Blog > The Good Guy File
Making Holiday Memories in Columbus!
Sleigh bells ring … snow falling … winter wonderland … white Christmas! Can you see it? Can you dream it? Well, if you are enjoying Christmas, New Year’s, and the Holiday season in the Deep South, you might not have much snow or many sleigh bells, but we have our own traditions and memory-making experiences! And, Columbus is a perfect setting for it.
Sometimes, just getting out in the cool air and taking a walk downtown is one of the best holiday experiences. Broadway in Uptown Columbus is the perfect place to window shop, hear some great music, have a wonderful meal, and step back in time amidst the beautiful architecture of the 1800s along the tree lined boulevard. The fountains, the gazebo, Christmas lights all over, having a latte and a pastry at the Iron Bank Coffee Co. . . . and so much more!
Make memories this holiday season by enjoying the new Kilwins fudge shop which just opened at 1230 Broadway. Fudge, peanut brittle, all kinds of delectable candies, gifts, and more are now available in this newest edition of the reemergence of Broadway as a major shopping, dining, and cultural center. And, what could be better for Christmas than the aroma of fudge in an old fashioned candy shop?
Uptown Columbus is the perfect place to make Christmas memories for the future . . . and to think back on Christmas past. Don’t let Christmas fun and celebrations end on December 25th. Columbus will keep enjoying the season all the way through the New Year and we would love for you to join us!
"I cannot endure to waste anything so precious as autumnal sunshine by staying in the house. So I have spent almost all of the daylight hours in the open air."
Sure wish I could take credit for something that lovely and poetic, but that's something Nathaniel Hawthorne so eloquently came up with many moons ago. But I certainly agree with his sentiment and love of this season and it's a good thing we've got plenty to keep us busy and out and about this weekend. So what might you be in the mood for? Football, got that. Marathons, check. Live comedy, you bet. A singing, dancing, cross-dressing character from Transylvania...yep, even that!
Take a break and go take a look at the Event Calendar and you can find out all about the Fountain City Classic at AJ McClung Memorial Stadium on Saturday or get details for the 2015 Soldier Marathon & Half Marathon at the National Infantry Museum. If you're a fan of the NBC hit, "Last Comic Standing," the RiverCenter for the Performing Arts has a live show tonight (11.6) with the best of the best from that show.
Head up the road a short drive to Pine Mountain for what's known as the "event of the season"...the Steeplechase at Callaway Gardens. Lots of great horse racing to watch and loads of other activites to make it a full day outdoors...they even have Jack Russell Terrier races which is a hoot to watch!
Don't forget this is your last weekend to catch a wacky classic--"The Rocky Horror Picture Show" at CSU's Riverside Theatre Complex. This is actually a live performance which takes the interactive experience to a whole new level! If you've been before, you know what to expect...if you haven't, well, just be prepared!!
And you can just about always count on something fun going on in the 1000 block of Broadway and tonight is no exception with the November edition of the First Friday Artwalk! It’s a very family-friendly event and they’ll have lots of different live music acts on the main stage, you can see lots of amazing art and even meet the artists, and they’ll even have these things called “Collaboration Stations” where you get to get all creative and artsy yourself…and kids will love this part too. Everything is handcrafted, hand-made or hand-painted. Nice way to kick off the weekend!
A show of hands who's ready for the weekend? Looks like it's unanimous! And why wouldn't we be ready? Beautiful Fall weather, tons of events and great people to hang out with. That's got the makings of a great weekend stamped all over it. And with everything that's happening the next couple of days, it's probably a good idea to make a plan and take a look at what's on the line-up. Best advice I can give you is to take a look at the Event Calendar to get a good idea of all there to choose from.
