Throughout my undergrad, I had heard from various friends that the Gallery Hop, which takes place on the first Saturday of every month in the Short North, was something I absolutely had to go to. Now, I don’t know about you, but when I hear the words museums or galleries I tend to run in the other direction. I’d normally take any sporting event any day of the week over a museum or anything that has the word gallery in it. So, in 3 years of undergrad at OSU, I had never been to a Gallery Hop.
By my 22nd birthday (senior year of undergrad at OSU) it seemed to my friends and I that we had done everything there was to do to celebrate birthdays, so everyone was in the mood to do something different. Coincidentally, my birthday happens to coincide with the Gallery Hop for November. After my friends assured me it would be fun and I wouldn’t hate it, off we went to Gallery Hop.
Now, I hate to admit when I’m wrong (especially when it means losing a bet), but after attending “the hop” I was forced to admit the error in my ways. The Short North made a believer out of me. I had always wanted to go to many of the little shops I’d seen so often on my way downtown and this was the opportunity. Most places are open until about 10pm on Gallery Hop night. The stores are mostly small businesses, many of which are owned by OSU alumni. Not only is this a really cool way to shop, but it’s also a great way to support local, small businesses near the OSU community.
1. Three Dog Bakery. They have great dog treats that look like “people food” and are made like people food except that they are sugar free. Maggie (my dog) prefers the carrot cake, but they also have cookies decorated for whatever season it is, tiramisu, and brownies, to name a few. They also have their own brand of healthy dog food in stock.
2. Global Gallery. This store is near and dear to my heart because the owner is a Program Coordinator for one of the OSU Scholars Programs and she also helped NOURISH International- OSU Chapter get students to go to Peru to complete a sustainability project. The store itself has all fair-trade products from across the globe, which are quite unique. The organic coffee is also delicious.
3. Much to the chagrin of my boyfriend, Big Rock, Little Rooster. This would be the place where all the women are lined up looking at the wedding dresses displayed so nicely in the large bay windows. As I’ve tried explaining to my boyfriend, it is just fun (at least for the girls, anyway) to look at the variety of dresses the store has to offer.
Tips for Gallery Hopping:
1. Take the Bus!!! It gets really crowded really quickly so traffic can be a mess. Plus, it is already hard to find parking there, so it much easier to just not worry about it and take the COTA #3 down and if you are late coming back, the COTA #21 (night owl).
2. Go Early! As stated above, it gets crowded in a hurry. If you figure out which shops you really want to go into, go to those when you first get there, then you can meander the rest of the time.
3. Stop at Jeni’s. After walking around shopping and just looking around, nothing makes you more relaxed than having a little Jeni’s before you go home. Caution: The line will probably be long, but the wait shouldn’t be too bad.
4. If you’re going to get drinks or eat, do it after. A lot of the restaurants, obviously, are open late on Saturdays anyway and they know to expect a big crowd on Gallery Hop nights. It’s more relaxing to eat or get drinks after you’re finished looking/shopping so you don’t feel hurried or rushed if you try to eat in the middle of it all.
5. Best Time to Go: October/November or April/May. These four times are the best because usually it is still somewhat warm and everyone is so excited either because school has just started or because spring has arrived. Either way, the atmosphere during these times is electric.
Gallery Hop is definitely something you have to experience at least once while here at OSU. The charm of the Short North and the variety of stores, restaurants, and art galleries there are makes for a winning combination.
Next Gallery Hop:
Saturday, November 6th