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

 

Is cabin fever getting the best of you this (extra) cold and (not so) lovely Januarylion-in-snow? Me, too … but I have a few “beat the blues” tactics in my arsenal that I thought I’d share. Bring your camera, the kids and come with me on a virtual adventure … a perfect January day in Dublin, Ohio!

 

First stop… La Chatelaine French Bakery in Historic Dublin. If you get there first, you might want to enjoy the signature quiche, fruit and coffee. I’m going to grab an almond croissant and a hot tea to go. (Sorry, not a morning person.)

 

#2. Columbus Zoo and Aquarium. We’re HUGE fans of the Columbus Zoo. It’s like visiting an entirely new planet, just five minutes away. As a bonus, visitors get half-price admission tickets through March 1, 2009. (Am I your new BFF, or what?) Let’s head for a simulated night hike at Bob and Evelyn’s Roadhouse (Australia region), then go to my fav: Manatee Coast; wander over to the calming 100,000 aquarium in the Shores region; then to the Islands of Southeast Asia and to pet the barnyard animals of Habitat Hollow in the North America exhibit. A little hand sanitizer and we’re off to our next stop.

 

#3 Morgan House. Just across the river, we’ll visit the Morgan House. We can warm up with a bowl of the signature chowder or a sandwich by the roaring fire. The old-fashioned-girl in me loves the furnishings and legend behind this place. (Confederate General John Morgan slept here … sort of.) The hip chick in me loves the jewelry, clothes, seasonal décor, gourmet foods and great gift items.

 

#4 I’m going to give you a quick driving tour by a few of the Dublin Arts Council’s Art-in-Public Places. There’s the Tribute to Jack Nicklaus sculpture (for his contributions to Dublin) and our funky Field of Corn (109 ears of 5-6 ft. concrete corn!). Scioto Park is home to the 12 ft. high stone face of “Leatherlips.” I hope you brought your sled (and wore your boots), cause we’re going to ride this awesome hill all the way to the Scioto River! Go ahead … age before beauty.

 

#5 Let’s shop Filene’s Basement and DSW for stylish (discounted) clothes and shoes; visit Whole Foods for some fresh produce, tulips (my favorite blooms) and delicious samples; and then head to the Shoppes at River Ridge—for jewelry and purses at Audacious, Bliss and more. (Note: Let’s schedule a date to come back soon when the Wine Loft and Montgomery Inn are open.)

 

#6 Historic Dublin. Let’s pick up a copy of the walking tour at the Visitor Center, highlighting the many charming buildings on the National Registry of Historic Places. Next stop, TehKu Tea Company for a hot cup of one of their 60+ world teas (red, black, green) and some hot scones. When in Dublin (OH), you’re Irish—so we’ll visit Ha’penny Bridge Imports of Ireland for some souvenirs (for you). Then we’ll visit Blankets and Booties for cute baby stuff, Z Bearlas for great gifts, Temptations for fine yarns (I’m a novice knitter). We’ll decorate our own cupcakes at the Our Cupcakery cupcake bar; pick up some Buckeye Crunch and Irish mint brownies at Sisters Sweetshop/Grandma’s Fruitcakes and enjoy a blast-from-the-past with treats from MJs Candies. Isn’t this fun?

 

#7 Irish Attitude. You can’t leave the city where “Irish is an Attitude” without a little Irish cheer. We’ll end our afternoon at Dublin Village Tavern (sample an Irish egg roll)… and/or The Brazenhead Irish Pub (authentic Irish setting).    

 

I feel better already. How about you?

 

 

-Post by Mary

Just checked out the Shoppes at River Ridge the other day and found some GREAT

Shopped at River Ridge Dublin, OH

Shoppes at River Ridge Dublin, OH

bargains. Not many people (outside of local Dubliners) know about this new gem of a shopping district … but they will. Montgomery Inn (the top-rated privately held rib and barbecue restaurant in the US in 2007) will open its first Central Ohio restaurant in the Spring of 2009, right here in Dublin, Ohio.  But, there’s more.

 

Did you know that you can find fun holiday gifts for $15 and under at Audacious? I found purses, bracelets & bangles, hoop earrings, scarves, sunglasses, wallets, key chains and even OSU items. You can even build your own charm bracelet.  Every Wednesday 5-8 p.m. is Girls Night Out … with great specials.  

I found a Vera Bradley tote for my daughter-in-law at Bliss. This new store is filled with designer brands, all created by women, including: Crabtree & Evelyn, Stephan Baby, Bambini Carini, Mistral, Bean Pod, Trollbeads, Chamilia, Lela Belle, She Beads, Staxx and Kameleon.

The Acorn has markdowns of at least 50%. And then there’s Coldwater Creek with all those fabulous, irresistible clothes. If you’re looking for a unique gift for your favorite munchkin, try The Learning Center for very cool stuff. Take a coffee/bagel break at Bruegger’s Bagels. Coming soon: The Wine Loft (Feb. 2009) and Simpure Aveda Salon (March 2009). The Shoppes at River Ridge is located near the southeast corner of 161/Dublin-Granville Rd. close to Riverside Drive.

-Post by Kay