Marching Into Spring at Buckeye Lake

March 14th, 2023

It’s finally time to spring into fun at the lake! Whether you’re looking for a relaxing drink on the 35 miles of shoreline or an exciting outdoor adventure this season, Buckeye Lake has it all. Offering three important features: lake, land, and leisure, and only a 30-minute drive outside of Columbus, you’re sure to find something you love at Ohio’s very first state park! 


With over 3,000 acres of water, there are many water-based activities for lake fun including kayaking, jet skiing, tubing, and more! In need of a rental for you and your party? Opening for the season in April, stop by LakeBound Outfitters for all your outdoor gear needs, including kayaks, bicycles, camping gear, and paddleboards. Already equipped with your gear? Strap up your kayak and swing by the newly completed Thorn Township Canoe/Kayak Launch Park, a self-launching ramp for those ready to get out on the water! The ramp is also wheelchair accessible – making it easy for everyone to enjoy a day on the lake.

If you’re looking for something a little more relaxing, climb aboard the Queen of the Lake III for a tour of the lake’s history, or set sail with Captain Buck for a private pontoon boat tour. 

Thorn Township Kayak Launch


When you’re out and about, grab a coffee from Buckeye Lake Coffee CompanyMillersport Coffee or Coffee Shack Coffee Roasters & Cafe and stroll around Buckeye Lake State Park! For more outdoor opportunities, enjoy biking on the 4-mile shoreline path across the top of the dam, walking trails, year-round fishing, and some of the best birding spots in central Ohio! In need of a rental for you and your party?  Starting in April, catch a ride with 3XP Tours for pedals, paddles, and pints – that includes biking along the shore, kayaking across the lake, and refreshing drinks afterward!  New to the lake is Earthly Pottery Co., where you can shop handmade pottery, candles, and home goods or book a class to make your own unique piece! Plus, there are always events going on and around the lake that you won’t want to miss! 

Take a quick break and shop locally at the many unique businesses in the area! Spruce up your abode with Amish-made furniture and home decor at Oak Creations, or vintage home furnishings at Picadilly Vintage. Then, update your wardrobe with cute clothes and accessories at The Yellow Sundress Resale Boutique. With the myriad of shop options, you won’t go home empty-handed! 

Earthly Pottery Co.


After your day of excitement at the lake, grab a bite at a local restaurant with waterfront dining and live music! Enjoy a glass of wine at  Buckeye Lake Winery, a craft brew at Buckeye Lake Brewery, a delicious burger at Horvath’s Harbor, or a relaxing drink at the Hereinafter Cocktail Tavern. New to the Village of Buckeye Lake, indulge in upscale casual dining at the Blue Heron Kitchen & Pub with options of soup, salads, sandwiches, pasta, and more! If you need a little refresher, stop by Weldon’s Ice Cream Factory or Hank & Stella’s for a cool, homemade treat!

Weldon's Ice Cream Factory

Ready to plan your trip?  Whether it be a quick weekend getaway or your next family vacation, book your stay at one of the many unique short-term rentals (via Airbnb or Vrbo) near or on the water, and make Buckeye Lake your next vacation destination! 

For more information, check out our website, download our mobile app, sign up for our monthly newsletter, and follow us on Facebook & Instagram

The Latest Bites & Beverages at Buckeye Lake

February 20th, 2023

There are new exciting eateries popping up all over Buckeye Lake, and others are taking notice!  Check out what restaurants are coming to the lake, and of course, some favorites that have also made the headlines in years past. 

The Blue Heron Kitchen & Pub
Officially opening its doors in February 2023,  The Blue Heron Kitchen & Pub offers indoor dining and bar seating with an enclosed patio. 614 Now writes, “The restaurant, which features a nautical theme to its interior decor, will provide a mix of contemporary American cuisine and seafood favorites, which means everything from salmon to a gourmet pork chop sandwich will be available.”  Don’t miss out on this upscale American eatery in the village of Buckeye Lake!

Hereinafter Cocktail Tavern
Already a lake favorite, the Hereinafter Cocktail Tavern brings high-end cocktails and dining to Millersport! 614 Now shares, “With its use of liquid nitrogen, frothy egg whites, and other newer gastronomic methods, the newly-opened Hereinafter Cocktail Tavern doesn’t shy away from modern mixology…”  Experience classic Southern dishes, unique glass-sized cut ice cubes made from a 200-pound block, and the restaurant’s very own Heretofore Wine Shop, coming soon!

