Shopping and Services

Shops, places to buy stuff, and things people do.

Jungle Jim’s: Updated!

Original Post: Jungle Jim’s

The Original Jungle Jim’s is still as Jungley and Jimmy as ever. The food and craziness inside is still as mind blowing as ever. The outside has expanded to include a mini mall with a few restaurants and stores. While they are nothing too unique they help to enhance the overall experience.

NEW Location added:
4450 Eastgate South Drive
Cincinnati, OH 45245

The NEW and exciting update to the Jungle Jim’s franchise is the location on the other side of Cincinnati in Eastgate. The new store is even more zany than the original location. This one doesn’t just have a store map, but almost requires one. The large aisle that runs through out is great for getting from the front door to the registers, but is not so helpful if one goes down a smaller aisle and reconnects to it at some other point. Of course this being Jungle Jim’s, half the fun is getting lost in the endless selection.

The attractions from the original store are included in the new one. Sometimes they are even beefed up, such as in the candy section and honey sections. It seems as if the company knew what made the original a hit and simply expanded on it. The “Hot Sauce and Fiery Food” section is almost 3x as large. Candy section is twice as large. Aisles are now large enough for two lanes of cart traffic.

While expanding some sections Jungle Jim’s also made sure to make the shopping experience a good one. The store seems designed more from entrance to cash registers than the original one.  This is great for the shopper looking to experience everything. This is not so good for a person who is looking to get in and out in a hurry. But hey who goes to Jungle Jim’s expecting to get out in a hurry? This is the type of store that needs exploring and the new layout its great at helping that.

So for a shopping experience like no other visit the Original or NEW location of Jungle Jim’s.

Tip: Eat first. The place will make you want to buy everything and being hungry does not help.

Grass Skirt Tiki Room

img_0362This is going to be a mini celebration review.

105 N. Grant Ave, Columbus, Ohio

The Grass Skirt Tiki Room is one of those fun places to eat, drink, and discover. The atmosphere is matched by the great food and drinks. This restaurant is not huge, so it could get busy. We went in the late afternoon on a summer day and the place was not crowded. So if crowded is not your thing middle of the afternoons are good. The Grass Skirt is a bar type of restaurant, so late nights could be fun with a group of friends.

If you loved the Kahiki, and are looking for something to fill its place, this is it. The whole place, as the name suggests, is tiki themed. Very tiki themed. It is fun and festive. The decor is almost over the top, but stops at just the right point. There is a real laid back feeling to it. This does not mean you are treated poorly. We were treated professional and the staff was attentive. This place is one where you really feel like you want to hang out.

The menu fits the theme and the food was good. Not overpriced or over sized. The portions fit the price. The drinks are island style and come in fancy themed glasses. This is the type of place that one will stop in for a crazy drink and end up grabbing a bite to eat.

So, give The Grass Skirt Tiki room a try.






Coventry Village

from Wikipedia

Cleveland Heights, Cleveland

Coventry Village, a small shopping and art district in Cleveland Heights, Ohio, is worth a visit. The “village” is an eclectic mix of restaurants, shops, and people. From Birkenstock to toys to almost anything you can want.

The village is close to the University circle, with the Cleveland Museum of Art, Western Reserve Historical Society, and much more, and across the street from Lakeview Cemetery, resting place of many famous Ohioans. This makes the village a great place to get a bite after visiting the museums and other nearby attractions.

Almost every type of food is available. Subs, Asian, Mexican, Vegan, all most anything one can think of. Most of the restaurants are locally owned and operated, some are chains.

Once filled with food visitors can walk up and down the streets of Coventry Village exploring the strange and diverse collection of shops. The uniqueness of shopping available is reminiscent of other districts (Yellow Springs, Oregon District, Short North), but still an experience all its own.

At the end of the night when the shops and the kitchens have closed the village is still hopping.  Many nightclubs and bars line the streets and are open well into the night. The nightlife is not just limited to the many clubs and venues but to the streets where some of the most entertaining things can be the people.

Parking can be a problem in the area. Every spot is metered. At time the spots can fill up. Most of the time the parking garage and streets spots are easy to find.

So with a large collection of … well everything, Coventry Village is worth a visit to anybody in Cleveland or just in the area.

Historic Sauder Village

22611 OH-2, Archbold, OH 43502

Sauder Village is named after Erie Sauder, the founder of Sauder Furniture. Sauders is known for its inexpensive ready to assemble products sold in many big box stores. The village started in 1970’s as a dream of Erie’s and soon became a reality. Over the years Sauder Village collected many old, but not unusual, buildings from around the black swamp area.

The village is divided into multiple sections. Each section has a theme that ties the buildings and surrounding grounds together. At the main entrance is the main village area. This area contains buildings that would be found in a typical small village of the 19th century, including a doctor’s office, a train station, a herb shop, and Sauder’s original workshop, a museum housing a large number of artifacts, and more. Beyond the main village is newcomers and natives area, telling about the early traders in the area and the original inhabitants. Further along is a pioneers settlement, which tells about settlers of the area. Before swinging back into the main village the trail runs through a small homestead of (as of June 2015) the 1920’s.

