Youngstown, Ohio is the Mahoning County seat and is one of the 10 largest cities in the state of Ohio. Here are 3 unique things to do in Youngstown, Ohio.
A prominent city located in the infamous midwestern rust belt, Youngstown has a lengthy and storied history. Named after John Young, the town was settled in the late 1700’s by Young who started a sawmill. Later coal mining became a prominent activity bringing hundreds of immigrants from places like Germany and Wales. Soon, steel mills became important to the region and remains so even to this day.
The town sits among the foothills of the Appalachian mountains and is located to the east of Cleveland, the nearest major airport (although Akron’s smaller regional airport is technically closer). Like many midwestern towns, the loss of industrial jobs to China and Mexico has impacted the local economy, but since 2010 the town experienced a bit of revitalization – particularly in the downtown area.
Unique Things To Do in Youngstown Ohio
Youngstown Ohio is best visited in the spring or fall as the winters are bitterly cold and the summers feature that classic Midwest humidity. Visiting in the spring or fall will allow you to take advantage of some of the more unique things to do in Youngstown including some of the outdoor activities.
Mill Creek Park
Mill Creek Park is a nearly 3000-acre park that features a wide variety of activities including hiking, biking, walking and nature trails, fishing and boating and much more. At the park, visitors can visit a cute Lilly Pond, picnic, or even visit the Riverside Gardens which boasts an amazing array of plants and flowers.
The massive park runs along the Mill Creek, widens to a few lakes, and ends at the Mahoning River. Visitors will not be able to see the entire park in one visit given it’s largesse. The park is also very spread out – it follows a creek after all – but this makes it easy to see different parts of the park on different trips.
The park also has both a Par-3 and full-sized golf course, a disc golf course, playgrounds, softball fields, volleyball courts and more.
Lanterman’s Mill & Covered Bridge
Lanterman’s Mill & Covered Bridge are the most prominent historical buildings in the greater Mahoning area. The mill was built in the mid-1800’s and is still in operation today, where visitors can smell the sweet aromas of bread being made on their tour.
Technically party of the Mill Creek Park complex, the Mill and Bridge are worth their own separate visit. The Mill leverages a series of natural waterfalls originally owned by the town’s founder, John Young. An ambitious pair of men purchased the land after recognizing it’s potential for a productive mill.
The mill and surrounding area allows visitors to step back in time and witness how entirely different generation of settlers leveraged natural resources to produce food for their community.
The covered bridge isn’t quite as old as the Mill, but it’s a remarkable architectural piece and a great spot to snag photos – especially in the fall.
Youngstown Brewery Tour
Like many small towns across America, microbreweries have found a foothold in the local community. While the beer scene is not nearly as epic as Grand Rapids Michigan (aka, “Beer City, USA”) Youngstown does have several great brewpubs in town worth visiting.
- Noble Creature Cask House. Located in the downtown area, Noble Creature Cask house sits in an old church. They have an excellent selection of small-batch brews and feature several tasty sour beers.
- Paladin Brewing. Located in the nearby community of Austintown, Paladin Brewing is owned by a local family and they have a draft named “Cancer Sucks!”
- Biker Brewhouse. Located in an old Harley store, this motorcycle-themed brewery is worth a visit and a pint.
Final thoughts on planning a Youngstown OH Trip
Youngstown Ohio isn’t a destination town; it’s not really the place you plan a trip to, per se. That said, like many towns across America it has character, history and depth and it’s worth visiting. Whether you live in the local area and are just looking to dig a little deeper into the community or you are passing through, Youngstown is worth slowing down and seeing some of the local sights.
Be sure to check out all the great destinations in our “Unique Things to Do” Series and take a step out of the ordinary on your next trip.
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