OFB 50 States Project: Ohio

OFB 50 States Project: Ohio

In The OFB 50 States Project, you the readers spill the beans about your state: the good, the bad, and the delicious. And thus provide “forever place” seekers (like yours truly) a useful resource in their search. We’d love to hear about your state! To be a part of this project, click here to fill out the form!

The Facts

Low State Taxes Ranking:  30Low Cost of Living Ranking:  15

State Economy Ranking:  31

Average Temperatures (Columbus):

  • Winter:  37°
  • Spring:  64°
  • Summer:  85°
  • Fall:  65°

The Nickname

The Buckeye State


The Short of It

The state of Ohio is brought to you by the following awesome OFB readers:
1) Erin E.  //  2) Jess H.  //  3) Carla  //  4) Elaina

What food best represents Ohio?

  • I grew up in NW Ohio, where the answer would be shredded chicken sandwiches (Best. Thing. Ever.). Now I live in NE Ohio (Cleveland), where the answer would be corned beef. 1
  • Skyline Chili 2
  • Cincinnati Chili 3

What song best represents Ohio?

  • Ohio (Come Back to Texas) – Bowling for Soup / This City – Patrick Stump 1
  • Hang on Sloopy – The McCoys  4

How does OH refer to a carbonated beverage drink?

  • Pop 1, 2, 4
  • Depends on which part you’re in 3

If you could take a friend to one place in OH, where would it be?

  • Cedar Point 1
  • Reds Stadium 2
  • The southeast state parks 3
  • Old Man’s Cave 4

Old Man's Cave

Old Man’s Cave (photo by VasenkaPhotography)

The Long of It

Biggest misconception about OH?

  • The biggest misconception is that it is boring and rural. 2
  • There’s nothing worthwhile in Ohio. 3

Best aspect about living in OH?

  • First: I’m here. Haha, but actually I will be moving out of the state for the first time this summer. Moving to Portland for a change of scenery :). Second: No natural disasters. The worst we EVER get is a tornado and I haven’t seen a single one in my almost 24 years in Ohio. Third: Our votes really matter in elections. Ohio very much has the ability to decide who wins and who loses. Fourth: Cedar Point. Fifth: Cleveland specifically has awesome food. There are a lot of great restaurants here. 1
  • There are so many things to do. Tons of parks and restaurants, interesting points of interest. It’s also super beautiful during the spring, summer, and fall seasons (but I’ll admit, winters can be rough!). 2
  • Beautiful open areas. Very diverse- lots of cities with distinct characters, as well as great rural areas. 3
  • The lake! It’s nice to have the Great Lakes so close — so much to do out there! 4

Worst aspect about living in OH?

  • The weather. The saying goes, “If you don’t like the weather in Ohio, wait five minutes.” Our weather has serious multiple personality issues. To sum it up: Bitterly cold in winter, really effing hot in summer. We get like 3 days each of nice fall and spring days. 1
  • The weather. It gets a little bipolar. 70 degrees one day, 30 degrees and snowing the next. It gets rough on the sinuses and allergies. 2
  • Fairly conservative, politically and religiously. 3
  • THE WEATHER. Extreme and inconsistent. And the summer breeds construction. Everywhere! 4

Summarize your feelings about Ohio in five words.

  • Safe but kinda boring. Cows. 1
  • I’m proud to be Ohioan! 2
  • Not my forever place. 3

Our Freaking Take

It seems like every time I meet someone whom I can’t immediately get a sense of where they’re from, turns out they’re Ohioans. Hopefully that’s not taken as a knock. It is the 7th most populous state, after all. And most Ohioans I’ve met are nice, laid back folk. Other than that, I really don’t have much more experience with the state. We drove through the state on our cross-country move and the roads were in awful shape. They also charged us an arm and leg in tolls. Honestly, I don’t think there’s a huge draw for us to Ohio. Rarely, do the Ohioans I speak with rave about home. The weather seems blah. I’ve never liked any of the sports teams (which is a major consideration — kidding). I’m probably not giving the state a fair shake, but for now, I think Ohio’s one state we’ll pass on… cue angry Ohioan comments from every corner of the Internet.

