Toledo Invites the Visitor In.

I kept reading about this amazing installation from Gabriel Dawe at the Toledo Art Museum. Upon further research I realized that Toledo also had a charming neighborhood (the Old West End) with amazing old homes. I had been planning a road trip to Detroit for sometime. I thought I would hit Toledo on the way. I had an unusually busy work week and was feeling a bit tired so I decided to just check out Toledo and save Detroit for another time. My first stop was the Toledo Art Museum. I was surprised that there was so much to see. While I’ve lived in Chicago most of my life, for the last two years I’ve been residing in Fort Wayne, IN. While the Fort Wayne art museum and galleries there are nice, I miss having something really massive to walk through. The Toledo Art Museum is really satisfying and The Kehinde Wiley show was amazing. Wiley really does it all: he paints, he sculpts . . . he’s my new artistic hero. I also enjoyed perusing the Glass Pavilion, as glass blowing has always been a fascination for me. I’ve collected amber and cobalt blue glass since the 3rd grade. I also made a trip to Libby and picked up some amazing bargains to add to my collection.

I stayed at an Airbnb in the Old West End. I love old houses and this neighborhood reminded me of a bigger version of Fort Wayne’s West Central neighborhood. I met my Airbnb host and his friends at the Attic on Adams. This bar was fantastic with friendly people and craft beer, two of my favorite things! I’m an IPA beer snob and ended up trying their Glasshopper IPA and the High Weyerhaeuser (which was recommended by my friendly bartender and is now my all time favorite IPA).

Every so often I need what I call “a big city fix”. Toledo, to my surprise, has become my frequent fix. I’ve been back a few times since my first visit last April. I even experienced the OWE Festival, which is filled with a lot of things I love: parades, porch parties, art on display, yard sales, beer gardens and friendly people. Since then I have made more friends and collected new favorite places including Black Kite Coffee, Handmade Toledo, and Poco Loco. Whenever I’m on Collingwood Avenue I pet my favorite neighborhood goats.

Every time I see the slogan, “You’ll do better in Toledo” it makes me smile. Most city slogans are about bragging about how awesome their city is but this one invites the visitor in . . . to do better . . . which is pretty kind actually.

Patricia does not currently live in Toledo but she an enthusiastic fan. She sent us this great photograph that she took at the selfie station at our wonderful Museum of Art. We at LLtoTo adore that Patricia feels so welcomed by Toledo and that it has become her “big city fix”. We believe that even if you visit is only for a day, or even a few hours, you will do better in Toledo.