For Immediate Release
April 30, 2012
For More Inforamtion, Contact:
Daniel M. Williamson, 614-645-5300
Scott Peacock, 614-222-6104
200Columbus Wraps First Season
Hundreds of Events Honor Columbus’ Proud Past
(COLUMBUS, OH) – Hundreds of events brought together thousands of residents throughout the first phase of 200Columbus – the Bicentennial, which focused on honoring the city’s past while celebrating the smart, open spirit that is propelling Columbus forward.
“Almost every week of the past four months included a neighborhood event, a birthday party or an arts event that created new stories and reflected on the deep history of Columbus,” said Mayor Michael B. Coleman. “It has been an honor to spend time with living legends, creative artists and residents of all ages as we’ve honored 200 years of this great city.”
In June 2008, Bicentennial Commission chairs OSU President E. Gordon Gee, Abigail Wexner and Bishop Timothy Clarke presented the Blueprint for the Bicentennial. Since then, teams of local volunteers from more than 35 organizations have worked together to engage dozens of civic, arts, corporate and educational organizations under the 200Columbus banner.
“The entire year of events and initiatives is designed to engage residents and showcase the city’s incredible creative spirit to lift local pride and build national attention,” said Jamie Greene, 200Columbus Program Manager.
The first phase of the year, dedicated to honoring the past, included more than 40 special events, visits by the mayors of Columbus’ Sister Cities around the world, special exhibits at the Columbus Museum of Art, Franklin Park Conservatory, COSI and OSU’s Urban Arts Space, along with the publication of the Official Guide to the Bicentennial and the book, Historic Columbus, by Ed Lentz.
“This year started with a bang and continues to offer unique ways for everyone to take a moment and appreciate the city we live in today,” said Ty Marsh, chair of the 200Columbus Organizing Committee. “We truly appreciate the hundreds of volunteers and dozens of corporate sponsors and local partners who are collaborating to make the Bicentennial a special time to honor Columbus and inspire us to look to an even better future.”
200Columbus The Bicentennial is a volunteer driven event made possible through the sponsorship of dozens of local companies. Presenting sponsors: American Electric Power, The Columbus Dispatch, The City of Columbus and Huntington. Supporting sponsors: Nationwide, Limited Brands Foundation, Battelle, The Ohio State University, The Columbus Foundation and Grange Insurance.
“Huntington is delighted to help sponsor Columbus’ birthday,” said Jim Kunk, Huntington’s Central Ohio Regional President. “We look forward to many more special events this year as we celebrate the history, character and people of Columbus.”
Highlights of the first season include:
200Columbus Bicentennial Celebration
On Friday, Feb. 10, 2012, more than 2,000 attendees made their way to the Greater Columbus Convention Center to celebrate the past, present and future of the city at the Columbus Bicentennial Birthday – A Celebration of the Centuries. The event, presented by Grange Insurance, made for a spectacular evening that included interactive history displays, vibrant performances by hundreds of musicians and great art cakes designed by culinary students at Columbus State Community College. The party also featured the premier of the Bicentennial Anthem by the 200-member Bicentennial Choir led by Milt Ruffin.
Neighborhood Birthday Parties
Hundreds of residents of all ages came out to celebrate the bicentennial with Mayor Coleman, Auditor Hugh Dorrian, City Council, the Recreation and Parks Department, 200Columbus and local companies joined in four neighborhood recreation centers. These free birthday celebrations were possible thanks to the generous sponsorship of Mount Carmel Health System, Kroger, White Castle, Floyd Browne Group and CT Consultants. The events will include specially designed Birthday cakes from Kroger, visits from the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, refreshments, local entertainment and history discussions.
Columbus Metropolitan Library Regional Birthday Parties
The Friends of the Library worked with the Columbus Metropolitan Library to host birthday parties in 20+ branches across the city.
Unique Partnerships Forming
200Columbus is forming active partnership locally including events with The Ohio State University, United Way of Central Ohio, Greater Columbus Arts Council and many more. OSU is planning 20+ events and activities during the bicentennial year to celebrate the city and engage students in the broader community. More from OSU: http://outreach.osu.edu/200Columbus
The United Way of Central Ohio is focusing on volunteerism and service, bringing together multiple agencies to plan 18 days of engagement in the fall that will include volunteer opportunities for more than 20,000 residents.
Jazz Moves Columbus
In conjunction with WOSU Public Media, the Columbus Jazz Orchestra and BalletMet celebrated life in Columbus through a synthesis of music, movement and historic imagery. From gospel to Motown, jazz to classical ballet, Jazz Moves Columbus commemorated the city’s heritage with two of its artistic treasures. More info at: http://www.jazzartsgroup.org/columbus-jazz-orchestra/celebrate-columbus-bicentennial-with-jazz-moves-columbus-feb-2-12/
WOSU’s Columbus Neighborhoods Documentary
“Columbus Neighborhoods,” a documentary series produced by WOSU Public Media, recounts the histories of the various neighborhoods that make up Columbus. The “Downtown / Franklinton” documentary premiered on the city’s birthday, Feb. 14 at the Ohio Theatre during a free community screening. More info at: http://beta.wosu.org/columbus-neighborhoods/
Celebrate Columbus in Song
To honor our city’s talented community of musicians, the “Celebrate Columbus in Song” contest invited local bands to create original songs inspired by Columbus. More than 120 songs were submitted, and 29 semi-finalists were offered for a public vote. More than 10,000 votes were cast on-line to select the final 13 tracks to appear on a CD to be released in June. This special 200Columbus CD also will include the Bicentennial Anthem, penned by Milt Ruffin and sung by the Bicentennial Chorus. More info at: http://200columbus.com/2012/03/winners-chosen-in-bicentennial-celebrate-columbus-in-song-contest/
Neighborhood Grant Program
To engage neighborhoods in the Bicentennial celebration, GCAC administered a grant from the J.P. Morgan Chase Foundation to fund projects submitted by cities, organizations, and neighborhoods throughout the region. Thirty-seven projects were funded including: Cultural Arts Centers and neighborhood murals, community celebrations and the restoration of historic clocks. The grants are helping to leverage almost $2 million in total investment in bicentennial projects. More info at: http://200columbus.com/2012/03/gcac-chase-announce-2nd-round-of-grants-to-help-neighborhoods-celebrate-columbus%E2%80%99s-200th-birthday/
Columbus Foundation Bicentennial Grants
In recognition of the bicentennial, The Columbus Foundation is celebrating Columbus’ past, present, and future by awarding grants to nonprofit organizations making a difference in our community. Bicentennial Grants support organizations, programs, and services that will positively impact our neighborhoods and residents for years to come. More info at: http://columbusfoundation.org/central-ohio/transformative-grants/bicentennial-grants/
Opening a new home for the Columbus Historical Society at COSI
In February 2012, the Columbus Historical Society moved to a new permanent exhibit space at COSI and opened interactive exhibits showcasing Columbus’ unique past. Since opening, more than 2,000 visitors passed through the doors to learn about the great moments, personalities and events behind the city’s growth and development.
