Avoid Brood X with cicada-free Midwest vacation spots
As of May, around a dozen states will be primarily affected by swarms of cicada, emerging from the underground every 17 years. The swarms will be buzzing from New York to Illinois and south to northern Georgia, including hot spots in Indiana, Ohio, Tennessee, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey.
According to researchers, this particular group of cicadas, known as Brood X (as in the Roman numeral), is one of the most geographically powerful of all 17-year-old cicadas. If you feel like the end of the world is approaching, here are five destinations are not on the Brood X cicada card for expected creepy crawly animals. And they’re all about a 5-hour drive from Cincinnati. It is fight or flight time. RUN!
More:When will the cicadas appear in 2021? How long will they be there after they come out? When will you be back?
Cedar Point Amusement Park (3 hours 43 minutes)
Cedar Point, a huge 364-acre amusement park on a peninsula on Lake Erie in Sandusky, Ohio, originally opened in 1870. The park is home to an impressive 71 rides, including 17 roller coasters, including the newest and most popular known as the Steel Vengeance, which debuted in 2018.
The park is also home to Cedar Point Shores Waterpark, which is slated to open on May 29th. The 18-acre water park with deep slides and shallow kiddie areas is a fun destination for everyone. Since most activities are outdoors, it’s easy to practice social distancing and follow precautions. Because of its long history, the park also has several buildings that are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
When staying at a Cedar Point hotel, save on regular one-day Cedar Point admission tickets. You’ll also enjoy early admission, the option (with paid entry) to enjoy selected rides an hour before the park opens to the general public. cedarpoint.com.
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (4 hours 20 minutes)
Visit Pittsburgh, also known as “The Steel City” for its more than 300 steel shops and the “City of Bridges” for its enormous number of bridges (over 400!). Enjoy a variety of outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, and paddling along the river.
Hikers should definitely not miss the 150 mile Great Allegheny Passage, which begins at Point State Park in Pittsburgh and eventually connects to the C&O Canal Towpath in Maryland. The Montour Trail offers bikers and pedestrians alike 60 miles of scenic adventure from Coraopolis on the Ohio River to Clairton on the Monongahela River.
The city is best known for its pierogies. So be sure to stop by the Pittsburgh Pierogi Truck for delicious handmade dumplings at reasonable prices. visitpittsburgh.com.
Farmington, Pennsylvania (4 hours 48 minutes)
About an hour and a half from Pittsburgh is Farmington, known for its Nemacolin luxury resort, which features a large Pete Dye-designed golf course and wellness experiences at the Woodland Spa and Salon.
The resort offers a diverse range of accommodations for all travelers: couples, families, pet-friendly rooms and larger rooms for family reunions. With so many activities including paintball, biking, art classes, obstacle courses, and a 27-table casino, there’s something for every family member. visitpa.com/region/laurel-highlands/farmington.
St. Louis, Missouri (5 hours 10 minutes)
The epicenter of Midwestern Americana, St. Louis is a vibrant city that has a lot going for it when it comes to food, beer, sports, and music. City landmarks include the Busch Stadium baseball park, home to the St. Louis Cardinals, and Gateway Arch, which is a memorial to Thomas Jefferson’s part in the expansion to the west. Don’t miss the tram ride at Gateway Arch, a pod that can hold up to five passengers to take in the breathtaking views.
Be sure to check out 1,326 acres of Forest Park, which opened in 1876 and which has hosted several major events, including the Louisiana Purchase Exposition (1904) and the 1904 Summer Olympics. Within the park, families with children can visit the Saint Louis Zoo.
You can stay at the Ritz-Carlton, conveniently located in the heart of the Clayton business and shopping enclave, minutes from downtown and very close to Lambert-St. Louis International Airport. The hotel has the Ritz Kids program, which features restaurants and other family-friendly hotel amenities, as well as a state-of-the-art fitness and massage center for adults and health conscious travelers. explorestlouis.com.
Grand Rapids, Michigan (5 hours 20 minutes)
Grand Rapids, Michigan’s second largest city, sits on the Grand River and is one of the fastest growing cities in the Midwest. Best known as “River City” and more recently “Beer City”, it offers museums and historical sites for those interested in culture.
Visit the Grand Rapids African American Museum & Archives, dedicated to retelling the rich stories of historic African Americans who live in Grand Rapids. Visit the Grand Rapids Art Museum in a stunning modern building with collections ranging from Renaissance to modern art, with a focus on 19th and 20th century European and American art. For vacationers looking for outdoor recreation, you won’t be disappointed. The area contains an abundance of parks and beaches that both adults and children will enjoy. experiencegr.com.