The Latest Bites & Beverages at Buckeye Lake

Hook & Ladder
Coming soon to Millersport, the Hook & Ladder where “fun and food collide at the lake,” is set to open in summer 2023.  Plan for brews, bites, and tons of entertainment! Check out their website and sign-up for updates!

Memorable Media Mentions

Hometown Hot Dogs
Recently celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2023, Hometown Hot Dogs brings a unique West Virginia favorite to the lake! Columbus Monthly shares, “Hometown’s signature wiener is the West Virginia Dog. This delightful filled-to-the-brim frank is topped with coleslaw that sinks into layers of mild, medium, or hot Coney sauce, cut onions, and yellow mustard. It certainly requires a fork…” Stop in and indulge in gourmet hotdogs, sandwiches, and more!

Buckeye Lake Winery
As the only winery on the lake, Buckeye Lake Winery shares the taste of Napa Valley with central Ohio. writes, “Established in 2013, the Buckeye Lake Winery prides itself on its hands-on approach to wine. While many Ohio wineries specialize in fruity wines because growing conditions here are conducive to it, the folks at Buckeye Lake Winery work with a California vineyard to produce ‘Big Reds’ — the Lake View Red, for example — that meet their high standards.”  Enjoy a full menu with outdoor and indoor seating, beautiful lake views, and of course, delicious wine! 

The Latest Bites & Beverages at Buckeye Lake

Papa Boo’s
Expanding their hours into the winter season, Papa Boo’s is a lake favorite all year round! Finding Ohio shares, “The food was served quickly, was plentiful and tasty. Our waiter and the other employees we spoke with were very friendly and welcoming. Beyond all that, it’s just a nice environment to experience dinner at the lake.”  Stop by Papa Boo’s for live music, delicious food, and a full bar right on the waters of Buckeye Lake!

Stay up-to-date with new businesses, restaurants, and more coming to Buckeye Lake with the Escape to Buckeye Lake app!  Sign up for the monthly Escape to Buckeye Lake newsletter and follow us on Facebook and Instagram to keep connected. 

Dive Into Valentine’s Day at Buckeye Lake

February 2nd, 2023

The most romantic day of the year is almost here, and we’re giving you all the tips and tricks to have your Valentine’s Day date night (or weekend) go smooth-sailing. 

1. Book Your V-Day Getaway

With multiple short-term rentals all around the lake, you’ll find the best stay for your V-Day getaway!  Find lakefront cottages and chic, photo-worthy homes with beautiful waterfront views to make your trip as memorable as possible. 

2. Out & About

Located less than 20 minutes from Buckeye Lake, take a relaxing stroll through the pet-friendly Dawes Arboretum with approximately 12 miles of hiking trails!  Or enjoy a peaceful walk on the lake with the 4-mile Buckeye Lake walking and biking trail with beautiful sunrises and breathtaking sunsets along the shoreline nearly each day!

Dive into Valentine’s Day at Buckeye Lake

3. Gifts Galore

Grab the perfect Valentine’s Day bouquet at Millersport Flowers and pair it with a Valentine’s Day-themed gift basket from Jackie’s Creations, both new, locally-owned shops in Millersport!  Looking for a little more?  Enjoy a short drive to the historical village of Somerset, offering unique, small-town shopping such as Gypsy Hawaii Boutique and (Mid) Western Second Hand for quality apparel, accessories, home goods, and more. 

Dive into Valentine’s Day at Buckeye Lake

4. Donuts, Drinks & Dinner

Morning: Grab a warm cup and brunch from Coffee Shack Coffee Roasters & Cafe on the North Shore and then partake in the sweetest donut date at Dockside Donuts.
Afternoon: Indulge in a scrumptious bite including gourmet burgers, wraps and desserts, at Horvath’s Harbor or unique sandwiches, tacos, burritos and more at Chef Shack, paired perfectly with a craft brew from the attached Buckeye Lake Brewery.
Evening:  Enjoy the relaxing, southern banks of the lake with a delicious and extensive menu at Buckeye Lake Winery.  Afterwards, end the night at the new Hereinafter Cocktail Tavern for high-end drinks and a cozy atmosphere. 