Each building contains many artifacts and history of the time period of the section of park it is in and of the use of the building. On busy days most have interpretors and artisans inside to help explain the history. These artists and interpretors are what bring the village to life. Everything from the daily routine of a pioneer, to what a barber charged, are brought to life through the stories and teachings of the employees. If the building is dedicated to an art, such as tin-smithing, or glass blowing, it is run by an actual purveyor of the art. Not only will they tell of the history of the art, but will probably be working on something to sell. This living history is brought to life spectacularly through out the village and seamlessly woven in at the same time.

From a small child learning about the history of the Black swamp, to an older person watching the craftsmen ply their trade, Sauder Village will have a little bit of something for everyone interested in history.


Along with the great article is some videos of the legendary place.

The interior

Kahiki Restaurant, Columbus Ohio 1999

Saving the Fireplace.

Kahiki Moai Fireplace Salvage

But whatever happened to the Fireplace?

Whatever Happened to the Kahiki Fireplace? A Tiki Mystery!

or the Fountain?

Kahiki Fountain

And the food?
The official channel of the frozen food company. (only 2 videos posted over 6 years ago)

Ohio’s License plate

The Ohio State Vehicle license plate has changed greatly over the years. From a white background, or some other solid color, with a single color text to the multiple colors recently used. The plate used today however were not created by a government for a government. The plates of today were designed by an artist and voted on by citizens. Ohio plates for the people by the people!
The design was created by Aaron Roberts, a graduate of Columbus College of Art & Design. The words used were voted on by the citizen in an online vote. Some other words were added to make sure that the whole of Ohio was represented. In the end the plates became an interesting way to advertise the great state.
So you don’t have to try reading them while driving the slogans are: With God All Things Are Possible, The Buckeye State, The Heart of It All, Beautiful Ohio,, So Much to Discover, 1803, Ohio Caverns, 1st Professional Baseball Team, 8 U.S. Presidents, Polymer Capital of the World, 17th State, Lake Erie, Cardinal (state bird), The Horseshoe, Newark Earthworks, Iroquois: Beautiful River, Serpent Mound, America’s Heartland, Home of Edison, Ohio River, State of Perfect Balance, Ohio Has It All, Ladybug (state insect), Hocking Hills, Put-in-Bay, Ohio Pride, Inventors Hall of Fame, Appalachian Plateau, Red Carnation (state flower), White Trillium (state wildflower), Birthplace of Aviation, Underground Railroad, Marietta (1st Settlement), Perry’s Victory, Beautiful Farmlands, Walleye (state fish), Ohio Burgee (state flag), Steel Innovators and Inventors, Adena, Glass City, Rock & Roll, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Johnny Appleseed, Marblehead Lighthouse

Thanks to Columbus Dispatch for the list.  

Ohio Gifts 2014

This holiday season there are lots of gifts you can get from Ohio.

Here are a few:

or online Der Dutchman Online Shop

Amish Gifts

Yes, the statehouse.

Ohio Gift Baskets and More.



Coffee and Tea

Salad Dressing and Steaks

Now for some Ohio Potato Chips:

Jungle Jim’s in Cincinnati has a Cincinnati favorites gift basket

Historical and more, definitely Ohio

Lots of Ohio Gifts

Look up any of the many colleges and universities in the state, lots of them have gift shops online.

This is only a few, so if you did not see one of yours, do not worry there were too many to list all.

Ohio Small Business Saturday 2014

Watching television one night and a commercial came on for Small Business Saturday. This got us thinking about all the small businesses we have reviewed and how it would be good if everyone visit one this Saturday. Now, wait what if you can not travel, just visit a small business in your area. Small businesses make America, yes make it. Small businesses are run by individuals, families, and friends. Small business directly have an impact on the employees and owners. By visiting one business you are insuring that you can help out at least one person. Many small businesses are foundations in the fabric of the community. They take out ads in the high school yearbooks, support local sports teams, give money to charities, host birthday and family parties, become community meeting places, and are the Saturdays of our youth. We must support them and any little bit is our way of saying thanks for making our community a better place.

One way you can directly support small business is to visit a flea market. Flea markets are built on small independent people working for their passions. Every turn in a flea market is a new adventure. One place me visited was Trader’s World in Lebanon Ohio.

Small Business Saturday Night Icon

No Saturday out would be complete with some food. Ohio has lots of great restaurants. We reviewed a few great one. There was the Echo Restaurant or Arthur’s Restaurant in Hyde Park section Cincinnati. If you’re in the Columbus area, we reviewed some great places. So check out, Dirty Franks Hot Dog Palace, Schmidt’s Sausage Haus, or The Thruman Cafe. Now these two cities are not all of it, there is the Golden Lamb in Lebanon or SumBurger in Chillicothe. Now for many Saturday equals coffee, so if your already in Chillicothe go here, Schlegel’s. Do not forget to travel north to Big Boppers Restaurant. There is also OinkADoodle Moo Barbeque in and around Dayton. Well if you’re in Dayton make sure go to the Hamburger Wagon. Now to finish off your day of eating make to see dinner and a show at La Comedia.

