The fourth largest city in the state of Ohio, Toledo is a water-loving town. Located at the western end of Lake Erie, downtown Toledo is built along the banks of the Maumee River that spills out into the Great Lake. Fed by the automotive and glass industries, urban Toledo has embraced the brownstone architecture revitalization similar to nearby Chicago and Milwaukee.
Home to over 600,000 Ohioans, greater Toledo offers many of the cultural venues, sports teams, and educational opportunities that come as a rite-of-passage with this population density. Known as the “glass city,” beaming high rises are constructed of materials melted from the sands of Lake Erie. Ornamental as much as functional, Toledo showcases its glass heritage in galleries, museums, and retail shops. Enough to make you want to carry Windex in a hip holster, here are two “glassy” venues for seeing Toledo clearly.
Toledo Museum of Art Glass Pavilion
Affiliated with the Toledo Museum of Art, the Glass Pavilion is located in a mostly transparent 74,000 square foot building across from the main art museum on 2445 Monroe Street. Featuring the works of world-renowned artisans including Dale Chihuly and Dominick Labino, the museum is segmented into galleries, conference space, a coffee bar and gift shop, and two state-of-the-art glassblowing studios. Providing materials, demonstrations, and instruction on glassblowing techniques, class schedules and event information is best found on the Glass Pavilion website. A work-of-art in itself, even the bathroom sinks are hip-and-trendy. Admission to both the Toledo Museum of Art and the Glass Pavilion is free.
Libbey Glass Showroom
With the invention of the world’s first automated bottle-making machine in 1903, Edward Drummond Libbey and Michael J.Owens set the glass industry’s revolution into motion. Significantly contributing to the both the local job market and the studio glass movement, people around the world have been decorating their tables with Libbey Glass for over a century. Located at 205 South Erie Street in Toledo, the 60,000 square foot Libbey Glass Showroom is a bargain-hunters paradise. At prices below suggested retail value, the outlet store features glassware, flatware, candles, dinnerware, decorative glass and porcelain, and gifts including towels, cards, and seasonal tchotchkes. Ideal for special events and celebrations, leave a corner of your trunk unpacked if you plan to stop at Libbey.
This post was originally published (by me) on sister-site Road Trips for Girlfriends.