With Halloween right around the corner, you might be in the mood to start that party a little early so check out the Fall Family Fun Days at The Rock Ranch on Saturday (10.25.14). The theme for this one is Not-So-Spooky Halloween Festival so they'll have all kinds of cool stuff for kids including trick-or-treating beginning at 6:00pm. You can even dress up your pets and bring them along! Now, if you do happen to be up for something just a tad bit spooky, at 7:00 you can try your hand at the Corn Maze...with the lights out and only a flashlight to guide the way!! I got goose-bumps just thinking about that. Or you can join in the Zombie Zip with Whitewater Express. Not only can you zip-line across the Chattahoochee River as it's getting dark, but you'll encounter zombies all along the way, including all 4 levels of the "Tower of Terror." Even when you make it safely to the Phenix City side of the ride...don't think you're out of the woods just yet! These zombies are everywhere!
Lots of other events to choose from like Octoberfest at Florence Marina State Park, a Blacksmith Expo at Fort Mitchell 1813 Fort & Museum, the Columbus Cottonmouths have their season home opener at the Civic Center tonight (10.24.14) against the Knoxville Ice Bears, or if you're in the mood for some theatre, call now to make reservations for "The Amen Corner" at The Liberty Theater or "Rock Legends" at the Springer Opera House. Just a heads-up on the last two...it's the final weekend for these shows so work them in if you can!
Enjoy the weekend and find something fun to do!
The Columbus Convention & Visitors Bureau (CCVB) learned last week that it had been awarded by the Georgia Association of Convention & Visitors Bureau its Benchmark of Excellence Certification (BEC). The Columbus CVB is the second in the state to reach this standard of excellence and the first Bureau in the state to carry both the GACVB designation and national accreditation by Destination Marketing Association International; Columbus's national designation ranks it within the top 10% of CVBs worldwide.
BEC is an organizational program that measures CVBs on certain standards that demand excellence from marketing, human resources, technology, strategic planning, etc. This dual designation raises the awareness from within the community that the Columbus CVB has established itself among the some of the best CVBs as well with providing customers with the assurance that Columbus' official destination marketing organizations is dedicated to meet and exceed expectations.
Categories: The Good Guy File, on Saturday, July 16, 2011
This is a comment one of our Facebook Fans left on out page! We love to hear feedback of all kinds but really LOVE when it's positive!
"I came to Columbus, GA for a visit recently (May 20-23) and I must say we stopped by the visitor's center on the way out of town and the staff who were working made my day!!! They were so kind and helpful and incredibly nice! Thanks to you for making my trip to Columbus one that I will make again!!!! Such an amazing town and I can't wait to come back and explore more!"
Make sure you stop by the Visitors Center next time you're in town to get the scoop on all the things to do in Columbus, GA! You can also visit us a visitcolumbusga.com fi you want to explore our beautiful city in advance.
Categories: The Good Guy File, on Monday, June 13, 2011
I'm sure it's just lost in the mail, but I haven't yet received my invitation to Will & Kate's royal wedding. Guess I'll have to pack away the fancy hat I was going to wear…oh well. But you know what? That's ok because we've got tons of fun stuff to do this weekend right here in Columbus, GA! You won't find the wedding listed, but you can still find a slew of events and all the information you need about them on the Community Calendar. In fact, this weekend is packed with a lot of good music, so here's a sneak peek…
First up, one of the best, and second oldest in the nation I might add, symphony orchestras is at it again this Saturday night (7:30pm)! The Columbus Symphony Orchestra putting on show called “Symphony Funk-Tastique” and features guest pianist Andrea Lam. Sounds like she’s going to put on quite a show because she started her training at age 5 and by the time she was just 13, she was winning all sorts of national awards in her native Australia! And the pieces of music they’ll be performing are pretty wild in the world of classical music! And if you get there by 6:45pm, you can take in “Know the Score”—a pre-concert discussion given by conductor George Del Gobbo about the music to be featured! Admission ranges from $5-$36, depending on your age and of course, it's all happening at the RiverCenter for the Performing Arts. (888.332.5200)
Now, if you want to start the weekend off with a little Country music AND help out some really great causes, then you’re going to love this one! It’s called “Country for a Cause” and it will feature singer and recording artist “Georgia Clay.” This guy is actually from Columbus but makes his home in Nashville, TN so he can really pursue his music career. So not only will we get an earful of cool country, but all the money raised will be used to serve meals to the homeless and impoverished of our city and 10% of the profit will be donated to the City’s task force on homelessness. They’ll also have door prizes, food and children’s games. Sounds like a fun Friday night! Things crank up Friday (Apr 29) at 7:00pm on the stage in the median of Broadway between 11th & 12th Streets. There's no admission, but donations to help the cause are greatly appreciated. (706.327.4880)
(P.S. Lots to tell you next week about all the goings-on in Uptown…Concert for Scott Ressmeyer & his Riders next Thursday, BBQ Competition Friday & Saturday, Friday night Concert Series starts and Market Days being next Saturday. Wow!)
