There’s a trail for ale and a trail for coffee, and this year Experience Columbus introduced a third choose-your-own adventure option to explore the things and tastes of the city. The Made in Cbus Trail curates a list of local makers turning out everything from spirits to handmade goods.
“We take great pride in the wealth of creative, entrepreneurs in Columbus who are making quality, one-of-a-kind products,” says Experience Columbus. “The Made in Cbus Trail is designed to call attention to these makers and drive additional traffic to their businesses.”
The Trail sees a mix of participants. Residents are discovering unique, quality products they may have otherwise missed, while visitors get a peek at the local small businesses that contribute to the culture of Columbus.
Tour-goers can explore many of Columbus’ urban neighborhoods from Olde Towne East to Short North and Worthington, with nearly 20 options to get their “made local” on. Trail stops include:
- Alchemy Juice Bar + Cafe
- Brothers Drake Mead
- Camelot Cellars
- The Candle Lab (Short North, Worthington)
- Celebrate Local
- Glenn Avenue Soap Company
- Helen Winnemore’s
- Homage (Short North, Easton)
- Igloo Letterpress
- Middle West Spirits
- Native Cold Pressed
- Red Giraffe Designs (Short North, Grandview)
- Stump Plants (Italian Village, German Village)
- The Smithery
- State of Devotion
- Wholly Craft!
- Watershed Distillery
“We’re extremely lucky to have a city with such strong entrepreneurial spirit, and this trail feels like a celebration of the collaborative efforts between small business owners and customers that allow us to be so successful here,” says Kate Stevens, founder of Red Giraffe Designs. “Joining the Made in Cbus Trail seemed like a fun way to give back to our regular customers, while also serving as an interactive guide for Columbus newcomers.”
For Red Giraffe Designs, being a part of the Trail has sparked more meaningful interactions with customers who are asking more question not only about her business, but other participants on the trail and the city as a whole.
“Being a part of the MiCT has certainly brought in new customers to the store who were introduced to the Trail at another business,” adds Phil Metzler, founder of Glenn Avenue Soap Company. “We love promoting it as a matter of pride in what Cbus has to offer, and as a way to introduce customers to other locally-owned businesses that are making great products.”
Metzler’s soap shop is one stop where visitors can see making in action.
Using traditional methods to produce soaps and skincare, “Our products are truly “Made in Cbus,” Metzler says. “Being part of the MiCT is important because we want residents and visitors to know about our unique shop, where they can see products being made, take a tour, and talk with the soapmakers.”
Outside of being a part of the Made in Cbus Trail, being members of Experience Columbus has had other benefits for both businesses.
“Experience Columbus works to make people aware of, and interested in, your business,” Stevens says.
Metzler says Glenn Avenue gets great exposure through the Experience Columbus website and various other publications.
“They do an amazing job of promoting Columbus to the world, and that is good for all of us,” Metzler adds.
For this pair of businesses, that has included connecting with special opportunities to promote their products. The organization uses Glenn Avenue’s local craft beer soaps and foaming hand soap in their direct mail and other sales and marketing campaigns. A custom order for the NCAA Women’s Final Four will put Red Giraffe Designs’ products in the hands of over 600 people.
Made in Cbus Trail passports can be picked up and any of the Experience Columbus Visitor Center locations – Arena District, Greater Columbus Convention Center or Easton. Buy something at four or more tour stops to claim a free Made in Cbus T-shirt! For more information, visit madeincbustrail.com.
— Experience Columbus’ vision is to be the leading force in creating and revealing the best of the Columbus experience to the world. Experience Columbus’ mission is to sell, market and promote the Destination Columbus experience to visitors. For more information, visit ExperienceColumbus.com. —