Downtown Columbus is Moving Forward
  • Inside 43215: Amplify Your Voice

    By Melissa Fast 
    | 20 Apr, 2014

    Do you have the power to affect inequality? Well, join forces with others, and everything is possible. The Women's Fund Keyholder event will help make that happen. On May 1, you have the opportunity to empower women and girls throughout our community, and Ashley Judd will lead the discussion at the Ohio Theatre. We know where to get tickets. So, how about it...? Amplify your voice.

    The Women's Fund Keyholder event gathers 2,500 people to honor the women and girls making a difference every day while affecting social change. The event energizes, activates and promotes gender equality, and all the proceeds from Keyholder are used to provide future grants that promise social change.

    Ashley Judd joins the Women's Fund on stage this year to share her passion and belief in the potential of women and girls. As an actress, Ashley has played many strong and passionate female characters throughout her career, connecting with and empowering audiences everywhere. Beyond the screen, she uses her confident, influential voice as an advocate for equality, encouraging women by sharing her own story. Her authenticity is undeniable; she is an incredible inspiration and change-agent for women and girls alike.

    "You have so much power to bring awareness, prevention and change," Ashley Judd has said about social change.

    Additionally, Ashley reminds us of the need for social change, globally and locally, and the effect this has on all communities. Did you know that for every woman or girl who participates in the Women's Fund grant partner programming, the effect ripples through our community, touching six more lives?

    "The Women's Fund has hosted this event over the years to amplify the voices of women and girls in our community," said Nichole Dunn, President and CEO of The Women's Fund. "Ashley Judd is an authentic woman who shares her voice to advocate for women and girls. Her commitment towards social change makes her the perfect fit for our 2014 Keholder."

    General admission tickets are 50.00 each. If you would like to be an Advocate with an Access Pass to the Keyholder After Party, that will cost 1,000. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit The Women's Fund website or call 614.225.9926.
  • Inside 43215: Vintage + Vision Tours

    By Heather Brown 
    | 20 Apr, 2014

    This summer, be a tourist in your own city. It's the classic home-towner's syndrome: neglecting to take in the sites and history of one's own home. The Columbus Historical Society is offering a series of bus tours this spring and summer where you can take in the past, present and even the future of this city we love.

    In two and a half hours, you will take in historical landmarks, cultural venues and more. The tour travels through downtown, hitting the Ohio Statehouse and the beautiful, new Columbus Commons; the Short North Arts District; German Village; the Arena District; the Discovery District; Olde Towne East; Franklin Park and more. The tour guide will share stories of national significance, international intrigue, and local history and lore. Sign us up.

    The Vintage + Vision tours run on the third Saturday of the month through October. The April 19 tour sold out, so be sure to register early for the upcoming tours (next month's will be May 17). The cost is 30.00 per person, 27.00 for seniors, and 24.00 for CHS members. You must register and pay in advance, so call 614.224.0822 or visit their website. The tours depart from and return to the Columbus Historical Society at 333 West Broad Street and COSI.
  • Inside 43215: Guilt-Free Dessert

    By Melissa Fast 
    | 15 Apr, 2014

    Wouldn't it be dreamy to enjoy dessert from time to time without loading on guilty calories? Well, a new downtown entrepreneur plans to make those dreams reality when she opens Sweet Simpliciteas.

    Aisha Echols started blending her own loose teas to make healthy drinks for herself and her family. She noticed when she used high-quality ingredients, she didn't feel the need to add a bunch of sweeteners and flavored creamers to make her drinks delicious. She started experimenting with all-natural ingredients to improve the taste of some of the teas (like chamomile), and she even blended a special concoction to ease teething pain for her daughter. Passion flamed, and she opened an online Etsy shop and also sold her Sweet Simpliciteas at places like Celebrate Local.

    But a little bit of kismet kicked in when she lost her job and, on the same day, was contacted by the Economic and Community Development Institute (ECDI). She found out about the Kick Start Columbus program from the folks at ECDI, and she entered the contest to win rent for a year, plus a host of other big prizes. Her business plan was selected, and now she is getting ready to open up shop at 259 South Third Street.

    “The day I left one place, I was presented with another opportunity. I was given a little push,” Aisha said. “I’ve never worked harder in my life, but I love it.”

    Aisha enjoys a niche of dessert teas like Chocolate Chip Chai and Crème Brulee Latte, but she offers plenty of other blended teas for those who prefer traditional favorites. She will offer about 30 blends of all natural, high-quality teas – all guilt-free.

    Look for details of a soft opening within the next few weeks, and a May grand opening. You’ll be able to buy tea by the cup, or purchase loose teas by the ounce. Either way, you’ll find some cozy seating, free WiFi, and some grab-and-go pastries and sandwiches.
  • Inside 43215: Designing Ohio

    By Heather Brown 
    | 15 Apr, 2014

    Tis the season for t-shirt design contests. We let you know that CoGo Bike Share wants to see how your designs roll, and now the Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board wants you to demonstrate the creativity and innovation of Ohioans through the Ohio Statehouse T-Shirt Design Contest. The Statehouse Museum Shop wants to find a unique, stand-out-from-the-crowd design that they can sell in the Museum Shop beginning this summer.

    If you want to share the fruits of your designer genes, be sure to get your entry in by April 30. The T-Shirt Design Committee will review the entries and announce semi-finalists on May 5. All semi-finalist designs will be posted on the
    Ohio Statehouse Facebook page, the Statehouse Museum Shop Facebook page and the Statehouse Museum Pinterest page, where visitors can “like” their favorites. The designs will also be on view in the Statehouse Museum Shop where visitors can cast their vote. All voting ends on May 23 and the committee will take into account the votes when choosing the winner, which will be announced on June 2.

    If your design is ultimately chosen, you will receive a t-shirt with your design, a $25 gift card from the Statehouse Museum Shop and a private tour of the Ohio Statehouse, including the rarely-seen Cupola, for up to 10 people. Plus your design will be on sale in the Ohio Museum Shop starting this summer.

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