As we enter the 21st century, Tuscarawas County's varied attractions, beautiful landscape and ideal location mark it as one of the state's and region's most distinctive and attractive tourist destinations.
The county's attractions wrap education and fun into one full package that reflects area history, culture and other aspects of life. With a visit or vacation stop in Tuscarawas County, couples and families are able to enjoy a variety of activities that can include taking a ride on a passenger train, stepping back in time with stops at 18th century settlements, browsing at numerous specialty shops and stores, learning how other cultures have adapted their customs to lifestyles in the county and watching the slower pace of the Amish.
Every member of a family is taken care of during a visit to Tuscarawas County, which is conveniently located only 90 miles from the major urban centers of Columbus, Cleveland and Pittsburgh and easily accessible via I-77. Paul Green's award-winning outdoor drama "Trumpet in the Land" presents the story of Moravian missionaries and their efforts to bring Christianity to the county's large Indian population during the formation of Schoenbrunn, Ohio's first settlement. The drama is presented at the Schoenbrunn Amphitheater in New Philadelphia. Schoenbrunn Village at New Philadelphia remains alive and well, including 17 log buildings and the original cemetery, revealing life in the area as it was in 1772. Zoar Village State Memorial at Zoar permits visitors to explore life in an early 19th century communal society. The state's only Revolutionary War fort, Fort Laurens State Memorial, is located only a few miles up the road from Zoar.
A museum, artifacts, film presentation and other items present the story of the fort, which was constructed in 1778. The Gnadenhutten Museum in the village of Gnadenhutten tells the story of one of the most brutal events of the Revolutionary War, the massacre of 90 Christian Indians. At the village of Newcomerstown, the Temperance Tavern Museum presents a walk through much of the area's history to modern times. Items in the museum detail Newcomerstown's role as the one-time Delaware Indian nation capital in the mid-1700s, as well as presenting the lives of major league baseball pitcher Cy Young and legendary Ohio State University football coach Woody Hayes, who both grew up in the village. Sugarcreek is the center of the state's swiss cheese manufacturing industry and serves as the "Gateway to Amish Country," with a large Amish population and related Amish-style shops and stores.
The site of the annual Ohio Swiss Festival in the fall, the village's Alpine Hills Historical Museum boasts three floors of artifacts and other presentations. Visits to working cheese factories and the nearby Baltic Mills flour factory and shop also are available, along with a stop at one of Ohio's most recognized wineries, Breitenbach Wines. The J.E. Reeves Victorian Home at Dover is a 17-room mansion named for a famous industrialist from the late 19th century, and is host to many special activities and social functions throughout the year. World War II veterans and enthusiasts alike will enjoy the Dennison Railroad Depot Museum. The museum is housed in a restored rail station, and offers many special rail excursions through the countryside during the year, as well. The works of the world's master carver, Ernest "Mooney" Warther, are on display at Warther Museum and Carvings at Dover.
The tradition of Warther, who carved the history of the steam engine in ebony and ivory among other works, continues today through his grandson David Warther. A drive through the rural landscape of Tuscarawas County always is a relaxing and fun venture that can yield visits to specialty shops and sites. Drive-it-yourself tours on roads outside the county's cities and villages are popular choices for many families looking for brief escapes from busy lifestyles. The calendar in Tuscarawas County also is dotted with numerous events, festivals and celebrations throughout the year. Indoor and outdoor activities abound with entertainment, food and other events to mark these celebrations of culture, heritage and fun.
The county's large selection of varied restaurants and lodging choices can be tailored for any taste and need, making a visit to the county a very hassle-free task. Corporate motels and hotels, distinctive bed and breakfast locations and specialty hotels and conference centers can accommodate weekend getaways, family vacations and business meetings.
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