Updated Mon, Aug 20, 2012 2:25 pm
In 1940, the Federal Writers Project produced a massive book detailing the scenic treasures and everyday life along Ohio’s roads - roads that went through the big cities as well as through farmland and tucked-away places. 70 years later, the roads have changed and the pulse of the people is different – in some places. Picking up where the Federal Writers Project left off, the Ohio Humanities Council has announced the launch of the Road Trip! radio series and The New Ohio Guide Audio Tours at SeeOhioFirst.org. This new guide takes those older routes and gives them a 21st century twist, recreating them as free downloadable audio tours, and the Road Trip! radio series.
“Long before Ohio had an interstate system, the Federal Writers Project staff traveled the state’s main roads to compile a history of Ohio,” said Pat Williamsen, Executive Director of the Ohio Humanities Council. “But the New Dealers were also very concerned about using tourism to spark the economy during the Great Depression – so they created driving tours that were published as part of The Ohio Guide.”
“We have updated some of those itineraries as free downloadable audio tours to encourage motorists to get off the interstate and enjoy Ohio’s small towns and scenic beauty.” The Road Trip! series gives the radio audience glimpses of what is in store on the tours.
The initial launch of audio driving tours, funded by a grant of Transportation Enhancement Funds through the Ohio Department of Transportation, are available for download at SeeOhioFirst.org. Produced by independent producers and public broadcasting partners, the tours highlight the culture, and geography of regions. Listeners can expect to learn extraordinary facts about Ohio, while drivers will be directed to cultural attractions like the Tobacco Museum, Little Italy, and Magee Marsh. Each tour on SeeOhioFirst.org is accompanied by maps, photographs, and travel information.
As the state-based partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Ohio Humanities Council supports programs that encourage Ohioans to explore history, literature, and culture to connect what they learn with the way they live. For more information about OHC, visit www.ohiohumanities.org.