Peninsula, located about a 45-minute drive south of downtown Cleveland, is one of our favorite Northeast Ohio communities. The village is located at the center of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park and residents and visitors both enjoy the scenic town with its downtown historic district.
While visiting the park, take time to stroll the main street, where time stands just a bit more still with buildings dating from as far back as the 1800s. Art galleries, specialty shops, and restaurants are as inviting as they are a relaxing treat any time of the year.
The name, “Peninsula” came from the way the Cuyahoga River wrapped itself around a piece of land that looked just like a Peninsula. Peninsula became known as the “Seaport Town” of the Western Reserve in 1827. It linked the Western Reserve to eastern trade when the Ohio and Erie Canal opened. The village had much of the same style as the Eastern seaports, with its bars and hotels.
Stone quarrying was the main industry in the area during the 19th century. Peninsula was also a center for boat building used on the canal. Peninsula takes pride in its history, and it boasts many buildings from the 1800s in the downtown historic district, most of which are in remarkably good shape.
According to the 2010 census, the City of Peninsula has 565 residents, 98.4% of whom are white, .4% African-American, and .4% Asian. In addition, 55% of Peninsula residents are married. The median age is 47.
Peninsula has two restaurants, The Winking Lizard and Fishers Cafe & Pub, in the center of Main Street for those visiting the village. Snacks can also be found in many of the shops.
The charm of this historic village is alive all along Main Street with many shops and galleries. Among these are:
- Blue Heron Bookstore
- Crooked River Herb Farm Shop
- Szalay’s Farm Market
- Downtown Emporium (antiques)
- Elements Gallery
- Peninsula Art Academy
- The Log Cabin Gallery
- Fine Art Services @ Peninsula Art Academy
Peninsula students attend the Woodridge Local School District that has a current enrollment of around 1,800 students. The Woodridge Local School District has achieved the second highest rating of Effective for the Local Report Card assessment as given by the Ohio Department of Education. Facilities include an elementary school, a middle school, and a high school.
The Village of Peninsula is located at the heart of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. The park offers year-round recreational activities and events including hiking, bicycling, swimming, camping, and train rides. Many visitors of the park enjoy stopping in Peninsula for its historic, small-town charm. Boston Mills & Brandywine Ski Resorts are the place to be during the winter months with slopes for skiing, snowboarding and snow tubing.
Annual events in Peninsula include the Spring Stroll, Peddler Day, and Christmas in Peninsula. Activities at the Cuyahoga Valley National Park run year long, including the Heritage Music events, Spring Fever, Arts in the Valley, and art exhibits. The most popular area event is the Boston Mills Art Fest, held over two weekends in early July.