Northeast Ohio Spring Activities Guide: Parks, Museums & Attractions

CLEVELAND (WJW)– Spring has officially arrived! It’s time to get out and explore northeast Ohio to recover from that winter blues.

Here are some sports where you can be a tourist in your hometown this spring:

Akron Zoo

While the zoo is open year-round, opening hours increase in the spring. Upcoming events: Egg-stra Wild Egg Hunt on April 2, 3, 9 and 10; the Party for the Planet on April 23; and 21 and older Seltzers n’ Shells on May 21.

Cleveland Botanical Garden

You don’t have to wait for warmer temperatures to taste the outdoors. Most parts of the garden are open year-round, including the greenhouses in Madagascar and Costa Rica. The Hershey Children’s Garden opens seasonally in the spring.

Cleveland Metroparks Zoo

The zoo expands from its winter hours in April, and is open rain or shine. Check out events like “Zookeeper for a Day” or sign up for a 90-minute golf course tour. Admission is free for residents of Cuyahoga County or Hinkley Township on Mondays, Memorial Day through Labor Day.

Cleveland Museum of Art

The perfect way to spend a rainy spring day. Discover ‘Women in Print’, ‘Art of the Islamic World’ and ‘Ancient Andean Textiles’, or join a guided tour. Admission is free, except for specialized shows.

Cleveland Museum of Natural History

Another great option for getting out of the house during Cleveland’s rainy season. The Cleveland Museum of Natural History is packed with exhibits and hands-on activities on astronomy, archeology, and prehistoric life. Admission is free for residents of Cleveland and East Cleveland on Sundays.

Cuyahoga Valley National Park

With over 200 km of hiking trails, 200 bird species and dozens of picnic spots, it’s easy to spend the day exploring the park. There are also educational hikes most Saturdays.

Beech Creek Botanical Garden and Nature Preserve

Located in Stark County, this 75-hectare nature preserve features gardens, art exhibits and hiking trails.

Holden Arboretum

The campus, which spans Lake and Geauga counties, includes gardens, trails, and lakes. The Murch Canopy Walk and Kalbere Emergent Tower, which are approximately 12 stories high, will open for the season on April 1.

  • Holden Arboretum
  • Holden Arboretum
  • Holden Arboretum

Center IX

More events are returning to IX Center this year after a pandemic hiatus. The Piston Powered Auto-Rama from April 1-1 and the Nuclear Circus from April 28-May 8.

Metroparks Lake Farm Park

Open Tuesday through Sunday with demonstrations and educational programs featuring farm animals, a plant science center and farm machinery exhibits. Stop by May 14-15 for Sheep Shearing Weekend or May 21-22 for HorseFest.

Lehman hardware

Lehman’s Hardware in Kidron was founded in 1955 and has an extensive stock of woodstoves, housewares, toys and Christmas decorations.

Mansfield Reformatory

The Mansfield Reformatory houses the Ohio State Corrections History Museum and is a popular site for ghost hunters and paranormal enthusiasts. You can also take a tour that focuses on scenes from the 1994 films “The Shawshank Redemption.”

Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens

Stan Hywet opens for the season on April 1 with a buy one ticket offer with the donation of a non-perishable food item. Guided tours are returning after a hiatus during the pandemic. Other events include the Easter Egg Hunt on April 16, Founders Day Weekend June 10-12, and the Father’s Day Car Show on June 19.

Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens with pink flowers in the foreground
(Courtesy of Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens)

troll hole museum

Located in Alliance, it is the largest collection of troll dolls in the world. There are 14 rooms with various themes dedicated to the colorful characters.

Worden cornices

The moss-covered sandstone formations are cool in their own right. Then there are the Faces, carved out of rock in the mid-1940s. They’re located along the Worden’s Ledges Loop Trail in the Cleveland Metroparks Hinckley Preserve.

The largest cuckoo clock in the world

Take a drive to the village of Sugarcreek. The largest cuckoo clock in the world is in the center of Swiss Village. The bird appears and polka music plays every half hour from April to November. While in the area, pick up some baked goods and do some shopping.

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