More info at: http://www.columbushistory.org/
Game On Columbus Fan Events with the Blue Jackets, Crew and Clippers
Columbus’ professional sports teams partnered with 200Columbus to commemorate the city’s Bicentennial and build fan pride. The Columbus Blue Jackets ushered in 2012 and celebrated the city’s birthday at their New Year’s Eve game with indoor fireworks, while The Crew kicked off their season and the start of their Bicentennial celebration at First Kick on March 24. The Columbus Clippers are marking this historic year with their 200Columbus Bobble-head series of legendary local figures. In addition, Ohio State University Athletics Department is working to integrate the Bicentennial through their sporting events, including the Spring Game during which players wore 200Columbus patches on their jerseys on April 21. More on Game On Columbus at: http://www.columbussports.org/about/gameoncolumbus.cfm
The 2012 Central Ohio Home & Garden Show
From Feb. 25 to March 4 thousands of guests attended the Central Ohio Home & Garden Show – “Happy Birthday Columbus! Come Celebrate with US.” The event included 11 full-size, living landscape gardens featuring Columbus icons and landmarks, including the Brewery District, Downtown, Columbus City Hall, Nationwide Arena, Franklin Park, Victorian Village, Hayden Falls, Columbus Museum of Art and Goodale Park.
200Columbus Arts Events
- Monet to Matisse: Celebrating the 20th Anniversary of the Sirak Collection (Columbus Museum of Art) – CMA celebrated the 20th anniversary of one of its most impressive collections with a special exhibition displaying 78 works by masters such as Claude Monet, Edgar Degas, Pierre-Auguste-Renoir, Paul Cezanne, Paul Klee, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Chaim Soutine, and Henri Matisse.
- Columbus Views (Columbus Museum of Art) – Columbus Views commemorated the Bicentennial with artistic depictions of the city by artists such as George Bellows, Emerson Burkhart, Edmund Kuehn, Robert Chadeayne and others.
- Columbus Cartoonists: A Bicentennial Celebration (Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum, The Ohio State University) – Featured original cartoon art and artifacts created by cartoonists who lived, worked or were educated in Columbus, including Billy Ireland, Milton Caniff, Harry J. Westerman, Eugene Craig, Doc Goodwin, Bill Crawford, Edwina Dumm, Dudley T. Fisher and James Thurber.
- Finding Time: Columbus Public Art 2012 (Multiple Locations) – Finding Time transforms downtown into an open-air gallery with temporary public art projects on display throughout the year.
- OhioCentric (OSU Urban Arts Space) – This juried exhibit showcases artists from all over Ohio in celebration of the capital city’s 200th anniversary.
- Cityscapes Yesteryear: Past & Present (The King Arts Complex) – Original works of art by local painters Harvey Gilliam, Leon Page, Roman Johnson and photographer, Kojo Kamau capture Columbus’ neighborhoods, homes, landscapes and people of yesteryear.
- C-BUS Rocks: A Bicentennial Exhibition (CS Gallery & Events) – This exhibit showcased a variety of contemporary Columbus artists.
- 100 Years of Art: Celebrating Columbus’ Legacy (Ohio Arts Council’s Riffe Gallery) – This exhibition covered more than 100 years of artistic endeavors to present a sense of the Columbus’ arts community as it changing over the years in response to both local and national artistic developments.
200Columbus by the Numbers, January through April:
- 200Columbus.com’s events page includes more than 162 listings from area groups finding ways to align events with the Bicentennial
- Volunteers gave an estimated 2,000 hours to area events
- Media Exposure:
- Print/Online: 152 stories, $1.5 million value
- Television: 247 stories, $316,692 value
- Marketing toolkits downloaded: 511
- Email subscribers: 2,699, 30% open rate
- Twitter followers: 559
- Facebook likes: 1,540
- Merchandise team is selling 37 unique items on-line and at 13 retail locations
Events, initiatives and other information about 200Columbus is regularly updated at www.200columbus.com and on Facebook.
Columbus Bicentennial 2012 is a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to developing a robust and transformative commemoration of the city’s Bicentennial in 2012 that is a catalyst for greater economic prosperity. The initiative is referred to as 200Columbus the Bicentennial. The goal for 200Columbus is a community that is more inspired, proud and engaged in their progress and the increasing vitality of Columbus. This will lead to a community that is better recognized locally and globally as one of the best places to live and work.