The Columbus To-Do assignment is a really cool way to help first year students, especially those of us who are not from Columbus, figure our way around this beautiful city which we are lucky enough to be able to call home. The theme I chose for this semester is “Ice Cream and Desserts”. As a person who is addicted to any type of ice cream and all kinds of desserts, I thought this theme would be the perfect choice for me. I am extremely excited to be able to try out different ice cream stores and experience the top dessert destinations in Columbus. I hope to be able to adventure to everything; from the stores known all around the world to the stops that have earned the distinction as the city’s best kept secret. Through this assignment, I hope to be able to gain a better understanding of the city as a whole. I want to discover what the smaller, local stores add and mean to this big, fast-paced city. Coming from a smaller town, I also hope to gain skills to maneuver around Columbus. Along with this, I aim to form friendships with more people in ENR scholars. So far, I went to RocketFizz on High Street. RocketFizz is an amazingly mystical store that mainly sells soda pop and candy. Although at first glance, it may give off the vibe that it’s a local store, the RocketFizz franchise has made its way across America! Stepping into the building, I felt as though I stepped through a time machine. It looked like something out of a dream! The best part of the trip was talking to the friendly staff. They were as passionate about tasty treats as I am and being able to bond with people about something as great as candy really made my day! I would definitely recommend RocketFizz to my friends and family and I hope to go back soon!
This past weekend, I spent a lot of time exploring Columbus with some really fun people. What started as an expedition to complete an assignment quickly transformed into an unforgettable adventure. The first stop of the day was to a very unique custard store called Whit’s Frozen Custard. What made this shop unique was its ability to thrive on selling just three flavors of custard. This is unique because as a store known for its custard, one would imagine that it sold many different and fun flavors of custard. However, Whit’s only sells vanilla, chocolate, and one weekly flavor of custard. Even with this surprising sales routine, the store was very busy and all the customers looked satisfied with their custard. The high level of quality of the custard was undeniable and it was clear that the owners made the dessert fresh every day, as promised on the menu! Even though I only tried the chocolate custard, I can safely say that I give this restaurant a ten out of ten and that I am definitely recommending it to my friends and family.
Our next stop was to a frozen yogurt store called 39 Below. This store provided me with one of my least favorite experiences. Although the store looked very cute and welcoming on the outside, my friends and I were met with a different vibe once we entered. The first confusing event that took place was when the employee tried to sell us an object that definitely was not frozen yogurt. When we finally purchased our frozen yogurt, we realized that there wasn’t any where to sit inside the building, therefore we claimed seats outside. Ironically, and not in our favor, the weather also seemed to be “39 Below” and so we could not fully enjoy the cold dessert we were eating. In fact, we got so cold from the combination of the icy dessert and the chilly weather that no one was able to fully finish their frozen yogurt. I don’t know if my undesirable experience was a one-time event or a commonality, but I probably will not be recommending it to my friends or family. One good thing that came out of the visit, however, was the chance to take some cool pictures while waiting for our Uber driver to rescue us from the cold.
The third stop on our tour was to a nice little diner called Johnson’s Real Ice Cream. This destination provided us with a very fun and relaxed place to hang out for some time. The diner had a variety of food and drink options from burgers to ice cream to milkshakes to lemonade. We sat in some booths and enjoyed our food. The staff members were all very friendly and definitely contributed to the positive atmosphere. One of my favorite experiences from this store was probably seeing a group of little kids walk in together and just hang out. It illustrated the idea that this was a very family friendly, safe space for kids to just be kids and have fun and I enjoyed that idea a lot! It was cool to see young children embrace the city that I was only beginning to love. For all these reasons and more, I would definitely recommend this shop to my family and friends.
Our final stop was to a little chic pastry kitchen called Pistacia Vera. The building was aesthetically pleasing, both in terms of appearance and items sold. It had a very modern and relaxed vibe, but the food truly blew my mind. For the first time in my life, I tried a macaroon and it is safe to say that I found it to be my new favorite dessert! After trying the Buckeye macaroon, I felt as though I was experiencing a new level of pride for being a Buckeye. Not only was the food amazing, the music being played was very interesting and fitting for the store. Overall, I really enjoyed my experience at Pistacia Vera and am planning to bring my friends and family there soon!
Out of all the experiences I have been able to take part in through this project, the overall experience of spending time with my incredible roommate and some cool new friends was definitely my favorite experience of all. Building relationships with people can be scary for all introverts and extroverts alike. This project helped me overcome some obstacles by forcing me to talk to people I didn’t know very well and by putting me in situations I would have never imagined getting into (like getting on the wrong bus twice in one day). Through this assignment, I gained a lot of information about Columbus and all the people who impact the way in which the city works. I learned that Columbus never stops changing and improving itself, and if you just take some time to explore, you will be able to find some really beautiful places like German Village. After finishing this project, I have a desire to explore the music scene in Columbus. Since music is a huge part of my life, I am very curious as to how it impacts the life of our city. A recommendation I have for someone else completing the same list would be to take the time to take it all in. Absorb every single beautiful detail the city has to offer and don’t be afraid to let it change you. Also, if you are doing the ice cream and desserts list, make sure to check that the weather outside supports your decision to eat lots of ice cream and other various cold desserts in the unpredictable November weather that controls our new home in Ohio.