Throwbacks: Our take on the Ohio Vintage Baseball Festival

There is nothing that tempts us more than baseball and beer. With Scott driving through Ohio a few weeks ago on his way back home from California, we decided to take in the Ohio Vintage Baseball Festival in Columbus. Every year, the Ohio History Connection (who owns the historical site that I work at) hosts the baseball festival at their headquarters at the Ohio History Center. This was both of our first times going, and it was a very cool experience.

 

They had several fields set up around the museum for games with a game starting every hour. All of the players are wearing the old uniforms from the 1860s and played by those rules. There was a lot for us to pick up on: if the ball goes over the fence, its an out instead of a home run. It is an out if the ball is picked up on the first bounce. The runner crossing the plate must ring a bell behind home to ensure the run counts.

 

The main games of the day took place in Ohio Village, which is a small town that OHC made on the grounds of the museum that depicts a typical 1860s village. Most of the stores and homes can be entered by visitors that features different activities, shops, and foods. Scott and myself grabbed a beer and sat under an apple tree and took in one of the games. One of the best features of the game we saw was the left fielder playing behind a tree, with the tree being in the playing field.

 

After taking in a few hours of middle aged men playing 1860s baseball, we ventured over to a local micro brewery (as we always happen to do) to taste some local brews. This time, we took our talents to North High Brewing just a few miles away. It is a very cool brewery that opened in 2011 that sits in an old ford dealership on North High Street that dates back to 1917. They have a limited menu of food, with their hot pretzels being a staple. They have about 10 beers on tap at a time and they also can some of their staple beers. Overall, the vibe reminded us of one of our favorite establishments: JAFB in Wooster.

Our trip to the Ohio Vintage Baseball Festival gave these history majors everything they could ask for: Beer, Baseball, and a whole lot of history.

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