How did these answers line up with your perception of Ohio? Have your thoughts on the state changed after reading this? Could you see it fitting your forever-place bill? 

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  • Reply Halsy June 28, 2013 at 11:50 am

    Hmmm wonder what part of Ohio you drove in? I only know of one area that has tolls? I have to say no trip to Ohio would be complete without a visit to The Ohio State University…can you tell I am an alumni. No seriously the Shoe is awesome-especially on game day. I also agree that Hocking Hills/old mans cave is great too. We have an awesome zoo in which I have actually seen and talked to Jack Hanna(on my bucket list cue the nerdiness coming out). I like that there are so many dialects spoke as well. I love that we have all four seasons-sometimes in the same week 🙂 Its really a great place to raise a family. I guess I like Ohio a lot more than I thought….

    • Reply Johnny July 1, 2013 at 12:37 am

      I don’t know if it’s still called the I-80 where it meets in Ohio, but that’s what we took all the way from Utah to NYC. And Ohio spared no opportunity to leech our money for the short stint in the state. 🙂

      I’d love to catch a game at The Horseshoe. I’d love nothing more than to travel the country and visit the legendary college stadiums around the country, but I need to figure out how to get Joanna interested in that idea. 🙂

  • Reply Jake @ Common Cents Wealth June 28, 2013 at 11:50 am

    My wife is from Ohio, but we live in Minnesota now. I got a kick out of someone saying that the weather sucks and the winters are bitterly cold. Have they ever been to MN?! My wife can attest that the weather is way better in Ohio than Minnesota and she frequently reminds me of this.

    • Reply Johnny July 1, 2013 at 12:38 am

      Haha. I’m from CA, so you’ll hear me (and every LA weatherman) complaining if the temperature drops below 60 in the winter.

  • Reply Brian June 28, 2013 at 1:37 pm

    None of them mentioned two amazing things in Ohio… The Airforce museum at Wright-Patterson is a top notch facility and has so many airplanes it is sickening. It is really hard to see it all in one day. Second, none of them mentioned the amazingness of Jungle Jims grocery store in Cincinnatti. I guess I really have three things, since they mentioned Cedar Point, but left out King’s Island. Between those two parks (which are really far apart) you can pretty much get your rollercoaster fix.

    Could I see Ohio as my forever place? Nope. It is a nice place to visit, but it is just not for me.

    • Reply Johnny July 1, 2013 at 12:40 am

      I love me a good air museum. I didn’t know about the feud between Ohio and North Carolina regarding bragging rights to the Wrights (no pun intended) before I moved out here. But apparently they both try to claim their state as the birthplace of flight. Sounds sorta petty to me.

  • Reply Anna June 28, 2013 at 5:07 pm

    Born and raised in Ohio and yes, it’s my forever state. There are parts that are really beautiful and rural but we also have fun urban things going on in the Cleveland/Tremont/Ohio City areas. Ohio is full of history. How could your OFB Ohioan readers not mention that!? Ohio is known as the “Mother of Presidents” because 8 of our nation’s presidents were from Ohio and I believe 5 of them are buried here. Awesome statistic, huh? And.. we have the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame right here in Cleveland. You people are missing out! Yea, the weather can be very unpredictable, but we get a taste of all 4 seasons and that’s my favorite thing about Ohio. 🙂

    • Reply Johnny July 1, 2013 at 12:42 am

      That’s right, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is out there. I definitely need to add that to my list of “Places to Visit… While Joanna Gets a Pedicure.” 🙂

  • Reply Budget and the Beach June 28, 2013 at 6:38 pm

    By far the best thing about Ohio is Cedar Point. And that’s all I can think of. LOL…had to say it because I’m originally from Michigan. 🙂

    • Reply Johnny July 1, 2013 at 12:43 am

      Mic dropped. I like the bad blood up there. I’ve never lived anywhere with a geographical foe. Makes me feel like I’ve missed out.

