Places We Love: COSI

CBUS Dads blogger Steven Michalovich is reliving his childhood with his kids at COSI in 2017, specifically the Kidspace.

In the much-appreciated spirit of gifting experiences rather than stuff, my amazing brother-in-law gave us a year membership to COSI for Christmas. If somehow you’re not familiar with COSI, Parent Magazine ranked it as the number one science center in America in 2008.

Parenthood gets even more fun when you can get reacquainted with activities that you enjoyed as a youth. COSI is a prime example. I have fond memories of going into the city to spend a day at the Broad Street location.

Now I get to do the same with my children, albeit to a new downtown location.

We went for the first time since my youth on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. On a holiday for most schools, COSI was pretty packed, but we expected this, softening the blow.

With a two-and-a-half-year old, our time was 100 percent spent in the little kidspace. The vast amount of activities for young kids to do is remarkable. Everything, and I mean everything, promotes activity, creativity, interaction, and most importantly fun.

I’ll let the photos illustrate how COSI is one of the best, if not the best, place in town to take young children and let them explore. And we just scratched the surface. COSI has so much more for our family to explore as my kids get older.

Cheers to a new generation of memories.

By Steven Michalovich, Contributor

A First Trip to Nationwide Children’s Hospital Urgent Care

Last Tuesday evening my two boys and I were chasing our puppy around the house after his bath to dry him off. My three-year-old dove up on the sofa and slammed his head on the edge of the end table. This trauma cut a nearly 2.5 inch gash into his lower left forehead causing excessive bleeding.

Once I was able to get the bleeding under control and assess the situation, I was able to hop on my Droid to Google urgent care locations. I was not only pleased to learn that there is an Nationwide Children’s Hospital Urgent Care within 2.8 miles of my Upper Arlington home, but I was also pleased to know that I could see the current wait tim20170104_200447es and make the determination that if the wait time was too long in Hilliard, that I could possibly go to the other nearby location in Dublin. I called my wife, who wasn’t home at the time, calmed her down then off we went to Hilliard.

Being an employee of Nationwide Children’s Hospital as Administrator of Perioperative Services, I’ve never personally been on the receiving side of their ambulatory services. However, I have to say that the experience was fantastic. We experienced efficient and friendly registration and were put back in the treatment room within 5 minutes of check in. When we got to the back before entering our treatment room the staff at the desk made a point to acknowledge and meet with my son and let him know that everything would be ok and then explained the process for fixing him up. Everyone we came into contact with was
pleasant, empathetic and accommodating.

Case in point: My eight-year-old son didn’t want to watch his little bro get sewn up, so the staff offered to have him sit at the desk with them while the procedure took place – AND offered him a charging cord for his iPod that he brought with him.

The suture process was difficult for my son to take, however he was able to pull through and was happy to get a lollipop afterwards for his efforts. We were in and out with six sutures in under an hour.

I can only speak from my experience, which was exceptional and truly exceeded both mine and my wife’s expectations. Glad to know we have a high quality healthcare system nearby to cover my crazy boys when needed in an emergency.

By Steve Swift, Contributor



Two Indoor Activities in Powell for a Cold, Winter Day

CBUS Dads blogger Steve Michalovich shares his experience spending a cold day in Downtown Powell, visiting Recreations Outlet and TREEHIVE cafe & play.

The holidays are over, and temperatures have gotten quite frigid. If you have young kids, you are looking for any kind of activity that will occupy them and hopefully wear them out. When the wind chill is below zero though, it’s not as easy as heading to the park or the zoo.

My wife were in this predicament with our 20-month-old daughter last Martin Luther King Day. It was freezing outside, but we were all getting a little stir crazy stuck in the house for the three-day weekend.

