February 2009

The countdown to St. Patrick’s Day is ON! Are you feelin’ the Irish Attitude yet? Then POST your favorite Irish saying, toast or Limerick on our blog.  We’ll pick the best four and send you a Buy-One-Get-One-Free coupon for Graeter’s delicious Shamrock Sundaes! (Think mint chocolate chip ice cream, hot fudge, chocolate sprinkles and green mint whipped cream.) YUM!

The “wearin’ of the green” is fast approaching, and where better to spend the weekend than Dublin, Ohio? During our Dublin, OH St. Patricks Day Celebrationannual St. Patrick’s Celebration (Saturday, March 14, 2009), everything is a little greener. And we do mean EVERYTHING. From the Lions Club Pancake Breakfast to the huge community parade, to the Irish entertainers and the Blarney Hop at the Shoppes at River Ridge. Aside from the fact that most of the family friendly activities are free, our hotels are offering some great getaways. So, if cabin fever (or the economy) is getting the best of you … recharge with an economical weekend escape that will save you some GREEN. Here are some special deals:

  • Hilton Garden Inn Dublin (Fri, March 13)  8 p.m. Irish Reception including Bailey’s coffee, hot chocolate, shamrock cookies and an Irish atmosphere. (Not to mention a Half-Off Happy Hour with appetizers and drinks.) Receive a complimentary Irish souvenir upon check in. Before heading out to the parade on Saturday, enjoy a complimentary cooked-to-order breakfast. $99/night. 500 Metro Pl. North. 800/600-1550 www.columbusdublin.gardeninn.com
  • Envision yourself in Ireland with the Irish décor and music of the Chase Suite Dublin Hotel.  Relax in a cozy suite and receive a warm Irish welcome and a Shamrock luggage tag. Enjoy a hot buffet breakfast with special Irish menu items. Add an Irish themed basket (with Baileys Irish Crème, crackers, cheese and chocolate) to your stay for an additional $25. 4130 Tuller Rd. 614/766-7762 www.chasehoteldublin.com
  • The award-winning Embassy Suites Dublin offers a location in the heart of the parade route. Overnight in a large two-room suite and enjoy a cooked-to-order breakfast and cocktails at the evening manager’s reception. Special weekend getaway rate: $89.99 plus tax per night. (Based upon availability. Available Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.)  Call 614/790-9000 and mention code “WKN.” www.embassysuitescolumbusdublin.com
  • Both Dublin Extended Stay America locations offer great rates for the St. Patrick’s Day weekend celebration.  The Columbus/Dublin location (450 Metro Pl. North.) offers queen-size studios starting at $64.99, plus free access to Metro V Athletic Club. www.extendedstayhotels.com  614/760-0053. The Columbus/Tuttle hotel location (5530 Tuttle Crossing Blvd.) offers studio rooms starting at $79.99 with free coffee bar, fresh fruit and bagels in the morning. Book online: www.extendedstayhotels.com or by calling 614/760-0245.
  • Save some green by taking advantage of the Marriott Bonus Bucks Promotion when you stay at the Marriott Columbus Northwest Hotel over St. Patrick’s Day Weekend.  Stay two nights and receive a $50 Bonus Buck Certificate, good toward a future two-night stay at all Marriott Hotels and Resorts located in the United States.  The Bonus Buck promotion rate is $119.94. Book online: www.marriott.com  5605Blazer Pkwy.

-Post by Kay


Are you (or do you know) an Ohio filmmaker/video creator?  Well, get out your cameras … The Ohio Film office has JUST launched The Ohio Film Music Video Challenge. This cool contest presents an outstanding opportunity to show your stuff… and get your work in front of judges including  Bob Hoch (Senior Director of Digital Marketing) Sony Music; Mark Johnson (Producer) “The Chronicles of Narnia:”  Todd Longwell (Writer) The Hollywood Reporter and many other amazing entertainment industry icons.

The effort was designed to support filmmakers throughout Ohio, while partnering with some of our fine educational institutions and bands/musical acts. But, heads up … you have just three weeks to pull this together (from concept to video shoot to posting on YouTube). The public will be voting (which makes it extra fun for us filmmaker-wannabe types), narrowing the list down to the top 10. Then the music/film industry BIG WIGS step in to make the final choice.

The awesome prize package includes 10 hours of recording studio time at Ante Up Audio; a day of photography by Greg Wilson Photo, dinner for two at Hard Rock Café, a Gospel Brunch for two at House of Blues, a weekend stay at the Hyatt Regency Cleveland, tickets to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and more.  

Since the criteria mentions inclusion of a “location identified by a historical marker” and “a sign that displays the word Ohio in a positive manner” (among other things)—we hope you’ll remember that your BFFs at the Dublin, Ohio Convention & Visitors Bureau tipped you off about the contest (AND that we know the locations of a few GREAT nearby Ohio markers and signs).  Just sayin.’  Good luck … and rock on!  

