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Exploring the outskirts: Columbus has capacity for concert crowds

Andrew Holleran / Photo editor

Students have had a week to find their stomping grounds on campus, so The Lantern is taking a look beyond Ohio State’s borders to get them familiar with the city.

From intimate clubs to booming arenas, Columbus boasts a wide-ranging selection of concert venues, many of which are close to Ohio State’s campus.

For smaller, less expensive shows, Skully’s Music-Diner, located at 1151 N. High St., often draws young, lively crowds. Besides showcasing live music, the 1,100-person capacity club also hosts an ’80s dance party every Thursday night.

Travis Buck, a third-year in natural resource management, said Skully’s is one of the “most unique” venues he has visited.

“Skully’s is an interesting place because it has a bar feel and a club feel at the same time,” Buck said. “It’s not like any other place and it has a lot of good smaller, local bands.”

Scarlet & Grey Café, located at 2203 N. High St., is also a favorite venue among some OSU students because of its casual atmosphere. Local musicians frequent the cafe’s stage and press its 400-person capacity, and the venue also features an extensive beer selection, pool tables and weekly open mic comedy nights.

Kobo, located at 2590 N. High St., is another small, laid-back lounge that hosts live music up to seven nights a week and holds 250 people.

David Lantz, a fourth-year in philosophy, said Kobo is one of his favorite concert venues.

“I like Kobo because it has small rock bands,” Lantz said. “It’s close to my apartment and the drinks are cheap.”

Another option close to campus is Newport Music Hall, located at 1722 N. High St., across from the Ohio Union. The music venue holds up to 1,700 people for its shows, which range from national headliners such as Flo Rida and Owl City to lesser known artists such as Beats Antique and The Wombats.

The Lifestyle Communities Pavilion, located in the Arena District at 405 Neil Ave., is ideal for larger concerts. The venue boasts a 4,500-person seating capacity in its backyard amphitheater and can also hold 2,200 people in its indoor space.

John Flecher, a third-year in city and regional planning, saw Panic! at the Disco last year and the band fun. in April at the LC Pavilion.

“It’s a good size because it’s a bigger venue but not arena size,” Flecher said. “The Arena District is a good spot with a lot of bars and restaurants close by.”

For large arena concerts, OSU’s Schottenstein Center is a popular choice for students because of its proximity to campus. The Schottenstein Center, located just west of campus at 555 Borror Drive, is also home to the OSU men’s and women’s basketball teams and men’s hockey team. Other large venues include Nationwide Arena, located downtown at 200 W. Nationwide Blvd., and Columbus Crew Stadium, which is east of campus at 1 Black and Gold Blvd.

Mike Gatto, general manager at the Schottenstein Center, said the building’s size is its greatest asset.

“It’s a multipurpose building, so we can do a lot of different things,” Gatto said. “We can produce the largest productions, and we have a lot of flexibility in terms of a draping system. We can fit 20,000 people, or we can use the draping system to shrink it down to about 3,000.”

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