Have you heard of the Old West Festival? It was Twitter friend @katiberz who pointed it out to me, and then I didn't stop hearing about it for weeks.
I'll jump right to my recommendation: I think you should go if you have children, but don't expect it to be a festival of Ohio Renaissance Festival caliber. (Gun pun?)
It helped that I won free tickets online-- it might have been difficult to justify the $20 it would have taken Dan and me to get in. If we'd had children with us, it might have been another story-- I felt there was a lot more for kids to do, including a pretty sweet-looking train ride, a covered wagon ride, a puppet show, lasso demonstrations, a prize-winning bull to take pictures with.
As for adults, I had a difficult time engaging. There were some good music acts-- I have a special place in my heart for bluegrass, which helped-- but the little shops were all either crazy-expensive goods (leather chaps) or cheap throwaways (plastic sheriff badges), the shows were all very kid-focused (a magic show, a medicine show), and there just wasn't much to do once you'd heard your fill of country songs played on banjo.
Oh, Dan would never stand for it if I completely failed to mention the "gun fight"-- which again I was wrong to assume would be the Old West equivalent of the Ren Fest's joust event. Instead we all huddled around the saloon to witness 5-10 minutes of the worst acting this side of the Rio Grande. Not exactly something to plan your day around.
Dan and I enjoyed a tin mug full of homemade root beer, but after about an hour we were ready to head home. If you have kids, they'll have fun-- this coming weekend the festival closes, so bundle them up and head down SR 32. If not, maybe skip this one and hope they keep improving upon it. I think there's a lot of promise for the Old West Festival, if it continues to grow in the years to come.
Five Points Alley Biergarten
1 hour ago