COSHOCTON — Every season is unique in Historic Roscoe Village, but the autumn months are extra special! Roscoe’s location — nestled in the splendid hillsides of south eastern Ohio — provides the perfect backdrop for a fun, scenic visit to America’s Canal Town.
Fall brings an annual favorite to the streets of Roscoe — the Apple Butter Stirrin’ Festival on Oct. 18-20. In its 49th year, this event celebrates the harvest season with apple butter stirred over an open fire, unique craft vendors, delicious foods, and children’s games. The village’s center stage boasts live music and entertainment all weekend with plenty of bluegrass and folk favorites. Always held on the third weekend of October when the surrounding Coshocton County hillsides are awash with color, the festival offers lots to see and do as you enjoy the best of Fall in Ohio!
On a visit to Roscoe Village, you’ll enjoy guided tours of the village’s historic attractions, experiencing history where it was lived. The tour includes homes that reflect life as an early resident of the bustling canal town. You’ll also visit the doctor’s office, a schoolhouse, a blacksmith’s shop with a working forge and more.
Many of Roscoe’s structures date to the 1800s and were restored from near ruin to celebrate the history and traditions of this port along the Ohio and Erie Canal. Today the village captivates visitors with unique shops and delicious restaurants housed in beautifully restored homes and businesses that once lined the canal.
One such building, a three-story warehouse built in the 1830s, once traded in commodities shipped to and from Roscoe along the canal. Now the Warehouse Steak & Stein Restaurant occupies the building with its authentic sand-stone walls and brick floors. It’s open 7-days-a-week serving a wide range of lunch and dinner entrees and local favorites. Directly across the street stands the Medbery Marketplace, occupying the first floor of the massive structure that served as the Roscoe Hotel at the height of the canal era. The Marketplace incorporates the building’s colorful history into the setting for the perfect stop for deli sandwiches, delicious salads, local cheeses and baked goods, ice cream and more!
Sprinkled throughout the village are retail shops that offer a wide selection of unique items including fine jewelry at The House of G.A. Fisher Jewelers; ladies’ and children’s clothing at Abigail Birch & Company; decorative household gifts at The Cottage Gate; collectibles, homemade fudge and gifts at The General Store; candy for all generations at Roscoe Village Sweets and Treats and much more.
Roscoe Village is also the perfect place to find locally-made crafts that add a unique flare to gift-giving. Dennis Knight, a master leather-work artist, works with his team of craftsmen to create beautiful leather belts, purses, satchels and more, meant to last a lifetime. The Coshocton Supply Company features a variety of locally hand-crafted treasures including American flags made in Coshocton. At the Roscoe Village Visitor Center, you’ll find a great selection of pieces crafted by village artisans including woven rugs and placemats, forged items from the blacksmith, and handmade brooms.
When you visit Roscoe Village on Fall weekends, you can also enjoy a ride on the Monticello III, a horse-drawn canal boat that runs along a restored portion of the Ohio & Erie Canal. Described as the "smoothest ride known to man," the canal boat takes passengers on a 45-minute journey with fascinating historical insights of canal life from the boat’s captain. The boat runs every Saturday and Sunday through October 20 (weather permitting) and is truly an experience you’ll never forget.
Today’s Roscoe Village celebrates the history of nearly 200 years ago when the Ohio and Erie Canal construction first reached Roscoe. The small port welcomed its first canal boat in 1830, five years after construction had begun by hand for a canal that would eventually link Cleveland to Portsmouth with 309 miles of waterway. The full length of the canal was completed in 1834 and the small town of Roscoe benefited from increased trade and access to much-needed supplies. Prior to the canal’s construction, trade was mostly over land and it took far too long to get crops to market. The canal boat’s gentle, 4-mile-per-hour ride marked an economic boom for commerce in rural Ohio.
By 1855, railroads were emerging to take the place of the canals, but canal boats still traveled from city to city. The famous flood of 1913 brought an end to the hand-dug canals and sent Roscoe toward ruin.
In 1969, local entrepreneur Edward Montgomery completed the restoration of the first of many structures to breathe life into the decaying buildings. Roscoe Village was soon re-born as a living reminder of the fascinating engineering marvel of canal construction that did so much to open the Ohio Territory.
Come for a fantastic day spent touring, shopping and dining in Historic Roscoe Village! Visit during Apple Butter Stirrin’ or anytime this Fall for family fun and entertainment. To find out more about the charms of America’s Canal Town, visit www.roscoevillage.com or call 1-800-877-1830.