  • Reply Mrs. Pop @ Planting Our Pennies June 28, 2013 at 6:49 pm

    I always got this image that ohio is this place that few people ever leave since I rarely meet anyone from there despite it being so huge!

    • Reply Johnny July 1, 2013 at 12:44 am

      I met TONS of Ohioans in NYC and Boston. Outside of that, it seems like they’re probably all hanging out in OH, which makes sense.

  • Reply EcoCatLady June 28, 2013 at 7:31 pm

    I’ve known two people from Ohio, and there seems to be some sort of weird split personality thing going on with that state. I got the impression that the northern and southern parts of the state are very different from a cultural point of view. Other than that, Ohio is one of those places that I don’t really have on my mental map. It sort of melts into the whole midwest jello in my brain.

    • Reply Johnny July 1, 2013 at 1:29 am

      I’m with you on the midwest jello brain. We never visited that region of the country growing up, so my limited experiences there involve bathroom stops on road trips. And I don’t think it’d be fair to judge the midwest by the bathrooms I’ve visited.

  • Reply Stefanie June 30, 2013 at 12:08 pm

    Off topic, but I can’t seem to add your blog to my feedly account. It says it can’t find your URL even when I copy it in. Any chance you know why that is?

    • Reply Johnny July 1, 2013 at 1:30 am

      Thanks for the heads up! And I’m not sure why feedly’s search for our site doesn’t work, but regardless, you can click the handy little feedly button in the upper right corner and add it there.

  • Reply Liz @ The Lambent Life June 30, 2013 at 2:37 pm

    We lived in Columbus for 4 years and LOVED it. It’s a nice blend of the perks of living in a city (great higher education, art scene, loads of restaurants) while benefitting from solid suburbs (excellent schools, community, green spaces, low-crime). Ohio seems to be a stop-over for a lot of folks on their way to other cities (ourselves included) so we got to meet a lot of interesting people. I’d love to move back now that we have a family.

    • Reply Johnny July 1, 2013 at 1:35 am

      Now you got me second guessing myself. It’s amazing what a baby/parenthood will do to perspectives on places to live. A year ago, I’d say put us in a fun, vibrant beach city that always has stuff going on. Don’t get me wrong, that’d still be great, but far more important is a place (career included) that’s great for a family. Maybe I’ll wait on passing judgement on Ohio until we’ve actually visited the state.

  • Reply Michelle June 30, 2013 at 10:33 pm

    I want to go to Old Man’s Cave. I’ve never heard of it, but it looks so cool!

  • Reply Paige July 3, 2013 at 9:52 am

    I’m from Cincinnati, and I agree with what someone else said in the comments, that there is a split personality thing in Ohio. To me Columbus, and Cincinnati are vastly different from the rest of the state. You said you never met anyone who raves about it, I do. Not Ohio as a whole but I love Cincinnati. To me it is a rapidly changing, constantly improving, perfect mix of a metropolitan area, with a small town feel. I would love it to be my forever place.

  • Reply Kelsey D September 11, 2014 at 11:06 am

    I just want to say that I absolutely LOVE this series! It’s so cool to learn about the different states from a residential perspective. My family tries to go on vacation somewhere new each time so I have seen quite a bit of our great nation but I am from MI so that and OH tend to be preferred destinations. I now go to school in Dayton (The actual home of the Wright Brothers and the place they built their first plane in a bicycle shop…DON”T EVEN GET THE DAYTONIANS STARTED ON THE WRIGHT BROTHERS…NC has nothing on their claim to aviation history…) Anyways, the weather can be a drag here (we don’t really have much humidity in MI so I now HATE summer) but I have to say that the people most definitely make up for it. It may not seem like a hip place but most people who grow up in OH never leave so that must mean it’s great…right? hahaha well, I don’t think anything can ever beat my love for MI but OH is pretty nice place to live.

    PS: I just found your blog last week and I am one of those OCD people who can’t just read a blog starting the day I found it so I’ve been going back reading all the old posts…Hence this comment on an old post…

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