This month is perfect for getting outside and exploring our state before the kids head back to school. From America’s North Coast to the natural caves of Hocking Hills, there are hundreds of family adventures that should be at the top of every outdoor enthusiast's to-do list. These locally and family-owned outdoor recreation businesses represent just a few of the opportunities around the state for your family to enjoy.
In 2007, Hocking Hills Canopy tours set out on a mission to inspire Ohioans to experience the beautiful outdoors in their own backyard. By providing an experience that encourages visitors to get outside and explore, the business also highlights the idea that we should preserve our outdoor communities and nature itself.
Perfect for a summer or fall adventure, there are several different activities for you and the family to participate. Whether you enjoy ziplining, riding a Segway through nature, or hiking, there are many options for all ages to enjoy the beautiful views in Hocking County.
This local bike shop opened in 2009 and soon became so popular that three years later Blimp City Bike & Hike expanded into more empty space at the same address. Finally in 2016, they purchased a closed bank building at the 32-mile marker of the Ohio and Erie Canalway Towpath where you can find them now.
Blimp City has grown from their original staff of Andy, being in the store by himself six days a week, to five full time and three part time employees.
Blimp City also works to support local causes while planning to make more room and locations for more bikes as Ohioans continue to grow in their pursuit of outdoor activities.
Ohio Premier Archery and Sports was started in January of 2020 by father and son, Gary and Luke Ostoyic, alongside lead technician Evan Ceglarek. Having worked in the industry for many years, Luke and Evan used their combined experiences to create what is quickly becoming one of the most popular archery-only shops in Ohio. Not only do they carry high end bows and accessories, but also a generous inventory of used and price-point equipment to cater to the beginners and budget minded archers.
This shop is largely focused on growing archery as a whole, regardless of discipline or age. Maintaining a fleet of rental bows, both compound and recurve, the goal is to make it as easy as possible to get into the sport with proper equipment and instruction.
Ohio Premier hosts year-round spot shooting leagues as well as the popular indoor 3D winter league. With a dedicated team of shooting staff, there is almost always someone shooting on the range that is happy to help with advice or sighting in.
Recently they kicked off their youth archery club “The Ledges” as another outreach opportunity in the community.
Owners Andy and Tess Campbell found this beautiful campground in Racine about five years ago and immediately pictured all the opportunity that could come with it. Since then, they have updated several features around the campsite and more recently opened ‘The Aqua Park’ at Kountry Resort Campground this past May in 2021.
Kountry Resort offers camping, cabins, RV hookups, fishing, swimming, putt-putt golf, and even spaces for weddings or other special events!
For almost 40 years, Gentle Breeze Hot Air Balloon Rides has provided a Hot Air Balloon experience for the southern Ohio area. They are the oldest continuously operating Hot air Balloon Service in our state. Whether this is something on your bucket list, a gift for someone, or something to do with friends and family, it is sure to be a fun ride! Check out Gentle Breeze Hot Air Balloon Rides!
America’s North Coast has some amazing fishing! Ohio’s Western Basin of Lake Erie has the best walleye fishing in the world and it is estimated that millions of walleye are caught here each year. Though dozens of small businesses run their own fishing charters and work together to provide the best fishing experiences for their clients from all over the world, Blue Sky Charters has worked hard to really make a difference in the community.
Captain Peggy Van Vleet feels lucky to share her love of fishing with others and live and work in her favorite place on Earth. She has worked hard to promote the Lake Erie charter boat business, including organizing the governor’s Fish Ohio day. Peggy also organizes annual kids fishing outings in Port Clinton. She makes sure the kids have the fishing equipment they need to enjoy their time and possibly start a lifelong love of fishing sports. Peggy's love of fishing and the lake has made her not only a successful small business owner, but a mentor for hundreds of new fishermen and women, garnering her the Charter Boat Association Captain of the Year award in 2015.
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