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Athens (Ohio)

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Athens (Ohio)

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Athens is a small town and county seat of Athens County Southeast Ohio, best known for being home to Ohio University. The university was the first founded west of the Appalachian Mountains in 1804.

Get in

By air

  • Port Columbus International Airport (CMH), take US-33, approximately 70 miles, from Columbus.

By car

SR 33 and SR 50 intersect at Athens.

Get around

By foot

  • Athens is a small town that can be easily traversed by foot.


  • Ohio University

Arts and Culture

  • Ohio University School of Theatre Features six mainstage productions a year as well as a series of Lab Shows
  • The Seabury Quinn, Jr. Playwrights' Festival Graduate playwrights' festival held each year, usually at the end of May. Features readings, staged readings, and full productions of graduate work.
  • Midnight Madness Every Friday at Midnight in the Hahne Theater, School of Theatre Building. Each week the graduate playwrights write a ten minute play based on a theme they receive that Monday.
  • Lost Flamingo Company Ohio University's student run theatre company. Features nine to twelve productions a year, as well as yearly productions of The Rocky Horror Picture Show (Fall Quarter), The Vagina Monologues (Winter Quarter), and Short Stack, a collection of ten minute plays written by Ohio University students (Spring Quarter).
  • Comedy for the Masses Ohio University's student sketch comedy group. Features six shows a year, as well as an annual Stand-Up Showcase. Founded in 2001, in part by Michael Busch (the original Sprint guy from the Alltel commercials).
  • The 48-Hour Shoot Out An annual competition sponcered by the School of Telecommunications in which students are given two days to write, film, and edit a short movie based on a line of dialogue, a prop, and a genre.


  • The OU Bobcats compete in the Mid-American Conference of NCAA Division I-A College Athletics.




  • Casa Nueva, 4 W. State St., [2]. Great "Mexican" (non-authentic) food, vegan and vegetarian options, dedicated to using local resources. Restaurant has been worker-owned since 1984.
  • Lam's Garden, 934 E. State St., (740) 594-4424 for takeout. Excellent American Chinese cuisine, the best General Tso's Chicken in the universe.
  • Lui Lui's 8 Station St. Decent Asian and American fusion.
  • The Oak Room 14 Station St. Nice small bar with OK food for lunch, dinners are overpriced. Has a nice selections of beers on tap for its size.
  • O'Betty's Red Hot 15 W. State St. Burlesque themed hot dog joint.
  • Court Street Diner 18 N. Court St. 24- Hour greasy spoon diner, only restaurant in Athens that serves Cherry Kool-Aid
  • Peking Express 5 N. Court St. Commonly known to locals and college students as "$3.95 Chinese", it is precisely that, a giant heap of Chinese food for $3.95.
  • Avalanche Pizza 329 E. State St. Cheap, internationally award winning pizza. Insanely great deals (especially if you pick-up rather than get delivery) and an obscene amount of topping choices and specialty pizzas.
  • Bagel Street Deli 23 S. Court St. Charming deli featuring nearly 200 different bagel sandwiches and other fares, ranging from vegan to ultra-carnivore. Walls are decorated with tin foil sculptures and chalk signatures of past customers. Home of the annual Pickle Fest (pickle eating contest).
  • Donkey Coffee 17 1/2 W. Washington St. Rated Best Coffeehouse in the state by Ohio Magazine. Features calming music, great coffee, board games, open mic nights, poetry nights, local art, and is open 24 hours during finals week.
  • Souvlaki's Restaurant and Deli 9 W. State St. Late night gyros and baklava.
  • Big Mamma's Burritos 10 S. Court St. An option for those who loathe Chipotle
  • Burrito Buggy A stand that sells amazing burritos at the intersection of Court St. and Union St. It's bright orange, yellow, and purple; you can't miss it.
  • DP Dough 374 Richland Ave. Open to 3AM on the weekend, serving more than forty different types of calzones. Some of the best drunk food in Athens.
  • Grand China Buffet 1002 E. State St. Amazingly great buffet with waitresses who glare at you in every attempt to will you to your own death.
  • Hungry Howie's Pizza 235 W. Union St. Not just a national chain, but the best selling of all of the Hungry Howie restaurants in the nation
  • Stephen's 24 1/2 E. State St. Amazing restaurant with a constantly changing menu


There are many bars on Court Street located near Ohio University's College Green.