-Post by Mary  

You’ve heard us talk about our “Irish Experiences”  before … those special itinerary builders Richens Timm Irish Dance - Dublin OH(for motorcoach groups) and add-ons (for corporate outings/teambuilding events) that enable groups to truly experience Dublin’s “Irish Attitude.”  One of the most popular of these offerings is an “Irish Dance 101” class with Richens Timm Academy of Irish Dance. During this experience, groups get an up-close-and-personal look at the world of Irish dance … through the eyes of a certified teacher (and former dancer with Michael Flatley’s Lord of the Dance) and several students.  Groups learn the difference between a jig and a reel, how “sock glue” can come in handy, the inspiration behind the patterns on the brightly colored costumes and … a few steps.

The Dublin CVB will have the opportunity to promote our Irish experiences later this week in Pittsburgh at the Heartland Travel Showcase, a large regional appointment-based trade show/conference geared toward motorcoach tour operators. The event draws tour operators and suppliers from 12 states and Canada and is sponsored by the Ohio Travel Association. Most exciting of all, our Irish experiences will be highlighted (along with other Central Ohio partners) during a special luncheon event sponsored by Experience Columbus. About 18 months ago, Experience Columbus embraced the trend in experiential tourism and brought in a national expert/consultant to work with its lucky partners.  Today, their efforts have resulted in a wide variety of offerings by 21 partners–unmatched anywhere else. 

So, we were proud to be part of an Experience Columbus video shoot last Friday that will feature our “Irish Dance 101” class–and partners. The video will be unveiled at a special luncheon sponsored by Experience Columbus at Heartland this Saturday. Word is, it will be available online very soon. Meanwhile, check out the fun photos from the video shoot (see Flickr pics at bottom of page).

-Post by Mary

More great news from the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium …  they were just awarded the #1 Zoo in the Country by USA Travel Guide. Columbus Zoo ManateesThe guide goes on to say what we already know… “The Columbus Zoo is considered today to be the aspiration of any traditional zoo. Along with over 7,000 animals, the Columbus Zoo has more recently expanded to include a water park, amusement park and golf resort.” Look for some great Columbus Zoo/Zoombezi Bay Water Park hotel packages through the Dublin CVB in the coming months with great discounts on rooms, tickets, restaurants, etc.

-Post by Scott

Be Mine. True Love. Sweet Talk.  Remember those little candy “conversation” hearts with words on them that you used to get (or give) for Valentine’s Day? I loved those.   I have distinct grade school memories of decorating oatmeal boxes or gigantic white envelopes with hearts and lining them up along the chalkboard and just anticipating what I might discover in my mailbox after the 4th grade Valentine’s Day party.  A valentine from “the cute kid” with a box of hearts attached made me feel like Cinderella.  Ahhh, youth. 

I admit, as we girls get older, our expectations increase. That might explain my swooning earlier this week while posting the Dublin (OH) Valentine’s packages on our Web site. I have to say I was impressed with the imagination our hotel partners invested in creating these packages.  White knights (or Prince Charmings) can sweep their princesses away with a luxurious hotel getaway including Champagne, chocolate covered strawberries and a full breakfast.  Irish gentlemen can carry off their fair-haired lasses to a private suite complete with cozy fireplace, and give her a basket filled with Irish goodies like chocolates, gourmet cheese and crackers, a candle and Bailey’s Irish Crème. Other packages include a romantic dinner for two or roses. What could be easier? The work is all done. She’ll love it.  And the best part? The great rates. (Check it out.) Now, that alone is worth is worth making her feel like Cinderella for a day, right?  Heck, we”ll even throw in a box of conversation hearts.

-Post by Mary

There’s an old Irish proverb that goes, “A man loves his sweetheart the most, his wife the best, but his mother the longest.” Valentine's Day in Dublin, OH If you’re inclined to honor your sweetheart, wife or mother this Valentine’s Day … Dublin, Ohio would be a good place to start.

You can’t beat the French for a romantic Valentine’s Day Dinner. La Chatelaine French Bakery and Bistro is offering a 3-Course Dinner for two on that special day. Choose Frisee Salad or Seared Scallops for the first course, Beef Tenderloin or Monkfish for the 2nd course, and Terrine de Framboise a la Montparnasse or Bouchee of Chocolat Praline for dessert. Visit the La Chatelaine web site  for all the yummy details. Call now to make reservations.

If you’re looking for a little something different, consider Valentine’s Night at TehKu Tea Company for a “Romantic and Relaxing Dinner by Chef Inggrie. Enjoy a relaxing evening with tea infused Baked Salmon, herbed and roasted tea infused brown rice and a special house salad. Get pampered with Foot Reflexology by Rhoda and Chair Massage by Anne. Neck and arm massage by Abby with the Origins. Please RSVP to 614-761-3808 by 2/13/2009 or email info@tehku.com. Tickets are $75/couple.

-Post by Kay