A 34-foot King Cat twin-hull catamaran sets sail on the waters of Lake Erie, its 900-horsepower engine churning up a frothy wake as it leaves port and enters the aqueous abyss. At Sara-J Sportfishing Charters, guests spend a sunny afternoon on the open water casting and reeling in the lake's bounty of fish. With more than 20 years of experience, captain Gary Carpenter is confident enough in his abilities that he promises that charters will either reel in fish by the end of their trip or passengers receive their money back. Tours set out in the morning or afternoon as captains pilot vessels towards schools of walleye, steelhead, or perch swimming beneath the surface. Passengers soak up the sun, nibble on snacks, and regale stories of reeling in their first bluegill or misplaced water-skier.
Customers at West River Kayak & Canoe take their pick from a fleet of kayaks, canoes, and standup paddleboards to cruise down the 27-mile Vermilion-Lorain Water Trail, a Class I–II waterway. Turtles, beavers, and deer make their homes along the banks and occasionally dart out to greet travelers as shale cliffs rear up in the distance. The shop's staff ensures that even boating newbies can wend their way through the picturesque scenery by offering introductory tutorials before each rental to impart the basics of paddling, from how to turn to how to rub two paddles together to make a fire for roasting hot dogs.
For three decades, the Ohio Light Opera (OLO) has produced premier opera culled from around the world. The OLO attracts 22,000 aria-aficionados annually, to the chagrin of staffers saddled with sweeping up shattered monocles. In recent years, the company has expanded its repertoire to include Broadway staples such as Camelot, Loewe and Lerner’s rumination on the more musical moments of King Arthur’s reign paired with the more dramatic patches of his relationship with the Lancelot-lusting Guinevere. Alternately, Gilbert and Sullivan’s comic opera The Pirates of Penzance illuminates the classic tale of a pirate-turned-police-officer’s quest to vanquish vandals of the high seas while winning the unbridled affection of the major-general’s daughter.
Under the choppy surface of Ohio's quarries and waterways, the Columbus Scuba team guides students into the world of underwater exploration with specialized training courses. In order to prepare students for diving situations and encounters with bullies in schools of minnows, the team also holds classroom sessions, including PADI open-water certification. In addition to training students, Columbus Scuba dedicates itself to the diving community by operating the Mid-Ohio Divers club, through which they organize barbecues, camping trips, and group dives in far-off reefs and caves.
From an elegant perch in the clubhouse, diners at New Albany Links Restaurant and Grill sup on a menu of classic Italian entrees as they survey the adrenaline-pumping action on the course's 18th green. Seafood enthusiasts can cast a wide net over multiple courses starting with flaky, pan-seared crab cakes with aioli ($7.99), followed by a bowl brimming with angel-hair pasta, fresh basil, shrimp seared in extra-virgin olive oil, and morally upstanding sun-dried tomatoes ($7.99–$14.99). A twice-baked lasagna offers up layers of meat sauce, ricotta, provolone, and romano cheese for toothsome excavation ($7.99–$11.99), and multi-taskers will enjoy the way the chicken marsala mingles pan-seared chicken breast, sautéed mushrooms, and marsala wine into one decadent dish ($7.49–$12.99).