Or, if you’d like Classical music and you'd want to be outdoors, here you go! The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra will be performing under the stars at Callaway Garden’s Robin Lake Beach this Friday night. You can call in advance to purchase a stage front or beach table in advance or choose Lawn Seating, which is $20 for adults and for ages 6-12, admission is only $10. (800.CALLAWAY)
Maybe you’re ready to get out an enjoy a little sports action this weekend! Then head to Cooper Creek Tennis Center for the 32nd Annual Banana Open brought to you by CORTA (Columbus Regional Tennis Association). Adult matches are going on now and the finals will be held on Sunday and there will be Singles, Doubles, and Mixed Doubles play. And it may get a little warm out there for spectators, but not to worry because they’ve really gone all out with this banana theme…on different days, they’ll be serving up anything from Banana Splits, Banana Shaved Ice, Banana Pudding, even Banana Pancakes! Look for the Junior competition coming up soon too. They had me at Banana Shaved Ice… (706.317.4136)
It may be hard to believe, but 150 years ago, the Civil War got under way! Ever wondered what Columbus was like during that time? Here’s a good way to find out because this Saturday (April 30), the Historic Columbus Foundation is doing a special Civil War Driving Tour that will take in 40 locations throughout the City. Just imaging…the streets were not paved or bricked, there was no comprehensive sewer system, and at night the town was lit only by gaslight, candle lanterns and the moon! Sites visited will include all locations of factories used to produce war material for the Confederacy, the homes of famous soldiers and locations that were built during the Civil War as Columbus’ population grew from 9,500 to 15,000! You have to make reservations for this and there are only a few seats left. Meet at the Rankin House at 1:00pm and the cost to join in is $15 per person. (706.322.0756)
And to round things out, there's one more "Movies Under the Stars" this Friday night (April 29) at Wetherby Field on Ft. Benning. They'll be showing "Yogi Bear" and there's no admission…they'll even supply you with free popcorn…you gotta love that! Feel free to bring chairs, blankets and coolers. Movie starts at 8:30pm. (706.545.3328)
See, who needs a big, fancy, stuffy wedding when we've got all this going on?!
Now, go have some fun…
Another week almost over…and another weekend on the way! Time to start making some plans for fun and we've got a couple of ideas here for you. Remember, this is just a sampling of events but you can always go on the Columbus Community Calendar to find out even more.
Here's a fun twist on movie night! A classic movie is coming to a classic theatre Friday night (Aug 27). On a larger than life screen with state of the art digital projection and surround sound, the Springer Opera House will show a beautifully restored edition of Gone With the Wind. The movie, which won 10 Academy Awards, celebrated its 70th birthday last year but is still a very popular movie and is considered a landmark of film because of the wonderful story it tells. The Springer showed movies back in the 1930’s after the stock market crash so this is not a first for them, but you will have future opportunities to see occasional viewings of classics in the Springer Film Series. The show starts at 7:30 but the saloon will open at 6:30. You can call and reserve tickets now or get them tonight at the box office. Admission is $10 and the Springer is located at 103 10th Street in Uptown Columbus. (706.327.3688)
And speaking of the Springer—Georgia's State Theatre—they're having an event called "Sparkle the Springer." If you love this theatre, love to help and love to clean, they could really use your help in keeping this beautiful facility all shiny and, well, sparkly! If you'd like to help out, the cleaning gets underway this Saturday (Aug 28) at 10:00am. It's a great way to give back! (706.327.3688)
Friday night (7:00pm, Aug 27), at the beautiful South Commons Softball Stadium, the visually impaired Chicago Comets Beep Ball Team will take on the Country’s Midnight Express sponsors as part of all of the weekend festivities for the Country’s Midnight Express . But there’s a twist…the sponsors have to play blindfolded! The ball actually makes a beeping noise as it flies through the air and I believe the bases make a noise as well. The Chicago Comets are a very talented team and were the World Series Champions in 1993. This game is always so much fun to watch and the sponsors always get creamed by the Chicago Comets, which makes it even more fun. It’s a great way to spend a Friday night and it’s completely free to the public! You are welcome to make donations as all proceeds from this event and the Midnight Express stay in this community and go to help the visually impaired.