Dive into Valentine’s Day at Buckeye Lake

Map out your trip with the Escape to Buckeye Lake appOur app allows you to add different shops, restaurants, and more in one easy-to-read list, keeping you on track for the perfectly planned Valentine’s Day right from your phone!

Follow Escape to Buckeye Lake on Facebook and Instagram for more updates on restaurants, activities, and more happening around Buckeye Lake.


6 Tips for Making the Most of Winterfest

January 4th, 2023

It’s a new year and 2023 has tons of fun events and festivities in store at Buckeye Lake!  Starting off with a bang is Winterfest, one of the biggest events at Buckeye Lake, held by the Buckeye Lake Region Chamber of Commerce.  Check out this list of things to know to make your Winterfest experience the best one possible!

1. Book Your Stay ASAP
Winterfest activities start early and end late, plus, it’s a two-day event including the Polar Plunge!  Don’t miss out on all the fun and make sure you’ve got your lodging stay in order. Take advantage of the myriad of unique short-term rentals at the lake before they’re booked out!  

2. Study the Specials
Of course, local businesses help create all the fun!  Check out what restaurant specials, live music, and more are going on during Winterfest weekend to get all the best deals on the lake. 

3. Meet Benny the Bass
Join “Benny the Bass” at 6:30AM at the North Shore ramp to see if he “takes the bait” and predicts an early spring or refuses, which means 6 more weeks of winter. Benny will move to the Buckeye Lake Brewery after the pre-dawn fireworks show so you can see him all day! 

benny the bass


4. Buy Your Wristband
Don’t fret over who’s driving – plan your trip ahead of time and make sure to grab your Winterfest transportation wristbands with the Ohio Party Bus or the Barr Hopper!

5. Brave the Polar Plunge
What better way to wash away 2022 than by jumping into freezing cold waters?  On January 29th, take a dive into Buckeye Lake with the 9th annual Polar Plunge!  All proceeds benefit United Way’s local programs. 

polar plunge


6. Have Fun!
Winterfest not only benefits local businesses around the lake during the off-season, but helps bring the community together in a unique way!  Don’t miss out on all the food, friends, and fun this year.

Bonus Tip: Check back for updates on our Winterfest Specials page as well as follow the map of participating businesses on our app.  Follow us on Facebook & Instagram and subscribe to our monthly newsletter for updates on events, restaurants, and more happening at Buckeye Lake for Winterfest and all year long!  


Happy Holidays from the Lake!

December 14th, 2022

As December winds down, it’s a great time to get out and celebrate the end of 2022 around the lake!  Support small and get some last-minute shopping done for the holidays with unique gifts for your loved ones or enjoy some activities around the lake during the colder months.  

Plan your upcoming lake trip for the new year today and explore what else the region has to offer, including lodging, popular restaurants, activities, shopping, and much more. Whether it be a quick weekend getaway or your next family vacation, book your stay at one of the many unique short-term rentals (via Airbnb or Vrbo) near or on the water, and make Buckeye Lake your next vacation destination! 

happy holidays from buckeye lake

Don’t Forget!
Winterfest 2023 is coming soon!  Mark your calendars for January 28th as we join Benny the Bass to see if he “takes the bait” and predicts an early spring or refuses, which means six more weeks of winter. Winterfest is celebrated with fireworks, activities around the late, live music, art shows, food and drink specials, food trucks, and more. Don’t wait… book your stay now and make sure to grab your Winterfest transportation wristbands with the Ohio Party Bus or the Barr Hopper!

The team at Escape to Buckeye Lake would like to take a moment to thank you for a wonderful 2022!  We are excited to be your source for new events, restaurants, and experiences coming soon to Buckeye Lake in 2023.  If you haven’t already, sign up for our newsletter and follow us on Facebook and Instagram for an easy way to stay up-to-date. 

Have a happy holiday and a wonderful New Year! 

Shopping Local at the Lake for Small Business Saturday

November 18th, 2022

November is known as the month for giving back and what better way to show appreciation for your community than to support  those within it!  Check out some shops below to celebrate Small Business Saturday this year with those local to you at Buckeye Lake. 

