Events and News

Mark your calendar. Attend a program and learn something new.  
Have your say.  Hear what others have to say.  Celebrate. Connect with the past and present.


Events Calendar pdf
Online Event Calendar
Online News Room


Winter / Spring 2018

All programs are FREE and open to the public, unless otherwise noted.  If reservations and or payments are needed, you will be linked to the online event calendar or call (440) 774-1700 or send an email to to request a registration form. 


Community Programs / Activities

January 23
(Tuesday, 7:15 p.m.) The A Side and B Side of Arthur Dann

Local historian Sid Comings will give an illustrated presentation about Oberlin professor of piano Arthur Dann (1913-1979).  This multifaceted musician taught classical piano for over 40 years at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and also performed jazz as part of a popular combo known as “King Arthur and His Men." Come to this lively program to learn more about Dann and to listen to several brief recordings that reflect both sides of the maestro! Location: Kendal at Oberlin, Heiser Auditorium.


February 1 – Community Awards Nominations Due

OHC's Awards program, now in its 17th year, welcomes nominations of individuals, businesses, or organizations whose accomplishments are in keeping with the Heritage Center's mission to "preserve and share Oberlin's unique heritage and to make our community a better place to live, learn, work and visit." Awards include 1) Community Historian, 2) Heritage Guardian, 3) History Teacher or Community Teacher of the Year, 4) Keep Oberlin Beautiful, 5) OHC Volunteer of the Year, 6) Business Leader Service Award, or 7) Youth Community Service Award. Contact to receive more information or download a brochure with full details.


February 11 (Sunday, 2:00 p.m.) African-American Business Owners of Oberlin

Amanda Manahan, the Heritage Center's Museum Education and Tour Coordinator, will present this public program about African-American business owners. The visual presentation will highlight the long, remarkable history of these individuals, including their accomplishments, struggles, and the legacies they left behind.  Location:  Mt. Zion Baptist Church of Oberlin's House of Zion Fellowship Center


February 17 – March 18 Courage and Compassion Special Exhibit & Programs

The Oberlin College Department of History has arranged for the national travelling exhibit "Courage & Compassion: Our Shared Story of the Japanese American WWII Experience" to visit Oberlin. This exhibit is sponsored by the Go for Broke National Education Center and will visit ten U.S. communities where citizens welcomed Japanese Americans during and after the turbulent days of WWII. The exhibit will be at the College’s Richard D. Baron '64 Art Gallery in downtown Oberlin and several public programs will be offered throughout the stay of the exhibit. The exhibit and programs are free and open to the public. 

The Oberlin Heritage Center is a supporting partner of this program series.

Exhibit Hours, February 17 - March 18, Baron Art Gallery, 65 East College Street:

Saturdays 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
Sundays 12:00 noon-5:00 p.m.
By appointment


March 14 (Wednesday, 9:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m.)  Painting Conservation Seminar

The Oberlin Heritage Center, in collaboration with The Nord Family Foundation, ICA (Intermuseum Conservation Association), and the Allen Memorial Art Museum, is hosting an educational program for small history and arts organizations in Lorain County.  The seminar will cover topics such as materials and methods used in the creation of paintings, condition issues that can be identified by the lay person, and basic proper care, handling and display of paintings. Attendees can bring 1-2 paintings from their organization’s collection for assessment at the end of the presentation. There will be additional time for discussion and the day will finish with lunch and a guided tour at the Allen Memorial Art Museum. If your organization is interested in sending representatives, please contact Ohio History Service Corps / AmeriCorps member Sara Fisher for registration details (, 440-774-1700) or download a registration form and mail in by February 23, 2018.


March 15 (Thursday, 7:15 p.m.) Trail Magic: The Grandma Gatewood Story

Warm up to spring and Women's History Month with a viewing of "Trail Magic," a documentary about Emma "Grandma" Gatewood. Emma Caldwell was born in Gallia County, Ohio and married Perry Gatewood. It wasn't until after divorce and her eleven children were grown that she, at the age of sixty-seven, became the first woman to solo thru-hike the Appalachian Trail in 1955. This 50-minute film about Grandma Gatewood's life and travels will be followed by a Q&A session with film producer Bette Lou Higgins of Eden Valley Enterprises.  This program is presented in collaboration with Kendal's Third Thursday program series. Location: Kendal at Oberlin, Heiser Auditorium.

Sponsored by 1830 Hallauer House Bed & Breakfast


March 24 (Saturday, 1:00 p.m.) "One Step More": Oberlin Women's History Walk

Enjoy a guided walking tour of Oberlin landmarks and monuments with historic connections to women's continual efforts to gain rights and respect. This special offering during Women's History Month is $6 per adult; free to OHC members, any college student and children under 18. Advance reservations required.  Reserve your place online or call (440) 774-1700.