A big event that everyone in town looks forward to every summer is the Annual Midnight Express at Country’s on Mercury Drive. I just can’t believe that this will be the 30th year this great event has taken place. At 5:00pm on Saturday (Aug 28) the motorcycles will crank up with a charity motorcycle ride and the fun excitement will continue with live bands, PTAP’s Show & Shine Car Show, CSU and United Cheerleading demonstrations and Gold’s Gym bike-a-thon. The bands will start at 7 PM and you’ll hear local favorites Garrett Miles & Heather Hammond, Big Woody & the Splinters, and Classic Addict. Of course, the race will start at midnight, and the runners will be racing against the troops in Iraq via live simulcast. Awards will be handed out once the race is over. It’s always a fantastic event and this year will be no exception. There's no cost to attend the event and if you'd like to be a part of the race, registration is $25.
The 5th Annual Jim Blanchard Leadership Forum is scheduled for August 30 - 31, 2010 at the Columbus Convention & Trade Center. The theme is 'Adaptive Leadership for a Changing World' and includes a fantastic lineup of speakers. However, if you are planning on going and haven’t already reserved your seat, the event is sold out at the moment but the good news is there is a wait list. If it’s something you’re interested in attending, call right away and make sure you get on that list. On Monday evening, you’ll hear Former First Lady Laura Bush and on Monday there is a variety of wonderful speakers, including NY Times, best selling author and columnist Malcolm Gladwell and Randall Stephenson, Chairman & CEO of AT&T. It’s an exciting, information packed two days that won’t disappoint. Check the website for registration information or call 706.568.5101.
Here's a little something you can look forward to for next week…just to get you over that Monday hump! Get star struck this Tuesday (Aug 31) at the Coca-Cola Space Science Center with an Astronomy Night program. Planetarium show starts at 8:00pm and telescope viewing at 9:00pm. Free! (706.649.1470)
So there you have it. Just a taste of what's going on this weekend! Don't forget you can find out more by exploring the Columbus Community Calendar.
Now, go have some fun…
It really is the little things that can make your day go from bad to good (or vice versa) in an instant. A smile or a sincere greeting from a grocery cashier, a compliment from a stranger on the street, a server that goes out of their way to make sure your dinner experience is top-notch…these are just a few things that can improve your overall mood. It makes me especially happy when I find excellent and authentic customer service in the last places I expect it. I try to remember that when working with people and do my best to practice the Golden Rule, treat others as you wish to be treated. Someone may be having a really bad day, but just a smile or kind word might not make it all better but will definitely go a long way. So smile! And feel free to send me any great customer service stories you might have!
Categories: The Good Guy File, on Tuesday, June 22, 2010
So, a little bit of background…Yesterday, I was getting ready for work after a long night of tossing and turning and waking up every 2 hours when I realized I was out of coffee. So I went through a fast food joint on Macon Road for my desperately needed hit of caffeine. Coffee was good, service was good and quick, and my co-workers were saved from the monster I can become without my morning coffee. I never made it to the store last night to buy coffee, so once again this morning, I made my way to a fast food restaurant that shall remain nameless on Macon Road. I pulled up to the window to order and asked for a large coffee. I opened my mouth and began to request cream and sugar and the attendant said, "2 creams and 4 Splenda packets, correct?" I was sort of shocked into silence, wondering if I am so very predictable. When I pulled up to the window, the woman said, "I thought that was you. I recognized your car when you pulled up. Here's your coffee with 2 creams and 4 Splenda packets." Now I this is only my 2nd time EVER going through this drive through for coffee and this women who sees hundreds of breakfast customers a day remembered how I like my coffee. Talk about customer service! THAT is a great way to start your day!
