akron-ohio-skyline-1213538Akron — the Rubber City Capital of the World.

It’s a title that we as Akronites are very proud to hold, but it doesn’t mean we’ll be sending you on factory tours all weekend while you’re in town for the National Hamburger Festival. Akron is a city with a lot of history, but it also has an entire culture to call its own with a vibrant visual and performing arts scene, outdoor escapes, tons of restaurants, and a little something for everyone. In today’s blog post, you’ll find just a few activities to fit into your schedule during the Festival.

1. Visit the Area’s Parks (and check out the new mountain bike trails!)

The National Hamburger Festival is a lot of fun. It’s busy, you meet a ton of people at Lock 3, and the bustle is exciting. After a full day of festivities though, you may find that you need a break from the action. Luckily, Akron is home to an amazing metro park system from Summit Metro Park and Cuyahoga Valley National Park, both of which are tied to each other and Lock 3 by the Towpath Trail.
Each of the parks is home to its own stunning natural scenery along with playgrounds, trail systems, and more. Cuyahoga Valley National Park and Hampton Hills both feature newly installed, professionally designed mountain bike circuits that are free and open to the public if you’re up for adventure. Cuyahoga Valley National Park is also celebrating the National Park Service centennial this year, meaning there will be events happening all summer long.

2. Tour Akron’s Craft Beer and Coffee Scene

Enjoying local food and drink are consistently rated as top reasons to travel somewhere new. Naturally, the city home to the National Hamburger Festival has an abundance of pallet pleasers. There are over 15 craft breweries and wineries in the area and some favorites to check out include the new Ohio Brewery location, Hoppin’ Frog, Thirsty Dog, Aqueduct, and Mucky Duck.
It would be remiss to leave out Akron’s java scene. Neighborhood staples to start the morning off right or relax in the evening include Angel Falls, Akron Coffee Roasters, Artisan Coffee Shop, the Coffee Pot Café, Nervous Dog, and Kave Coffee Bar. Each shop has its own distinct atmosphere and flavor. Some shops, like Nervous Dog, are home to musical performances while others, like Artisan, supply board games for visitors to play.

3. View the Myopia Exhibit at the Akron Art Museum

Akron’s culture is rich with the arts and is home to multiple art galleries. This summer, the Akron Art Museum will be home to the Myopia exhibit from Akron native Mark Mothersbaugh of DEVO. This colorful multi-medium exhibit includes sculptures, paintings, rugs, and a collection of 30,000 postcard-sized drawings.

4. Watch an Independent Film at The Nightlight Cinema

In the evenings, just a few blocks away from Lock 3, downtown Akron’s independent cinema shows films that can be hard to catch on the big screen anywhere else. Recent independent films and favorite classics are often showing six days a week.
The theater is reasonably priced, has a passionate staff, and great concession stand. The compact space makes use of its hallway as a candlelit lobby area complete with pillows, benches, and tables for two. Visiting is certainly a refreshing experience for those that are accustomed to cookie-cutter theater chains.

5.Spend Quality Family Time at the Akron Zoo or Canal Park

There are few better ways to spend time with the family and kids than by going to the zoo or catching a baseball game. In downtown Akron, you can do both. The Akron Zoo and Canal Park Stadium offer family-friendly programming at prices that are hard to beat.
The Akron Zoo features grizzly bears, penguins, reptiles, marine animals, and more. On exhibit this summer for the first time are the newborn Snow Leopard triplets. The zoo hosts special events all summer long as well as educational programs for children.
Canal Park Stadium is home to Akron’s Double-A, minor league baseball team, the RubberDucks. Families can enjoy a game together along with special entertainment, prizes, and contests nearly every inning. During National Hamburger Festival weekend, the RubberDucks will be playing against the Portland Sea Dogs.

Make the most out of your trip to Akron by making sure a few of these activities are on your list of things to do while you’re in town. We look forward to seeing you in August and are certain that you will enjoy your time here during the National Hamburger Festival!

Nicholas Muffet is the Marketing & Social Media Coordinator at the Akron/Summit Convention & Visitors Bureau. To learn more, visit www.visitakron-summit.org or follow along at www.facebook.com/AkronSummitCVB/ or @akronsummitcvb.