*Remember to check or call ahead as the hours of businesses on Buckeye Lake tend to change during the winter season.

For the Coffee Connoisseur

Millersport Coffee | 12045 Lancaster Street, Millersport
Recently expanding into their new location, Millersport Coffee is a must for all your caffeine cravings!  Grab a shirt or mug as the perfect stocking-stuffer.

shopping local at the lake for small business week

Buckeye Lake Coffee Company | 14675 Zion Road, Thornville
With locally roasted beans by One Line Coffee in Heath, Ohio, Buckeye Lake Coffee Company works with local suppliers to source ingredients for the freshest, highest quality brews. Stop in for a latte, cappuccino, drip coffee or tasty bites!

Coffee Shack Coffee Roasters & Cafe | 4675 Walnut Road, Buckeye Lake
Only a short distance from the North Shore, Coffee Shack Coffee Roasters & Cafe features organically grown, delicious coffee and treats, as well as a full breakfast and lunch menu.

For the Craft Beer or Wine Lover

Buckeye Lake Winery | 13750 Rosewood Road, Thornville
Buckeye Lake Winery offers a full-service restaurant with outdoor & indoor seating and delicious food.  Enjoy the Napa Valley experience right in the heart of the lake!

Buckeye Lake Brewery | 5176 Walnut Road SE, Buckeye Lake
Sit back and relax at Buckeye Lake Brewery!   Enjoy their tap room serving draft beer, local wine, and bourbon, as well as seasonal winter flavors.  Feeling hungry?  Add an order from Chef Shack located next door to the brewery! 

For the Foodie

Buckeye Lake Margaritas Restaurant & Cantina | 4675 Walnut Road, Buckeye Lake
Experience the taste of Mexico right in central Ohio! Enjoy authentic Mexican food and delicious drinks just minutes from the lake.

Pappy D’s Island House | 2977 Greenlawn Ave, Millersport
Situated on Leib’s Island, Pappy D’s Island House is a casual, cozy space for family and friends.  Book your next holiday party or event in the newly renovated space upstairs with customizable catering options, with bartenders and servers available! 

Papa Boo’s | 11356 Avondale Road, Thornville
Now open year-long, Papa Boo’s is the lakeside place for fun and  food! With live music and a full bar, it’s the perfect spot to enjoy the water of Buckeye Lake in any season.

Horvath’s Harbor | 14675 Zion Road, Thornville
Cozy up by the fireplace and enjoy a broad selection of wines, craft brews, bourbons and delectable food at Horvath’s Harbor! 

shopping local at the lake for small business week

Hometown Hot Dogs | 12031 Lancaster Street  NE, Millersport
At Hometown Hot Dogs, you’ll find delicious homemade food for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.   Along with their gourmet hotdogs, locals rave about their comfort food, including soups, sandwiches, daily specials, and the best burgers around!

For the Decorator

Buckeye Lake Place | 12041 Lancaster Street, Millersport
For unique lakeside-inspired gifts or perfect home decor pieces, visit the carefully curated, high quality selection at Buckeye Lake Place with vintage goods, nautical items, antiques, logo wear, and home decor.

Oak Creations | 2474 Blacklick-Eastern Road NE, Millersport
Find reasonable and affordable selection every day at Oak Creations in Millersport!  Offering Amish-made furniture, home decor, accessories, Tiffany lamps and more. 

Picadilly Vintage | 12033 Lancaster Street, Millersport
With everything from shabby chic to rustic elegance, Picadilly Vintage provides a trendy new twist on vintage home furnishings!  

shopping local at the lake for small business week

Melissa & Patti’s Unique Finds | 14547 Township Road 1061, Thornville
Melissa & Patti’s Unique Finds is a gift and home decor shop with handmade and refurbished furniture featuring  nautical, beach styles to rustic, country styles. You can also find crafts and antiques, as well as custom work!

Smith Girls Art Gallery |  West Bank Road NE, Millersport
Smith Girl Arts Gallery is home to the artwork of local watercolorist, Gayla Smith. The Gallery is adorned with Gayla’s original paintings and museum quality prints. Grab note cards, stickers and a variety of stocking-stuffers from their website!

