Best of Arts & Entertainment
Best Way to Stage a Neighborhood Comeback
After moving from the depths of Easton to a palatial new home in the Brewery District, the theater-comedy-music troupe is helping to spearhead a revival of the historic neighborhood.
Best Jurassic Mashup
“A Fable for Tomorrow” at the Wexner Center
Anthropology and sci-fi collided in Alexis Rockman’s enormous paintings depicting a post-apocalyptic world of fantastic creatures and explosive color.
Best Singing Zombies
“Evil Dead: The Musical”
The undead in this CATCO-produced musical are technically not zombies, they’re Deadites. But does it really matter when they’re kick-ball-changing their way to eat off your face?
Best Vintage Playlist
Playdate at Skully’s Music Diner
At this ongoing showcase at the Short North rock club, top local bands of today marathon through top hits of yesteryear, one band per year, one decade at a time.
Best Bad Boy Retrospective
Caravaggio at the Columbus Museum of Art
Known for drinking and brawling his way across Renaissance Italy, the CMA exhibit reminded us that “the bad boy of the Baroque” also influenced generations of painters with his raw, visceral style.
Best Peek Behind the Curtain
The Columbus dance troupe turned the tables on Carmen with a sensuous look at the backstage emotions that afflict the cast of the famed opera.
Best Reason to Get Off the Playground
Chugging coffee from a Thermos on a park bench while you watch the kids play is so last millennium. The cool ’rents are hitting Clintonville’s Firefly Play Cafe, Powell’s Lattes & Lollipops, Bexley’s Piccadilly or Dublin’s Creation Nation instead.
Best Petting Zoo
The Columbus Zoo’s newest hands-on experience is Stingray Bay, a touch pool with 40 cownose rays and southern stingrays. The animals are naturally non-aggressive, though barbs are clipped to ensure safety.
Best Downtown Homecoming
Columbus Arts Festival
With its panoramic views, inviting colonnades, cozy swings and pretty fountains, the Scioto Mile is a stunning piece of public art. So the return of the Columbus Arts Fest to the riverfront made perfect sense. After four years in the Discovery District, the Arts Fest came back to a smart and creative setup spanning the river (twice) and embracing the gorgeous vista around the new Bicentennial Park.
Best Reality Check
Oprah Winfrey’s giving Columbus a double dose of reality with two new shows on OWN: Former OSU and Atlanta Falcons defensive lineman David Patterson and family move in with his mother-in-law, supermodel Beverly Johnson, in “Beverly’s Full House,” and Gahanna’s 2-year-old sextuplets cavort in “Six Little McGhees.”
Best use of overheard cota conversations
Nix Comics Quarterly
The fantastically inane adventures of Bus Stop Ned, documented regularly in this local comic book, are gleaned from conversations author Ken Eppstein overhears on public transit trips.
Best Sci-Fi Series
Here’s proof that a spontaneous idea can grow Cannes-sized. The story of Detective James Aidan—a noir cop, circa 2064—has propelled this web series to the forefront of next-gen small-screen entertainment. Think graphic novel + gritty crime drama + cloning ethics. And it’s made right here in Columbus. Stay tuned.
Best Place to Bring Ideas to Life
Columbus Idea Foundry
Innovation and collaboration are standard practice at the Columbus Idea Foundry on the Near East Side. The facility offers instruction, tool rental and 25,000 square feet to create.