5 Fun Things to Do in Middletown

Middletown, Ohio may not be on your radar of places to visit, but I was pleasantly surprised to discover several gems to add to your list there.

Jimcos Kayak rental

1. Paddle the Great Miami River

Kayak the scenic Great Miami River with Jimco’s Riverside Pizza and Kayaking.  

The paddles last a few hours and there is a good chance that you will see some wildlife along the way, including a bald eagle who resides nearby.

The river was really high during our visit and we were fortunate to have the owner, Jim, guide us and point out wildlife and points of interest along the way.

Jimcos Riverside Pizza and Kayaking

Jimco’s is open for kayak rental daylight till dark, weather and water levels permitting, 7 days a week. The location is steps away from the river and the pizza is really good!

For an extra incentive, if you rent a kayak at Jimco’s on a Thursday, you get free pizza! You can’t beat that deal!

Start Skydiving Middletown Ohio

2. Take the Leap of Faith

Located less than 2 miles from Jimco’s Riverside Pizza and Kayaking, Start Skydiving is THE destination for thrill-seekers!

You can cross skydiving off your list with a tandem jump or pursue training to become certified to jump solo.

START Skydiving trains more skydivers than any other drop zone in the United States at their JUMP Institute.

The Day I Almost Skydived

I was SUPER close to taking my first tandem jump during my visit. I’d even signed the waivers and bought the video package.

But after 3 hours of waiting for the clouds to break, the weather didn’t cooperate during my visit so that adventure will have to be crossed off my list another time.

While we were waiting on the weather, I met Jacob, who is a frequent jumper who offered to show us how a parachute is packed which was really interesting.

I’ve heard several people share that the sport becomes addicting after your first jump.

One of my friends tried her first tandem at Start Skydiving a few weeks ago and LOVED it!

Mural Middletown Ohio

She said that she felt totally safe, couldn’t say enough great things about the staff and that she would definitely do it again.

3.  Murals and Art

I’m a sucker for street art and I was surprised to stumble upon several great murals and artist displays in downtown Middletown.

Street Art Middletown

Art lovers will also want to stop inside Pendleton Art Center. 

The mission of Pendleton Art Center is to encourage and nurture artistic creativity. By providing a supportive and inspiring environment for artists, and by offering art exhibitions, events, and educational programs that raise public awareness and appreciation for the arts.

As you walk the halls throughout the building, you can get a sense of each artist’s creative style displayed outside of their individual studio space. 

Pendleton Art Center

The studios are open for First Friday each month from 5 to 9 p.m. and the following day for Second look Saturday 11am -3pm.  

Some studios are open daily; some are open by appointment with the artist.

There is also a cafe inside open Tuesday through Saturday 9-3 and First Fridays 5-9.

Make sure that you check out the events calendar that also shares opportunities to take special classes from artists.

Society Middletown Ohio

4. Discover Downtown Shops

There are several locally owned business committed to the revitalization of downtown Middletown.

The Middletown shop owners I encountered were kindred spirits with the visionaries that I met in Hamilton.  They could see the potential for what could be and were invested in their city’s success.

Flores Leather Works

Flores Leather Works

Crafting responsible leather goods, Flores Leather Works displays their multifaceted artisan skills, 100 % handcrafted, made with quality leather.

They pride themselves in creating quality products that are built to last a lifetime. What started with leather gun holsters has grown into so much more.

This family-owned store is worth checking out for a unique gift and happens to be the source of one of my all-time favorite bracelets that I regularly wear (pictured in the top left corner).

I liked it so much that I bought one for myself and another as a gift.

Downtown Shops Middletown

More Downtown Shops in Middletown

A few other noteworthy shops from our visit were Society, a store that takes pride in offering something for everyone at all price points.

Society also happens to carry really unique jewelry made from instruments from a local artist in Northern Kentucky. Her guitar string earrings were my favorite.

Another shop to check out is Spoken Bicycles that doubles as a full-service bike shop and craft beer bar.

I was traveling with my younger son or I would have definitely taken more time to explore the other downtown shops… but I guess that gives me an excuse to come back.
Combs BBQ Middletown

5 Enjoy Great BBQ surrounded by Vintage Americana

We’ve enjoyed wonderful BBQ for lunch, thanks to the recommendation of the owners of Flores Leather Works.

Combs BBQ  is known for its BBQ ribs, brisket, and pulled pork sandwiches served in an environment filled with classic Americana and vintage neon signs.

The ribs were a big hit with my son but his eyes didn’t match his belly.

Come hungry or you can enjoy your leftovers the following day.

Combs BBQ

Do you know of other places that I should add to my list in Middletown?

Share them in the comments below.

Thanks to Butler County Visitors Bureau for hosting my visit.

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5 Fun things to Do in Middletown Ohio

19 thoughts on “5 Fun Things to Do in Middletown”

  1. Soulcraft is a cool fair trade shop, and West Central Wine is a cool bar. Excellent event space at The Windemere. There are MANY other new hip shops, bars and eateries in Middletown, too…it’s on the move!

  2. My backyard is to die for! It has home-grown grass and real, authentic fencing all-around. On clear days you can see the sky from it. Definitely one of Middletown’s better attractions!

  3. Haven Yoga! Wellness studio and kids play place too. Great classes, teachers, massage therapists, acupuncture and more! Such a cool place for everyone. My daughter and I love it.

  4. Go Fish Go Hunt on North Verity Parkway across Smith park The place to get Bait , fishing gear , and hunting supplies . They can direct you to some great fishing spots on the Great Miami River. Or other places around the area! They host the Kids Fishing Derby yearly !

  5. Triple Moon Coffee Shop! Good drinks and yummy sandwiches

    Thank you for your nice write up. We are proud of what people are doing downtown and appreciative of their entrepreneurship. So many sweet shop owners working hard. I love visiting our little jewels.

    I hope others explore and find something to love.

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