For the Stylist 

Yellow Sundress Resale Boutique | 4675 Walnut Road, Buckeye Lake
The Yellow Sundress Resale Boutique features a variety of styles to spruce up your wardrobe. Browse cute clothes, fun accessories and essential home décor items.

The Lake’s End |  9075 Boundaries Road #9400, Thornville
Shopping for the outdoors-person in your life?  The Lake’s End in Thornville offers a selection of Carhartt apparel, Oakley gear, Wolverine boots, Redwing boots, Irish Setter boots, and more!  Their services also include screen printing, embroidery, custom banners, and graphic design for all your custom needs.

shopping local at the lake for small business week

Check out more places to shop at Buckeye Lake as well as more local food options.

Keep connected with upcoming events at Buckeye Lake!  Sign up for our newsletter, follow us on Facebook and Instagram and download our Escape to Buckeye Lake app.

5 Fun Fall Things to Do at Buckeye Lake

November 1st, 2022

The weather’s getting colder and the leaves are falling… but that doesn’t mean there aren’t exciting things still happening at Buckeye Lake! Check out these 5 fun fall things you can do in and/or around the water this season.

1. Fall Fishing

Who says you can’t cast a line year-round?  Even during the chilly Ohio months, fishing is still a top activity amongst the lake.  Check out the lake fishing map for more information on finding your perfect catch! 

5 fun fall things to do at buckeye lake


2. Snag a Bite

With over 30 bars and restaurants surrounding the lake, there’s always a good place to grab a bite to eat.  Cozy up beside the outdoor fireplace at Horvath’s Harbor or the Buckeye Lake Winery and enjoy the beautiful views right on the water.  Just a reminder that as the weather changes, so do the hours of most businesses around the lake!  Make sure to call ahead for the most accurate hours of operation.

3. Cozy Up With a Cup

Looking for a hot brew to keep you warm?  Check out Buckeye Lake Coffee Company, Millersport Coffee, and Coffee Shack Coffee Roasters & Cafe for all your caffeinated cravings this autumn!

5 fun fall things to do at buckeye lake

4. Outdoor Autumn Adventures

Stretch your legs before the snow falls!  There’s a myriad of outdoor activities around Buckeye Lake to keep you out-and-about this autumn season.  Whether you’re looking for walking trails, bike paths, or excited to enjoy the wildlife, the Buckeye Lake area has it all.

5 fun fall things to do at buckeye lake

5. Autumn Outings

Looking for some fun things to do by the lake this month?  Don’t miss these upcoming events.

  • Miracle on Lancaster Street in Millersport | 11/12/2022 from 12:00PM-5:00PM
    Already in the holiday spirit? Stop by for carriage rides with Santa and great deals from local businesses!
  • River Rats “Live on the Lake” at Boatyard at Buckeye Lake | 11/12/2022 from 7:00PM-9:00PM
    Listen to Zanesville, Ohio’s very own River Rats as they share live upbeat percussion, original acoustic ballads and instrumental fiddle pieces that stem from the Appalachian culture in the foothills of southeast Ohio.
  • Randy Gleason at Horvath’s Harbor | 11/18/2022 from 6:00PM-9:00PM
    Enjoy music from Shawnee, Ohio native, Randy Gleason, as he covers everything from the ‘60s to now, including Neil Young and Three Doors Down.
  • Flu’z Acoustic at Horvath’s Harbor | 11/23/2022 from 7:00PM-10:00PM
    Catch Flu’z Acoustic performing all of your favorite songs, from genres like rock, country, and today’s hits!
  • Pancake Dinner at Thornville Masonic Lodge | 11/27/2022 from 4:30PM-6:30PM
    Who doesn’t love breakfast at night?  Bring the kids and stop out for pancakes, fruit, coffee, raffles and more! All donations go to the Thornville Action Committee.

Keep It On Your Calendar…
Events coming up this December near Buckeye Lake.

Stay a while! Maybe you’re looking for a quick weekend getaway without the hassle?  Whether you’re near or far, Buckeye Lake is the perfect place with lots to do, no matter the weather!  With a ton of lodging options, you’re sure to find the perfect place to enjoy the lake.  Don’t wait, plan your trip today!

Be in-the-know with all things Buckeye Lake! Check out our upcoming events, subscribe to our monthly newsletter and download our Escape to Buckeye Lake app.