March 27-29 or April 3-5 (Tuesday - Thursday, 9:30 a.m.-4:00 p.m.)  Spring Break Camps “What a Wonderful World!”

Join us for an exciting and breathtaking exploration of the many wonders of earth. Campers will learn about the seven wonders of the ancient world, the “new” seven, and some of nature’s marvels. We’ll explore how people throughout history created immense architectural structures, the science behind geological formations, and why cultures create, all through engaging hands-on activities!  Camp Location: Oberlin Depot

This three-day camp will be offered twice to accommodate area schools with different breaks.
$60 members/$70 nonmembers; $3 discount if registered by March 9.
Register on-line by clicking on preferred camp dates:  March 27 - 29         April 3 - 5
Download a registration form  and mail to OHC with payment


April 4 (Wednesday, 6:00 – 8:30 p.m. Doors open at 5:00 p.m. for social hour) OHC Annual Meeting and Community Awards

Gather with friends and meet new ones at the Heritage Center's annual dinner and program. The highlight of the evening will be a visit from historical figure Edmonia Lewis.  Lewis was of mixed African and Native American heritage and came to Oberlin as a college student in 1859. Her time at Oberlin was marked by discord that pulled away the veil of Oberlin's vaunted racial harmony. Prevented from graduating, she left to build a career in art through commissioned work and among the studios of Europe, becoming a prominent neoclassical sculptor. Lewis will be portrayed by actress Sherrie Tolliver of the Cleveland-area nonprofit Women in History. The evening also includes a brief business meeting and the presentation of the 17th Annual Community Awards.

On-line registration will open and invitations with further details will be mailed to OHC members in mid-February. All are welcome. Add your name to the mailing list by sending an email to Location: The Hotel at Oberlin

Women in History program sponsored bNorthwest Bank


April 20 (Friday, 8:40 a.m.-2:00 p.m.) Tombs & Blooms: A Stroll Among the Historic Monuments & Spring Plantings of Lake View Cemetery

The Friends of Westwood Cemetery and the Heritage Center are co-hosting a trip to historic Lake View Cemetery in Cleveland. This guided walking tour includes the James A. Garfield Monument, Wade Chapel, and stories of some of the historic people buried in the cemetery. Participants can meet at the cemetery or sign up for carpools from Oberlin. Following our tour, we’ll picnic in a nearby park; pack your own lunch with your favorite goodies! You don't have to be a member of the Friends of Westwood Cemetery or OHC to participate, but we certainly encourage you to join both and support their missions. If the weather forces cancellation, participants will have the option to sign up for a rescheduled tour or receive a refund.

The tour fee is $5/person; space is limited. Register on-line or download a registration form and mail in with payment.


May 12 (Saturday, 9:00 a.m.-Noon) OHC Grounds Clean Up Day

Join a merry band of volunteers for an hour or two and help spruce up the grounds of the Heritage Center for summer visitors. Projects include trimming, weeding, yard clean up, and possibly some fence painting. Tools and supplies are provided but volunteers also are welcome to bring their own. Location: Oberlin Heritage Center Grounds


May 26-27 (Saturday-Sunday) Oberlin College Commencement/Reunion Weekend

OHC offers an array of activities for students, residents, and visitors throughout this special weekend, including the 30-minute Oberlin Origins/Sneak Peek tour, the Historically Inaccurate tour, and a selection of themed history walks including a brand new Oberlin Architecture History Walk. Stop by the Monroe House and browse in the Museum Store for Oberlin-related books, mementos, and visitor information. Tour fees range from $3-$6 for adults; free to OHC members, any college students, and children under 18. Advance reservations are required for the history walks and tours. Drop-in visitors are welcome for the Oberlin Origins "Sneak Peek" tours. 

Please click on an offering below for more information and to make an on-line reservations.

Saturday, May 26

10:00 AM - 4:30 PM  –  Sneak Peek: Oberlin Origins Tour (every half hour, last tour begins at 4:30 PM)

11:00 AM  –  "One Step More": Oberlin Women's History Walk

3:00 PM  –  Freedom's Friends: Underground Railroad & Abolition History Walk

5:00 PM  –  Oberlin Architecture History Walk

Sunday, May 27

10:00 AM – 4:30 PM     Sneak Peek: Oberlin Origins Tour (every half hour, last tour begins at 4:30 PM)

10:00 AM  –  Historically Inaccurate

3:00 PM  –  Freedom's Friends: Underground Railroad & Abolition History Walk

5:00 PM – Scholars & Settlers History Walk

Self-guided, at-your-own-pace Tablet Tours available every day, 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM. Rent an iPad at the Oberlin Heritage Center’s Monroe House for $5/hour. Call (440-774-1700) to reserve a tablet.