Did you know that Columbus, GA has over 45 hotels ranging from economy to luxury? With so many options to choose from, you are sure to find the perfect hotel for your next meeting, reunion, or special event. Whether you need a full-service property, a hospitality suite, or a large meeting room or two, Columbus has got you covered. With our first class meeting facilities, wide variety of sleeping rooms, and top notch attractions, you are sure to find exactly what you need for your next event in Columbus, GA.
Click here to learn more about Columbus, GA and how the Columbus CVB can help in planning your next special event!
Genealogy is a wonderful addition to activities during your next family reunion. It's a process that can bridge the gap between generations as well as uncover details about your family history that you have never known. Genealogy is becoming increasingly popular, especially as part of family reunions.The Columbus Public Library on Macon Road has a fantastic Genealogy Program. Here, staff will guide you in discovering the fun facts and secrets about your family's history. It's the perfect place to begin the exploration of your heritage and ancestry, especially if you are a newcomer to genealogy. Visit the library's website at www.thecolumbuslibrary.org for more information.
We all know there's nothing more important than family. Especially in this day and age where families are spread out across the country, unlike days past, where family stayed close by each other. This makes it harder for families to stay connected and stay in touch, which is why reunions are so vital. Because we know how critical family reunions are and how stressful planning one can be, the Columbus CVB hosted a Family Reunion Workshop at the Columbus Public Library on Saturday, March 6. It was a complete success, with over 15 eager to learn planners in attendance. The CVB walked them through the resources and talent we can offer as well as the resources available throughout the city. Many questions were asked and you heard the phrase, "Wow! I didn't know that!" uttered frequently.
If you or someone you know is planning a family reunion, please let them know that the Columbus CVB is ready and willing to help make their reunion the best it can be. Give us a call at 706.322.1613 and find out how we can help!
On February 24 - 26, 2010 approximately 50 Visitor Center representatives from across the Southeast were in Columbus, GA for their Annual Meeting. They had informational sessions all day at the historic Trade Center, with a little bit of free time thrown in to explore our beautiful city. On Wednesday night they had a fantastic dinner at the National Civil War Naval Museum at Port Columbus. The atmosphere was wonderful and Country's catering was, of course, fantastic…steak, fried catfish, cheesy grits, hushpuppies, banana pudding, buttermilk pie, and chocolate chess pie…wow, I'm hungry again just thinking about it. Thursday night the participants did a dine around in our Uptown area where they ate at restaurants such as The Fresh Fish Market, Country's on Broad, The Cannon Brew Pub, Downstairs at the Loft, Houlihan's, and Locos Amigos Cantina. They'll finish up on Friday with a scavenger hunt and then head home, hopefully having learned a lot and leaving with some great memories of Columbus.
We want to say thank you to this group of great people for coming to Columbus and allowing us the opportunity to host their Annual Meeting. We hope to see them all again very soon!
We have the new Economic Impact numbers for FY 2009 and they are impressive. Based on a Tourism Impact Analysis done by Columbus State University, in FY 2009, we had 1.5 million visitors to Columbus, $359 million was generated in annual visitor expenditures, and 6,900 jobs exist because of tourism. Plus, for every $1 the CVB spent on advertising, Columbus received $11 return on investment.
I definitely think the word is getting out there about Columbus, and what a fantastic place it is to visit!
