The fourth most populated city in Ohio, Toledo is the seat of Lucas County. Located on the western end of Lake Erie and along the west bank of the Maumee River, Toledo borders Michigan, and was originally founded as two different towns: Port Lawrence and Vistula, both located in the Toledo Strip. In 1833, the two towns merged to convince Ohio to appoint the newly named Toledo area as the terminus of the Miami and Erie Canal. Instead, Ohio added two side cuts before Manhattan, with one in Toledo. In 1835, Michigan and Ohio disputed in the bloodless Toledo War over who owned the Toledo Strip. By 1837, Ohio was awarded the strip, re-founded Toledo, and incorporated the city into Ohio. Because Toledo began as two different towns divided by Cherry Street, the streets on the northeast side run at a slightly different angle from those on the southwest side.
Today, Toledo is well known for a variety of attributes, from its arts community to its education, local sports teams, healthcare, and industries. Toledo has experienced the rise and fall of the automotive industry, and the glass industry, resulting in Toledo’s nickname of “The Glass City,” and now the rise of green industry. Despite its “rust belt” reputation, Toledo invested in solar energy research and saw a growth in “green jobs” around the 2000s. Transportation in Toledo is convenient, with both the Toledo Area Regional Transit Authority (TARTA) and the Toledo Area Paratransit Services (TARPS).
Historic places of interest in Toledo include the Old West End, a historic neighborhood north of the Toledo Museum of Art with mansions that can be toured during Christmas. The Oliver House, a historic hotel designed by architect Isaiah Rogers that was converted to industrial use, is reportedly haunted by a jovial Captain in military uniform and is now run as a brew pub by the Maumee Bay Brewing Company.
In terms of sports, Toledo has a minor league baseball team, the Toledo Mud Hens, the Inverness Golf Club known for hosting six major USGA events, hockey, a women’s full-contact tackle football team called ‘Thee Toledo Reign’ and an indoor women’s football team called the ‘Toledo Crush’, the Glass City Rollers and Roller Derby, and the headquarters of the Automobile Racing Club of America (ARCA), along with the local Toledo Speedway.
Many outdoor recreational activities are found in International Park, the 47-acre R. A. Stranahan Arboretum, the Toledo Metroparks system with the University and Parks Trail and the Toledo Botanical Garden, and the 6.3 mile long University Bike and Walking Trail. Other attractions are Tony Packo’s Café, featuring hot dog buns signed by celebrities, the Hollywood Casino Toledo, the lake freighter Col. James S. Schoonmaker, and the Toledo Zoo, which was the first zoo with a hippoquarium-style exhibit.
The Toledo Public School district runs many of the public schools found within the city, but various public charter schools, private schools, parochial schools, and even Imagine schools are in the city as well. With a multitude of universities that contribute to city life, like the University of Toledo, Bowling Green State University, Lourdes University, and Davis College, the educational opportunities in Toledo are endless.
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