May 28 (Monday) Memorial Day Self-Guided Tour of Westwood Cemetery

The Oberlin Heritage Center is creating a new, free digital tour featuring Oberlin service men and women buried in Westwood Cemetery.
Watch for details in spring e-newsletters.


June - August: Outdoor Games for All

Unplug those earbuds. Put that phone away. Grab a friend, sibling, parent, grandchild, or anyone else looking for some fresh air and fun. This summer the Oberlin Heritage Center will be putting games outside for people to enjoy in our yard. Choose from classics like ring toss, jump rope, hoop and stick, and more. The games will be available, for FREE, during OHC's open hours, Tuesday through Saturday. All you have to do is sign them out.

P.S. If you're willing to support the purchase of these games and replacements, please contact Executive Director Liz Schultz.


June 2 (Saturday, 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.) SavingTaste – Food Preservation in the Home

Have trouble consuming all your homegrown produce? Here’s a chance to learn how to preserve some of your own garden harvest! Join the Oberlin Heritage Center for a hands-on food preservation workshop that will teach you the basics of how to keep vegetables and fruits safe and delicious throughout the year. Learn a bit of the history of methods as simple as drying and pickling to canning, curing, and freezing, and leave with some practice and takeaways to try at home. For ages 12 & up; youth participants must be accompanied by an adult. $30 members, $40 nonmembers. Material cost included in registration fee.

Register on-line or watch for registration details in a spring e-newsletter or contact to be put on a notification list.


June 23 (Saturday, 10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.) Chalk Walk

Observe or take part in the 13th annual Chalk Walk ( continuing the tradition of festive, colorful sidewalk painting that began in 16th century Italy. All skill levels are welcome to work alongside professional artists in creating sidewalk art. High quality chalk is provided free. Stop by OHC's table on S. Main St. for a fun break!  Location: Downtown Oberlin


Summer History Walks

As warm weather returns to northeast Ohio, so do the Oberlin Heritage Center’s popular outdoor history walks. All ages can enjoy time outside and learn more about Oberlin’s unique history and architecture through these fun learning opportunities. Remember, OHC members enjoy FREE guided tours and history walks!

Freedom’s Friends History Walk: Underground Railroad & Abolitionist History Walk: Prior to the Civil War, as many as 3,000 African Americans passed through or lived in Oberlin after escaping from slavery. Learn about Oberlin’s famous freedom seekers and those known to have helped them make their way to freedom on the Underground Railroad.

Saturdays at 11:00 a.m. in June, July and August. Tour starts at the First Church of Oberlin

June July August
6/2 7/7 8/4
6/9 7/14 8/11
6/16 7/21 8/18
6/23 7/28 8/25


Radicals & Reformers History Walk: Join us for a stroll through historic Westwood Cemetery.  This guided tour promises a pleasing balance of Westwood's scenic landmarks and stories of some of the many spirited men and women of Oberlin who simply refused the status quo.  Find out which resident was remembered as "gentle, soft-spoken, tolerant and yet nobody's fool."  Visit the headstone of the man who escaped from slavery (twice!) and later served on the Oberlin village council. 

First Sundays at 11:00 a.m. in June, July, and August. Tour begins at Westwood Cemetery.

June July August
6/3 7/1 8/5


Ongoing Guided Tours

  • Upstairs / Downstairs Tour – Small Town, Big Stories – Every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday at 10:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. The Heritage Center’s three beautifully preserved historic buildings serve as backdrop for stories of Oberlin’s nationally significant history, from its founding in 1833 through its first century of progress. 75 minutes. $6/adults; free to OHC members, children and college students. Advance reservations encouraged; walk-ins welcome, too.

  • Sneak Peek – Oberlin Origins Mini-Tour – You’ll hit all the highlights of Oberlin’s first 100 years in this 30-minute guided tour of the first floor of the Monroe House. Offered Tuesday through Saturday between 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Drop-ins welcome, although advance notice appreciated (440-774-1700). $3/adults; free to OHC members, children and college students.


Self-Guided Tablet Tours

Move at your own pace with our tablet tours of historic Oberlin! Borrow an iPad at the Monroe House between 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m., Tuesdays through Saturdays and explore Oberlin landmarks, stories, and historic images. Stop in, e-mail (, or call ahead (440-774-1700) to rent a tablet. The fee is $5/hour or $20/day; 20% discount for OHC members.

  • Freedom's Friends This tour is a self-guided version of the popular Freedom's Friends History Walk. The tour leads you to local landmarks connected to Oberlin's abolitionist history. Be inspired by the illustrated stories of sacrifice and freedom and learn more from added stories not included in the History Walk.

  • Picture the Past: Downtown Oberlin This tour covers a one-block radius extending from the corner of Main & College Streets. Filled with fun facts, historic photographs, and more!