• facebook
  • twitter
  • youtube
  • rss
  • instagram

Columbus Commons Blog

So Much is in Store for Season Number Six!


FREE Events This Season!

Our team has been hard at work to pack the park with tons of amazing events this season. Here is a snapshot of what we have coming up in 2016. Click on any of the links below to get all the details!

All of the events featured below are produced internally by the Columbus Downtown Development Corporation (CDDC), but Columbus Commons is proud to be the host site for many other events produced externally. Check out our event calendar here to see all of the awesome events that call Columbus Commons home.


It wouldn't be summer at Columbus Commons without free live music! Join us in kicking off the season with a free concert on May 20 by Saintseneca. Then, on May 27, Phil Dirt & the Dozers will transport you through time back to the good ol' days of rock 'n roll.

The Navigators will be back in the park for a 4th performance packed with high energy hits to raise money for a Columbus charity. And you know that another season of Downtown Live, presented by Capital Crossroads SID, means all your local musical heroes will be jamming on the Columbus Bicentennial Pavilion every Thursday in July. Fan favorites include Mojoflo, Popgun, Conspiracy, Angela Perley and the Howlin' Moons, and more.

Finally, we’ll send the summer off on Sept. 2 with none other than the central Ohio legends, McGuffey Lane.

Shadowbox Live will also be returning to our stage for two special performances this season. The first is, Bigger than Jesus: A Beatles Tribute on May 29, paying homage to the pivotal band, as well as the life and times of the era. Shadowbox will be back on Sept. 4 to perform A Tribute to Joe Cocker: Mad Dog and Englishman, honoring one of the most well-loved rock and blues singers of our time.

Remember, it’s all free so grab a friend (or a few) and a lawn chair and get ready to dance the night away. You won't want to miss a beat!



No contracts, no excuses! Whether you're a fitness junkie or your just starting out on your wellness journey, our free fitness classes make it easy for everyone to exercise. Plus, we've got a view that beats what you see from an elliptical. All classes are free thanks to UnitedHealthcare.

Once you complete a waiver here, you'll be ready to participate in any fitness class throughout the season. Session one runs from May 2 - June 11 and after a midsummer hiatus, classes will return for a second session from August 1 - October 1.



Searching for easy ways to entertain the kiddos this summer? Look no further because the Commons is your one-stop-shop for free outdoor fun!

First up this season, our iconic, hand-carved carousel will start spinning on April 25, perfect for a day trip downtown. Plus our cafes will be open for business in case you're craving a cone from Jeni's or a tasty burrito from Tortilla.

Our Art Box, curated by the OSU Urban Art Space, opens on May 25, so stop by and make a craft with the free supplies our peruse the kid-friendly reading materials in our Reading Room. Open Play will also be available during these times with all  your favorite recess activities like soccer, football, jump rope, parachute play and the Imagination Playground.

Commons for Kids, presented by UnitedHealthcare Community Plan, will be back on Fridays starting May 27 from 10 am - 1 pm! The park will be full of free activities like carousel rides, inflatables, crafts and more to entertain your crew for hours.

We'll be taking fun to a whole new level at our Family Funday on May 28 from 4 pm - 8 pm. This extravaganza will feature carousel rides, face painting, putt-putt, inflatables, crafts and more. New this year, we're partnering with Autism Speaks to open the event at 3 pm exclusively for families with children who have sensory sensitivity. We'll be keeping the crowds small so they can enjoy all of the normal event activities in a less overwhelming environment.

The only thing better than watching a good flick, is seeing it under the stars at your favorite downtown park! This summer, catch these movies at the Commons, all starting at 8:15 pm:
May 28 - The Good Dinosaur, presented by UnitedHealthcare Community Plan
June 24 - Honey I Shrunk the Kids, presented by UnitedHealthcare Community Plan
July 22 - Minions, Presented by Heartland Bank

Families are invited to enjoy carousel rides, inflatable games, a pumpkin patch, petting zoo and much more at our annual Harvest Fair, presented by PNC, on Sept. 24 from Noon - 4 pm. This event is a fall classic with a downtown twist so mark your calendars now because you won't want to miss it!


Food Truck Food Court

Food Truck Food Court, presented by Giant Eagle Market District, features local food trucks serving up some of the best eats Columbus has to offer. Enjoy a plethora of fantastic lunch options on Thursdays from May 5 through Oct. 27. There will be 8 trucks on site all season long, plus two trucks that rotate monthly May through September to keep your taste buds on their toes!


Thank You to Our Park Partners!

Columbus Commons is supported each year by the contributions of generous partners who believe in the Commons' mission to provide free community events in the heart of downtown, everybody's neighborhood. All of our free events would not be possible without these partners! Check out all the organizations that are investing the Columbus community by supporting an active downtown.

We also want to thank you for choosing to park in the Columbus Commons Garages! Revenue from these garages provides significant support for the programming and maintenance of Columbus Commons. So if you're coming downtown by car, whether it’s for a free event at the park, a show at the Ohio Theatre, dinner at one of our great nearby restaurants, or a walk along the Scioto Mile, we thank you for choosing the Commons Garages.