We discovered two incredible ways to spend a few hours indoors in Powell:

We started at TREEHIVE cafe & play. We had never been to a play cafe before, so the concept sort of blew us away. We were able to drop our daughter off in a clean, enclosed activity space with toys, puzzles and slides, where 10-20 other children were actively playing. A TREEHIVE cafe & play staffer was in the space, being kept very busy keeping up with all of the hyped kids. Meanwhile, my wife and I grabbed a cup in the cafe, which is similar to any other modern coffee shop. We talked. We scrolled the internet. I purchased my running shoes for the upcoming season. We spent about 45 minutes there, which is probably about the max you could hope for. I was impressed with the different membership models and pay structures TREEHIVE cafe & play offered. The site is available to reserve for big parties, which I filed away for potential future use.

From there, we went across the street to Recreations Outlet. On the surface, Recreations Outlet has helped many Ohio families turn backyards into playground meccas. But their facility in Powell (there’s also a couple in the Cincinnati area) are big showrooms for the products they offer. We’re talking basketball hoops, trampolines, big toys. We learned that Recreations Outlet offers indoor play all year long. If you need additional convincing this is good (you shouldn’t), they set charitable play hours each week where 50 percent of all earnings from indoor play go to a worthy charity. In 2016, Recreations Outlet donated $42,000+ to local nonprofits. On MLK Day, the place was packed, but that didn’t stop our daughter from taking it all in. It didn’t stop me either – how could I not get in on the action? We put in another 90 minutes there, and it didn’t get dull. For a visual, here’s my daughter a year ago in a swing – in slow motion.

If you can get up to Powell, both are near the downtown, which is actually a neat place to hang out with some cool shops and local restaurants.

Winter has really just begun, so if you have any other suggested indoor activities around town, please share.

By Steven Michalovich, Contributor

A Story of Helping Others and the Lessons Gained

After checking out the Huntington Holiday Train Exhibit at the Main Library, CBUS Dads blogger Steve Swift and his family witnessed something that proved to be a valuable lesson to his children.

I recently took the Friday before New Year’s Day off of work to spend time with my wife and kids. We spent several hours that morning at the Main Library in Downtown Columbus, mainly in the kids area searching for and reading various kids books, drawing and taking part in a bunch of arts and crafts activities and checking out the last day of the wonderful Huntington Holiday Train exhibit. Needless to say, the downtown library is a great place to spend quality time with the kids. On this particular day, our Congresswoman Joyce Beatty was being sworn in to the U.S. House of Representatives in a ceremony on the second floor and there were a lot of people in the building. The mood around the library was filled with excitement, and everyone seemed really happy and cheerful.

When it became time to leave, we left through the front of the building onto Grant Street. As we were walking to our car on State Street, we noticed an elderly gentleman with a cane struggling to walk along the sidewalk. As I was thinking about helping him, a young lady came from across the street to assist him. At this point we were within a few feet of this interaction and overheard the lady sincerely attempting to escort the elderly gentleman to his destination at the nearby Grant Medical Center. The gentleman politely refused her assistance but accepted her offer to walk along and talk with him until he got to the Center.

When we got to the car I asked my eight-year-old son his thoughts about what the lady was doing. He knew exactly what had happened in that the lady was being nice and wanted to help the “old man”. We discussed how it is not only the right thing to do, helping others when we can, but it also has effects that go far beyond the action of simply helping people. We talked about how all of those people: the elderly gentleman, the young lady, the witnesses, and even us, will carry on more of an awareness of kindness and helpfulness that will transcend to other people we interact with – and that awareness will evolve into action which will help make our community even better.

While having this discussion and stopped at a red light on Spring Street, we then witnessed with the car in front of us a professionally dressed gentleman get out of his car and picked up a few large pieces of car debris from the road and placed them on the sidewalk near a trash can. I explained to my sons that the nice man was removing the debris from the road so that no other motorist would get hurt or damage their own car.

Our family was on cloud nine after this series of events and we talked about them more over lunch. It was a very positive experience to help close out the year, and I’m really thankful that the very fine people of central Ohio demonstrated this type of behavior for my family to witness.

By Steve Swift, Contributor