Categories: The Good Guy File, on Thursday, February 25, 2010
If you love theatre, arts, history, or just beautiful historic buildings, you are sure to fall in love with the Springer Opera House. If you've never been, click here take a sneak peek at this magnificent facility. The Springer has a Main Stage Season, A Children's Series, and a Studio Series. For more information about their season or the theatre itself, visit www.springeroperahouse.org.
A couple of months ago we kicked off our "51 Reasons" campaign. I have been putting different reasons out there on all of our social media sites and have asked others to send me the reasons they love Columbus and I wanted to share a few of the responses I received:
"Its a big city without the big city feel—laid back and comfortable."
"Love Lake Bottom, Cooper Creek, Flat Rock, & the RiverWalk."
"Personal, spiritual and professional growth!"
"The birthplace of Coca-Cola!!! "
This is just a little of the wonderful feedback we received about this wonderful city. If you have a reason you love Columbus, please feel free to share! Thanks!
"Hey there! How are you today?" Just these few words, especially when coming from a stranger, can have a big impact. I've noticed more and more lately that it really brings a smile to my face and makes my day a little better when someone I don't know, that I just happen to pass while walking down the street, smiles and says, "Hey! How are you? Have a great day!" So I have started greeting people too. It, hopefully, not only makes them feel better and noticed, but makes me feel good too. Now, I'm not saying you are not going to get some weird looks or the cold shoulder or maybe a response that you don't want to hear…that is going to happen. Some people just don't get it. But don't let that stop you.
Keep smiling. Keep saying "Hi!" I recently spoke to someone I passed in a parking lot, just a simple "Hi, how are you?" and she responded, kept going then stopped, turned around and said to me, "That is what I love about the South. How people you don't even know are so friendly and warm. Everybody here is always quick to smile and make you feel welcome." It turns out she was visiting Columbus for her son's graduation from Fort Benning. So next time you are walking down the street or down a hallway, smile at the people you pass and say hello…it costs you absolutely nothing and benefits everyone.
Categories: The Good Guy File, on Thursday, February 4, 2010
So, the CVB is kicking off its 51 Reasons campaign. It's basically just a fun, ever-changing list of reasons to visit or live in Columbus, GA. I asked our Facebook fans and friends to give me some of their favorite reasons, and these are a couple of the responses I received:
"I loved living in the Wildwood area! The historic homes and apartment that I lived in was beautiful and the parks are very well kept!" Kelly Carden McAbee
"A genuine historical catalog of "Suburban American architecture" from mid-1800s til today, rich military heritage balanced with a theatre district & vibrant songwriter/music scene.
Columbus, Georgia is an example of an American city transitioning from industrial to creative and back again…
Create in Columbus. Export to the world…" Sean Rox Michael Schoff
Please feel free to send any of your favorite reasons for visiting or living in Columbus, GA! Thanks!
We really should count our blessings that we are able to call such a wonderful city home. Columbus, GA has changed a lot over the past 10 years…and change has been great for us. I hear so many people lamenting the fact that we don't have a beach, or we don't have an amusement park, and go on and on about what Columbus doesn't have. But what about what we do have? What about the RiverWalk? The new Skate Park at South Commons? The National Infantry Museum? The Springer Opera House, the State Theatre of Georgia? Port Columbus? All of the local organizations that offer new things to do and ways to meet people, like the Columbus Roadrunners or the Rivertown Adventure Club, just to name a few. With all of our rich history, an environment that is extremely conducive to raising a family, and some of the friendliest people I know, natives should be proud to call Columbus home.
More and more people than ever are learning about Columbus, GA and what a great city it is. Usually, people's first question when they are thinking about coming here or have just arrived is, "So, tell me what there is to do in Columbus?" And the answer they receive is always much more than they expected. With all of our rich history, wonderful attractions, such as the National Civil War Naval Museum at Port Columbus, the Springer Opera House, and the Chattahoochee River Walk, and friendly natives, visitors to our city are always surprised and sometimes a little overwhelmed with everything they can see and do while here. In fact, many people have to schedule another trip because they don't have enough time to get it all in. If you want to hear more about Columbus, listen to this recent radio interview with Peter Bowden.