Activities & Attractions: Richland County
From ski resorts, golf courses and world-class racetracks to theaters, art galleries and outdoor concerts, Richland County is a fun place to be year-round. Especially fun: festivals including the Prairie Peddler Festival, Lexington Blueberry Festival, Shelby Bicycle Days and Bellville World’s Fair.
Mansfield Historic Carrousel District
Shop and dine at more than 60 unique specialty shops and eateries located in and around the historic Carrousel District in downtown Mansfield. It is also home to the first new, hand-carved wooden carrousel built in the U.S. since the 1930s. With 52 wooden animals, two chariots, mirrors, gilded detailing and lively pump organ music it will bring back happy childhood memories. You can enjoy outdoor concerts and the farmers’ market here, too. (4 West Fourth Street, Mansfield 44902; 419.522.4200; carrouseldistrict.com)
Ohio State Reformatory
The inmates are long gone, but the history of this amazing structure lives on. Tour the halls where “The Shawshank Redemption” was filmed, and enjoy the beautiful architecture of this building, where so many infamous prisoners were housed. (100 Reformatory Road, Mansfield 44905;419.522.2644; mrps.org)
Richland B&O Trail + Mansfield City Bike Loop
Walk, bike or cross-country ski on this family-friendly 18-mile paved bike path that connects two of Richland County’s quaint towns. Entry points along the trail make entering and exiting easy.
Wine & Ale Trail
Sip your way through the area’s wineries, breweries and wine bars, many located in interesting sites — a bank vault, blueberry plantation and former mortuary, for example.
Photo: Rick Dikeman
Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course
Enjoy the thrilling pace of racing at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course - as a spectator or a participant. The park-like, 330-acre complex includes a permanent road-racing circuit which hosts major championship events, as well as amateur and regional car club races. With grandstand seating for 12,000 and three observation mounds along the track, the spectator capacity is over 75,000. (7721 Steam Corners Rd, Lexington 44904; 419.884.4000; midohio.com)