  • The Union 18 W. Union St. Voted one of the best dive bars in America by Maxim Magazine. Features $1 Pabst Blue Ribbon, live indie rock of varying volumes, and Dance or Die, a monthly dance party.
  • The Smiling Skull 108 W. Union St. Athens' biker bar. Great jukebox ranging from Johnny Cash to Dylan to The Clash. Very reasonable drinks and nearly guaranteed to be free of frat and sorority types.
  • Cat's Den 110 W. Union St.
  • Jackie O's 24 W. Union St. Home of the only microbrew in Athens, offering live music, food and outdoor patio. A great alternative to the typical Athens bar scene.
  • BW3's23 W. Union St. Wings, beer, sports, trivia, and a wall dedicated to people who have eaten 12 Blazin' wings in five minutes.
  • Skipper's 22 W. Union St. Very decent food and great liquor selection.
  • The Junction 41 N. Court St. Very popular bar that features the signature drink Junction Punch. Gin is probably an ingrediant and one is more than enough.
  • The Pub 39 N. Court St. Well known for their Beer Cheese Soup, Aquarium Night (beer in obscenely huge glasses), and for being massively packed during the weekend.
  • Pigskin Bar and Grill Very well known for their signature drink The Black Widow, a one of a kind dark purple concoction that is a must have for any visitor to Athens.
  • Pawpurr's 37 N. Court St.
  • Crystal 34 N. Court St. Very easily the frat/sorority bar
  • Red Brick Sports Pub 14 N. Court St. Many flat screen TVs and a pretty decent menu
  • Cat's Eye 12 N. Court St.
  • Lucky's 11 N. Court St. The official Steelers bar of Athens. Very good daily specials.
  • Route 65 19 S. Court St.
  • Tony's Tavern 7 W. State St. One of two townie bars, and definitely is the nicer of the two. Daily specials on Killian's and a very laid back, friendly dive bar atmosphere.
  • Casa Cantina 4 W. State St. Great food, pretty mediocre bar, terrible margaritas
  • Broney's 7 W. Carpenter St. The newest bar addition to Athens at the very end of Court Street




  • Burr Oak State Park Lodge

Bed & Breakfast

Get out

  • Burr Oak State Park and Resort Lodge, Athens County, north of Glouster and east/adjacent to the Wayne National Forest off of Route 13. A variety of overnight accommodations, lodge, cottages and campground. Lodge: Sixty guest rooms, five meeting rooms, a dining room, full-service lounge, gift shop, swimming beach, tennis courts, playground equipment, boat launch ramp and indoor pool. Cottages: 30 family cottages, air conditioning, cable tv, sleeps six people, bath/shower, living room, complete kitchen, dining area, screened porch. Linens, towels, cooking, eating utensils are furnished. Camping: 100 non-electric campsites, showers, flush toilets, twenty one primitive sites, pet camping. Fishing, hunting, swimming, beach, bathhouse, showers, changing booths, snack bar, twenty-eight miles of hiking trails, Burr Oak Backpack Trail, horseshoe court and playground.
  • Lake Hope State Park, eastern Vinton County, approx. 20 miles west of Athens. Lake Hope State Park is entirely within the 26,824-acre Zaleski State Forest and adjacent to part of the Wayne National Forest. Dining lodge: destroyed by fire 2006. Being rebuilt. Cottages: 72 cottages, all cottages have linens, towels, complete kitchens, microwave ovens, heat, air conditioning, outdoor grills and fire rings. Camping: 219-site campground, heated showerhouses, pit latrines, waste disposal, laundry facilities, picnic tables, fire rings, forty-six sites have electric hookups, pet camping, three Rent-A-Camp units, one camper-cabin, one Rent-A-Tepee. Boats with electric motors only, 120 acre lake, canoes, kayaks, and rowboats, available for rent. Swimming beach, beachhouse, sun deck, restrooms, concession building, fishing, hunting, seventeen miles of hiking trails, 21-mile backpack trail with primitive campsites, thirty-three miles of bridle trail and 23-mile singletrack bike trail.
  • Stouds Run State Park, Athens County, east of Athens, on Route 690 , inside of Wayne National Forest on Dow Lake. 75 non-electric campsites, picnic tables and fire rings, pet camping, three Rent-A-Camp sites, boating, fishing, hunting, fifteen miles of hiking trails, birdwatching, nature study, 8-1/2 mile bridle trail, 900-foot sand beach, change booths, drinking water, restrooms, scuba diving with proper equipment, picnic tables, cooking grates, three shelterhouses, basketball court, playground equipment, boat rentals, volleyball court and another playground.

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