Things We Love: Picks from Alex Hastie
Alex Hastie is an attorney, musician and Ohio historian who lives in Grandview Heights. A Columbus native, he owns his own law firm in Grandview specializing in criminal defense and liquor law (representing bars, restaurants and breweries). Alex serves on the Board of Trustees for the Ohio History Connection, and is also the host of the world's only Ohio history podcast: “Ohio v. the World,” available everywhere you get your podcasts. The show interviews authors, historians, professors and journalists about the famous people, places and events from the history of the Buckeye State. His band, the Winnie Cooper Project, covers '90s hip-hop tunes at festivals all over Central Ohio. Here are a few things he loves.
Playoff hockey comes to Columbus next week and it's just the best. There's nothing like Nationwide Arena during the NHL playoffs, and I believe our Blue Jackets are finally poised to make a serious run this year. As a season ticket holder, I made a sizable wager on the CBJ to win the Stanley Cup while in Las Vegas earlier this year at 30-1 odds. So… let's go Jackets!
Columbus Diaper Coalition
My wife and I are expecting our first child this summer and I'm realizing just how expensive having a kid can be. Diapers, for example, aren't covered by food stamps or WIC. I don't know how the low-income members of our community do it. The CDC provides free diapers to more than a dozen food banks and local organizations to disperse throughout the community. They do amazing work on a shoestring budget. And it's a great place to volunteer.
“So goes Ohio, so goes the nation.” Ohio's rich history is central to the history of America, and so many incredible people have come from this state. My podcast, “Ohio v. the World,” will never run out of content to share. Also, check out the awesome new "Ohio: Champion of Sports" exhibit at the Ohio History Center (the big building next to Mapfre Stadium). It's a modern, interactive exhibit sharing all of Ohio's contributions to the sports world, from Jesse Owens to LeBron James and many lesser known sports and athletes.
The Dick and Jane Project
My favorite nonprofit is the Dick and Jane Project. It's amazing to me that people don't just give all their charity dollars to these guys. DJP sends local musicians into Columbus' underserved school districts to write songs with the kids. The kids write the lyrics and even perform with the musicians in a professional studio. Then the songs are played on the radio (on WCBE) every week. The positive impact it has on the kids is profound.
My wife and I bought a house on the same block I grew up on in 2017. It was a little weird at first, but I love living in Grandview. It has great bars and restaurants, plus everything is walkable. I call Columbus the “City of Convenience” and no place is more convenient than Grandview.