to reminisce about the day’s adventures as you sip on local Ohio wines at Plum Run Winery and sample a pint or two of craft beer at Grove City Brewing Company. Located in the same building, Plum Run Winery and Grove City Brewing Company offer an array of local drink flavors, crafting mead, cider, wine, and beer. Dine on a fresh salad, artisan flatbread, or juicy burger while enjoying your wine or beer, then head to your hotel for a much-needed night’s rest.
Day two of your Grove City winter weekend starts at Lilly’s Kitchen Table for a hearty homemade breakfast. Savory comfort foods are the best fuel for the adventures awaiting you. Bundle up in warm gear to play in the winter wonderland of the 110-acre Fryer Park. Spend the next few hours with a smile on your face as you speed downhill on a sled then try your hand at catch and release ice fishing on frozen Rotary Lake.
Just a short drive from Fryer Park is LVL UP Sports, central Ohio’s paintball mega park. Featuring multiple playing fields, over 250,000 square-feet of themed scenario fields and six acres of woodsball, LVL UP Sports is the destination for the ultimate game of paintball! An adrenaline pumping paintball game with ecofriendly paintballs is a fun way to embrace the winter season. It’s a vibrant scene as an array of paintball colors are splashed upon the white snowy backdrop.
After your adrenaline-pumping day, you’ll probably need a power nap and shower to rinse off the colorful paint before heading to dinner. Cimi’s Bistro at Pinnacle features Italian-inspired cuisine. Savor every delicious bite as you dine fireside and enjoy the views of the beautiful golf course. While you could linger for the rest of the evening at Cimi’s, you can’t miss a performance at the Little Theatre Off Broadway. Performing musicals, comedies, and dramas, you’ll find yourself lost in the moment as the talented local artists and actors perform.
As you wake up feeling refreshed and rejuvenated from your weekend adventures, spend your last morning in Grove City by hiking and bird watching at Scioto Grove Metro Park. The 620-acre park offers plenty of open areas and scenic bluffs to spot migrating birds and waterfowl. As your winter weekend getaway comes to an end, you’ll reminisce about the fun memories you created and realize that the winter season is best enjoyed in Grove City.
By Heather Rader