So if food is not your thing (you’re a robot) then you can always check out another kind of small business. We did a review of three fun places to visit in the Cleveland area, one of them is not food related, but all are good to visit this Saturday.

If you do not live or can not visit Ohio you can always find a small business using this website,

or check out more information here,

Let’s say thank you to the PEOPLE who run our small businesses by visiting one this Saturday.

Made in Ohio: 10 Products We Love

So I happen to be on searching for products that are made in Ohio and came across this site, USA Love List. The site tells some products made in the United States.

Here is the page I am talking about (come back after)

So now we or should I say I want to post my own list. This list might or might not be ten. It will not be a top ten list.

Velvet Ice Cream – This ice cream is made in Utica, Ohio. The company has been for 100 years. You can take a tour of the Olde Mill Factory. The ice cream come in many delicious flavors.

Not be out done is another ice cream maker and facility.

Young’s Jersey Dairy – This company makes ice cream and so much more. The company also sells other products. The company started out as a dairy farm, which they still do. They sell their ice cream straight to the public near Yellow Springs, Ohio.

Esther Price Chocolate – This company makes is Dayton, Ohio based. To see one of these gold covered boxes in your local Kroger is feel like you have come home. They make a great traditional holiday gift, not just Christmas, but every holiday. They are not in other states and not just Ohio Kroger. They also have retail stores. They were also voted in 2014 as the Best Ohio Made Candy by readers of Ohio Magazine. The have a lot of varieties of chocolates, sweets, and snacks. Yum Yum Yum

Jones Potato Chip Companyy – Great potato chips out of Mansfield, Ohio. They make some great varieties of chips. Writing this my mouth is already watering.

Tony Packo’s Food Products – They also have cafes and yes you heard it on M.A.S.H. This Toledo company makes great Hungarian hot dogs and condiments. Very good quality. They have many different jarred peppers that are great on hot dogs. Something to try is the Hungarian Salsa.

It must be lunch time looking over this list, so far. Here are some non food ones.

American Whistle Corporation – This company in Columbus has been making whistles for a long time. They have factory group tours that showcase, that an American company can still make quality products at a reasonable price.

The Christy Knife Company – This company is in Fremont, Ohio and makes a unique sliding pocket knife. The company as a been around since the late 1800s. The knife is great if want to have it on a key chain or open it with one hand. You could wear it like a pocket watch for added style.

Step2 – This company makes children’s toys, children’s furniture, and home and garden items. They have a wide range of products. They have some really nice looking products. There products can be found all over Ohio in many of the big retailers.

Sutphen Corp – This company make fire trucks and other related equipment. They have been making this much-needed equipment for many years. They make most of the their equipment in Ohio. They do have a one factory outside of Ohio.

Hall China Company – This company make really good dishes and food service products. They have many older products they have re issued in different colors and numbers, so you can have an older style product. What is nice is their products are modern timeless and bright-colored.

Annin Flagmakers – This company makes American flags (which should be made in America). If you already got your share and your neighbors share of American flags they do make other flags. This is not a 100% Ohio company, but they do have a factory in Coshocton, Ohio.

Root Candles – This candle company has been making candles in Medina since 1869. They make some fine candles in many colors and scents. They have a wide selection.

Ohio Statehouse

1 Capitol Square, Columbus, OH 43215

Capitol Square, a complex that includes the Ohio Statehouse, Senate Building and Atrium are all available to visit most days. You can visit them and look around on your own. You can also take one of the hourly tours in the middle of the day. The tours are nice because you get to see all of the rooms and places where laws are made. If you book a tour and the Senate is in session, you probably will not be able to visit the senate, so plan ahead. A good time to go is in the summer, you can tour the whole statehouses public spaces and the school tours are not happening. The tours lead you through many of the public spaces and give you the history of the buildings and how the statehouse came to be. It is really interesting to see how the buildings were made. One will be surprised at how much Lincoln influenced the statehouse. Now we could give you a long list of every feature of the statehouse and what it looks like, but then why would you want to visit. The best part is going to the statehouse and experiencing it for yourself.

There is also a tour series during the Halloween season. This tour series is called the Haunted Statehouse Tours. These tours are done for a limited time each year, so plan ahead.

Tours are not the only thing to do at the Statehouse, there is also a museum. The Statehouse Museum has many exhibits that highlight the legislative process in Ohio. There are many interactive exhibits. This museum is a great place to go to locate information or test your knowledge. The great thing about the museum is that it highlights what is happening today and also allows visitors to give their opinion.

Photo courtesy of the Ohio Statehouse Photo Archive.

Photo courtesy of the Ohio Statehouse Photo Archive.